July 12, 2019 10:20:25 AM
Many people are familiar with the story of Esther from the Bible. For those who aren't, it was the story of a Jewish woman married to the king of Persia, who was called upon to use her influence to save the captive Jews under Persian rule from persecution.
Uncertain of her ability to intervene, Esther was encouraged to take up the challenge by her cousin Mordecai, who told her, "Who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?"
On a smaller scale, that's the same question that is being asked in Ward 4 of Columbus.
The resignation of Ward 4 councilman Fred Jackson on July 3 has prompted a special election to fill the remainder of the term. That special election is scheduled for Aug. 20.
The election comes at a critical time.
Some of the city's poorest neighborhoods are found in the ward, which presents no shortage of challenges. Those challenges were made even greater by the Feb. 23 tornado, which hit the ward particularly hard. The recovery has been, and will remain, a slow and challenging process, which makes having an effective advocate for Ward 4 on the city council all the more important.
In many respects, it's the toughest job on the council and will require a strong, visionary leader.
So far, two candidates have qualified ahead of the July 31 deadline - Pierre Beard and Kegdra Gibbs-Gray.
We applaud both for seeking to serve their community in this important and challenging position.
While we offer no endorsement of any candidate, we are pleased that a woman has stepped forward, given the dearth of women in city government. We believe women have an important role to play in our city.
We also encourage other citizens in Ward 4 who may be contemplating a run for the council seat under the theory that the more choices voters have, the better choice they'll be able to make at the polls.
With a little more than two weeks remaining to qualify, we encourage those citizens to carefully consider this opportunity.
Who knows but that you have come for such a time as this?
1. Ask Rufus: Early Roads LOCAL COLUMNS
2. Local Voices: A high school graduate's perspective LOCAL COLUMNS
4. Partial to Home: The cherry cure LOCAL COLUMNS
5. Roses and thorns: 5-31-20 ROSES & THORNS