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Opinion: People will move to Idaho (yes, even from California). Let’s welcome them and work together on future challenges

OPINION OF THE PUBLISHER

Last night, Tyler Rausa posted something to twitter that turned my head – and turned my stomach.

Someone left a printed message on his car:

“GO BACK TO CALIFORNIA WE DON’T WANT YOU HERE.”

Oh, really?

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If you read Rausa’s name and thought it rang a bell – it should. He scored 220 points for Boise State as a kicker between 2014 and 2016. He grew up in Temecula, California – but as a star recruit for Boise State, he did both his home state – and adopted state proud.

But some anonymous individual decided to leave an unwelcoming card on his car.

What does this solve? Is “being nasty to random people” an Idaho value? Not the Idaho I grew up in. I moved here in 1981. As in – I was born at St Luke’s in Boise. My dad was born here. His dad and mom were born here… etc.

I grew up loving Idaho – for its beauty, for its environment and most of all – for its people – new and old alike.

Most of the people who live here now started out somewhere else.

Since just 1990, the population in Idaho zoomed 73% – from 1 million people to 1.75 million people. While some of those residents were born here – many came from elsewhere.

Whether you moved here in 2019, 2009 or 1919 – you have a right to live here.

And what’s more – leaving a snotty card on someone’s car or a nasty message on Facebook solves nothing.

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Does population growth bring challenges? For certain. An increase in traffic, housing supply shortages and the threat of urban sprawl are real problems.

But complaining won’t solve it. Solutions will. Working together. Using energy to engage with leaders. Voting.

It will not be easy. The problems we face are large and complicated. It will take lots of smart minds. But Idaho is a place where the impossible can happen.

Welcome to Idaho

Welcome to Idaho
Welcome to Idaho

I wrote on Twitter last night that I would print up cards that say “Welcome to Idaho! I hope you love it as much as I do!”

It’s one of the most popular things I’ve ever tweeted.

So today, I’m making available postcards with that exact message. You can buy one – or many – on Zazzle. (A portion of your purchase will help support BoiseDev’s journalism). You’re also welcome to snag the image above and print your own version, too.

You can sign your name or leave a message on the back.

Give them to your new neighbors. Hand them to your new friends. Put one on Tyler Rausa’s car.

Your support makes BoiseDev possible. Consider a membership to help us grow.

Don Day
Don is the founder and editor of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow.

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