To The Citizens of Santa Fe; To The Southside Residents:
Today marks a new day in the history of la ciudad de Santa Fe. Today more than ever we face a myriad of social realities and challenges unprecedented in the annals of human history. Ever since the Great Recession, the Hidden Economic Depression, of the early 21st Century, the majority of ordinary citizens have been left behind, have been forgotten in the great struggle for economic prosperity and basic survival.
In my hometown of Santa Fe I have witnessed and come across countless families without a name, without a voice, without an identity throughout the business and governmental halls of power, sketching out a semblance of an existence unrecognized by those that are supposed to represent us in a healthy Democracy. Austerity measures are being implemented throughout the world and Santa Fe is no exception. Even if a variable percentage of the population of the City residing on top the Eastside Mountains, or cowering inside exclusive golf resorts hidden in the hills to the North, and are unaware or ignorant by choice of the austerity, the scarcity of economic sustainability for the common well-being, the Southside area residents are all too familiar with the truth. Many families and residents have been foreclosed upon; too many of our children are lost in a world of violent madness, excessive drug abuse; domestic tumult; out of control teen pregnancy; widespread lack of economic and educational opportunity; too many of our people wander the streets aimlessly with no home to call their own; the mentally ill, the senior citizens, those that are not “economically viable”; people of color, women, LGBT, people with disabilities, our most vulnerable citizens over the past decade and then some, have been neglected, forgotten, and abandoned.
On the Southside of Santa Fe we have been provided nothing more than empty lip service and hallow misgivings about community renewal, environmental sustainability, public safety, job creation, quality education, public service, health care, governmental reform, neighborhood improvement, and quality of life. For over a decade now plans have been drafted, resolutions have been introduced, funds have even been appropriated, or misappropriated, and still we walk the same neglected streets and barrios of a forgotten segment of this great small urban center of Santa Fe that continues to make the top lists for wine, recreation, food, skiing, art galleries, and retirement for the rich. The economic divide between the well-to-do and hard working families is increasing on a day by day basis and I ask you, what have our so-called leaders done to properly address this systemic reality, this unforgiveable tragedy? The answer: absolutely nothing!
As any genuine homeboy from Santa Fe would tell you: “I was born here all my life…” I have grown and watched and participated in the many struggles of honest hard-working people trying to feed their families and provide their children some sense of opportunity for a better future, without much given in return from the so-called leaders of this small city. I have witnessed and been appalled one too many times too often by the high level of corruption that has controlled our local government from the inside channels of city hall to the governing body itself. So I ask myself, after everything I’ve seen during my upbringing to the modern day, knowing how dirty and filthy politics can get, why would I want to run for City Council? As I speak to many people across the city, some of which are people I grew up with, many of these people ask me am I crazy. I answer with only one response: “yes, I am”. I also answer myself when I ask myself this question: “yes, I am crazy… I am willing to put myself on the line, I can take the hits… because I care”. As much as I have tried to convince myself otherwise throughout many stages of my life, I cannot deny the truth: I care.
I care about my community. I care about the poor. I care about the disenfranchised, the wretched, the downtrodden, the little guy, the underdog, the minorities, those that have been left out of the so-called American Dream. I care about women who get paid less than their male counterparts; I care about LGBT people that are still searching for equal rights; I care about the so-called immigrant community that has yet to discover an effective voice in Santa Fe, my brothers and sisters, that are escaping the persecution of extreme poverty only to find economic prosperity through the lens of slavery; I care about the unhealthy division amongst Native-born local Hispanics and Latino people from Mexico, Central America, or South America (it doesn’t make any sense to me, we are of the same ancestry and history); I care about the starving artists (many of whom are my personal friends) that are constantly overlooked by the sham and superficial fakeness of the fabrication of the art industry in town that doesn’t adequately give back; I care about the single mother, or the single father, struggling to raise children on their own while holding one demanding or two highly demanding jobs just to make ends meet; I care about the elderly who are too often ignored and taken for granted when they are so valuable to the viability and heritage of any vibrant community; I care about the youth that are so constantly overlooked and abused and exploited by uncaring adults that should know better; I care about the environment, the land, the sky, the light, and the clean air that should benefit all; I care about the scarce water resources and the clean water on the Eastside of Town as opposed to the dirty water on the SouthWest side of town; I care about our failing schools that continuously and tragically continue to fail our students; I care about the victims of domestic violence, the addicts of substance abuse, the homeless people lost in a town that moves millions of dollars a day through this tiny city, and all they ever ask for is a handout; I care about the high cost of living, the lack of access to business and government for ordinary people, and the lack of a true living wage; and I care about the health and well-being of every single citizen that chooses to call Santa Fe their home, even if sometimes it doesn’t feel like one.
