OPINION: Sometimes it’s nice to pause and say thanks

With all the anger and frustration and division, counteracting that with gratitude helps

If the last couple of months have given us any indication it’s that candidates seeking federal election or re-election are going in guns blazing.

The divisive nature of our federally elected officials is not a surprise when one considers that extreme negative political campaigns in North and South America have found success for those running. It’s an electioneering technique that is easy to do, garners extreme attention from the media and the electorate (free advertising), and comes across as a leadership move.

What’s disheartening is that campaigners are out in full force. Using the guise of being there for the community, our current members of parliament are hijacking community events to meet their own plans.

The campaign trail will surely be a long one.

What is further disappointing with this behaviour how it’s widening the gap between political ideologies. Partisan politics is by its very nature divisive, I get it, but there is something to be said for diplomacy. Whatever course these candidates take, it will be interesting to see what the electoral thinks because these actions don’t seem to be appreciated by an educated population.

As we head into what promises to be a battle of parties in the next 10 months, one realizes that we can grapple with these candidates or we can remove ourselves from these actions and show gratitude.

This opinion piece will be the start of an ongoing series — from time to time — to offer thanks and to attempt to counteract some of the negativity that will be forcing its way into our lives.

There’s much pain out in the world; Ponoka lost a loved teacher just weeks ago, workers are facing jobless futures, people are struggling with debt and the list could go on. But there are also many wonderful things happening in our lives and in our community. As one community volunteer likes to say, “Things are awesome.” With apologies to Justin Kelly. It’s true though.

Ponoka has a dedicated group of volunteers willing to see recreation grow. We’ve got for a second winter in a row, plans for an ice skate path.

Ponoka News’ small newsroom is seeing incredible online growth while somehow managing to capture the community’s stories. That wouldn’t be possible without dedicated and involved staff members.

So to them I also offer my gratitude: to publisher Judy Dick for her continuous focus on this community. To Jordie Dwyer for pushing himself to try new things while also keeping his local writing a focal point. To salesperson Karen Douglass for adjusting to the changing times and reminding people she’s got the gift of gab. To Whitney Feragen for stepping into a new role and doing her best to learn a new industry.

Plus, a huge ‘thank you’ to our paper carriers who, despite the crazy weather patterns of central Alberta, manage to get the paper delivered. Of course a show of gratitude must go to our advertisers. We offer a free newspaper to our readers and it’s the advertisers that make this possible. And to all the others behind the scenes getting things done.

Plus, to our readers, for pushing us to be better, and also trusting us to get the stories out to the community.

To you all, I say ‘Thank you’. Thank you for working hard and for being there for this community.

We’re heading into uncharted waters politically in Alberta but that doesn’t mean we can’t take some time to show gratitude for what we do have around us. That sentiment may sound cliche but if we don’t have our gratitude and decency then we’ve lost.

Let’s remind ourselves that these political discussions, while important, should not be what define us. It’s the people and family around us and what we do as people that makes all the difference.

Happy holidays everyone and Happy New Year.

Just Posted

Notley promises extra $90M a year to reduce waits in surgery, emergency rooms

Leader says she’d keep funding specialized liaison teams so paramedics can get back to work faster

New Democrats would bring in $25 daycare if re-elected: Notley

Notley said the plan would include adding 13,000 daycare spaces

Supporters rally for Jason Kenney as UCP leader stops in Red Deer

Kenney promises equalization reform, stopping ‘Trudeau-Notley’ payroll hike, trade, economic mobility

WATCH: Fashion show highlights Cree designers

The fashion show was part of a Samson Cree Nation conference on MMIW

Rimbey RCMP need help identifying vandals

Plus, GPS in stolen vehicle helps locate it and the suspect in Red Deer

The good, bad and the unknown of Apple’s new services

The announcements lacked some key details, such as pricing of the TV service

One person dead in head-on collision near Stettler

Stettler RCMP investigate fatal collision

One Maskwacis man arrested after gun seized on reserve

Maskwacis RCMP locate loaded handgun during search warrant

Military officer accused of sexual misconduct, drunkenness in B.C., Alberta

Warrant Officer Jarvis Kevin Malone is charged under the National Defence Act

Morneau unveils principles for Indigenous ownership in Trans Mountain pipeline

The controversial pipeline was bought by Ottawa last year

Refugee who sheltered Edward Snowden in Hong Kong arrives in Canada

Vanessa Rodel and her seven-year-old daughter Keana arrived in Toronto this week

New UMSCA trade deal getting a boost from Trump, business groups

The trade deal is designed to supplant the North American Free Trade Agreement

Trudeau says he, Wilson-Raybould had cordial conversation last week

Trudeau denies anything improper occurred regarding SNC-Lavalin and the PMO

SNC-Lavalin backtracks on CEO’s comments surrounding potential job losses

Top boss had said protecting 9,000 jobs should grant leniency

Most Read