Dissent an integral part of the democratic process


by admin on April 20, 2011

The Editor,


There has been some questions as to whether or not the present council of the MRC is democratic and transparent. As a civics teacher in Ontario, I and my cohorts are asked to teach our students that democracy has eight elements: rule of law, being informed and getting involved, common good, human dignity, personnel freedoms, respect, political equality, and political freedoms. Without going into definitions, I think we can safely assert that many of the people criticizing the council fail to be democratic citizens.

Not to worry however, because the Ontario curriculum also suggests that a true democracy is an elusive concept that all cultures may strive for, but may never achieve. Without going into that debate, I just want to say all I wish for is for people to call a spade a spade. In other words, if you are acting out of self-interest (and there’s nothing wrong with that), then say it.

If you don’t want your taxes going towards something, then say it. If you want to protect your backyard, then say it. If you don’t want to give up on your vision of what Chelsea is to you, then say it. The next thing is, we elect people to represent us, and they vote on the issues. As they say; it doesn’t work, but it’s the best of the rest (political systems).

Dissenting voices are an integral part of a democracy and debate is good. Expecting a corporate agenda behind every public policy or decision is not realistic, though. There needs to be some responsibility taken by residents to accept that it’s not always going to go your way.

We are 10 to 20 minutes away from a major city, lets get real here, people. We have been the beneficiaries of the separatist agenda for 30-plus years, and the game is up. Your children can’t afford to live in the community they grew up in, is that what you want?

The grocery store is our community centre, and many complainers don’t even go there. I won’t even begin to talk about community, and what that means. Its time to prepare for tomorrow; hindsight is 20/20; you can’t live in the past, etc., you can choose the motto that applies to you and your pet peeve. But please stop with crap copy in the Low Down, I feel like I’m watching TV.


Ed Hanrahan

Chelsea, Quebec