Monday, January 23, 2006

It's a Good Day

As far as I'm concerned, this election has been an embarrassment for several reasons. Unsubstantiated attacks, gutter politics and a general negative vibe have dominated this entire campaign. Any hints of a vision have been articulated within the framework of other parties shortcomings. Overall, hardly inspiring and mostly disappointing.

Despite the campaign dynamics, here we are on election day, where the ideals of democracy finally come to the fore. Election day, no matter the outcome, is always a positive in my mind because it reaffirms the notions of equality, freedom of expression and civic pride. Everyone enters the voting booth with their own defining issues, concerns and agendas. You feel a sense of empowerment, no matter how fleeting. You feel a sense of community through participation. Despite the different preferences, a commonality is present.

The last week I have had political discussions with a vast array of people, most of whom are generally disinterested and passive about politics in their day to day lives. This engagement in the process is such a necessary and healthy exercise that further cements our democratic principles. I have an opinion, I have a voice and this is what I think. It's a great dialogue, that will sadly wane, but for the moment it is center stage. The principle of voting is something that unites us all, despite geography, despite ethnicity and all the other divisive forces.

I just voted. It feels good. It always does, probably because it represents something bigger than my little world. Tonight, I will glue myself to my television, dissect the results and probably cry foul when Harper takes control. But, for right now it sure feels like a good day.

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