Respect the courage of a candidate to run
“I wish to run in the next election”
Words spoken by someone a few years ago.
“I will be running in the election on October 1”
Words spoken by the very same someone on Wednesday.
Ladies and gentlemen, please meet Lindsay Simmons, a Bermudian mother of one and a foster mother to many.
Someone who has poured their heart and soul into ensuring that all Bermudians are given equal chances in life.
A lady who has decided to become politically involved to give proper representation to the people of Constituency 12, Devonshire South.
She is not alone in recently joining the political arena.
With a number of resignations as of late — some surprising, others not so — there are a number of new faces on the political scene.
This can be viewed only as a good thing, as it shows that our democracy is ever evolving.
As such, over the next few weeks, there will be many persons from both sides and possibly some independent candidates who will be knocking on your doors and/or calling you.
Whichever side you support, if any side at all, please know that it takes a lot of courage for anyone to run for politics in a country such as Bermuda.
Often, far too often, in our country, which has been historically divided by race for 400 years, people will avoid knocking on doors or making calls to voters based on race.
This is a sad indictment, not just on our political history, but on our society as a whole.
This year we have witnessed an awakening over historically racial wrongs in America and here at home.
Now more than ever, Bermudians of all stripes are more and more cognisant of where we have been and, more importantly, where we need to head.
So I say to those who will be canvassed, whenever someone from either party does reach out to you, just know it took a lot for them to come out.
Especially, in the unforgiving heat of August and September.
For the more than 46,000 registered voters, gratefully, there are amendments to the Parliamentary Elections Act that will allow more Bermudians to vote in the General Election on October 1.
Some key takeaways:
• Those who are physically incapacitated can now vote at home
• Those who are on parole can now vote
• Seniors can vote in advance polls commencing on September 14
• Those who will be off island on October 1, will need only a copy of travel itinerary to vote at advance polls
Politics can be a double-edged sword. As such, many do not wish to be involved at any level beyond voting.
That is totally understandable.
Yet on the flip side, politics can and must be used as leverage to do good for our community and for all in our island home.
While we have made mistakes, there is no error in the people of Bermuda coming together to help each other out, to learn new skills and to be generally one people.
In closing, whenever someone from either party knocks on your door, please take a moment to speak with them, using social-distancing and face masks.
Go one step farther and offer them a bottle of water. I can assure you that they will appreciate it for many reasons.
To the people of Devonshire, thank you for keeping the faith in us to serve them.
Thank you, Lindsay, for being #Devonshire strong.
• Christopher Famous is the government MP for Devonshire East (Constituency 11). You can reach him on WhatsApp at 599-0901 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
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