I love where I come from, and I love the many people I have come across in my hometown, regardless if they were from somewhere else. Needless to say, this is why I am running.
I will not promise anything to anyone. I am not doing this for prestige, power, money, or any other worldly idea that holds no value for me. I am doing this to contribute, to help take care of our people in a time of great need, in a time of great need to reach out to one another and take care of one another.
Everyone living today that has lived long enough knows something isn’t right about the world we live in. Whether we blame it on climate change, dwindling natural resources, exploitation of land, technology, mass media, corrupt governments, war, epidemics, famine, other people, lack of physical and spiritual well-being, or any other excuse or reason, many of us that are mired in hard reality every day know something isn’t quite right.
The only thing I can offer is a unique skill set, an open heart, receptive ears, and stalwart will to confront the real issues faced by real people in Santa Fe, and to always and consistently fight for the rights of all humans, especially those that are currently feeling they have no rights left.
I will work very hard to represent my people that need a sense of place; that need better quality jobs in their community; that need access to quality education from pre-K to elementary to secondary to post-secondary; that need to keep their families together; that need to start or expand their small business; that need to keep big business from swallowing their livelihoods; that need bike lanes and bike and walking trails and open space and more user-friendly parks; that need access to workforce resources and information; that need child care services and affordable health care; that require economic sustainability, economic stability, and peace of mind; that need citywide quality affordable housing; that require a means to reduce the high cost of living; that need a real living wage; that need to hold big business accountable; that require more transparency and accountability in government and business; that need to prevent their children from becoming another statistic; that require justice and a voice and a place to call their own; that need a sense of peace, unity, and a livable community.
I have worked in government long enough to know that the only thing wrong with government and big business is the wrong priorities. The only people that seem to benefit from government and big business are the rich, the well-to-do. It’s not that I’m opposed to those that are more than capable of taking care of themselves, it’s just that there are many more that have been rendered incapable of taking care of themselves because those that take care of themselves do too good of a job of taking care of themselves.
“When you are involved in the struggle, you must give back to the struggle”
We are in this together. The time is over of supporting candidates that run unopposed and pay nothing but lip service to a community in need while our elected public officials line their own pockets, corrupt our public trust, and abuse their power by exploiting working people for personal gain. The time has come upon us to give back, and to work stronger in the realm of developing and cultivating human resource above the petty grubby myopic narrow vision of personal greed.
Today More Than Ever… Hoy Mas Que Nunca…
There was once a time in our history when these words meant something, when they meant a major change not only in the way we perceive our world, but when we took action to change it for the better, for the greater good.
I will be the voice of the people that is currently lacking at City Hall. I will take care of the District 3 neighborhoods and residents and work together with all of you to transform the Southside into the powerhouse and unique way of life that it is. I will give back to my community every day I sit on that panel and hold public office, without any consideration for personal gain. I am here to represent my people, our people, the people and the land that we love and that we all want to protect and give to our children with a higher quality of life.
Please join me in this struggle. Please join me in this struggle to rid City Hall of its corrosive corrupting influence, and to rid it of the do-nothing somebodies that can never be more than what they have proven they are incapable of doing.
Let’s March 4th Together! Vote Angelo Jaramillo March 4, 2014!
Hasta La Victoria Siempre!