Please attend

I really wish my Prime Minister would join the world at the climate summit in New York City. Did you hear that, although he will be in New York, he will give the summit a miss? Apparently it is true.

It makes me angry because he is politicizing a universal issue. By skipping the summit he makes the political statement that climate change is an issue for other parties, not the CPC. His supporters take his cue and it polarizes the issue.

This is not hippies vs. suits anymore!

Mr. Harper markets his party as sensible and fiscally responsible which means if he does not place importance on climate action the message is that it must be a frivolous issue we don’t have the luxury to address.

He is wrong. Climate change is non-political, international and transcends 4-year election terms. It is also the ultimate pragmatic and small “c” conservative issue–a long-term, pull-up-our-boot-straps-and-get-on-with the-job-at-hand kind of issue. The CPC doesn’t need to talk tough about ISIS to inspire that nationalist vote, they could unite Canadian citizens under a passionate banner of climate action. If you can stomach evaluating crises based on death toll, climate change is going to kill a lot more people than ISIS ever will. It will just happen more slowly.

If I were to speak to Mr. Harper at this moment, I would put it this way.

Mr. Harper, you must agree that timely, meaningful action to address an oncoming problem which you know will cost Canada billions is the only sensible, fiscally responsible course of action. Your supporters who do not understand this will soon, in spite of your attempts to distract them, so you may as well get ahead of history and show up in New York ready to listen. If you are concerned about losing your base of support, well, if your supporters do not understand what we are facing and the necessity to act, it is your duty to bring them around to the cold, hard facts. There are mountains of information and hard economic studies to help them catch up. Let’s pull together and get it done!

To everyone else: please find time to attend the Climate Action march near you today, Sunday, September 21st at 1pm. It is the perfect time to send a message to all political parties that you support taking action now. This could really affect the coming election campaign because the parties are listening to people now. They want to know which issues are going to affect the way people vote.

Political Postscript:

Speaking of parties listening, I got an e-mail from Justin Trudeau, the leader of the Federal Liberal party, asking me to select which issue is most important to me. Climate Change was on that list (guess which issue I selected). I expect (and hope) this information will become part of the Liberal election machine’s calculations. If I received a similar request from the other parties, I would give them my opinion as well. The more parties who know what is important to us, the better.

From time to time I also receive a flyer from my Conservative Member of Parliament, Mr. Randy Kamp. Paid for by my taxes, these flyers tend to focus on what good things the government is doing (minor changes to cel phone plans, keeping taxes low, “standing up for Canadian families”, etc.) but there is never any mention of climate change. There is a poll, however, which invariably asks me which party is “on the right track”. I can tick the box and mail it back to him postage free (or wait, I’ve already paid for the postage, haven’t I.) I have never understood the purpose of this poll. It certainly cannot provide useful information to Mr. Kamp other than the very basic political where-do-we-stand-with-the-voters kind. “Which party is on the right track?” it says. I can only surmise that it is a kind of subliminal reminder to Mr. Kamp’s constituents that the only party that is on any track is the Conservative Party because they are the only ones with a locomotive.

Published by

James Rowley

James lives in Maple Ridge, BC, Canada with his amazing partner, Leanne Koehn, and their two amazing kids in their beautiful house. He studied Science and English Literature at the University of British Columbia where he met Leanne. He also studied acting for a while at Studio 58 in Vancouver. He works as a teacher of English and curriculum writer for new Canadians.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *