12/16/08 — Just folks: Caroline Kennedy should start from bottom like rest of us

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Just folks: Caroline Kennedy should start from bottom like rest of us

It is nice that Caroline Kennedy wants to serve her country -- and that she has done so much work for charitable causes over the years.

It is even nicer that she continues to lend her family name to a variety of efforts -- and that she feels it is so important to be involved in her community.

But she should not be considered for the New York Senate seat about to be vacated by Sen. Hillary Clinton.

Not until she has paid her dues.

It is presumptuous for Ms. Kennedy to make such a request considering her lack of experience and with the nation and her state facing such a challenging time.

So, if it really is "time to get involved" and no longer possible to wait "for someone else to get the job done," she should do what the rest of us do -- serve locally.

She would be a fine advocate for her town, her county, her schools -- and could even make a real contribution.

And then, after she has served locally, she can move up to a state government seat -- and then a federal post.

That is what you do when you do not measure your own stature by the family name you carry but what you have yourself proven that you can achieve.

Americans are tired of legacies. There have been just too many people lately who seem to feel their family name is all they need to flash to earn what others have worked their lives to achieve.

Caroline Kennedy is a fine person, but she is not ready for a U.S. Senate seat -- and for her to be appointed to that seat right now is nothing short of political patronage. And that is the last thing this nation needs right now.

Published in Editorials on December 16, 2008 10:48 AM