Friday, December 27, 2013

The Responsibility We All Must Assume

In a column entitled A disheartening year in Canadian politics published on Dec. 20, The Globe's Jeffrey Simpson recounts the corruption, buffoonery and scandals that permeate our municipal, provincial and federal governments. Whether we look at the antics of Toronto's Rob Ford, the widespread venality, graft and ties to organized crime endemic to Montreal politics as revealed by the Charbonneau Commmision, the gas plant scandal in Ontario or the diseased mentality surrounding Senategate, there seems little from which the average citizen can take heart.

In response to that column, a Globe letter-writer, Caroline Wang from Vancouver, offers an antidote that I think all of us who write progressive political blogs would heartily agree with. Rather than letting our disgruntlement and disillusionment be a reason to disengage from the political process, it should prompt all of us to channel our anger and become part of the solution:

Re A Disheartening Year In Canadian Politics (Dec. 20):

So isn’t it up to the “plenty of honourable and hard-working people” of Canada to change the unacceptable “culture of deceit, backscratching and venality” that appears endemic in political life and that caused the annus horribilis?

Jeffrey Simpson asks a good question: “How was it, with so many people complicit in the corruption for so long, that no one blew the whistle?”

If we want to see a change to the way of doing business that will promote a culture and system of legality and honour, this can only be done by Canadians who are “mad and disillusioned.”

The answer is not turning off. It is becoming more involved in order to challenge what is wrong.

Working together to stamp out the disease of “widespread, prolonged and systemic corruption” wherever it happens to be in our society is the first step to recovery.

Electing exemplary leaders who will shape our future and create a legacy that reflects and defines our national character is the only way to create the best from Canadian politics.

May 2014 mark the year that increasing numbers of us channel our inner Peter Finch and use our anger and our passion for a better Canada by devoting at least part of each day to learning more about the people and parties who have betrayed the trust that the electoral system has given them.

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