Sunday, March 9, 2008

Freedom Riders in Progressive College Town

The city's bus service will give free rides to voters for the May 20 preferential primaries. The regular fare is $1, but citizens can ride for free when they declare that they are going to or returning from a specific polling place on election day. Democracy will get a boost from the new public policy adopted this week by progressive public officials who believe that everyone should have a chance to vote.

The Community Transportation Advisory Board authorized the change Wednesday affecting the Jonesboro Economical Transportation System. Fayetteville could also adopt this progressive public policy, but it does not have a city bus system much less any plan in the works for future regional light rail service.

Mass transit cannot be ignored by public officials who are committed to sustainability. We don't need a show trolley operated by the A&P Commission, and we don't need politicians telling us they have a theoretical position paper we can read. We need a practical mass transit system to serve our community, and $4 gas should convince anyone. We have many of the pieces in place, but we need progressive, experienced leadership to make it happen.

Until then, we're not even as progressive as Jonesboro.

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