We've given our legislators a pass
Re: “`I feel thoroughly let down in this election' ” (Clifford Lincoln, Sept. 2)
The opinion piece by Clifford Lincoln and the subsequent letters to the editor illustrate how we have allowed our legislators to fail us. They are supposed to be our representatives, speaking on our behalf when making decisions that will affect our lives. Instead, we have permitted them to become representatives of a particular party and the puppet of the party leader.
Lincoln's support of his friend would be perfectly sensible if his friend were able to speak and vote independently. If such was the case, we would be able to hold our representative to account and decide if, on balance, he or she is being a good representative. I don't expect that he or she will always speak and vote as I would because many of my neighbours don't share my opinion and they are represented by the same person.
Currently, it is useless to hold your local representative to account because he or she is just following “the party line.” In that sense, we don't elect a free parliament, especially when one party has a majority. A legislature composed of representatives who spoke and voted freely would certainly be more challenging for the leaders, but it would be far more interesting to watch. The members would truly have to pay attention to one another and work together to formulate our laws. What a strange concept!
Lloyd Brereton, Greenfield Park