Community BoardOpinionPolitics

OPINION: Reflections on Surrey’s 2018 Municipal Election

By Cindy Dalglish

This campaign was eye-opening, enthralling, difficult, and fun. It was exhausting, disgusting, invigorating, and disappointing. Many times, over the past several months, I heard from people that they ‘aren’t into politics’, or ‘I don’t get political’. My, what a privileged stance. I know many that just didn’t bother to vote, too.

Not only did many die for the privilege, here is what you need to know.

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Unless you are a hobbit living in the forest, completely off the grid and eating food you catch yourself, you are political. Have a bank account? Political. Eat food from a store or a restaurant? Political. Walk on sidewalks? Did you go to school? Kids in school? Drive a car? Take a bus? Go to a movie? Play a sport? Have your kids in sports? Are you older and needing medical care? Are you younger and broke a bone? Do I need to go on? POLITICAL. Every.single.thing we have in this world is gained through some form of politics.

I’m tired of the term “politics” getting a bad rap.

I’m tired of the title “politicians” getting such negative press.

And I’m also getting fed up with “taxes” being considered a bad thing.

Without politics, politicians, and taxes, you would not be able to afford to live. Period.

There would be exorbitant costs to going to school, your basic healthcare, your cars, your food. The system we have, like it or not, is better than the alternative. Fundamental rights would not be protected. There would be no judicial system (we can argue the effectiveness of ours later). No mental health (again, later). No police. No one to see us when we are sick, give us chemo for cancer, heck we wouldn’t even know we are dying of cancer. And no leaders. No one willing to put themselves on the line for everyone else that didn’t bother going to vote.

There are so many good people trying to make positive change for the greater good (agree with their ways or not), and 67.45% of Surrey stayed home when it was time to do the one thing they need to do while the rest of the candidates work their tails off trying to garner your vote. There is not a political vote that you should stay home for. Not one. There are advanced voting opportunities and election day. Heck, if you can’t make it to one of those, you can go to City hall and they will accept your vote in person.

But this isn’t just a Surrey issue. This is a Province-wide issue. Do we need to move to the Australian model of voter engagement where it is compulsory with fines for not? What is it going to take?

We take so much for granted. And it’s sad, really. Just sad.

We need our citizens, just as much as they need us.

VOTE. Signed, was a candidate and now back to being “just” a parent advocate.

Cindy Dalglish

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