Saturday, May 31, 2008

What "silent majority"?

Letter to the editor Times & Transcript
Published Friday May 30th, 2008

To The Editor:

I have heard quite often of late from our current government that they have the silent majority with them to justify the implementation of some of their more controversial decisions.

To me this is very worrisome as my understanding of living in a democratic society is that we are given a voice to speak out, not to be silent.

The current Liberal government has effectively shut down any public debate on French second language education and other issues and then claims the "silent majority" is with them.

How can this be the case?

If there is no opportunity for either side of an issue to speak out and express their concerns, how does the Liberal government know that those being silent are supporting them?

I would think it more likely that the silence is a result of not hearing a balanced view from both sides of the debate in order to make an informed decision.

When elected, a government does not have carte blanche to implement any policy it desires. They have an obligation to their electorate to consult and take into account any concerns they may have.

To say the "silent majority" supports a particular issue is not only wrong, it goes against the very idea of democracy.

In 2010 after Premier Graham's government is defeated, will they try and claim victory as they have the "silent majority"?

In a democracy a silent majority does not exist and should never be used by a government to justify controversial or unpopular decisions.

Mark Danells, Rothesay

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