A most interesting message came to me this evening.
It was from a businesswoman I’ve known for many years. She and I listened the other day to Paul Matney make the case for the multipurpose event venue that’s going to be on the Nov. 3 Amarillo ballot.
Voters are going to be asked whether to approve the MPEV and its ballpark design. My businesswoman friend had opposed the MPEV. Then she changed her mind. She told me that Matney’s presentation made her reconsider her opposition to the MPEV.
It reminded me of something the late Republican state Sen. Teel Bivins of Amarillo once told about his former Texas Senate colleague, Democrat Carl Parker of Port Arthur, was able to do … which was to change senators’ minds simply by the force of his own debating skills while arguing his case on the floor of the Senate.
It’s a rare thing to watch happen, Bivins said, but Parker was able to accomplish the seemingly impossible.
I don’t know that I’d ever witnessed such a compelling presentation, either before I heard Matney’s presentation. Then again, he was preaching to the converted already … that would be me.
Matney’s passion for whatever cause that’s on his radar can be a wondrous thing to see and hear. The former Amarillo College president became an ardent proponent of the school he led and he spoke with fluid eloquence about AC whenever he was given the chance.
He apparently has developed the same fluidity as he campaigns across Amarillo on behalf of the MPEV and the years-long effort to remake the city’s downtown business district. The MPEV with its ballpark design can play a huge role in downtown’s revival and Matney is delivering that message with stunning efficiency.
Believe me when I say that my friend whose mind has changed on the MPEV is not one to be pushed around easily.
I believe she might not be alone among those who are rethinking their view on this important project.