Last week in the paper the Cox Campaign's ad seemed to question whether Bruce Haney had the education that would be required to act as Sheriff for our little county.
You see, Bruce's father died when he was fourteen and he went to work immediately to support his family. After graduating from high school (and working simultaneously) he went into carpentry before finding his passion helping others after going on a ride along with police officers in LA and witnessing two violent crimes. He then went to work for the LAPD before finally becoming Marshall in our little town.
Growing up as the daughter of two educators I learned early on that education is important. But as many of us learn as we go through life, there is more than one way to acquire knowledge and while the knowledge that comes from opening a book and turning the pages is valuable, we often find that the knowledge that comes from living life teaches us far more and is ultimately invaluable.
Who we are and who we become can be influenced greatly by formal education, but more often I’ve found that the moments that shape lives and characters are the unexpected ones that pop up as we go about our days, when we make hard choices and decide whether or not to take the easy route or the hard one.
A man may learn far more as he works his way through life, working to help others, to provide for his family and to keep his community safe than he could ever have learned sitting behind a desk in a classroom reading about theoretical scenarios in a book.
Experiential learning and the school of hard knocks can be difficult teachers, but the lessons learned will tell a man far more about himself and his relationship to the world around him than anything he could have absorbed in a formal setting. Experience teaches courage and moral strength and helps a man understand what he is capable of and the importance of integrity.
Bruce Haney may not have as many expensive pieces of paper hanging on his office wall, but he has the life experience and the heart, courage and background that we need in a leader in this community. He is the right choice for Trinity County Sheriff.