To the Editor:
I was disheartened to read the recent Letter to the Editor by Richard Tomlins attacking my city councilman, Steve Stycos, from Ward 1. Clearly, Mr. Tomlins and I see things differently. I look at what Mr. Stycos has done in the community and on the council to make my judgments about his suitability for office and his efficacy while serving.
A Pledge of Allegiance is not more important to me than the work he does to serve my Ward. An individual who refuses to take the oath is not "saying" that they don't believe in the Constitution or the Bill of Rights. And one of the beautiful things about our country is that personal liberties are defended. He chooses not to take the oath. I don't need to support his choice or defend it, nor take exception.
Steve has a long history of community involvement, in addition to his responsibilities as a city councilman: member of the School Committee, co-founder of the Pawtuxet Village Farmer's Market, manager of the Westbay Community Garden and visionary and organizer of the new Edgewood Community Gardens at Cherry Woods, and an abiding commitment to environmental stewardship throughout the area.
Mr. Stycos is one of those rare individuals who walks the walk, does his best to follow through on promises, listens to the needs of his constituents and goes above and beyond to affirm his commitment to Cranston, Rhode Island and the United States at all times. He does not deserve to be lambasted.