Are knitters still politically correct, even one year later?
I can hardly believe this was nearly one year ago! Politics accompanied our stitching. Kate has since moved to Calgary and she’s greatly missed. I do believe that the meetings where we had politicians join us and realise that knitters are not just old grandmas in rocking chairs were the most memorable. Often the meetings were charged with the emotions and passions that often accompany politics but tempered with the understanding and level temperament of knitters.
I hope you enjoy this flash back to what we were doing one year ago as we stitched away our Sunday afternoon. Who knows another election may just give us some renewed fervour and reason to once again introduce a politician or two to the wonderful ways of knitters (we WILL rule the world one day!)
September 29, 2008
Politics and knitting are two of my favourite topics and have been mixing it up for a few weeks now. We’ve invited the local federal candidates to come and speak with us on Sunday afternoons. We’ve received JP Ducasse of the Green Party, Scott Ruston of the NDP and Brad Trost of the Conservative party, who is also the incumbent during this particular campaign. Needles kept time with the metre of the conversation, debates flared, Knitters knit, and Politicians "politiced."
Scott Ruston was the first to appear on our docket this past Sunday. Scott, a potash miner and family man with a naval background, is world travelled and no stranger to politics. Education, arts and culture, child care and a sense of community governance came forth throughout the Q&A. Aboriginal issues and health care also topped his list of important issues. It was refreshing to hear his commentary be mixed with a sense of down home Saskatchewan values. His belief in a "different" style of governance and campaign flare came through loud and clear. Scott noted, numerous times, that a sense of community and connection needs to be preserved and this has coloured his campaign style. Getting out to the people, discussing their needs, being involved in their interests, and keeping a high level of personal contact with constituents is the only way he can effectively receive input from the people. Since he could be our representative and present our issues and interests on Parliament, it is his firm beleif that this is the only way he can get a feel for what the people who elect him need and want.
Brad Trost was next on our docket. Brad came prepared with seasoned political experience. He doled out the Conservative party line and moved through the heated discussions with the expertise that only comes from experience in the trenches of federal politics. Other candidates are more expressive in educating us on their platforms and ideologies. However, Brad was prepared to stand by the Conservative record. He is a geo-physicist that, given the opportunity to manage his favourite portfolio of Natural Resources, felt he could increase the economic climate of our northern portions of Canada, enable companies and corporations to tap into our natural resources of the north in an environmentally responsible manner, and, thus, create a better environment for all residents of Canada. After an hour and a half of banter, debate, accountability, Brad left our table.
We have yet to meet with our Liberal candidates. Deb Ehman and Karen Prahar will join us Sunday October 5, 2008. This will be thier chance to convince us why a Liberal government would be the best choice for us. So far many issues have come forth from our members that have also been on the minds of many consituents and voters. Equalization payments, cuts to the arts and funding, Order of Canada recipients, gas prices, disposable income in families, copy write legislation, Education, and Health Care funding are only a few. Politics is indeed alive and well.
Even the younger set listened with eager interest. Fleur and Tayna (baby), friends of mine, joined us. Even though Fleur is not a knitter (but appreciates a good hand knit garment, she joined in the politcal fun!
The one constant this knitter has noticed to date is that with each visiting candidate a sense of surprise and amazement has presented. We as knitters are not known as accomplished, intelligent, well-educated, informed, or professional. Our group is here to change that perception and we are starting at the top – our politicians. Most were quite surprised at our invitation and even thought it to be a "bit odd." But most were wiling to give us a chance and amazed at the level of education that sits around our table. We are not the home bound, house wives and grandmothers of days past. Knitting is no longer a woman’s activity. We are diverse and eclectic and, it is my firm belief, most likely wouldn’t have met otherwise if it were not for our love of string and sharp pointy sticks!
Now onto the real business of the day: Show and tell: