To the editor,
The proposal to change the charter of the City of Brownwood to a hired professional police chief, who is also an experienced manager of both large funds and personnel, stands on its own merits, if examined logically. The Citizens for a Safer Brownwood committee has tried to keep the campaign nonpersonal in scope, even though several letters to the editor and the interview with Mr. Cowin attempt to make it a blow to him personally.
This proposal was until Sunday not about Mr. Cowin; however, Steve Nash chose to interview him now, less than two weeks before the election, and the Bulletin placed the interview on Page 1. Even the headline stated “Cowin feels election to an extent is about him.” In the lengthy article, Mr. Nash quoted Chief Cowin as saying “If everybody loved me, you probably wouldn’t have this on the ballot.” If the campaign heats up in the next two weeks, it will be in large part because some folks evidently want that to happen, and it is not the Citizens for a Safer Brownwood Committee.
The city’s charter change proposal specifies that the election will not affect the current chief’s term, and members of the committee have assured Mr. Cowin that we want to be nonpersonal in this election. Certainly, the two or three times that this came before the electorate in the past had nothing to do with Mr. Cowin. This IS the first time that a concerted grassroots effort has been made to make the issues clear to the public, and halfway between election years still seems like the best time for this consideration.
I continue to think that the electorate in our democracy enjoys constructive, civilized discussion and will consider what is best for Brownwood over the long view. Please consider the issue, inform yourself, and vote for Brownwood’s future as a forward-thinking community by voting FOR Proposition 1, in early voting this week and next, or on Saturday, May 10, 2008.