On a much, much smaller scale, I can easily-relate to the never-ending assault experienced by Donald Trump since announcing, competing for, and successfully winning the Presidency.
In 1983, armed with a sure-fire plan to save Pine Bluff, Arkansas-- my hometown-- I officially ran for Mayor. Unlike Trump, I lost my race--but not before experiencing—first-hand-- the most
vicious, deadliest attacks from the ugliest people--ever.
Running for a political office was my initiation into the world of dirty deals, outrageous lies, heartless attacks, destruction of
my car, my property, and my reputation. Worst of all, the opposition openly used every under-handed trick imaginable, including big money, to manipulate votes and voters. I was forty-four years old when I "earned" my advanced degree in political
Today, I consider myself an authority on Political Evil. And, for what it’s worth, I know that every so-called professional politician on earth--is actively-involved
in making "deals" with the Devil.
FROM MY BOOK-- THE BEAUTY QUEEN:
"East Side, West Side....all around the town..." No, I'm not singing about the sidewalks of New York. I'm referencing Pine Bluff, Arkansas---the town that raised me.
It no longer matters which side of the street you live on in Pine Bluff or...whether you have a $10,000 house or a $100,000 house. Pine Bluff is no longer the perfect, Mayberry-type community for perfect living or raising children. Year after year,
it continues to be nationally-ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the USA.
I envy people who never experienced the town in its glory days. Unlike me, they have no reason to remember
the town with sadness. Proudly, I became the town’s first Miss Hospitality; it’s first Miss Pine Bluff and first Miss Arkansas. I loved the town like family. I lived there from the age of two years--received my education in Pine Bluff, married
there, birthed two children there, and divorced there. For so many years…Pine Bluff, Arkansas was the center of my life.
By the early eighties, the town was in serious trouble.
So….in 1984…. I ran for Mayor of Pine Bluff, believing I could make a difference in whether the town lived or died. After launching a successful fight to get the 819 Steam Engine out of the park, I coined the phrase, "Let’s put the Steam--
of the 819-- Back in Pine Bluff."
Using the Engine to benefit the town where it was built-- in the early forties--- seemed like the perfect “key” to success. I formulated
a plan to restore the historic Steam Engine and-- with great celebration--get it back on-track for a regular run from Pine Bluff to Little Rock. Raised in a railroad family, I knew the historic Engine would attract Rail Enthusiasts to Pine Bluff--- from around
the world. Rail fans would travel anywhere, anytime, for the opportunity to ride behind an original Steam Engine like the 819. It meant that Visitors from everywhere would buy tickets and memorabilia, purchase meals, and book over-night accommodations
in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, The soon-to-be---future destination for Historic Railroad Lovers.
It meant that school teachers from other states could shuttle busloads of students to Pine Bluff
for a memorable hands-on learning experience…like none other. No doubt--the ongoing revenue from the 819 could bring fame, prosperity, and stability to a dying town.
“ENEMY” who wouldn't spend time or money to save the town--- were determined to do anything/everything possible to keep me from winning the Mayor's Race. In the end-- those with no vision or love for the town were successful in destroying my fool-proof
plans to save Pine Bluff.
And “THEY” had nothing to offer in my place. No one tried to match my dream and my well-researched plan--- a solid plan that included strong supporters
like: Walmart’s Founder, Sam Walton, who promised to establish a distribution center in Pine Bluff; Sheffield Nelson, President of Arkla Gas, who agreed to develop a new business-recruiting plan for Pine Bluff; and the Cotton Belt and Southern Pacific
Officials who were preparing to launch an 819-on-the-move plan.
Many successful leaders across the nation were committed to invest time and money in Pine Bluff, Arkansas BUT ONLY after I became
Pine Bluff’s Mayor. When you kill the plan of someone with a track record for making things happen...you damn-well-better have an even-better plan to replace it. But....the enemies didn't give a damn about saving Pine Bluff. Their only goal was to STOP
ME from saving it.
After losing the mayor's race, I could have gone public with the names of all the dirty-dealing politicians who were willing to destroy Pine Bluff for their own gain but,
it wasn't worth my time. When the curtain drops, the performance is over and… it’s time to leave the stage.
Many blame race issues for the town's downfall but RACE didn't cause
Pine Bluff to die. My hometown didn't get where it is today without serious help from a powerful, selfish few. Most were and continue to be—Democrats:THE POLITICAL PARTY OF DEATH AND DESTRUCTION.
My hometown of Pine Bluff died a slow, agonizing death. Yes, I'm bitter. I will never lose my anger over “what could have been”.