As election day nears and campaigns draw to an end, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the voters of Ward 2, and the people of Sault Ste. Marie for opening their ears, eyes, and doors for me and all of the other candidates. We are extremely lucky to, every four years, have the ability to critically examine the records of our leaders in an effort to collectively address our concerns and make a better future for our community.
This has been an educational experience for me, with lessons both enlightening and saddening. Of particular note is the denigration of civil debate and discussion for the sake of political gain. It is sad indeed that the rancour of “big politics” has leaked down to stain our civic races. This is a blight on modern politics, and degrades the call to public service.
Our community can only thrive when we choose to bear our obligations collectively. We must strive for inclusivity, compassion, and mutual respect regardless of our personal convictions. It is our good fortune to have people in this town who willingly put the needs of others before their own. Those people are my inspiration, and their ethic is my aspiration. They are our hometown heroes.
On October 23rd, a new Council will be seated and the arduous task of forging the next four years of our future will begin. Please remember that regardless of who is seated at the table, they are your representatives. They should speak with your voice. If they do not, hold them to task. But also remember that at the end of the day, when the lights and cameras go off and the ink dries, that these are simply people. They do not deserve to be attacked, or mocked, or disparaged. They are parents, neighbours and coworkers. When we lose this insight, we lose our community. We, Sault Ste. Marie, are better than that.
In closing, I will paraphrase a quote recounted by Clifford Stoll: “all truth is one. In this light, may (we) endeavour here for the steady evolution of mankind from darkness to light, from narrowness to broadmindedness, from prejudice to tolerance. It is the voice of life which calls us….”
Thank you all. Please vote on October 22nd.