Submitted by Korben Whitt-Leitner
Dear Reader: On Sunday, March 7, 2021, the local Democrats had a forum which they invited me for a question-and-answer regarding my candidacy as a select board member. I, wanting to address all the groups in town, agreed to participate. I am a biracial, 19-year-old Republican running for the office of Select Board. I wanted to discuss some issues: (1) How the Bedford Police Department has treated me so well, ensuring that Bedford is a safe and wonderful community to raise a family; (2) How as a resident of Springs Road, I see the fire department worked tirelessly and responded to all calls within the town and at the VA (3) The wonderful job that the DPW has done in maintaining our town and (4) The school committee, department and teachers have tcontinued to meet their obligations with hybrid learning and that I have confidence that they will transition to full classroom participation. Most importantly, I wanted to discuss that I would rely on the citizens of Bedford, listening to their concerns and expertise in making decisions especially as they were concerned the budget and the future. None of this was discussed with me. I have requested a copy of the tape so that I can make available to voters.
Editor’s Note: Click this link for an unedited video of the entire forum that was shared with The Bedford Citizen. The Select Board segment begins at 1 hour and 5 minutes.
What was discussed, and I was the only one asked this, was if I supported the constitution. I was accused of not having my views align with the constitution (while I have an eight-year US Army service commitment), and that was just the beginning. The attack commenced from there. This seemed to be much more of a planned challenge on my integrity rather than a forum for me to express my plans, and goals for the town that I love. I accepted this invitation in hopes that it would be moderated on a fair forum that allowed both Margot, and I to present us as Select Board candidates. Unfortunately, this went in the complete opposite direction. I was interrupted and unable to finish my answers, that were just mainly rebuttals to defend myself.
It bothers me to say, and not what I wanted to take away from this, but it appeared that no one was interested in a young black man’s goals or opinion’s, but rather just questioned his beliefs.
I know this will probably be published as “young kid not ready to lead” article, but this letter is to cover the inhospitable treatment and total disregard they had for me as a candidate. I expected much more from the democratic process. Please take time and watch the video and decide for yourself.
With this, I ask that you vote for me on March 13, 2021. I am committed to you, and I committed to the town of Bedford