Getting on the Ballot

Before I start, I want to say this to all of you.

I first submitted my 300-word ballot statement to ARRL’s Ethics and Elections Committee on September 3rd of this year, approximately 12 hours before the deadline. That was the first of four submittals I had to make over the course of the next fourteen days before my statement was finally approved on Monday, September 17th. A major reason that my statement kept getting returned to me apparently was that I did not do a good enough job of separating my opinions from facts.

In general, I guess I might have gotten the Committee’s “OK” sooner if I had prefaced every sentence with “In my opinion”. Doing that, however, would have left me with only about 200 words or so to work with! (For those of you who have an appreciation for the recorded works of Stan Freberg, the whole process was reminiscent of his satirical take-off entitled “Elderly Man River”.)

Nonetheless (and unlike Mr. Freberg), I fully accept the Committee’s position that it is important to keep facts and opinions separate, and I shall try to do so throughout my web summaries. However, just like the blind men analyzing an elephant, even “facts” can be seen and interpreted differently by observers having different vantage points. (Is an elephant’s trunk a “fact” or an “opinion”?)

Thus, in my view, the 300-word ballot statement of this challenger to an incumbent director has been stripped of some of my legitimate descriptions and assessments of factual events simply because I see them in a different light or from a different perspective than the Committee does.