Comment 76680

By CouldaWouldaShoulda (anonymous) | Posted May 09, 2012 at 08:19:53

Adrian, you're right. Hamilton's problem isn't ignorance. But maybe it's a combination of other elements just as powerful.

The truth is that for many Hamiltonians...even if we're just talking the 'Original City of Hamilton'...what you've focused on as an issue isn't one deserving of much attention, never mind the citizen equivalent of 'political will'. If you want to label this 'they just don't care', fine. There are all kinds of issues out there in the world that have relatively small groups of impassioned, dedicated people working on...that never make it onto the radar of most of us, and even less of us end up getting on-board with the causes.

When you combine this with the other elements...councillors who lack the inspiration and motivation to generate political will to fight for the reversal of one-way streets, in combination with legacy reluctance on the part of City Staff and Outside Forces That Prevent Genuine Change in This Arena...then you end up with-

Well, you end up with you writing this article, bemoaning how we can't seem to effect the change that at least 'some' of us are in agreement with. And then, this:

"It really is time to move past the "what" and on to the "how" and "when". Past exhortations have failed. We need to do something different this time. But what?"

-'How?' Well, there needs to be enough force placed on a seemingly immovable object in order for it to be moved. Developers understand this game. Residents either don't, never enter into the process ('they just don't care'), or when they do, there's rarely sufficient force applied to the factor that's traditonally been 'the decider', Council. So it seems to me that there needs to be either sufficient force generated and applied to Council, or to have one that sees things the way you're suggested they should be seeing things. Given that in 2014, most incumbents will be returned (it's an historical fact), then the force to get Council to effect the changes needs to be generated.

-'Past exhortations have failed'. Councillors will, if appropriately 'motivated', will effect change. They don't tend to effect change by dint of op-eds read here, or at The Spec or at The Hamiltonian. The fact is that what you see as 'exhortations' haven't registered sufficiently en masse at Council. (Mostly because the vast majority of Hamiltonians 'just don't care'.) You've been active, Ryan's been active, RTH has been active, there have been events where the topic(s) have been front-and-centre...but it might help not to confuse all this with what's required to get results out of City Hall, what's required for Council to effect change.

-'We need to do something different this time. But what?' Well, how many options are there? Wishing for better leadership? Protracted, strategized civil disobedience as suggested at 'Dissidents'? I'm inclined to refer to both Occam's Razor as well as 'Don't try harder...think smarter.' (See 'How?')

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