Democracy begins on our street.

It is impossible to sum 50 years of membership in the Liberal Party of Canada in less than 500 words. The problem is that in today’s world if you cannot make your point in fewer words, you are not communicating.

But there is little excuse for the pique we have been in lately. One thing that contributes to this annoyance is the current rewrite of the Liberal party’s federal constitution. That has really left us in the dumps. This constitution fails to understand what liberalism is all about. It fails all the tests of democracy. It is an oppressive and top-down edict that betrays the trust we have placed in Justin Trudeau.

Liberalism begins on our street, in our neighbourhood, in our community and in our town. It does not come down from on high in Ottawa. This is because liberalism involves principles. It is based on the freedom of the individual to learn, to grow, to accomplish and who know their rights. Liberals are caring people who share a love of country without regard for heritage.

Liberalism is built on a strong past but looks to the future. It builds, it invests, it promotes a vibrant land of opportunity for all.

Liberal policy has to have its origins in the electoral districts. It should be brought to regional conclaves and then on to national attention. And nobody should have the right to censor. Bring your objections to the floor.

Liberal candidates have to come from the community. They have to be the choice of the liberals in the electoral district. That is the core of our democratic process. And MPs have to report back to their constituents.

And while Liberalist is a resource of names and information about Liberal Party supporters, it is supported by and the ultimate property of the electoral districts. Please stop abusing it with a constant barrage of fundraising. We certainly need the funds for the party but the party headquarters has to work with the electoral districts on this task.

We should also deal with the question of party membership fees. After many years, on many riding executives, we have never seen a person who was denied membership in the party for lack of a ten-dollar fee. The fee is a minor offset for normal expenses of keeping the party alive in the community. It also signifies a commitment. That means something.


Copyright 2016 © Peter Lowry

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