Is Santa Claus a Republican? I would like to think he is on our team, or rather that we are on his team. The writer, who responded to 8-year-old Virginia’s question to “The Sun” about the existence of Santa Claus, wrote about skeptics and then assured her that “He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy.”
I believe that we are fortunate in this community to know many people who live to serve others. They may not wear red suits with white furry trim. But, they live the spirit of Christmas and community. Sometimes it is the small things, done by the many that make the biggest difference. This time of year, it is wonderful to see many community groups and individuals raise money and donate to the Naugatuck Ecumenical Food Bank and our other social services. Many of these organizations include membership from our borough’s leaders and employees.
The Republican and Democratic town committees include members who also serve with other public service and community groups. None of us would be serving if it were not for the love of our community. You may be skeptical, but the more involved you are, you will find that what I say is true.
For the Nov. 5 elections, we were fortunate to have candidates who asked to serve. All who reached out to voters and ran campaigns deserve our gratitude. Some were disappointed. I hope they continue to stay involved. It is no secret why some have continued to be re-elected. Most belong to several school, church, and other volunteer organizations, actively participating in community service for years. To those who were elected, know it is an honor that Naugatuck’s voters placed their confidence in you. A poor economy, with many still out of work, has created even more need for social services. Therefore, the faith that people placed in you should be cherished and not forgotten.
In January, the membership of the Republican and Democratic town committees, who endorsed all of our municipal candidates, will undergo its election. The candidate choice for the town committees differs each year. Sometimes, we have no one who offers to serve. Other times, we have either more candidates than openings, or we have one person who stands up and says they will run. Our choice then is to decide whether to endorse no one or to have faith in an unknown. It’s a choice made by a group, who have always considered each individual who offered to serve. Running for office seems easy only for those who have never jumped in.
As with most volunteer organizations, there is no pay, benefits, or glamour. In fact, most people won’t even know your involvement. Yet, there is great opportunity to get to know those who are making a difference in our community. You will learn where the needs are and how best to serve. I have found it an honor to serve on the town committee and would encourage all to learn more about our members, our work, and consider joining us as we strive to make a difference in our town.
While campaigns and candidates may separate the Republican and Democratic town committees prior to an election, once that is over, we all know that it is time to join hands and get the work done. And frankly, even during the hardest run campaigns, I have seen that most candidates continue to show respect and understand that we all want what is best for Naugatuck.
Is Santa a Republican? In Naugatuck, I have been fortunate to know Republicans, Democrats and party unaffiliated people who have shown the same spirit as Santa, giving back to our community and working to help our families. I guess all we can know for certain is that the spirit of giving is pretty well represented in Naugatuck and you are welcome to join.
Chairwoman, Republican Town Committee