On Oct. 8, there was a memorial to the homeless in Polson Park.
A number of people spoke, among them Coun. Juliette Cunningham.
““There are as many reasons for being homeless as there are homeless,” Cunningham said during her turn at the podium.
“It’s (homelessness) a very divisive issue and it’s becoming a partisan issue. But it doesn’t matter which political party you support, we need to look at this from a human perspective.”
To ascribe the outrage some people feel about the current situation to partisan politics rather than a genuine concern for the harmful impact on local dynamics is nothing more than a deflection of the reality.
There is not a person reading this, I am sure, who doesn’t feel compassion for the unfortunate circumstances many of these homeless find themselves in.
However, I believe that these same people have not been influenced by which political party they support in believing that a bad situation is getting much worse, and some people, regardless of which party they normally support, seem to be ignoring how dire it is getting for the businesses which are being severely impacted by all of what is happening.
From my perspective, this is a person speaking who feels a compulsion to use a solemn occasion as a podium for expressing her frustration that not everybody agrees with how she has been perceived to have handled an issue that has become contentious.
It reminded me of the funeral of Bill Bennett, at which Christy Clark could not resist the compulsion to include a call for support for the Site C dam.
There is a time and place for everything, and a good politician knows which times and places are not appropriate for making public comments which are partisan themselves.
Cunningham has a public record of service which is commendable. Nobody can deny that.
She also has a tendency to say and do things that many, like myself, have every right to critique.
To critique what she does, or doesn’t do, in her public capacity is, in no way, a concession of the quality of her character.