Election season is a depressing time for a journalist.
No, not because there’s a lot more stories to write or the late nights covering various topics as it seems everything happens in September and October.
It always seems that few people care about politics. But when an election is called, political stories take over.
Yet, judging from the low turnout at the local federal election debate, the federal election is not at the forefront for most people.
When compared to the number of people that attended other public engagements, such as the proposed Mt. Begbie Chalet, the caribou conservation meeting last spring or the climate rallies by city hall, few attended the debate.
At the other events, there was standing room only. Roughly 100 people attended the Mount Begbie Chalet meeting and a crowd beyond 800 filled the Community Centre auditorium, spilling into the hallway for the caribou meeting, with more than 5,000 people tuning in via Facebook Live.
At the last climate rally, roughly 400 students attended.
Less than 100 came to the federal debate last week, which was perhaps the only chance for Revelstokians to hear in-person from the candidates, mingle and ask questions. It appeared the Revelstoke Review was the only local media present.
One of the seven candidates running will represent Revelstoke in Ottawa and be our voice for, well, everything.
Yes, the climate rally was mostly attended by youth and yes, they cannot vote. However, they are the vote of tomorrow and politicians know that.
If you care about the caribou debate, tell your MP. If you care what happens to Mt. Begbie, tell your MP. If you care about the climate, tell your MP.
Or even, just tell the people running for MP.
If they know the concerns of the people, hopefully, they would include it within their mandate.
Vote for the MP that you think would best represent you for whatever you think matters most. Even if you vote for an MP whose party does not get elected to power, that MP can voice your concerns to the highest and most powerful office in the country — the prime minister.
When it comes to politics and I hear someone say it does not matter who wins or they cannot be bothered to vote, I can’t help but think of a Lord Of The Rings quote.
When the Ents decide to not go war against Saruman the White, Merry replies, “But you’re part of this world! Aren’t you?” The Ents tell Merry to go back to the Shire for his part in the story is over. Merry knows that the fires of Isengard will spread and eventually engulf the Shire.
“There won’t be a Shire,” he says sadly.
Everything is connected, even if it might not seem so. Although Revelstoke is 3,732 kilometres or a 39-hour drive from Ottawa, according to Google, we’re still part of Canada.
Our vote matters.
On Oct. 21, vote.