Listen, learn, vote

Voting is a simple act that holds powerful significance. Don’t waste the opportunity.

And so it begins – 28 days of fevered campaigning as the 2013 provincial election gets “officially” under way.

Not that the parties (or the candidates) have not been campaigning already. With the advent of the fixed election date, and the byelection held in Chilliwack-Hope just a year ago, it seems the campaign began months ago.

But now comes the important part – our part.

During the next four weeks we have the responsibility to learn what we can about the individual candidates and the policies they represent. It’s our job to weigh their promises, assess their abilities, and register our decision.

And it’s never been easier. With the pervasiveness of online sources, reading up on a candidate is only a mouse-click or a tap away. Complete party platforms are either online now or will be soon. The Progress will also be compiling its election coverage under a specific tab at www.theprogress.com.

There are other opportunities.  To date, more than eight all-candidate meetings have been scheduled, providing a chance to ask questions, listen, or simply meet the candidates.

But becoming educated about the issues is only part of the work. It’s what we do with that information that really counts.

And so far, we haven’t done a very good job.

During the 2009 general election, barely half the voters in the riding of Chilliwack bothered to vote. In Chilliwack-Hope, the turn out was better, but only by two per cent.

In the byelection held in Chilliwack-Hope last year, voter participation was much worse. A paltry 41 per cent of registered voters registered their choice.

Whether apathy, cynicism or laziness, it doesn’t matter. It is an abdication of a responsibility that people elsewhere in the world continue to fight and die for.

It is a right granted to women in B.C. only 95 years ago, and to certain minority groups only in the late 1940s.

And yet, more than half of us routinely take it for granted.

Voting is a simple act that holds  powerful significance.

Don’t waste it.

Just Posted

BREAKING: Details of Chilliwack councillor’s expenses being sent to the RCMP

Decision to have expenses audited and shared with police taken at special meeting on Wednesday

Seventh day of searching for missing plane between Edmonton and Chilliwack

Search efforts are concentrated along the Highway 5 corridor between Valemount and Kamloops

Around the BCHL – Trail Smoke Eater grad to captain NCAA Michigan Tech Huskies

Around the BCHL is a regular look at the BCHL and goings-on throughout the junior A world.

Chilliwack firefighter seeking to reunite Rosedale VFD’s old auxiliary fire pump with antique engine

It’s been four decades, but Pat Liebault is hoping to reunite Rosedale’s auxiliary pump and engine

Watch out for Pavement Patty: Drivers warned outside B.C. elementary school

New survey reveals unsafe school zones during 2018 back-to-school week

First Nations block roads to stop the moose hunt in B.C.’s Interior

Chief Joe Alphonse confirmed Thursday they’ve deactivated the Raven Lake Road and the Mackin Creek Road just before the Island Lake turnoff

‘Like an Alfred Hitchcock movie’: Birds fall dead from the sky in B.C. city

Raptor expert says he’s never seen it happen anywhere in the Lower Mainland

Canada signs global pact to help rid world’s oceans of abandoned fishing gear

The federal Fisheries Minister says it’s a ‘critical issue’

GOP pushing forward for Kavanaugh, accuser wants ‘fairness’

Kavanaugh has denied al allegations of sexual misconduct

Lower Mainland woman sets Grouse Grind record

Madison Sands sets a new best time on Vancouver’s fitness landmark

Tent city campers now allowed to stay in B.C. provincial park

Contrary to earlier reports, Ministry of Environment says there is no deadline for campers to leave Greater Victoria camp site

Bus company vies to replace Greyhound in Kamloops to Vancouver, Kelowna

Alberta-based Ebus applies to the Passenger Transportation Board to replace Greyhound

Former VP of lululemon joins B.C. cannabis cultivation facility

Kerry Biggs will be the Chief Financial Officer of True Leaf, in Lumby

Most Read