We elect officials like county Supervisors to protect our interests. In theory, this is how our system of government works.

In practice, however, we know this does not always happen. That is not to say that there are not elected individuals who put the interests of their constituents first and the interest of large campaign contributors second. But unfortunately money talks and its voice is often louder than that of the multitudes.

If you read the May 1 letter to the editor by Mike Hackett and Jim Wilson ("Time’s Up: To protect local water supplies, Napa County voters must approve Measure C"), you will know that three supervisors pledged their support for Measure C. Why did they do this? Because Measure C was a cooperative effort which included the Napa Valley Vintners.

That being the case, it was safe for supervisors to be supportive of Measure C. But that changed when some of the louder voices within the NVV protested. Now it was no longer safe for supervisors to support Measure C and they have become silent on the issue. But even their silence speaks.

We, the people, cannot really fault the supervisors. Supervisors are captives of the system which put them in power. So when money speaks, as it has in the campaign to defeat Measure C, voters need to speak with the only voice they have; the ballot.

Measure C is about protecting our water supply. The question voters will decide is who will have control of the watersheds that are responsible for the water that shows up in our creeks, streams, rivers, reservoirs and aquifers? Who will control our water supply? Will it be those who clearly own the land on which the watersheds exist? Or will it be those who will suffer irreplaceable loss if the water supply they depend on is damaged because watersheds are destroyed?

Will the few gain while the many lose?

It really is a David-and-Goliath battle. And we cannot depend on the supervisors to supply the stones for our sling. We have to do that with our votes.

As you consider your vote on Measure C, remember the NVV were involved in drafting the measure as it now appears on your ballot. They even shared the cost of legal counsel during the drafting process.

Consider also that the written statements submitted for inclusion in the voter pamphlet by the “No on C” folks had to be changed because they admitted in court that many of their statements were false and misleading. Some of those false and misleading statements now appear on “No on C” campaign literature and signs.

Who will win this battle? The Goliath of big money and special interest? Or will we, the people, send a message to both big money and silent representatives elected to protect the interest of the many?

Vote 'yes' on C: speak now to the silence of those elected to protect your interests.

Richard A. Cannon


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