I work in politics. I’ve worked campaigns. I vote – always. I discuss politics with friends and voice my opinions. I have had occasion to blog about things I’m very passionate about.
The section of the book I am currently reading has included a lot of discussion about Barack Obama’s speech to schoolchildren and the parents who were furious about such a thing. This is the politics of hate. The politics of us vs them – you’re either with us or against us. One essay writer pointed out: “This is the President…”
The country voted, someone came out on top, respect the office, respect the choice of your fellow voters, even if you don’t like the result.
Here in Canada we have a government and we have an opposition. The government introduces legislation, the opposition opposes it, debate ensues.
Except not any more.
Our government has decided that they don’t want to debate so they don’t have to. They are put time limits on the amount of debate there can be on virtually every bill going through the House of Commons. Where there is still debate – in house committees – the government side has decided to take things in camera.
When any of the opposition parties questions legislation the government side gets angry with the for opposing. The opposition. Yeah.
All of this means that the Canadians who did not vote for the party currently in power are not getting the chance to be heard and all Canadians no longer have access to information about how decisions are being made.
And the sad fact is that a lot of us are not paying enough attention to realize or care, but we should.
If I had my way, people would give up the ‘us against them’ hatred and learn more about the process.