I sincerely believe human nature is innately good. I also sincerely believe human nature has a strong desire to fit into social structure. This need to fit in often causes the voices of the squeaky wheel to go unchallenged. Parties with special interests often take advantage of these opposing forces of human nature by speaking their mind at public forums.
Having the courage to speak publicly is viewed as a form of strength and leadership because it is associated with confidence. Unfortunately it is human nature to assume that someone with courage is also representing truth when voicing thier concerns publicly. A person with special interests sincerely believes in thier cause, however, they will also know deep down that thier special interest is not beneficial to the community at large.
When a person with a special interest speaks in a public forum this internal conflict gives rise to hyperbole, but the inaccuracies of the speech are easily dismissed given that the courage being displayed is associated with a benevolent agenda. Special interests in community matters is not benevolent by definition.
This situation occurs frequently at civic gatherings. The silent majority sits quietly, allowing the situation to play itself out. A community with an HOA has a small board of directors who are themselves part of the community. All too often a small group with special interests overwhelms the even smaller group of elected representatives and the majority is left unheard. This is especially true when the board meetings are poorly attended.
These public displays are uncomfortable, further widening the gap between benevolent and non benevolent forces. It discourages the benevolent community leaders and eventually these leaders give up the good fight and the community is overrun by special interests groups. Nobody wins when this occurs.
Preventing such things is a simple matter of participation and positive feedback. A larger turnout at a board meeting is all it takes for the silent majority to be properly represented at a meeting. This encourages a benevolent board and discourages non benevolent leaders from taking actions in thier own special interest.
To learn more about this, do some of your own research on civic engagement using the website:
Also consider making a point to attend your civic gatherings. I challenge you to speak up to shed light on special interests and support benevolent leaders.