If Canada’s 2008 Federal Election proved nothing else, it proved that the city of Toronto truly is out of touch with the rest of Canada – at least as out of touch as some say is the province of Quebec.
It was clear through the results of the vote, riding by riding, that much of Canada was doing its best to give the Prime Minister its confidence (or, at least, showing the Liberals that they elected an inept leader). Yet what happened in Toronto? Every “416” seat, with the exception of Toronto-Danforth and Trinity-Spadina, the two awarded to the Leader of the NDP and his wife, became, or remained, Liberal. The only change in Toronto, in fact, came in Parkdale-High Park, where a Liberal unseated a New Democrat.
It’s almost enough to make one understand why others in Canada cast aspersions on Toronto!
In Quebec, of course, the government’s main competition was from the Bloc Quebecois, rather than the Liberals, and the circumstances there are, of course, quite different. Yet just as there is a dichotomy between Quebec and the rest of Canada, so is there a similar dichotomy between Toronto and the rest of Canada. And between them, they have managed to place yet another stranglehold on what could otherwise have become an effective parliament.
Surprisingly, I’m not sure we can lay the blame at the feet of the media – at least, not completely: the October 10, 2008 edition of the Scarborough Mirror, a community newspaper serving Toronto’s more easterly communities, endorsed every Conservative candidate in its editorial. The National Postendorsed the Conservatives. Even CTV News seemed to tip its hand somewhat to the right. (And there may be others.) Yet Torontonians, in the majority, did not heed these recommendations.
The electors of Toronto have shot themselves in the foot yet again. Their votes have ensured that the largest city in the country will have no voice in cabinet or even in caucus in Ottawa. That’s Toronto’s loss, and one could also say it’s Canada’s loss.
Being out of touch exacts a cost.
(And while I’m at it, may I say how disgusted I am at the voter turnout? The lowest ever! If you had the right to vote – a right won for you with the blood of thousands of soldiers – and you chose not to exercise that right, you should be ashamed of yourself.)
Refusing to be in touch with your polling station exacts a cost, too.
Pray for your government. The Bible says God put it there for our good (Romans 13).