It’s that time again. That special time when we as free Australians get to exercise our right to vote; to be part of the democratic process. This time, we’re voting in the local council elections. I know it may sound corny, but I love election time. Always have. Now, I’ve got an extra reason to enjoy it.
You see, now I have the chance to explain to Miss6 (Miss2’s too young to understand it yet) just how important it is. She already knows that her maternal grandparents and their children – Superwife being one of them – fled Poland in the 80’s as political refugees. When I sat her down to let her ‘help’ me fill out the postal ballot paper, I told her how one of the reasons Babcia (that’s Polish for Grandmother) and Djadek (Grandpa) left Poland was because they weren’t allowed to vote. The people in charge just came in with tanks and guns and soldiers and took over. Miss6 was awed. I’m not sure what she thought of being in a country where the people weren’t allowed to have a say as to who ran the show, but she sure did think her grandparents were pretty awesome for getting themselves and her mum and her aunt outta there.
So, with Miss6 on my knee, I ran through the ballot paper and the bio for each candidate. The conversation went something like this:
Me: See that guy with the ears? He wants to spend more money on the library. That lady with the long hair? She wants to do more with our parks and gardens. That bloke with the teeth? He wants to reduce council rates–
Miss6: What’s council rates?
Me: That’s how much we have to pay these guys to do their job and to make sure the roads are right and our rubbish gets taken away and stuff like that.
In the end, I ticked the box for ears guy, much to Miss6’s approval. Now when we drive around our local area and see his grinning mug up in shop windows, I point him out and remind Miss6 that we voted for him.
Miss6: Will he win, Daddy?
Me: I don’t know, Princess. I guess it doesn’t matter though. The real thing that matters is we all get to chose. That way it’s fair.