Reflections on 2020, Hope for 2021
This has been a historic year, one I’m sure will be discussed and debated about for decades to come. Between a global pandemic and a contentious election, 2020 is a year that really showed us where we shine, our strength and our kindness, and where we can strive to do better.
On the latter, it was a tough year for all of us, and it didn’t always bring out our better nature. An unprecedented health crisis meant that we all made missteps as we were trying our best to learn how to best protect ourselves and our neighbors.
Unfortunately, our politics were divisive, and this was most clear when public health became politicized. Rather than disagreements about best practices, it became about teams working against each other. It’s frightening to see friends and family pitted against each other, accepting different realities with misinformation running wild.
This year, I ran for reelection. I am humbled and honored to represent the 74th Assembly District. Northern Wisconsin is my home, my pride and my joy.
In the end, however, my win was bittersweet. I have always been proud of my bipartisanship, my ability to speak with and connect with any of my constituents, no matter their political stripe. This year, I saw more ugliness and vitriol than I ever have in my time in politics. At the worst moments, my personal safety was threatened, and my family was not spared from attacks.
That being said, I don’t believe this is the status quo. These are frightening times, and our government has failed so many. The federal response was virtually nonexistent, and more Wisconsinites than ever don’t know where their next meal is coming from. People across the state lost their jobs and sometimes had to wait months for unemployment. Staying safe and at home meant isolation, especially for rural folks.
Hate and anger is never the answer to our problems, but it is painfully human. After everything that has happened this year, I am still hopeful and ready to get to work in the state legislature.
I’m hopeful because in all the chaos, I saw so much compassion and goodness in our communities. Neighbors taking care of each other, people going the extra mile to keep in touch with loved ones, more care and thoughtful investment in local economies, and of course, our frontline health care workers putting their health and safety on the line to do their jobs.
Even the election, through all the partisan bickering, was something to see. Clerks, municipal workers and volunteers came together to administer a safe and fair election. More Wisconsinites participated in an election than any time in history. If we can harness all that passion and combine it with the good nature Wisconsinites are famous for, I think this means great things for the future of our democracy.
As we welcome 2021, let’s not forget what makes our state wonderful and let’s come together in our shared goals. In the next legislative session, I will fight for all of us, not just those that agree with me. I will support expanding high-speed internet, funding our local schools, improving access to affordable health care, making sure seniors are taken care of, and so much more.
And no matter how you feel about my politics, nothing is more important than listening to my constituents. If you ever have any questions, concerns or ideas you’d like to run by me, you can always contact me at 888-534-0074 or Rep.Meyers@legis.wisconsin.gov.
This holiday season, take stock of what matters most—the people you love, the community you care for, and the future we all want for the next generation.