Wednesday October 3, 2012

Sometimes, when you vote, you are voting for more than a person. You are voting for service, and you are voting for a person whose disposition will serve your needs the best. In the 4th District race between Lee Scott Laugenour and Smitty Pignatelli, the choice was clearly illustrated in what should have been the biggest non-story of the race.

Mr. Laugenour, whatever his qualifications, clearly has no business dealing with people. The differences between himself and Mr. Pignatelli, however great he has magnified them in his mind, are in fact just differences in shade of the same color. Both are fairly liberal, both are committed to ideals that see government as a positive force, and both believe that progressive views are good.

What sets Mr. Pignatelli apart is his understanding of the real job he goes to Boston to do. It’s his job to serve his constituents, help navigate the sometimes Byzantine process necessary for the average person to get satisfaction from government, and to try and ensure that his district is fairly represented in a body that is run in secret and lacks transparency by being firm in his commitment to the people of South Berkshire.

How does the news story about Monument High School’s debate illustrate why Smitty Pignatelli is the best choice for the district? Because Smitty understands, sometimes your day gets hijacked. Sometimes, the mundane necessities of the job outweigh the idealist goals you may have. Most of your days are spent fighting with alligators, not draining the swamp. It means you take the time to listen to the folks who you represent -- even if you know they may not be voting for you.

Mr. Laugenour’s temper tan trum about this issue shows me that he probably won’t listen because he is determined to talk. I remember my Dad telling me one time: God gave you two ears and one mouth. Use them in that proportion. Smitty is a great listener and he is a great doer. We don’t need another talker in Boston -- we need a listener. I don’t live in the 4th District, and I wish we were as well represented as it is, but I urge those of you who can to vote for Smitty Pigna telli on Nov. 6.

DAVE PILL

Pittsfield