Remember in the old cartoons, when something incredible happens and the character’s jaw literally drops until it hits the floor? That happened to me last week.
The Liberal party announced they would be creating an Island-specific platform for the upcoming election, recognizing that there are regional issues facing Vancouver Island communities that aren’t the same as those on the mainland. Don’t be alarmed by that noise you just heard – it wasn’t a ghost; it was your jaw dropping.
I spent a couple of days reading, rereading, and re-rereading the announcement, trying to understand what exactly the Liberals were thinking, and I came up with two possible explanations.
First, it’s a joke gone wrong. Like someone in Liberal party communications was playing a Halloween prank. Why else would the Liberals just now realize that life is different for people who call Island communities home? Even I don’t think they’re capable of that level of ineptitude. But that’s what also leads me to the more likely scenario of the two: Scary Halloween politicking.
You see, the Liberal party is trying to scare Vancouver Islanders into voting for them. The problem though, is the only thing haunting the island are the ghosts of all the dead Liberal promises.
For many years, the Liberals have had ample opportunity to listen to, and address, the concerns of families on the Island. But they have not done that – and I know this, because in all of my conversations with the families, business owners, and community leaders, with people like you, the issues aren’t new. Affordable living, quality care for our seniors and families, new, sustainable economic policies, and high quality education haven’t improved at all under the Liberals. If anything, they’ve grown worse – and that my friends is the real Halloween scare story; the story of a Liberal party that has lost its capacity to care for the people of this province.
Like many this Halloween, I will be telling my family and friends the mysterious tale of the missing e-mails, a cyber data murder that still haunts the halls of the Legislature. And if you listen close, real close, you can still hear their cries for justice – but they go unanswered. Trapped forever in another world, held in the dungeons of the Legislature by the invisible chains of a witch’s spell.
As the moon of this Halloween draws near, I take a small bit of comfort knowing seniors, families, students, workers, children and even the Liberals themselves, will hold in their hands a colour of safety that belongs to the people of B.C. – orange.
When you see orange this Halloween think of change. Think of putting people back at the centre of our politics. But most of all, have no fear, the Liberal’s “Island Specific” platform is just a story full of ghosts, goblins, headless promises, and witches that were meant to frighten parents with small children. I won’t let it haunt the future of this great province. Together, we can change our destiny.