Our democracy isn’t perfect. It’s delivered with flaws, but when you look around the world there seems to be no ideal.
One of the great traits about democracy at the local level is it’s approachable. During municipal elections we have the opportunity to choose amongst our neighbours, friends and the people we pass on the street. It’s nice to know the people we pick on November 19 are only a phonecall away.
Over the next two weeks voters will have an opportunity to meet those pushing for support up close. To challenge them and question them on what direction they plan to nudge the city and region over the next three years.
If you truly care about where we are headed, then you shouldn’t pass on the opportunity.
Starting Tuesday, there will be four forums from which to choose (see story on Page 3). All four provide a different feel and will leave those who attend with different insight into the people who have let their name stand.
Choose one or choose them all, but if you really want to feel more confident in your decision later this month, then it’s a good idea to make the effort.
One important impression voters can come away with at these forums is to see how a candidate thinks on their feet. Over the course of the next three years, issues will arise that require judgement and an ability to assure residents that decisions coming out City Hall are the right ones. Seeing how candidates react to questions and each other while sitting in front of a room full of people can be telling. Watching it live provides the opportunity to judge individual performances unfiltered.
A healthy — and yes, not perfect — democracy requires participation from the people. Come election time there is a responsibility placed on voters to make an informed decision so the leaders we send to the hallways of power produce the best outcome possible. Spending an evening with candidates is your opportunity to make a real difference.