I was discouraged and disappointed when I read Party politics a municipal distraction (Advocate, March 14), because it seems like we might have another biased writer working at the Advocate who is going after the wrong thing and the wrong people.
Then I got thinking … maybe I should be grateful that Mr. Cameron Kennedy (author of this column in the Advocate’s “Our View”) was able to use his powers of discernment to decode the secret messages of this group of council candidates, including their outlandish ideas of “reducing debt,” “living within our means” and “citizen votes” on issues like a city ward system.
Heaven forbid the citizens of Red Deer actually elect some people to council who are against wasteful spending. Yes, we must be afraid of this group who call themselves “Red Deer First.”
And as for that Red Deer First candidate, Calvin Goulet-Jones … yes we should certainly be afraid of Calvin. Can you imagine electing a councillor that has a supportive spouse, young children, works in the trades and goes to church? Yes, that sounds about as un-Red Deer as you can get.
So the question is … why does Mr. Kennedy oppose Red Deer First so much? Is it the idea that a group of people, who share some of the same political principles getting together to support a shared platform? Apparently, Kennedy believes this is an insult to the intelligence of Red Deer voters; however, Red Deer College political scientist professor David Baugh recognizes some potential benefits of having a group with similar financial responsible values, such as Red Deer First, collectively run in our municipal election this fall, as published in “Red Deer First in uncharted territory” in the same edition of the Advocate.
Maybe Mr. Kennedy’s beef with Red Deer First is that he is one of the three cyclists in the city who actually uses the bike lanes. Maybe he is concerned that Red Deer First might remove some the bike lanes in problem areas to restore vehicle traffic lanes and on-street parking. Yes, that would be a travesty indeed, particularly to the 200 people who signed a petition to keep the bike lanes. We won’t worry about the petition signed by over 3,000 people to have the problematic bike lane areas removed … after all, they must be the vocal minority?
Or maybe Mr. Kennedy, just maybe, we should all just take a step back and hear this group out? Instead of you declaring their goals and intentions, why don’t we let Red Deer First, and the candidates that they support, declare their goals and intentions?
We have known about this group for less than a week and the election is months away. Personally, I am not afraid of the idea of Red Deer First, so I am left to wonder Mr. Kennedy … why are you?
Red Deer City Councillor