Can We Talk?

Published: 6/1/2018

Can we talk?

Bob Dylan’s famous song “Times they are a-changin'” is as true now as ever. Look around; we are on the verge of self-driving cars, we spend too much time staring at little computers we keep in our pockets, and we can rarely be bothered to have a real conversation with another person – hey, just text me! No, I’m not saying progress or tech is bad, I’m not in a “kids, get off my lawn” mode either. Here’s the deal: this week, one of my social media posts generated a bit of a kerfuffle. Sure, we’ve all seen how social media posts can get out of control, and this example is pretty mild, but I was surprised how some folks just let who they are and what they think so quickly when typing. I’m not sure they would act the same if they were having a conversation. Which brings me to my point…yes, finally…we just don’t converse any longer.

My pal Herbie joined me at a city council meeting not too long ago and was surprised with how the speakers during public comments addressed the council. Let me just say – they were less than kind or cordial. In fact, several seemed not to have a point other than being angry. His question to me continues to ring in my ears – “Don’t people know how to talk with each other anymore?” I just don’t think we do. In a world where opinion is fact, and everyone has a better way of doing things, we have forgotten we are all in this together. I don’t have to agree with you, but I should understand where you’re position on an issue. Instead, we just raise our voices instead of improving our arguments. Maybe communication, what I’ve based my career on, is vanishing. Maybe the next candidate’s forum or debate will be done by text.

I want to take a moment to thank Cerritos Mayor Mark Pulido and City Manager Art Gallucci for providing a great presentation at this week’s State of the City. The local economy is strong, with a robust retail environment. At a time when many suburban malls are struggling, the Los Cerritos Center remains strong with nearly 12 million visitors last year. Retail sales in 2018-2019 fiscal year are projected to be nearly $3.5 billion – amazing. We certainly should thank the business community for all they contribute to the local economy. As a “no-low” property tax city, local leaders depend on sales taxes to make sure residents and safe, and the city looks great. You can find a copy of the presentation here.

Have a nice weekend.



Scott Smith

Weekly Quote:

The future will be better tomorrow. Dan Quayle

13259 South St
Cerritos, CA 90703

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