Elizabeth May more effective as a Green

Re: “May should consider joining another party,” Nov. 15.

I live in Elizabeth May’s Saanich-Gulf Islands riding, as does columnist Lawrie McFarlane, but I disagree that May should consider joining another party.

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What a breath of civility she has brought into Parliament. Her insistence on adult behaviour on the Hill, by sitting down whenever heckled is a strategy that works. The Speaker closes discussion until the vulgar hecklers shut up and May can continue.

May has consistently shown a constructive approach called “working together.” And now that the Harper era is over, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced a healthier national discussion (imagine, he actually released muzzled government scientists to speak their findings publicly!), there is hope for transparent government and intelligent discourse in Canada. And, with Trudeau’s commitment to bringing in some form of proportional representation, these are very bright days.

In proposing that May join another party to be heard, McFarlane misses two key points:

• Canada’s party system has become a stranglehold on free voting among MPs. I don’t belong to any political party, but I celebrate the fact that the Green Party does not whip its members. They think for themselves and report to their constituents — May does that regularly;

• Tiny though the Green Party may be, May has twice been recognized by MPs as their most outstanding member. That’s not “a perch in obscurity.”

Mighty oaks from tiny acorns grow.

Bill Schermbrucker

Saturna Island

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