Farmers, Professors, and Others Deliver a Message of Courage to Senator Cannella

“Doing the right thing isn’t always easy, but we’re counting on you.” That’s the message of courage more than 250 Modesto-area residents delivered to State Senator Anthony Cannella’s office on Thursday.

I was one of hundreds of people from all walks of life who gathered at the Modesto rally to ensure Cannella hears directly from his constituents about what is most important to us: education, safe communities, and caring for seniors and young people.

Joining educators like me at the event were seniors, public safety officials, farmers, and others who have our share of differences, but who know getting California back on track is so important we have to come together to protect our shared priorities.

But protecting those priorities will be impossible if State Senator Anthony Cannella doesn’t show the courage to prevent current revenues from expiring June 30. If those revenues are not maintained, another $9.6 billion in cuts will be made, ON TOP of the devastating cuts those communities across California have already suffered: massive layoffs of teachers, leaving classrooms crowded. Police and firefighters laid off, threatening our safety. College courses cut and tuition soaring, pricing middle-class students out. Adult Day Health Centers shuttered and home care stripped away, putting thousands of seniors in danger of being forced into nursing homes.

Senator Cannella is one of several Republican legislators who are under increasing pressure from extremists not to support a compromise in order to protect schools and colleges, public safety and health care for seniors from more cuts.

These extremists are radio personalities and Washington, D.C. political operatives. They don’t have our interests at heart, they aren’t the ones who have to worry about our kids getting through school, or looking out for our parents and grandparents who have paid their dues over a lifetime. Senator Cannella is the one who is supposed to represent us, and it’s time he showed the courage to do what’s right.

I have no doubt that it’s hard to be in Senator Cannella’s shoes these days, with the extremist shock jocks in L.A. threatening to put pragmatic legislators “heads on a stick.” But Senator Cannella is supposed to represent us, not the entertainers and ideologues who don’t care at all about our community and have no relationship to Stanislaus County and its needs.

California is in crisis and we can’t take any more cuts to public safety or education, which is our ticket to a brighter future. We’re counting on Senator Cannella to show the courage to do what’s right. No more cuts!

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