My partner has been warning me about this for weeks, but I couldn’t let it in. Knowing people were angry, and believing they’d make this choice were very different things in my mind.
I voted early and left for Newfoundland to visit family. The difference between a wealthy province like Ontario, and a province that’s actually struggling is pretty plain out there, especially in health care. Some of my family members have health concerns. They’ve waited for weeks just to get an appointment for an urgent MRI, and a year for a specialist referral.
I do not believe Ontarians devalue their healthcare, their children’s education, or decent wages. I do not believe we have forgotten the Harris years. I also know that the people will not be door mats, and when a politician says one thing and does another, we remember. People made a choice for what they knew.
There’s a strength in Newfoundland that I think we in Ontario will need as well, and that is our neighbors. These are times when we will be tempted towards division, to bunker down and protect our own, but we must make the choice to be stronger than that. The politicians at the end of the day are only names, placeholders on a system that wa never meant to build strong communities. That strength comes from all of us.
The gains we’ve made are not lost.
So please today my friends take time. Take time to heal, have a tea, call a friend, read a book, call someone. Most importantly, talk to your neighbor; find ways to make your community stronger. We’ll need that in the days to come.