Today was one of my favourite days on the campaign trail thus far; I went to the pavillon canadien-français during Folklorama with Terry. This is an extremely popular pavilion which features traditional dancing, jigging, french-style music, as well as tourtière, pea soup, and tarte au sucre. My background is Métis so I very much enjoy seeing the French culture on display and celebrated. The ‘spectacle’ was wonderful!
You might be wondering just what it is that we do when we go to an event like this – by now you’ve seen many pictures of politicians posing with the official pavilion ambassadors or some of the performers. You’d be forgiven if you think that it’s just one big photo opportunity. It’s actually more than that, much more.
A major part of a politician’s job is to meet citizens to hear their concerns. Like public relations and marketing (my other life), politics is all about building relationships. Events like Folklorama give politicians the opportunity to develop those relationships. With the multi-cultural society we live in, people in general need to have an appreciation for different cultures; this is a great way cultivate that.
As a politician, you interact with different people every day, a chunk of which probably didn’t vote for you. Working in politics allows you the opportunity to make a real difference in people’s lives, which is an incredible feeling. It’s easy to be negative and perpetuate the stereotypes about politicians, but in the end I believe that most people get into politics because they care. Those are the types of people I work so hard to get elected, and that’s why I’m involved.
PS: Had a ‘democracy’ win today. My parents live in an apartment and asked if they could put up an election sign (don’t know why they asked, but they did). The landlord came back and said no election signs allowed. I was pretty sure that they’re not allowed to do that, so I went on the Elections Canada site to check it out. Boom – they cannot tell tenants they can’t put up signs. Click on the screenshot for more information. Maybe this will help another campaign or supporter out there. Knowing elections rule? Priceless!