If you want to see a Courtenay Council that reflects the desires of city residents to have a beautiful, healthy, vibrant community that cares at least as much for ordinary citizens and a healthy valley as it does for the interests of big money, secretively funded “old boys” then you need to know this important fact about the upcoming municipal election: the Dogwood Initiative is NOT doing a pre election phone out to ensure progressive electors get out to vote. If you want to see progressive candidates elected in the October 20, 2018 municipal election YOU have to do more than just mark your X by the progressive candidate of your choice. YOU have to take up the slack left by the withdrawal of the Dogwood Initiative from any kind of active role in getting out the vote.

In the 2014 election it was clearly the election day call out by the Dogwood Initiative that ensured enough progressive electors got out to vote to elect more progressive representatives than this valley has ever seen before. It was certainly enough to so thoroughly enrage the valley’s big money interests that they have come together to run full page, colour attack ads in The Record issue after issue —but slacking off during the official election period to avoid having to expose exactly who is frantically turning out their pockets to try to ensure that the valley never again has such a progressive council. Given the clearly visible buckets of money thrown at the up coming municipal election one can’t help but wonder how much is being spent on social media efforts to find, convince, get out their vote. I am sure the big money success of Donald Trump and Doug Ford has not gone unnoticed in the Comox Valley.

What can you do? Well you can vote! But that is not enough. You can put your social media contacts to work, but—most importantly—you can call/talk to your friends. Talk with them now AND call them(make a list) on election day. People like to hear from friends. I do. All these spam calls turn my stomach but I love it when a friend calls to say hello. Well don’t just call close friends; on election day call everyone you know , email them the night before. Let them all know that if they don’t want a valley once again dominated by the old boys’ network—they NEED to vote—and urge them to call all their friends to get out the vote. Offer rides. Baby sit. Pick up their kids after school. Anything. ANYTHING you can do as a friend that wants a healthy valley dedicated to the well being of all (regardless of their accumulated income). Call it an insurrection—like when we threw Harper out. BUT let’s do this as a learning experience: how can we ordinary citizens who do care about the Earth we are leaving to our children and the quality of life we have in our beautiful valley make our voices count in a world so dominated by corporate interests and big money? Let’s make this an event we will never forget: the day ordinary citizens stood up to big money and gave meaning and power to the now famous words of Barack Obama:

“While you can’t necessarily bend history to your will, you can do your part to see that it…“bends toward justice.” So I hope that you will stand up and do what you can to serve your community, shape our history and enrich both your own life and the lives of others…”

Norm Reynolds