I write in support of adding the ballot referendum, “Shall the village of Oak Park defund its police department?” for our electoral consideration this spring. 

Contrary to the Journal’s editorial view, it’s not a “fake question,” nor a “political charade.” That dismissal seems like cynical, psychological projection to me. The proposed ballot referendum is, in fact, a very real and direct question about a fundamental principle for guiding our public policy, one which can be answered directly and democratically at the ballot box. 

If the answer is “Yes,” the village will have a clear mandate to draw down the police budget and look for other places to spend public money. If the answer is “No,” the village will have no such mandate. Either way, there will be clarity.

Honestly, is there anything more sacred in public governance than a simple, straightforward, democratic vote?

I don’t think so. So let’s put this question to a vote and let the people decide.

William Ward

Oak Park

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