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VIEW FROM THE THIRD- DECEMBER 14

Complaining, blaming, and shaming

 

I don’t know about you, but I am really tired of listening to our municipal council complaining. Maybe I’m in the minority, but I didn’t vote for people to complain, or blame, or shame on my behalf. I voted for individuals to represent my interests and work their hardest to bring them to fruition.

 

Unfortunately, when I tune into the council during the meetings or read about their activities afterward, I am dismayed by the amount of time and energy devoted to the past: old fights, previous wrongdoings, and former slights. Who cares? Move on already. I don’t want to live in the past and I surely don’t want my elected representatives to reside there.

 

How does the endless history lesson move us forward? We all know that we once mined coal and manufactured steel – and we were good at it, we supplied much of the country for a time with the result of the labour.

 

We also know that in the 1990s several local units of government were forced to amalgamate, and some felt at the time that the CBRM didn’t get a fair deal.

 

But unless our council is in the final stages of building a time machine to transport it and rewrite our history, I think that it is beyond time to turn the page.

 

I want a council that focuses on the future not one that yearns for a past that we never had. Instead, I listen to and watch a council that seems to enjoy pulling the string in its back and listening to the same message again and again.

 

I think we deserve a council that is focused on a vision for our future and creating a plan to get us there. What is it that we want to be? That’s what I want the council to discuss. Then I want them to plan a course of action that gets us there.

 

We have people moving to the Third for the first time since I have been alive. We have young international students who want to help us grow our economy. For the first time in decades, most of the high school graduating class plans to remain in the Third.

 

I want our councillors to turn their minds to how they are going to leverage what we have now - in this moment. How are we going to increase the quality of life of those who live here and want to move here? How can we provide opportunities for young entrepreneurs to build prosperous lives in the Third?

 

I don’t think our mayor and councillors put their names on ballots to give them a platform to complain, blame, or shame, but for me, far too much of their time is spent in the past, and the worst of it.

 

That’s a big problem for all of us now and in the future.

 

There is a lot of work to be done and we need visionaries, not bitter politicians who would rather complain, blame, and shame instead of doing the job we need them to do.

 

I’ve been back home long enough to endure two municipal elections.

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