Who says people don’t care about government anymore?

Were you glued to the tube when the Iraqi bombardment began?

Did you tune in to find out what Anita Hill was saying about Clarence Thomas during his Supreme Court confirmation hearing?

Haven’t you heard more than a few cries of “racism” at City Hall?

Each is an example of “government,” such as it is today.

Of course, it’s easy to tune in when government becomes titillating, bloody or just plain frightening. It’s harder to pay attention when all we’re dealing with is a City Council or Mayoral election.

We may not like it, but that’s the way it is.

Yet local elections define life in our neighborhoods. If crime is a problem, grumbling about George Bush, Clarence Thomas or Saddam Hussein isn’t going to help much. But becoming informed about, and voting for or against, our City Council and Mayoral candidates will make a difference.

It’s time to start paying attention not only to the sensational stories of our time, but also to the less-publicized but just-as-important events and issues we can influence.

In that spirit, the Advocate mailed identical questionnaires to Mayoral candidates and City Council candidates in Districts 2, 9 and 14 – each of which includes a significant portion of East Dallas or Lakewood.

Each candidate was asked to answer, in 25 words or less, seven questions concerning issues important to East Dallas and the City as a whole. The responses we received are printed in this issue, with candidates listed in order of their ballot appearance.

And we compared our politicians’ comments with those of neighborhood residents, whose responses also are printed on Page 15.

Once you have reviewed the issues and candidates, there’s really only one thing left to do: Vote.

The election is November 5. If you aren’t sure where to cast your ballot or the district in which you reside, call the City’s election hotline at 670-3618.

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