Will your voice be heard?

Will your voice be heard at the ballot box? Or are you among the 50 percent of Ontario citizens who are going to let someone else make the decision for you about who will govern the province following tomorrow’s election?
Around the coffee table, it appears no one is excited by this election. It is not a top-of-mind concern anywhere in Fort Frances outside of the campaign offices of the four parties.
What does that say about electors in the Kenora-Rainy River riding?
Back in 2011, only 49 percent of Ontario electors chose to cast a vote. Those working on the campaigns and doing the polling believe this year’s provincial election turnout will be even less.
Do we believe that no provincial party will be able to make things better? Are we ready to accept the status quo? Do we believe that our votes don’t count?
Do we believe that provincial issues such as health care, education, roads, the environment, elderly care, transit, and hydro costs can’t be changed by any party or elected individual?
Do we accept that mismanagement of our tax dollars is acceptable in Ontario? Do we believe that our politicians should be held accountable for the policies and actions of their parties, whether or not they form the government?
Is it more important to elect a candidate from a riding who will work for his/her constituents over the party that is most likely to form the next government?
One of my friends who voted in advance said he squeezed his nose shut while he cast his vote. Another person said she wanted a choice that said “None of the above” and instead voted for all four candidates to show her dissatisfaction.
In some parts of Ontario, there even is a party named “None of the Above.”
I receive at least two calls per night shortly after 6 p.m. But because I am slow to answer, all I get is dead air without anyone on the line.
A couple of times, an automated call has been received, with a robot asking questions that you can respond to by hitting 1 for “yes” or 2 for “no.”
At one time, feet on the ground—with volunteers knocking on your door to promote their candidate—was the norm. They carried passion and excitement about their candidates and tried to pass on their enthusiasm for those individuals.
Volunteers still might be out there but I haven’t seen them. Maybe even volunteers are hard to find during an election campaign today—and find it harder to pass on enthusiasm for their local candidate when the election is built around someone distant in the Toronto region.
Will you cast your vote for democracy or let someone else dictate how you will be governed.
It is your choice.

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