I am frightened.
I am more afraid of the Harper Government than I am of the two women who wanted to wear the niqab during the citizenship ceremony.
I am horrified by Harper’s use of Republican and Tea Party tactics that change the tolerant, confident, outward-looking Canadians I meet into a fearful people, suspicious of refugees desperate enough to risk their lives to escape the ongoing horror in their country.
I am aghast at the weakening of the democratic process during the past 10 years, the disrespect for the truth and the refusal to be accountable, the consolidation of control into the PMO and the Fair Elections Act, disenfranchising thousands of voters — young people, First Nations and new immigrants.
I am also frightened by Harper’s disrespect for science — the abolition of the long form census, the lack of feedback on our environment and escalating extinction of species, and the muzzling of scientists on other matters that effect all Canadians. I cringe over his again representing Canada at the upcoming climate talks in Paris.
I am afraid of the cuts to healthcare instituted by the Harper government: a $36 billion cut in federal funding for health care over the next decade, according to the Canadian Health coalition, and a change in the Health Act that will mean less money for all provinces except Alberta, and will almost guarantee the loss of national standards in healthcare.
I am afraid of so much. I will lump the rest of my fears together for the sake of brevity, using the Naomi Klein term “disposables” — disposable Parliament, First Peoples, aboriginal women, poor people, refugees, regulations and oversight in all federal departments, respect for the justice system, CBC, safe food, clean water, foreign aid, veterans who come back from war damaged, gun control, peacekeepers and more, much more.
The three progressive parties in the present election have such compelling leaders and policies that our split votes will enable the Harper Conservatives to come up the middle. The NDP is leading in this riding with the Conservatives a close second, and Greens and the Liberals a distant third and fourth. Alistair MacGregor of the NDP is our only hope on Oct. 19.
He needs all of your votes to win. I don’t usually plead, but right now, I am that frightened.