Monday, May 2, 2011

Election Day

Today is a very special day in Canada. It's Election Day!

Let's be honest. When I turned 18 I was happier about the fact I could vote than the fact I could buy alcohol - and I love wine.

So, to my Canadian friends... I'm not going to tell you what to vote. You know what you want for your country. But please, please, for the sake of democracy, take twenty minutes of your day and vote.

Think about it. There are people dying these days in Lybia and elsewhere in the Middle East for a chance at democracy. We're lucky here. We can choose. It might not seem to make a big difference in our day-to-day life, but it does. And in a year, two years, ten years, the difference will be bigger.

Look at Canada today. Look at it five to six years ago. Try to tell me we haven't changed (whether you think it's a good or a bad change). We have.

It started with a piece of paper in a cardboard box.

If you don't know what to vote, because you haven't been following, I have to handy sites to help you out. CBC has a vote compass. It's a collection of questions on important political matters (30, I think) and at the end, it places the five political parties around you.

If all you know is that you don't want to vote conservatives, you can also enter your postal code in ProjectDemocracy. It will tell you, judging from the latest poll, what the best strategic vote is. (So I guess this isn't quite neutral from me. Oops.)

Do something for your country. Speak up. Vote.


  1. Well said, Claudie. Voting is both a right and a privilege. Exercise both!

  2. Project Democracy is brilliant! Thanks for pointing it out. Our riding is a pretty much guaranteed NDP seat - our NDP incumbent is wonderful and very popular here, but it was nice to confirm that information.

  3. Voting is awesome! I was so excited when I got to vote for the first time, and the husband and I always go out and vote for each election, even though with complain and whine because we are dyed in the wool democrats and my state is so red it bleeds and so our votes don't usually get us anywhere, but it still feels so good to do it.

    And! A couple of months ago a conservative group with a private agenda paid for and pushed a petition to have our mayor removed from office for various reasons, primarily an entertainment tax which tagged on like 25 cents to a $30 dinner bill but outraged people who didn't understand taxes. It didn't matter that these little taxes he'd put into place, that we never really noticed, took us from being in the hole budget wise to having a small surplus. Anyway, so they finally got their vote (costing the state $1 million, of course) and so we went out and voted to keep our mayor. We sat on pins and needles watching the numbers at not long before the end the numbers came up...and he was winning by TWO VOTES. Literally winning by the votes my husband and I had cast. It was the first time I realized how powerful my vote could be.

    He ended up keeping his office by more than enough votes, but still. For at least fifteen minutes he was winning because of my household.

  4. Sommer, that's awesome. Last elections the deputy in my county was ahead of the conservative candidate by one or two hundred votes for most of the evening. More than 2, but it still gives you an appreciation of how every little vote counts.

    Elizabeth: We're having a tight run between the Bloc and the NPD here. In the last 10 years we changed allegiance 6 times. *Anything* could happen. Fun times ahead. :D

    Jen: I like to think of it as a right, a privilege AND a duty. :)

  5. I hope it goes the way you want it to, Claudie. At least your riding isn't going in an (ahem!) undesirable direction.

    It's always interesting seeing what turns up on the ballot. In addition to the usual Marxist-Leninist candidate, we also had a Radical Marijuana Party candidate in this riding.

  6. Whenever I feel like I couldn't be bothered, I always think back to the suffragettes who went through hell so women could vote. And all the people in the world who don't have that basic right. So there is never an excuse not to make it to the polling booth. Mind you, it's compulsory in Australia, but a lot of people wear the fine instead.

  7. Wow, I wonder if we have a website in America that is similar to Project Democracy. That's pretty useful!

  8. Solvang: I never heard of one. With the States divided neatly between Democrats and Republicans, though, it'd seem obvious who to vote for to try and block the other, no?