• Friday, December 17th, 2010

Earlier this week, my eldest daughter and three of my grandchildren (one as-yet-unborn) were driving home when the vehicle that they were traveling in was crushed between two semi trucks.

Everybody is fine, but it’s just another thing that has happened in the last few weeks that has come up in my life that has demanded my attention.  With the Christmas season upon us, and all of the excitement  that come along with it, lives are filled with activity and often demands.

Unfortunately, the accident that set in motion the incidents that led to my daughter’s vehicle to be crushed, didn’t have the same kind of ending.   There was a life lost in this accident.  A young woman who was well respected by the people who knew her.  A woman whose death will have an impact on so many lives.  I can’t begin to imagine the grief that her family and friends are going through this Christmas season.

While it isn’t every day that your kids are in automobile accidents (please, Lord, make it so….), it isn’t that unusual of an event. And if not that, then its another thing—bills to pay, mouths to feed. Sometimes, life can be a struggle, but when I look back at where I’ve been, and how I got here, I know that these struggles have only served to make me stronger. I would not be the person I am today if I had not spent five years as a single mother of four, dividing my time between raising the family, working, and completing my education.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, now that I’m running for the Prince George Peace River Conservative Nomination. While democracy has existed, in various forms since the time of Plato, in truth, these have often been more like oligarchies: rule by the elite in a society. Before 1919, women weren’t allowed to vote, let alone run for political office. It was only in 1960 that First Nations were given the right to vote.

Its easy to take for granted this privilege, this gift of self-government. We live in a country where we, the people, are allowed to self-govern. This is a remarkable concept, made doubly so by the fact that this is truly a democracy. That everyone over the age of 18 is allowed to vote, regardless of political leaning, gender, skin colour, sexual orientation or whether or not they like the band Rush.

It’s remarkable that someone like me: A mother, a wife, a grandmother, a councilor, an ordinary person—from Tumbler Ridge, no less—has the same right, the same privilege, to run for national political office.

Here’s my challenge to you: get involved. Its surprising how easy it is. The most basic form of political expression is the right to vote for whomever you want to. With rumours of upcoming elections, I urge you not to become cynical, thinking that your vote means nothing. It does.

But there’s far more that you can do. Right now, the Prince George/Peace River riding does not have a representative in Ottawa. In the next few months, or even weeks, the local Conservative Party will be electing a new candidate to fill this vacancy. I am running for this position, and I would love it if you were to sign up for the Conservative Party, so that you have a voice in determining who you want to represent you.

If you want to get more involved, I am looking for people to help me: selling memberships, assisting with fundraising, making a donation. You can call or email to get involved.

“Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong.”
- John Diefenbaker March 11, 1958

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