LETTER: Apology from District 1 Councilman Peter Smith
In a letter to the editor, the councilman from Severn said he is hopeful that the council will hold itself to a higher standard.
Anne Arundel County,
The last few months have been very trying for me. In the few short weeks I have been appointed to this seat, many of you have reached out to me and expressed your displeasure of the current state the leadership in our county has created.
If you have not been told, I want to officially apologize for our behavior. We are not perfect and we will stumble and like any steadfast servant, we will rise and continue to travel in the direction to move Anne Arundel County forward. Much like every other environment, it is filled with individuals who are only human and whose decisions can be clouded with lenses that are forged with a lifetime of diverse struggles. Recent events have lead us to make some tough choices —choices that will inherently bring with it a variety of different opinions and beliefs.
I and the other six members on the Council have an array of unique experiences and values. We also have strong opinions and convictions. These can sometimes create rifts in our ability to find common ground. However, I can strongly attest to you that each of them only want what is best. Councilmen Fink, Benoit, Ladd, Grasso, Trumbauer and Walker really are working hard on behalf of the communities and I’ve come to see that during my integration on this team.
As we navigate through this uncharted territory over the next few months, I ask that we continue to be civil and respectful. Marianne Williamson once stated that “In every community, there is work to be done. In every nation, there are wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it.”
I am hopeful that this council and other county officials will strive to hold themselves to a higher standard and reflect the values that all can emulate. Anne Arundel County deserves it not because it is politically tenable to do so, but because every citizen deserves an elected official whose moral compass is fixated on true north. While we may veer off course, the direction will always lead us to do the right thing. The right thing for our budget, the right thing for our schools and even the right thing for our police department.
Our goal is not to stifle ones dreams, but to find mutual grounds to have those dreams co-exist. This county is your home and you deserve caretakers who help guard it with the utmost respect. You deserve leaders whose only interest is yours. There is much work to be done, but I believe the tide will turn and we will make you proud again.
Anne Arundel County Councilman, 1st District