“Realists” Perspectives at Community Meetings Not Appreciated

The Stapleton neighborhood does a great job with keeping community members involved in planning, progress, and events coming up. A majority of this community involvement is handled through community meetings, where committee leaders, developers, and planners hold open forums for people in the community to come in and share their opinions. There are often heated exchanges in meetings as opinions often differ. One thing that a majority of attendees can agree on is that no one likes the level-headed, common sense, realist perspective some are bringing. “Don’t tell me something can’t be done,” says meeting-goer Chris Edmunston. “And definitely don’t tell something isn’t realistic. That’s not why I came here.” Others agree. “When I go to those meetings, I want my voice to be heard, and my ideas to be accepted without rationale,” says Andy Gustufson. “And most certainly don’t try to take me through the reasons why something isn’t feasible. I’m just not listening.” Realist Josh Runyan definitely feels unwanted. “I am like anyone else. I want what is best for our community, but it needs to make sense given our current environment.” Runyan says he is often given dirty looks after meetings, and has even stopped being invited to neighborhood social events. “One of the neighbor kids actually pushed my kid down yesterday,” says Runyan. “They used to be best friends, but he told my son, ‘your daddy’s not like my daddy.’” Organizers of the community forums say that all perspectives are welcome, however the radical ideas are the most welcome. “When we get rational ideas we may have to follow through with them,” says committee leader Sarah Budke. “The irrational ideas we can simply tell the people that we will look into that.” Realists are considered to be very rare, and apparently, unwanted in this community. ]]>

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