Who are You Voting For and Other Thoughts Worth Pondering by Garden Girl Sept 2, 2014

garden girlCFN – Can you start to feel the election fever around here as the signs are popping up in people’s yards and the propaganda fills our news feeds?

This is the time where as a community we can band together and voice our opinions through votes about how we feel about our local government.

The biggest problem is voter turnout. People don’t seem to value their vote as much as they should. It is a travesty. Appalling to say the least. Imagine living in a place that we couldn’t vote? I bet many would miss the freedom we are honoured to have.

I take pride in going and putting my vote in. At least I try to make a difference instead of sitting on the sidelines and complaining about something that I have a choice to have a say in. It is even more disappointing to know that the younger demographic is in the lowest voting percentile and the older is the highest.

When will the younger generation wake up and realize that they should want to do these things, have a voice, and opinion, for themselves instead of depending on the older generation to do damage control. I can tell you as a thirty-something, I have found it hard to see myself partnering up with others because of the lack of maturity and self-responsibility in people of my demographic. Luckily, I found and surround myself with people who make me see a brighter tomorrow, instead of the all too common insight “I see me constantly dragging and picking up their a$$ to keep us afloat.”

When I meet people, I can instantly picture what time spent with that person will invite into my life. Whether it be a child with an eclectic personality or a fascinating person of the older generation.

“Lessons (and education) are never free.”

I carry that nugget of wisdom with me always. I am forever seeking mentors. I am fascinated by the strong characters that surround us, the ones who selflessly forge paths in life for others to ride the coattails or easily follow.
My friend’s Dad came to Canada, from Europe, when he was twelve with barely a dollar. Fast forward to now, he’s in his latter seventies, has two children, a wonderful cottage on the river with a cabin cruiser, (I should mention he cleared the land and built the cottage himself while working full time, as an engineer for Ford, AND as a single Dad…) and a beautiful two story home in the city with an uncommonly large lawn with fruit trees.

He created his own happiness. He taught himself- with the help of great teachers- calculus, and went on to teach at a local college before he went  to work with Ford until he retired.

His life, to me, is this grand journey, and I relish the days we have spent by the water, drinking tea and wine. I was like a dry sponge and his stories were the best water that I am all too happy to absorb. He taught me many things, just by listening to his stories. Most importantly, he taught me that I am the one to blame if life doesn’t work out the way I wish it to. I have the power to manipulate my destiny. It is no one’s fault but my own if I am unhappy.
I wish more people would see the world as he does.

The question that begs an answer is “How do we engage more people to care?”

Everyday has significance and voting day is that much more significant.

This one day affects the next four years to follow.

I plan to use my voice and vote, I hope you do too. Every second of every day is a privilege, use them wisely.


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  1. If you don’t vote then you cannot complain, but being Canadian you’ll complain anyway…..

  2. Garden Girl there are many people who came to Canada with absolutely nothing in their pockets and we know of some families from Lebanon who did the same and made companies and they have passed on but their children and grandchildren have the business today. Some made it and others failed. My doctor’s secretary is half Italian and half Russian and she looks Russian and her dad and his brothers sold the house that they had in Ottawa and built one themselves out in Greeley just outside of Ottawa. Her dad has his own business and they have a 2 acre lot and she said that she cuts the grass out there on a riding mowar and they have a garden and plenty of land and they have coyotes who visit them on a regular basis. Many immigrants have come over and worked hard. This morning while walking we could hear the frosh going on at Carleton University and my husband said to me that here in Canada and the US students go to fool around whereas in his country and a lot of others they go to study. Life is a great deal harder abroad and life in Canada and the US have raised mighty spoiled people and don’t appreciate what they have. My husband said that there is way too much freedom here and he is absolutely right. About voting people get discouraged when they see all the corruption going on around them and see no future ahead of them and that is why they refrain from voting and not just the young people but even people of my age and older. The young people feel it more being stuck with huge debts and no job and they see all the corruption and say the hell with it all.

  3. I’ll mentor you Garden Girl. I always liked chicks with antlers.

    Seriously though, most young people in Cornwall are on welfare. As long as the Liberal cheques keep rolling in to pay for meth, tattoos, and sometimes diapers and dog vaccinations, they don’t give a shit. It is time for mass sterilization in this country.

  4. Thank you again for putting your concerns out there with pride and passion. Most positive!

    Your concerns about freedom reminded me of an Abraham Lincoln quote, “America will never be destroyed by the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves”.

