And a time to vote . . .
To everything – turn, turn, turn
There is a season – turn, turn, turn
And a time for every purpose under heaven
A time to be born, a time to die
A time to plant, a time to reap
A time to kill, a time to heal
A time to laugh, a time to weep
With the Stanley Cup playoffs finally here, and the Vancouver Canucks poised to play their first game tonight, and with the BC election campaign well underway, there is no shortage of storylines to follow for BC residents.
In this day of 24/7 news, of course, we are not confined to following local issues and stories. Indeed, sometimes following the news on the various media available to us can feel like watching one big reality TV show. Like many, I was gripped by the Boston Marathon bombing and the search for the perpetrators and the factory explosion in West, Texas that followed mere days later. Pushing those stories out of the headlines of course was the garment factory collapse in Bangladesh and the ensuing hand wringing that has followed the stark reminder that we in the west are culpable for working conditions in the developing world. It is easy sometimes to get caught up in what is unfolding in the rest of the world.
But changing the channel and getting back to the BC election, there are times when recalling particular moments in history are particularly apropos and this is one of them. Anyone with a remote grasp of history knows that the major battle early Nikkei fought (along with other Asian immigrants and First Nations peoples) was for the right to vote, to take their place as true Canadians in a society that tolerated them at best and actively worked to get rid of them at worst.
We of course have benefitted from the perseverance of those early pioneers and their eventual winning of the franchise, and now enjoy all the rights of citizenship.
The provincial election may not be theatre on a grand scale (anyone who followed the debates can attest to that!) and it’s easy for cynicism to trump duty, but if there is one thing we can do to honour the memory of those who came before us, it is to follow the issues as best we can and come voting day (or even before) head on down to our polling station and cast our votes. Sometimes we may have to hold our noses, but it’s a small price to pay for this unwieldy thing we call democracy.
Oh yes, and go Canucks!