It's an eclipse, it's the Olympics, it's a leap year... no, it's a federal election! OK, so it's only been three and a half years since the last one in 1997 but Big Daddy J.C. dropped the writ this past Sunday and there is no turning back now.
Whether you like it or not, you will all be inundated with propaganda via TV, radio, print media, telephone calls and doorknockers until you cast your vote Mon., Nov. 27. I call it election mode.
If you are a political geek like moi then you are somewhat familiar with the parties, their leaders and their platforms. But let's face it: do all students really have time to follow Canadian politics? Even if they do, do they really want to?
Lucky for you the Students' Union will be publishing a Federal election supplement in the Gauntlet the week before the election. From now until then, we will be interviewing candidates, reviewing party platforms and looking at their past records. In addition, we will be holding a forum in Mac Hall for all candidates running in Calgary West (which is the university's riding).
Do you live in Residence and want to vote? Fear not! If you are registered in Calgary West there will be polls for you in the Dining Centre Nov. 27. However, if you are registered in your riding back home there is a way for you to vote. You need to phone the returning office for Calgary West at 503-8060 and ask for the "special ballot coordinator." That person will arrange for you to vote for a candidate in your home riding.
Most of you are over 18 and eligible to vote. Most of you don't vote. We are young, we have a vote and we have concerns and issues we would like to see addressed. If we don't make the effort to have our voice heard nothing will ever change in our favour. So take the time to find out who your candidates are and on Mon. , Nov. 27 cast your ballot for the candidate of your choice.
*Did you know that our current Member of Parliament in Calgary West is Rob Anders, an alumni of the University of Calgary? He's also the same guy who blocked funding from the federal government that had been requested by employers in the riding to hire summer students through the Summer Career Placement Program. Remember him?
We'll be keeping you informed on who is student friendly and who's not.