    Freedom cannot be taken for granted. We have an obligation to each other to protect each others right to freedom and here in our democratic system it begins with voting.

    I share your concerns and to answer you query on how to engage more people to care I believe the answer lies in having more pride in being a Canadian.

  5. @David Oldham- I think more so than that, it has to start at home. In order to be proud Canadians, we need to start with being proud Cornwallians. While progress is quite evident in certain areas of our our city, it seems that more than 70% are left behind or even worse, left out. In that sense, it is as though Canada itself has turned its back on our city. I mean, how else could this clown show go on for so long? I seriously hope that the discomfort I feel is the approaching winds of change. Because I find our current political scene is cringe-worthy, at best. When it comes to finding out things that have been or are going on, I personally feel ashamed of our city’s government progress and its wantonness. Regardless of how much of the stories are true, the fact alone that they even exist should scare most people into wanting to overhaul the whole local caucus based on the fact alone that seem to be running a circus. With our money. They apparently care more about their own paychques than they do about raising the local economy by keeping and creating jobs here. It is time we blow the whistle on this entire act. If any of them really had any heart or diplomacy, this situation, how far we’ve wandered away from being a productive area (Cornwall is rated 167 out of 170 Canadian cities by MoneySense), could never have been possible. It takes a special kind of greedy, self-serving group to allow us as a whole to deviate so far from a prosperous place that provides comfortable living for it’s citizens. If we were a ship, it would be safe to say we have been sinking for as long as I can remember. The longer we wait, as a whole, to acknowledge this (yes, it really is this bad!), the longer it will take to repair the damages. On the world stage, despite being Canadian, Cornwall is a sad place with much untapped potential. It will take the right people, WORKING TOGETHER DIPLOMATICALLY, to make it blossom into what it very easily could be, a Cornwall for EVERYONE.

  6. Nice concept Garden Girl. But most young people don’t get into involved in politics, etc. until later in life. Life would be easier if they got involved as soon as they could. But they don’t and I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen. As for whom I’m voting for that’s for me to know and no one else.

  7. On the other hand, Hugger, maybe it isn’t such a bad thing that young people hold off on political involvement until they get a firmer grip on the issues involved. To me, there’s nothing creepier than the “youth wings” of any political party. History has taught us that the indoctrination of immature kids into political parties (and religions) quite often leads to bad outcomes. Our own Dear Leader is a perfect example of what I’m talking about.

  8. Media plays a huge part in how we see our local politics. Unbiased reporting with full disclosure warrants interest and probable involvement in politics’. Unfortunately with large media chains bent on serving its bottom line at the cost of principled journalism locals young and old are turned off from getting ‘involved’ and that perhaps may be intended. An involved community is usually a progressive community willing to try new things and for some that intent interest may be seen as counter-productive to the Status Quo.

    You can vote at the polls and hope for change but more importantly you can get involved and see that the right kind of change is encouraged. Change that is beneficial for the whole community and not just special interests. Demand full disclosure from your local media or you’ll vote with your dollars. Advertisers aren’t about to advertise with a paper that no-one is buying. Step it up a bit and refrain from spending your dollars with advertisers that feed that decisive bottom line and tell them why. Change will happen under those circumstances.

    I was fortunate to have high school teachers that recognized the importance of that involvement. We had a mock parliament with student elections, campaigns etc. and I can safely say that our involvement in community affairs grew exponentially.

    We also had a newspaper, The Glengarry News, that represented the whole community and didn’t shy away from running articles or letters to the editors that accurately reflected issues of the day and as a result of that people there are involved. The town is growing in leaps and bounds as a result.

  9. Garden Girl many people are fed up with politics at all levels of government and if I lived in Cornwall (which I don’t and never will) I would never vote. People (the sheeple) voted out Kilger who was a literal nightmare and voted in Leslie and all it is is an old boys club and the town is completely dead and will never be any other way. When your dad’s friend came to Canada it was a long time ago when there was prosperity and Europeans are hard wokers unlike the lazy Canadians and lazy Americans. I know of a few families here in Ottawa who built their own homes from scratch room by room and owe nothing in debts. I do admire Dr. Baitz for what he went through and made a good success. You will never see a Canadian or American have that kind of a drive in them at all.

  10. Again, thanks for the vote of confidence Jules. And I guess the solution is to not vote. Canadians and / or Americans don’t have drive? Are you included in this, as if I recall you’re canadian?

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