Last night I watched the lunar eclipse with fascination, gratitude and wonder. I was wired afterwards, and had a hard time falling asleep, or deciding what to write about. So I got up early this morning to write.
And as beautiful and awe-inspiring as the eclipse was, I decided that I need to write about something that has been pressing on my mind all week: strategic voting for the Canadian election.
In Canada, our federal election is coming up in a few short weeks, and the results are going to be key in deciding whether Canada remains a great place to live, or becomes a fascist regime. Pretty harsh words, especially coming from me.
For many years, I couldn’t vote in Canada. I wasn’t a Canadian citizen. So I didn’t give much attention to politics, especially because the differences between the US and Canadian political system confused me. (What do you mean, the government can decide when the election will be? What do you mean, senators get appointed for life and aren’t elected? Four, or more, political parties? And I thought two was bad enough.)
Because politics were essentially out of sight, out of mind, it hasn’t been easy for me to get back into it. However, the current government has been pretty hard to ignore. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has renamed the government. That’s right. It’s not currently the Government of Canada (like it’s been for…ever); it’s the Harper Government. Egotistical much? I’m sad to admit I missed that one when it actually happened – FOUR YEARS AGO. (Yes, I’m an ostrich.)
Electoral fraud, fiscal irresponsibility, no separation of church and state, muffling scientists, voter suppression tactics that make it not only hard to find your polling station, but also hard to prove your eligibility to vote, the atrocities go on and on. I didn’t even mention Bill C-51 (oops, I guess I did). These articles may not even be the best examples. They are merely the issues that come to mind when I think of Mr. Harper. Ugh. Even typing it makes my skin crawl. Helen Austin sings it so eloquently:
I’ve heard of strategic voting in the past, and I disagreed with it. Why vote for someone you don’t support? I mean, if everyone voted for who they supported, wouldn’t the result be more accurate? And maybe that candidate that you support would actually win, if everyone voted their beliefs. Normally I would say, “I don’t care who you vote for, just vote.”
Well, for this election at least, I’ve changed my tune. I actually DO care who you vote for this time. We have to do everything in our power to make sure the Harper Government does not get reelected. And that means strategic voting – voting for the candidate who stands the best chance of winning against the Conservative candidate in your riding. You can find out who that is at several sites, including Anyone But Harper and Vote Together. Strategic voting can make or break the future of Canada.
Please register to vote. And please vote Harper out.
PS. If you’re not convinced that Harper is bad for Canada, consider his actions in comparison to Fascism (def. an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization. Examples of fascist leaders from the past are Benito Mussolini and Vladimir Lenin):
Can you tell I feel strongly about this?