We citizens are responsible for our own government

Regarding the editorial, “Elected leadership must be held accountable” (page A4, Feb. 27 North Kitsap Herald):

While the article accurately brings home the importance of accountability for our elected officials, we humbly suggest it misses a key point, to wit: “Where was the port commission in all of this?”

Important as the above question is, the real question should be, “Where was the community at large when these infractions of law were being committed?”

Accountability of our elected representatives begins with the community impressing upon its leaders that it will hold them responsible for their actions or inactions only when they themselves demonstrate their responsibility of good citizenship.

The late House Speaker Tip O’Neill’s famous quote, “All government is local,” is an absolute truism. We, the people, are responsible for the government we have. And unless we accept that paramount element of our free society, we have no excuse for the outcome.

Pending elections in the coming months for positions in several communities, which your editorial lists, offers the opportunity to take stock of our representatives and what they have or have not accomplished.

The timing is right for Kitsap residents to own up to their responsibility of monitoring good government. We only have the most recent presidential election and the millions of citizens nationwide who chose not to go to the polls as an example of what can happen.

We citizens are responsible for our own government. That is the bedrock of accountability in a free society.

Bill Effinger