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Sunday, March 26, 2023
Editor’s NotebookEditor's Notebook: You say you want an 'evolution'?

Editor’s Notebook: You say you want an ‘evolution’?

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Wrong again, for had I been pressed to predict, I’d have said that the Arlington County Democratic Committee this week would have gone with Matt Royer, the more progressive-leaning contender, in the race to succeed Jill Caiazzo as committee chair.

Why? Because the drift of the party has seemed to be younger and to the left, which Royer seemed to be capturing more than his opponent, centrist Steve Baker.

In the end, Baker won the race in what, from the pen of a brilliant analyst (if he does say so himself) was a case of Democrats wanting evolution, not revolution.

This is not to say Royer is an out-there revolutionary; no Afanasy Matushenko is he (look him up; an interesting life story although one that ended at the business end of a hangman’s noose). But Royer certaintly tilted left of Baker.


In the end, to repeat a phrase from above, history is written by those who show up, and those who showed up opted for Baker as the party’s chair for the next two years. One of those who voted for him told me he wanted a “calming voice” in troubled times, and Baker better represented that. So there you go.

A WELL-EARNED BREAK: Both the outgoing Arlington Democratic chair (Jill Caiazzo) and vice chair (Maggie Davis) took well-earned bows at the Jan. 5 reorganization meeting. Each is stepping back after four years in a leadership slot.

They came into the jobs at the middle of the Trump era and are leaving as Glenn Youngkin is set to be inaugurated as governor, so it hasn’t been all sunshine and lollipops (RIP, Lesley Gore…), but you can’t say the Arlington County Democratic Committee didn’t do its part in getting out the vote for its candidates over the past four years. That qualifies as success for both Caiazzo and Davis.

THE SHUTDOWNS BEGIN TO INTENSIFY: The prevailing theory, of which I am somewhat dubious, is that it’s going to be a rough six weeks and then smooth sailing as “herd immunity” starts to win out over the various COVID variants.

Haven’t we heard this before? Multiple times, in fact.

One place the rise of the omicron variant is having an impact is on the local theater scene, as a number of troupes (professional and community) are canceling upcoming productions, either because of general health concerns or because their casts and crews are falling prey to the virus.

Dominion Stage and Ford’s Theater each recently nixed upcoming shows, and no doubt more cancellations will be coming.

If, in fact, we’re out of this local/regional/national/international mayhem in a month or so, then it will be seen as a smart call. But if not, is this what’s going to happen until the end of time — we hunker down every few months until civilization tears itself to shreds?

Heckuva way to run a railroad, as the saying used to go.

  • Scott McCaffrey

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