OUR VIEW: Keep a civil tongue

A civil tone in local politics this fall is what the two announced candidates for mayor in the Town of Sidney agree on.

A civil tone in local politics this fall is what the two announced candidates for mayor in the Town of Sidney agree on.

Both Steve Price and Steve Duck are hopeful for a civil discource come October and November — and it’s something all candidates should be trying to achieve throughout the campaign.

That is not to say, however, that people shouldn’t disagree or hold contrary opinions or ideas on the future of thier community.

No one wants cookie-cutter councillors who show up at regular meetings and only agree with each other. For the most part, none of the Saanich Peninsula councils are like that, but Sidney and to a degree Central Saanich are closer to that than North Saanich (which is completely different — and that’s an understatement). There’s also an unwritten rule that once a council makes a decision, it moves ahead as a united front with no dissent.

While one would want to see a majority decision on most issues out of local councils respected, that result should not automatically quash the opinions of, or stifle, a dissenting member. There’s nothing wrong with disagreeing with someone and continuing to push an agenda — as long as there’s some degree of respect among peers and in the process.

That’s the main difference between the more congenial and more fractious councils on the Peninsula.

We encourage all candidates to act in a civil manner this fall, but we also don’t want people to pull any punches when it comes to their thoughts on leadership in our communities. Candidates and their supporters must engage in vigorous, yet respectful debate. To allow a degeneration into name-or-cat-calling serves no one and isn’t deserving of our votes.