Vote now to secure your right

By Aaron Berhane October 2011 Ontario will be holding its provincial elections on October 6. This should be an exciting time for all of us, but unfort...

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By Aaron Berhane
October 2011

Ontario will be holding its provincial elections on October 6. This should be an exciting time for all of us, but unfortunately it doesn’t seem to be.

I hear people saying they have lost interest in politics. They don’t plan to vote or participate at all. The main reason, they say, ‘it is the same old same old.’ Whether you vote for one party or another, they add, politicians are all of the same breed.

This attitude always bothers me. We want change, but we don’t want to take part in creating change. Even though we have the right to do so. Why don’t we exercise our rights?

In Eritrea—the country I came from—people are dying to cast their ballots and pick their leader. But they aren’t allowed to do so. Since 1993, the Eritrean people have never witnessed an election. The people there are governed by a regime which doesn’t allow them to exercise their basic rights: freedom of speech, religion and movement. All their rights have been seized for almost two decades.

Here, however, we have everything—almost. But we don’t use what we have. If we don’t exercise our rights properly now, somebody will take them away one day. And it will be very hard to get them back. This is the situation the Eritrean people are facing today.

Elections are not a game. It concerns our lives and those of future generations.

We have four options on the table right now: the Liberal Party, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party and Green Party. Let’s go out and vote for one of them. That’s a way to send our politicians a strong message. If we don’t vote, remember, somebody will take away this right one day. Don’t let that happen.

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