A startling oversize flyer arrived in local mailboxes last week. "The difference is easy to see," it says. Madeline Rogero is pictured in black and white, over a dark and ominous sky, above a picture of abandoned buildings in a slum area.
Opposite her, Mark Padgett's in living color, in a blue sky, watching over children playing ring-around-the-rosie on well-tended green grass. "Mark Padgett / Jobs & Neighborhoods," it says. The other side, the gloomy side with slums, says "Madeline Rogero / Taxes and Spending."
As we've noted before, the only tax hikes Rogero was associated with were when she voted with the generally conservative majority on County Commission back in the '90s. Back then, Padgett was just a lad, not old enough to vote.
But what caught our attention last week was the creative imagery.
The "Rogero" slums depicted in the grim photo aren't her fault, apparently aren't even in East Tennessee. (If those interesting ca. 1900 brick row houses were in Knoxville, they would almost certainly have been the subject of a preservationist redevelopment effort by now.)
And in the background of the sunny blue "Padgett" side, featuring the dancing children, are what appear to be palm trees.
It raises the question: Will Padgett finally bring palm trees to Knoxville? After so many decades of Democratic failure to do so?