Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday September 12, 2018
Local elections getting lost in the sound and fury
Between Doug Ford’s unprecedented antics at Queen’s Park, Donald Trump’s daily bombastic proclamations and NAFTA negotiations, it’s little wonder local elections — in Hamilton and across Ontario — are being drowned out. But it’s time for that to change.
Our municipal governments have more impact on our day-to-day lives than their more senior brethren. Yes, they’re at the bottom of the food chain — as Ford has so brazenly demonstrated — but they deliver front-line services. Our sidewalks and roads, our safe water supply, public transit, recreational centres and parks, waste disposal, libraries, animal control, tax collection — these and a host of other services and costs flow directly from city hall.
And every four years, we have a chance to pass judgment on the current city council. We can endorse them, collectively or individually. We can change out people we’re not happy with. We can clean house if that’s appropriate (even though we get to vote only for our respective ward councillor, mayor and school trustees).
So while Ford and Trump may be more dramatic (and melodramatic), it behooves us to pay attention to what’s coming up on Monday, Oct. 22. The Spectator has already begun to do that, and we plan to ramp up our coverage beginning this week.
Bottom line: If you live here, pay taxes, raise kids, retire, and you’re an engaged citizen, these elections matter. Don’t miss the opportunity to get involved in local democracy.(Continued: Hamilton Spectator Editorial)