“We Are All In This Together” — Let’s Use This Insight To Transform Politics And To Build Dynamic Civic Communities

Albert Griggs, Jr., shown here speaking last November 11 at the dedication of the Huber Height Veterans Memorial. Griggs served as chairman of the Huber Heights Military And Veterans Commission (MAVC)

This pandemic has a lot of people saying, “We are all in this together.” Wouldn’t it be great if we had a politics that would make this wonderful notion actually real? I have a plan.

I’ve spent my career designing and analyzing systems and I’m basing my campaign for the Ohio Senate on my commitment to repair and strengthen our system of representative democracy. Everyone knows that the big reason for the dysfunction of the system is that the citizenry is divided — polarized. It is amazing the hate towards Democrats that I read on Facebook. Of course, there is hate directed towards Republicans as well.

It is true that this pandemic means we are all in this together, but if a nuclear bomb goes off, we all will be in that together, as well. The truth is we, the people, are divided — and unnecessarily so. The wonderful people in the Sixth District have much in common. We are united by patriotism, love of country and love for our fellow humans. There is a big consensus in the citizenry to work together to advance the common good. Regardless, we, the people, are divided, polarized.

In our dysfunctional system, a minority is electing our government and this minority has no reason to deal with the majority. In Ohio, this minority has taken over the whole state government system as a monopoly — fixing the rules. In the U.S. Congress, this minority is divided into two hostile and uncooperative camps.

We need a system where candidates arise from a diverse community — not from a political oligarchy or a well-funded special interest. To fix our system, there must be leadership with a plan and vision. I’ve named my campaign, “The Campaign To Build A 21st Century Democracy.” My plan is to use 21st century technology to build authentic communities.

District Six has 240,000 voters. My goal is to engage at least one percent of these citizens as voting members in a “District Six Leadership Community.” The goal is for this group to fairly represent the diversity of the district and for members of this group to be committed to leadership — committed to understanding each other and to understanding issues. I want to work with a group who has a real hunger to understand and to participate in politics.

This Leadership Community will study and debate the work of the Assembly and will partner with me — empowering me to be an effective, responsive, transparent, and creative member of the Ohio Senate. This Leadership Community will be committed to developing consensus within the group. It will write proposed legislation and will engage and inform the public. The goal is for young people to become active, creative members and leaders in this civic community and for this experience to prepare these young people for eventual election to public office.

Members of the Leadership Community will team together in their local jurisdictions to engage and inform citizens and to build community. These teams will network together on district wide projects. One big project — to engage citizens of all persuasions — will be to develop civics education opportunities for youth. I’d love to see district-wide projects dealing with the U.S. Constitution (Constitution Day, September 17) and the Gettysburg Address (November 19).

There is a hunger within every person for community. Democrats need to champion a politics of unity, a politics of community building, and dare the Republicans to do the same. “We are all in this together” is a wonderful notion. We need to make it real. I am offering leadership and vision to empower civic communities that will bring citizens together into active and meaningful citizenship. This is the vision and the plan that can flip this gerrymandered Republican district. I am asking for your vote in this Democratic Primary.

My Civil Service Career

During my Civil Service career, I managed a wide range of programs and provided leadership to organizations ranging from approximately 35 to over 3,500 government civilians, military, and contract personnel. My experience includes cross-functional positions in strategic planning, program acquisition/management, and weapon system support. I worked in staff positions at Product/Logistics Centers, Major Commands, Secretary of the Air Force (Acquisition), and the United States House of Representatives.

Programs I managed:  aircraft (fixed wing and rotary wing), space (space based and ground systems), Intelligence, Weather (space and terrestrial), Missile (offensive and defensive), and the integrated tactical warning and attack assessment network.  I’ve worked with other governments on very sensitive issues.  I held a TS/SCI security clearance when I retired from the government.

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