Letter: Restricted access to watching politicians debate

The only access we have to the debates is online. As many Canadians do not have Internet, this is simply not acceptable in a democracy.

To the editor:

I continue to be concerned about what’s happening in Canada.

Among numerous concerns I have, I am particularly concerned about the lack of televised accessibility to the debates. The debates have always been available on TV and radio but now they are not.

The Conservatives under Harper rejected participation in televised debates three months ago ( http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2015/05/12/stephen-harper-election-debates_n_7265086.html). As a result, the only access we have to the debates is online.

While most Canadians have Internet access, many still do not. That is simply not acceptable in a democracy.

This is a critical time in our history and we must have maximal access to our potential leaders’ thoughts and policies.

Further, under the misnamed Fair Elections Act, pushed through a year ago by the Conservatives, Elections Canada is prevented from encouraging people to vote, even putting an end to kits designed to teach our children about democracy and voting in Canada.

The Act eliminates Elections Canada’s investigative capacity altogether.

It also helps the Conservatives make it more difficult for the poor, the homeless, First Nations and students to vote.

And, do not get me started on the attack ads—thoroughly unCanadian. We seem to be spiralling ever downward into the political nightmare visited upon the US by its Tea Party Republicans. Do we really want to go that route?

 

Gary W. Lea, Kelowna