Paddy Daley and I had a great chat today about participatory democracy today.
The conversation was precipitated by my disgust with comments uttered by Municipal Affair's Minister Herr Kevin O'Brien that 70% of the voter's in this province are too ill-informed to vote. He basically said introducing e-voting will make it too easy for people to vote which will lead to bad government.
I think he owes the public an explanation and an apology.
I also think Premier Dunderdale needs to show him the door to the government members office.
His disdain for the average resident of this province is unacceptable.
If an outside observer stated that 70% of us were too stunned to vote, or words to that effect, there would be a reaction akin to the reaction expressed in the wake of Margaret Wente's past ill-informed sterotypes about us. The talk shows, media, editorials and letters to the editor sections would be full of outrage.
Where is this mythical fighting Newfoundlander? What happened to Danny's proud, strong & determined revolution. Did they run away when Danny resigned? Are they afraid of the current regime? Would Danny Williams have accepted this kind of subterfuge from within? I sincerely doubt it. He would have had O'Brien's head for this.
I think it is so sad that one of our own feels this way about 70% of the population. How does one become so arrogant and paternalist that they forget that in a democracy, the voter is always right. That the humble average voter is the politician's boss.
The Legion's should be in an uproar, these comments are an attack on our democracy that so many people gave their lives to defend. One vote, one person. Equality. The underpinning of our democracy.
To date, O'Brien has not attempted to explain himself, partly because their is just no excuse for his opinion and he is arrogant enough to think this will just blow over. The public is stupid, they will forget all about this, they always do.
Are you going to prove this guy right or demand respect?
- Peter L. Whittle
- A former journalist, broadcaster, political staffer and policy adviser, Peter has studied political science, journalism, public administration and Canadian politics. He has grown weary of partisan politics but remains engaged in public policy issues and community activism. Father to three teenage boys,he is committed to teaching them the values of cooperation, volunteering and caring for each other. All I want is for my children to be respectful and successful.