If you’re reading this, you better have voted in the federal election. But just as I should have done work over reading week (which I didn’t), we should reflect on the past and see how we can develop and grow. What motivates us to act, and are our actions up to the moral and honest standard we would like them to be?
Let us reflect.
I am disappointed by the lack of revolutionary ideas and proposals that were present in this election. Canada continues to have a Senate that does not work, an ecosystem that is dying, Indigenous peoples that do not have access to clean drinking water, an electoral system that favours the big parties, and a head of state that doesn’t live here. The list goes on.
It can be argued that these ideas can really be considered as ideals—propositions that are seen more as secondary objectives to the more important primary election platforms. Outlandish ideas are easily dismissed, especially if they are being advocated for by youth—inexperienced, utopian-seeking brats—a demographic that does not comprehend the complexities and realities of life.
The thing is, young people live real lives—incredibly complex ones. We are siblings, children, and even parents. The people who make up my generation have different experiences compared to those that came before, and by virtue different perspectives on life and politics. By being different, their perspectives on what is important and their ideas on how to implement them is in itself revolutionary.
Young people need to realize this and forge an outlet to vocalize their perspectives. The important thing to note is that they need to be heard. Taking that voice to the ballot box is one of the most effective ways of ensuring this. Parties gear their platforms to voters. If the voters are not revolutionary, neither will the platforms be.
But alas, the election is over (or soon to be), and depending on how government is formed, we may not see an opportunity to vote for a while. The ability to be revolutionary is not restricted to the ballot box however.
Be revolutionary in your daily lives. As youth we should reflect on the past with regret for the things we were unable to accomplish, face the present with pragmatism and solve the challenges we face with reason, and be optimistic about a future that symbolizes change and challenges, both known and unknown, that we will face.
Apply this perspective to your daily life, and it will become a part of our culture. The culture will fuel our politics and politics will affect our lives. The change starts with you.