Booth envisions better city by making citizens better

Sep. 17, 2013 @ 08:49 PM

Arnold Booth Jr. has seen a generation become lost. He’s given back to his community through his business, and he’s eying the City Council of Henderson as a way to do more.

Booth is one of two candidates for the at-large Ward 2 seat in the non-partisan Oct. 8 municipal election. He is challenging incumbent Mike Inscoe.

“I love what I do,” said the self-employed barber at Platinum Cuts IV. “I’ve seen a generation get lost during my career cutting hair.

“I understand City Council has a job bettering the city, but we’ve got to better our citizens.”

Booth is a 1981 graduate of Vance Senior High. He graduated from barber college in 1994 and has 17 years of self-employment.

He says the jobs rate, educational system and families are key current factors. He envisions a future for Vance County returning to agriculture through timber and produce.

“There’s a lot of ways to save tax money,” Booth said. “We’ve got a lot of waste.”

He said part of the waste solution is putting non-violent prisoners to work. He hopes his idea would also deter criminal activity.

“We need to work with the sheriff’s department to get those non-violent criminals out and have them working,” Booth said. “Put them to work. That will cut them from wanting to go in there.”

Booth wants to see children gaining scholarships for college, and parents playing a role in making it happen.

“Right now, time is flying,” Booth said. “We’re running so fast in America. We’ve got slow down. Sunday dinner at mama’s house? We don’t even do that anymore.

“A lot of folks are not aware of consequences of what they do early in life.”

He’s anxious to give back through public service.

“I would love to be in position,” Booth said of why he’s best for the ward seat. “I want to be the voice, to let the community know what is going on. The City Council is not doing that. They’re not letting the citizens know all the business that goes on. It’s in The Dispatch, but people don’t read.

“Henderson needs all four wards. We can be better if all four wards are strong. I can be that voice.”

And he believes people within the communities can make the difference.

“We need more folks to volunteer, and to step up from that muck and mire we’re in,” Booth said. “We’re in a bad situation right now.”

One he hopes to change.

Contact the writer at awooten@hendersondispatch.com.