I don't see people like me in public office -- a young parent in a single-income household, without generational wealth or a white-collar job, paying rent for the foreseeable future as homeownership becomes a distant dream.
I see a need for economic diversity. I see a place on the city council for a person who has experienced two financial disasters before the age of 35, yet still learned how to thrive within his means. I see an underserved district that needs a councilperson in their corner, who understands the economic anxiety of raising a child during a pandemic, and someone who knows all too well what it is like to live paycheck to paycheck.
I also see Black, Indigenous and other people of color who have been harassed, profiled, or ignored, and it is my duty to use my privileged position to listen to the demands and concerns of these communities and bring them to the table without filtering, co-opting or altering them. Amplification is a tool that I, as a white candidate for public office, can use even before I am elected.
That's why I'm an abolitionist. If we support The Movement for Black Lives with social media posts and signs in our yards, we must support them with policy decisions that create substantial change. One of those crucial, oft-mentioned policies is abolishing the police. This is vital to the future of community safety for all, and I stand with The Movement for Black Lives. Abolishing the police is not an immediate solution; it's a destination. That includes Claremont.
Claremont is a wonderful city that I'm lucky enough to call home, but it is not exempt from the ubiquitous social ills of racism, homelessness, systemic inequity, neglect of the working class and divisive politics. I envision a future where the City Council expands Claremont's support network to curb these problems, and a future where our city is brought together and strengthened by greater representation and inclusion. We can build up our care economy, from mental health and rehabilitation services to subsidized daycare and beyond, and create a new vision of community safety without policing in its current form.
I will fight for antiracist policies across the board, affordable housing, creative revenue generation, sustainability, racial and economic equity, protection of our city's most vulnerable and a reallocated budget that reflects the true values of Claremont -- education, empathy, dignity, humanity, justice and community.