I was intrigued with the letter by Alex Shantz entitled “Anger is proper and righteous in political realm” (Feb. 24) both because of its length (the Register must have thought it was quite important or the writer was someone of great note) and because the writer states “As a political philosopher, with a concentration in ethics, law and politics, and subject expert on this matter…”, (wow).
I thought it must be quite important. Unfortunately, I had difficulty following the thread of his arguments, but I ascribed this to my inability to understand the deep philosophical concepts involved. I was stuck with my naive idea that decisions should be based on facts not emotions.
In any case, I decided to look into who this expert was. To my surprise, I found that he had filled a vacancy on the St. Helena School Board. Within two years he resigned citing the fact that he could do more on the larger political scene, and he would now be running for some higher office. His resignation was unfortunate in that it left a vacancy that must be filled requiring an uncertain amount of complexity and possible additional costs. I am sure the School Board appreciates attending to these additional tasks.
I wish Shantz the best of luck in his electioneering efforts. He has a solid base of support due to his membership the Napa County Green Party and his involvement in Black Lives Matter. In a current YouTube comment he states “Greens play a crucial role in terms of challenging community capitalists, through community municipalization and workplace democracy, by encouraging workers to take back control in their own work places, running Greens against local neo-liberal politicians, beating them and their corporate partners, and seizing sovereignty away from them … and I argue that, Greens are best positioned to build duel power in local communities by becoming fifth columns in local municipalities, filling wedges on city councils along the pressure points between capital interests and the people. We do this by being explicitly anti-capitalist and winning elections.”
If he does win an election for higher office, it will be interesting to note whether he assumes the responsibilities of that position, or resigns and moves on to run for an even higher office.
Editor's Note: Shantz points out that his resignation letter did not discuss running for higher office. He sent the following response to this letter: "I was explicit in my public resignation letter, along with my reasons for stepping back, and these reasons haven't changed: 'At this stage in my life, I’ve decided to step back from local politics to pursue my master’s degree in philosophy and make music. My immediate career goals are to become a philosophy professor and start a band.'"