All Out to Mobilize the Youth to Build a Bright Future for Themselves!
By Anna Di Carlo, National Leader, MLPC
This week Youth Vote Canada is involving 700,000 students in more than 7,400 schools across the country to engage with the leaders of political parties in the lead up to the October 19 vote. In these and many more schools, teachers are involving their students in programs which teach them civics and introduce them to the political process. Many hold mock elections by choosing to represent one of the parties, campaigning and holding a vote.
On this occasion, I would like to greet all Canadian youth on behalf of the Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada and congratulate you for your participation in the Youth Vote Canada and other initiatives.
Across the country we find that the best prepared and most lively interviews, all candidates meetings and discussions are organized by the younger generation. You are far less stilted, which means forced, contrived, awkward or wooden, with your questions. Many times questions asked by the media or in candidates meetings merely permit candidates of “major parties” to repeat self-serving party platforms, while small party candidates and independent candidates are marginalized, never given a chance to engage the electors in discussion. But with the youth there is an eagerness to actually discuss the problems Canadians face and how they can be provided with solutions.
As you learn about the political process, keep in mind that the youth cannot afford to line up behind one or another of the so-called major parties which are pushing the neo-liberal anti-social offensive. But they can’t afford to stay out of politics and leave their fate to others, either.
The MLPC calls on youth to get involved in the work for democratic renewal. The youth can stop government funding of political parties and instead make sure they fund the political process. They can change the electoral process so that Canadians come to power and form governments which they can hold to account in the Parliament and legislatures. The way things are now, self-serving political parties form governments and use the political power to do things which cause damage to both the social and natural environments. The youth can end this.
Three-and-a-half million people between the age of 18 and 25 can vote in this election. Elections Canada estimates that less than 2.5 million of them are registered to vote. The registration rates are especially low for 18-year-olds, estimated at only 27 per cent. The rate of registration increases with age. In the case of the 25-year-olds 88 per cent have registered, around 430,000 citizens.
Those born between May 3, 1993 and October 19, 1997 will be able to cast a ballot for the first time in this election. That’s about 1.8 million young people. Most of them have lived under Harper majority rule since their early teens.
In this election, register to vote, make sure your friends register to vote and make your vote count by voting for democratic renewal. This means vote Marxist-Leninist in the 70 ridings where the MLPC has candidates, and vote to keep the Conservatives and Liberals out. If many of you get out and vote, you can make a huge difference to the outcome of the election. Once you take up the work to empower the people, before you know it, the world will actually belong to you.
Register now and call on three friends to register, and get them to get three friends to do the same!
Voter turnout among youth ages 18 to 25 in the 2011 Federal Election stood at a low of 38.8 per cent. Turnout for those aged 25-34 was somewhat higher at 45.1 per cent. In the 2011 Federal election, those born between October 15, 1990 and May 2, 1993 were eligible to vote for the first time. Their turnout was slightly higher than the overall turnout for the 18 to 25 group at 40.5 per cent. Of all qualified voters, 58.5 per cent cast a ballot in 2011, and the official turnout figure counting only registered voters was 61.1 per cent.
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MLPC Call to the Youth
The MLPC calls on the youth and students to play an active role in this election to create a bright future for themselves. Essential for this bright future is the fight to provide the rights of all with a guarantee. In this regard, there is no more important right than the right to participate in making decisions which affect our lives.
As a result of the neo-liberal, anti-social offensive the conditions of society are becoming increasingly difficult for everyone. Instead of providing the youth with an education, recreation and a healthy life, these conditions are pushing the youth into unemployment and indebtedness. They are criminalized, isolated and told to turn against each other. Without renewal the conditions will only get worse.
In this election, there are more than five million people between the ages of 18 and 30 who are eligible to vote, comprising 20 per cent of the electorate. Get involved to solve the problem of the need for democratic renewal so that decision-making power rests in the hands of the people, not political parties which represent private interests.
Mobilize yourselves and your friends to cast a ballot to defeat the Harper government which thinks young people belong in prison or in the armed forces. Also make sure the Liberals are not elected. The experience of people in Quebec, and Ontario, BC, Nova Scotia and other provinces is that Liberal governments also push a vicious anti-social offensive and war agenda. Not a single youth for imperialist war!
Visit our website mlpc.ca to see where Canadians stand and the issues in this election! Get people to read and subscribe to our daily online bulletin Renewal Update to keep informed.
Most importantly, empower yourselves by taking up the independent politics of the working class to empower the people. You can play a great role to open society’s path to progress and take your future into your own hands. Don’t wait for others to do it for you!
In this election, go all out to humanize the natural and social environment by taking a stand for democratic renewal! Make the world fit for human beings such as yourselves. Vote Marxist-Leninist!
The Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada supports the demand of college and university students that education from the primary to post-secondary level is a right that must be given a constitutional guarantee. In order to provide this right with a guarantee, the MLPC calls for governments to take immediate interim measures towards free education. This includes increasing public investment in education, freezing and progressively reducing fees, abolishing user fees and creating a national bursary program.
The MLPC unequivocally opposes the cuts to the funding of public education that are taking place in all the provinces of Canada and Quebec. It considers that the increased reliance on individually-paid tuition fees and user fees along with direct sponsorship from monopoly corporations are forms of privatization of education which must be immediately halted and reversed. Control of the form and content of education must be in the hands of the public and under the control of the educators and students themselves, not private interests.
The MLPC also supports the demands of college and university teachers and education workers for decent contracts and job stability, teaching conditions and pay commensurate with the work they do.
The education of the working people is an immense source of added-value created during the working lives of Canadians, whether in industry, the arts, sciences, or the field of education itself. Therefore those businesses and institutions which benefit from receiving educated personnel free of cost must pay a levy to finance post-secondary education.
The MLPC also supports fully funded studies including room and board for all Indigenous students and opposes quotas or caps to such funding. This includes post-graduate studies. This is a constitutional duty as well as part of reparations for all the damage done to the Indigenous peoples in a myriad of ways.
A modern education must enrich the cultural, spiritual and intellectual life of members of society and the society itself. The aim is certainly to make sure we have a vibrant economic system but it cannot be to make the rich richer and the poor poorer as is the case today. On the contrary, to modernize society the aim of education must be to give rise to the kind of creativity humankind requires to make sure the natural and social environments are humanized.
In this election, candidates of the MLPC are calling on students on campuses and where they live and work to use the election to take an active approach to their own empowerment and be politically involved on that basis, rather than being used by establishment parties as a vote bank.
Source: Democratic Renewal, October 5, 2015 • No. 182 Previous Issues