Advance View: Vote as little as you wish

You don’t have to vote on Saturday.

But we think you should.

Voting is not a legal requirement in Canada, as it is in many parts of the world.

We don’t understand why any country would deem it necessary to force its citizens to exercise their democratic responsibility.

But then, we don’t understand why so many people in this country – in this community – fail to realize how important a trust has been placed in them in determining their own future.

In parts of the world where the responsibility to participate in democracy does not exist – because democracy does not exist – people die or risk death for the privilege.

It’s difficult to accept that so many people in Langley City and Township will find other, far less important things to occupy their time on Saturday.

Nevertheless, we’re not going to tell you have to vote… but we are going to tell you how to vote… although definitely not who to vote for – that’s your decision, your privilege, your responsibility.

Come Saturday morning, you will have before you the opportunity to choose among a large number of candidates seeking to fill three civic offices, each of which offers a varying number of vacancies.

You don’t have to fill all the spaces. You don’t have to cast ballots for all of the offices. Just vote for the people you feel will be a good fit for the positions they wish to fill. Is there only one school trustee candidate you feel comfortable with? Just vote for one.

Are there only two councillor candidates that you fancy? Just vote for two.

If you don’t like any mayoralty candidates, leave that part of the ballot blank.

Indeed, if there is no one you feel you can trust, vote for no one. But turn up at the polls to hand in your ballot. Be included in the count. Let them know you were there. Let the successful candidates know that the community is paying attention.

You don’t have to make the effort, but we think you should. Even if you don’t like your options, let them know you take your responsibility seriously.

– B.G.

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