No placards for these protests

From Saturday’s Globe and Mail Published on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2010 12:00AM EST Last updated on Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2010 3:38AM EST to go to the Globe and Mail website, please click here.

Politicians and pundits who assume the public is ignorant and apathetic about parliamentary democracy, and who underestimate the importance of online activism, should pay close attention to study findings that older Canadians regularly utilize online political-expression vehicles (Anti-Prorogation Activists: Engaged, Voting And Older – Jan. 21st)

For example, CARP’s e-newsletter has 85,000 opt-in subscribers, and more than 6,000 responded to the online poll on prorogation almost overnight. For the record, they are strongly opposed to prorogation in the present circumstances and would punish the government at the polls over it. And remember that 70 per cent of older Canadians vote regularly. Regardless of what they may think about the effectiveness of MPs, they see Parliament as a check and balance against executive power. It should come as no surprise that the generation that drove social change during the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s remains politically engaged and has traded in placards for keyboards.

Susan Eng, Vice-President, Advocacy, CARP

Keywords: government, seniors