My Friend Ali Ramos Vs. the Worst of West Texas, Or, Ali Runs for City Council
Although I love the bumper sticker "Lubbock or Leave It" for its charmingly half-assed pun, I actually despise a love-it-or-leave-it mindset.
It's a mindset that avoids problems rather than addressing them. It embraces blind tribalism, it's a kowtow to the status quo, and it, like the bumper sticker's pun, is just absolutely lazy.
I've gotten piles of crap for being outspoken about my beef with West Texas, being told by, invariably men, to shut my trap and smile because they are 'tired of hearing it.' In some ways, these mansplainers are correct: if I want it to be different, I should do something about it.
Ah, but here's the rub: radio is regulated by the FCC, which includes a fair-time rule for political candidates. So in essence, for me to run for local government, every one of my opposition would be allowed to have time equal to me. That's six hours a day, and I bet their taste in music just sucks.
Instead, I'll hold on to my little platform and gently suggest some alterations. This in no way diminishes my love for the homeland. It means I love it enough to want it to be better for more of my fellow Lubbockites.
I'm very proud that I have a darling friend that is running for City Council in Amarillo. Amarillo will never not be bizarro Lubbock to me. It is our reflection in so many ways, and what would happen to us if we traded a major university for a major highway. What happens in 'Rillo ripples down to us, and vice-versa.
Ali Ramos describes herself as an activist and has done more to bring down the worst of West Texas in a few months than most people I know do in a lifetime. She helped expose an awful man and his disgusting racism, and despite being told over and over she had no effect, well, let's just say Ali Ramos still exists, while the stupid restaurant does not.
She is a social worker and an artist, with a soul big enough to support both callings. In many instances, a weaker person would have just withered from all the criticism and downright sh*t talk she's received, but Ali is made of tougher stuff. Her fortitude, passion, and relentlessly hard work are great indicators of the type of city councilperson she'll be: one that advocates for the disenfranchised, the downtrodden and the forgotten, all while remaining sensible and with a sense of humor.
I won't relay her well-defined, practical policy ideas here because we live in Lubbock, not Amarillo, but I will encourage the Ali Ramoses of Lubbock to brave the opposition and be the change they want to see. And I'll be here cheering you on, just as I am Ali's biggest cheerleader.