my experiences in moorhead, minnesota


I lived in Moorhead, Minnesota while attending classes at Minnesota State University Moorhead.  In addition to academics and campus life, I also ran for mayor.

 

In 2001 I ran for Moorhead City mayor, one of five candidates, and I came in fourth place.  While it was a nonpartisan election, I had left the Libertarian Party and identified as an Independent with a civil libertarian streak.

 

My main platform was; (1) get students, the poor, minorities and the LGBTQ community more involved in the political process, (2) give the Moorhead Human Rights Commission more authority to enforce civil rights rules and (3) fight for more affordable housing.

 

Beyond my main, three-point platform, I had gotten numerous columns/letters to the editor published in the Fargo Forum, the High Plains Reader and the Advocate (MSU-Moorhead Student newspaper).

 

Among the issues advocated in these publications included; abolish the Electoral College, re-legalize marijuana and yes, LGBTQ equality.

 

Technically, I was probably the first Jewish and openly LGBTQ candidate to seek the Moorhead mayoral office.  Perhaps even the first college student.  My religion and my sexual orientation did not come up during the campaign.  This was probably because of the following reasons.

 

  1. Overt attacks on a candidate due to their religion or sexual orientation was not something that polite, Midwesterns did; and
  2. I was one five candidates running for Moorhead mayor, and I don't think that the two more established candidates or the local press saw me as a serious enough candidate to warrant much criticism or scrutiny.

One of the disappointing aspects of my campaign (besides losing) was the fact that the local LGBTQ leadership refused to endorse my campaign.  I talked about this a bit more here. Oh, well.

 

Incidently, The guy that won the 2001 mayoral election -- Mark Voxland -- is a hard-working, decent guy and a straight ally (supports the LGBTQ community). 

 

Last, but not least, a friend of mine named, Kevin R. Shores was one of other, unsuccessful candidates for mayor and was probably the first native American to run for Moorhead city mayor.  We met while I was a student and he was very helpful in running MSUM NORML.  He ran for Moorhead mayor a second, maybe a third time.  More recently, he ran (unsuccessfully) to be the Grassroots Legalize Cannabis Party Congressional candidate in the 7th District.