Now You Tell Me…

“There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception” – Aldous Huxley

There are times you can only scratch your head and wonder if this is really life or am I just having a bad dream.  Reality and perception are like that.  The past three days have been a lesson in why I am becoming increasingly hermit in nature, it’s not just physical ability.  I’ve just spend three days finding reminders.

We had some great weather moments over the weekend which really encouraged me to get out and enjoy.  I had a few things that really needed doing so it was an all out type of weekend.  Things like re-stocking the pantry (personal space is always interesting in public gathering places), I had signed up to attend a public political event and I wanted to make sure I exercised my vote at an advanced poll.  So physically I was busy (kept count and did the chair transfer into or out of my car 48 times) so today I am big pharma’s happiest customer.  Today has been a four pill day…

My adventure at the advanced poll was another head scratcher and left me wondering just how little common sense there is out there.  My advanced poll was at a local elementary school.  It was a Sunday so when I arrived at the polling station there were lots of available parking but no identifiable disabled parking.  Since the poll seemed pretty steady (about 30 cars in the lot) I took an end spot just to make sure I wouldn’t be blocked in when I got back.  I do that to avoid the possibility of coming back to my car to find someone parked so close I can’t open my door wide enough to reload my chair.

walkingagainWhile I’m unloading my wheelchair in my usual fashion I noticed a women wearing an Elections BC lanyard around her neck.  She was watching me closely and I checked that off to someone watching to make sure I didn’t miss my chair as I jumped from my drivers seat.

As I wheeled towards the door to go into the poll she approached me to tell me about the “curb side” vote.  I had never heard of this but according to her one of the services now is to bring anyone with mobility issues all of the paperwork to their vehicle and cast your vote that way.  I’ve been voting for a lot of years and that is actually a good idea but it would be nice to make people aware of this.  I consider myself relatively well informed so I was surprised by this fortuitous piece of information.  At the same time, now you tell me.  You watched me unloading my chair so wouldn’t 20 seconds of common sense indicate you should say “I should make him aware”.  Oh well the fight goes on…

What was disappointing was that the person watching me do this couldn’t exercise enough common sense to tell me this BEFORE I went through the activities of unloading/loading my wheelchair.  A favourable policy is only as favourable as to the awareness of it.  If you don’t know a service is available how do you exercise it?  Anyway I get fed up with people who in positions of responsibility (from politician on down to front line worker) use “omission” as a reason to avoid common-sense.  I am not arguing the service, I think it’s pretty progressive but not widely known.  If you are not going to make us aware of an accommodation why have it?

It like the regulation that lays out the responsibilities at a service station.  According to the regulatory system service stations are expected to provide “hands on” service for people in wheelchairs.  The experiences I have had involve having to get out of the car and wring the buzzer by the pump.  For me, I’m at the pump now so why call someone out.  Some of my peers don’t have that luxury. Again, the little things, when do you stop protesting.

I was able to attend a talk with Nathan Cullen on the need for electoral reformNathanCullen.  This was a cornerstone of the Liberal election platform so Prime Minister please #KeepYourPromise.   If you are really about the “country” and not beholden to anyone you can make it happen.  We are at the crossroad of what is appearing to be a global shift in political ideology.  Get those safe guards you promised into our electoral system while you still can.  Stand by your word that 2015 would be the last “past the post” election and move on this.

Get Up And Walk
We don’t want to enable you, we want you to be independent

Trump backsliding on one of his platforms, doing away with Obamacare, worked for the people.  Your backsliding on electoral reform is only going to hurt future generations.  At the same time those future generations need to start understanding that not voting is just giving future policy makers control over your life.  Our future is based on your votes today.

If you are in BC right now get out and vote.  If you are not in BC then pay attention to when your next level of government is up for election.  For now I’m popping a pill, getting out of this wheelchair and stretch out in my recliner.  It’s been a mixed but busy three days…

Just one mans opinion…

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