If you went to the Candidate's Forum, then you know there was only one star - one whom everyone applauded. That star is Tony Fields, one of the candidates for Alderman of Ward 4. He spoke naturally from his heart, and I think he was the only candidate who actually finished his introductory remarks within the time frame. Instead of stopping in mid sentence, his remarks ended appropriately.
He also spoke using very good English, which is more than I can say for most of the current Board. This is one of my pet peeves. The Aldermen represent us with all types of people and groups all over the state and country. I am personally embarrassed when my representatives can't even speak English properly. It makes them think we're all a bunch of Mississippi hicks.
Tony said one thing that really impressed me - and many other members of the audience. Unfortunately, he did not choose to talk about it in the article in the Democrat about this race. He said that all candidates talk about wanting to make Natchez a city where our young people can stay and live. However, he pointed out that all the people saying that are old fogies (actually, that's my term - he was more polite). He wants to represent the young generation of this city. He's absolutely right. We badly need younger people on the Board of Aldermen, to serve as spokespeople and role models, and to represent a different point of view.
In the Democrat article, he chose to talk mostly about education, which as I've said before, is not an area over which the Board has much control. However, that's what he knows best, and if anyone can make a difference, it's Tony Fields.
I don't have anything against Bubber West. I think he's actually one of the most effective and intelligent of the Aldermen - not that there's much competition. But he has serious financial and health problems, which interfere with his ability to serve. He's had 17 pretty good years, and it's time to make way for a new generation.
I had to feel sorry for the third candidate, Donnell Newsome, who is actually a very good candidate. He had to share the stage with the Star and the Incumbent, and it was tough to compete.
Unlike the rest of us, Ward 4 actually has three competent candidates. But I have to say, Tony Fields really stood out.
PS. You may have noticed that I left out Ward 3. That's because there's no vote there until the General Election on June 3, and I wanted to concentrate on those we vote for in the Primary Election on May 6. Besides, I have discussed Ward 3 previously, and I can assure you I'll have more to say in the future.