Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Voting not important to hockey players

A recent story in the Globe and Mail quotes several hockey players as saying that they won't be voting in the upcoming election. Their excuse?

"It's not really important to me," said Montreal Canadiens centre Mike Ribeiro.

Now, in their defence, a lot of them are saying that they don't feel they have a right to vote because they are uninformed about the issues.

"To be honest, it's kind of a shame, but I'm much more into following American politics right now ... just from being in the U.S.," veteran Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Sean Burke said recently. "I'm embarrassed to say that as a Canadian, I try to keep up with some things but I'm really uninformed politics-wise in Canada.

"I could vote because I'm still a Canadian citizen, but I'm so uninformed I would be casting an unfair vote," added the native of Windsor, Ont.

Okay, it's perfectly fine to admit that you're ignorant about what's going on in Canada if you live in the US. I can't imagine that news stations and radio down there would talk about Canada very much. But, to say that you're uninformed and then not do anything about it, well, I'm sorry but what the bloody hell is wrong with you?If you're uninformed you don't just say you're uniformed and let it slide. You, GO GET INFORMED. Good grief Charlie Brown aren't these guys supposed to be role models?

Oh and by the way, a little frozen chicken told me that election day is supposed to be the coldest of the year. My advice, be smart like me and go to the advance polls. A number of people have already done this and advance poll voting is up 25% from 2004. So if you get it done early, you can stare dismally at the TV on Monday and hope to gods the country isn't screwed. Now isn't that something to look forward to?

But this story isn't all depressing. Some players did say they were going to vote.

Chad Kilger of the Toronto Maple Leafs, son of former Liberal MP Bob Kilger, said he's already voted. He cast his ballot in an advance poll on Christmas Eve while home in Cornwall, Ont., during the NHL break. Now that there is a man exercising his democratic rights.

Vancouver Canucks centre Brendan Morrison will be playing in St. Louis the night of the election but the native of Pitt Meadows, B.C., thinks it's important for everyone to vote. "When you're younger it's something you take for granted," he said. "When you get older you realize what has happened in history before you. A lot of people have put their lives on the line to be able to have our country where it is today. It's a privilege to vote and something special."

Ottawa Senators defenceman Chris Phillips, a Calgary native, will also vote. "I can't speak for everyone, but I'm a Canadian citizen and I will definitely be voting this year," he said.

And you know, I kinda want to thank them for taking the time to actually go and do this. It's kind of sad actually, when you have to go out of your way to thank people for voting.

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