Golden Oldies

by - Sunday, April 17, 2011

A lot of my frustrations in the last few days have come from... how do I say this politely? Old people. Seniors citizens. Baby boomers.

Yes, I get that you've been on this earth for longer than me, but that doesn't make the time I've spent any less valuable than yours. And it also doesn't mean that your archaic opinions, ideals and values are (or should be) accepted into today's society.

I spent much of Saturday morning in a training session for the upcoming Canadian election (yes, we have one eery three weeks... or so it seems). I was the youngest person in the room by far, at least a couple of decades.

I was immediately dismissed as not knowing anything. While yes, this was the first time I was training for this particular position, I've worked every federal and provincial election since I was 18 years old. And when you live in Canada, that's a lot of elections.

I'm reminded of a couple of incidences that came up during that session.

The first was an older lady who said that it would just be easier for a person in a wheelchair to vote by mail-in ballot cause it would be "easier" than doing the required accessibility checks throughout the day cause she'd be busy.

Then an older gentleman Sid that there was too much paperwork involved in letting a woman vote that wouldn't remove her full face veil for religious/cultural reasons.

Then came the bitching that both workers (yay!) and electors can use cell phones while voting. There was just about an old person riot about how rude that was... that is until (I couldn't have timed this better myself) one of the bitching oldies cell phone rang. Right in the middle of the argument. Cell phone can't be used while voting, but you didn't take the time to mute your phone during a paid training session?

Really? This is 2011. The theme of this years election is "accessibility". People have the right to vote. People are encouraged to vote. We need the young vote, the middle aged vote and the elderly vote. Voting history is pathetic in Canada at best (unless you count the most recent Calgary municipal election which was freaking awesome to be a part of).

But if these golden oldies had their way, the physically disabled would be required to stay home and mail I their ballots, those that choose to cover their faces due to religious/cultural reasons wouldn't even be allowed to vote cause there is too much paperwork, and no young adult under the age of 25 would bother because they can't bear to be separated from their friends by phone for log enough to cast their vote.

Just cause you're old, doesn't mean you're right. It may just mean you have to open your eyes to new ways of doing things. New opinions. And new experiences.

We won't even go into the bitching over which polls these people would be placed at - complaining that they were too far from home. That is until the ARO let them know (a little snarkily too, which was awesome) that our riding is the smallest riding geographically in western Canada, and nothing was all that far away. Take that, golden oldie!

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  1. Anonymous9:58 AM

    Love it! Mo

  2. You know, when I found out about some volunteers who work for each election to help people from remote first nations communities get in to vote (most of these communities involve 3+ hrs by car to get somewhere with a station therefore the rate of turn out is less than 1%) it made me really think about how much I take for granted in being able to just wander down and vote with my able body in my local community.

    Also, yeah. Old people. Blah.

  3. Wow -- they don't even want to help disabled peope vote? You would think elderly people would be more sensitive than that, since we all tend to have more trouble getting around as we get older. Unreal! :(