Comment 109343

By kevlahan (registered) | Posted February 19, 2015 at 16:48:59 in reply to Comment 109336

The City has officially adopted as one of its four Vision goals to be the "best place in Canada to engage citizens".

If not all citizens are equally engaged, the proper response is to work harder at engaging the under-engaged, not to claim that those citizens who are actually doing what the City wants them to do are "hijacking" the process! Ensuring that the (by definition unknown) views of the "silent majority" deserve more attention (because they are a majority) runs completely counter to the City's goals and basic democracy.

Don't forget that in the case Whitehead is referring to the City is actually requesting citizen engagement and opinions ... it is not a question of "squeaky wheels" complaining, it is a matter of citizen's volunteering their time and effort to help out the City!

If voter turnout is below 50% (as it has been in most municipal elections) we don't claim that those who did vote were "hijacking" the election. We don't modify the election results after the fact to take into account what we guess those who didn't vote might have wanted. We try to increase voter turnout!

The problem of disengaged residents is not fixed by devaluing the views of those who are engaged, and by implying they have nothing better to do with their time!

Comment edited by kevlahan on 2015-02-19 16:55:35

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