|CM Narvaez, Rangel & Mayor Salinas in a giving mood|
As it happens every Holiday Season, scores of elected officials were seen (and heard) giving away gifts throughout the Gateway City. While, on its face, it appears to be a noble and generous gesture, what is the real reason behind it? For one thing, there is definitely the belief by some in our community that this entire Santa Clausing verges on illegality. After all, it could be construed as politicians "buying votes" with taxpayer money. In essence, campaigning on our dime.
As the title of this post suggest, the whole idea behind all the giving seems to be, not the helping of others, but politicians helping themselves. More often than not, there's the councilperson or mayor or whatever politician is involved hamming it up for the cameras.
Why can they not give gifts to those kids in need in a completely anonymous fashion? I'm sure that logistically, it can be done but then no particular politician could claim credit. The receving kids wouldn't know the difference. They certainly would still be just as happy with their toys. So, when it comes down to it, it seems that it's the politicians who are the real winners in this scheme.
If it's illegal for elected officials to receive gifts because it might influence the way they vote, then it should also be illegal for them to give gifts. Why? For the same reason: because it just may influence how the parents of the kids involved vote? I mean come on, how can you not vote for someone who went out of their way to give your kid(s) some gifts at Christmas time? So what if it was really the hard-working taxpayers who were actually paying for it all?