lundi 13 octobre 2008

Strategic Voting in context: the environment, Canada, politics...

Dear voter,

I do understand your concern. The strategic voting issue has been giving my consciousness a really hard time.

I am the Green Party candidate in Lévis-Bellechasse. The last Green candidate here has tried to make me encourage people to vote strategically. Around Quebec City, where most key/swap ridings are in the province, Bloc members have been offering Greens to step down to give them way. This manoeuvre has angered me, because it's not in plain mediatic sight, it's hidden, under-the-cover, it's depriving voters from choice.

I am a candidate in this election because I believe that politics is one of the many paths to save the planet. Just like you, I don't want a majority Conservative government. In the short run, it would be a threat for the environment in Canada. In the long run, a stronger Green Party means more parties will adopt our ideas, and the environment in Canada will benefit from it.

But there is more to me than the environment, my Green label or my country. At the world-level, everything breaks down to climate change. Bluntly and ecologically put, here is how I see the situation on Earth. In this day and age, the 6th great extinction, most great mammals are facing extinction. One of the few characteristics distinguishing us humans mammals from the rest of the animal kingdom is that we have the capacity to think in an abstract fashion, and thus to project ourselves in the future. Like our cousins, survival is an instinct that drives us to reproduction. We fear that our species wilI not last forever, under a threat called climate change. By burning stored energy to develop, we have influenced the regulatory schemes of the atmosphere. We humans fear the future as death; we fear the extinction of our species.

Now, how to cope with this dire reality? One can chose to deny it, as it is one of the process of grief. One can remain indifferent, and live business-as-usual. One can act. Action may be fuelled by emotion such as fear, guilt, or hope, or logical reasoning. The mindframe in which action takes place might be anywhere from negative to neutral to positive.

While my motivation is based on the cold-blooded reasoning above, emotion is my driver. Powered by hope, I act positively. Despite an imperfect democratic system, I use it in order to affect change. This is why I run with ideas, which once wildly borrowed and implemented, are good enough to save the planet, and ourselves with it. I sincerely believe that politics is a way to organize our long-term survival as a species.

I see further than myself, my province, my country; I think global. I think further than two to four years; I think in millions of years. I, Lynne Champoux-Williams, run under the banner of the Green Party of Canada in Lévis-Bellechasse.

Lynne Champoux-Williams
Candidate du Parti Vert du Canada dans Lévis-Bellechasse

Date: 03.26.1992
ID: STS045-601-47
Credit: NASA Johnson Space Center - Earth Sciences and Image Analysis (NASA-JSC-ES&IA)

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