Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Why Canadians Walk Like Penguins

We Canadians have a great country. We do live in one of the best places on earth – unlike our neighbours to the south, people from other countries actually like us.

Problem is, our sidewalks are not taken care of well – if at all. Or at least in my neck of the woods, the sidewalks are slippery, ice covered skating rinks, just waiting for someone to break their neck on. All while our roads are clear of ice, snow and slush – so much so they look like nothing ever was on them in the first place.

Why are pedestrians forced to walk like penguins, while those in cars get a free ride, so to speak?

Aren’t we all pedestrians at some point in time? No one can escape walking out doors in the winter. Even those with cars must eventually walk to and from them, usually on the very same sidewalks which everyone else must endure.

So how come our sidewalks are unsafe, while our roads are clear as glass?

Maybe those without cars are considered second-class citizens, unable to afford the luxury of a car, so their vote doesn’t matter.

But every vote in an election counts – or so we are lead to believe. Unless maybe there is something we don’t know about going on behind the scenes.

Even if there were, again, we are all pedestrians sometime.

All it takes is someone slipping and falling on the icy sidewalk, and next thing you know, the city has to deal with bad press and possibly a lawsuit. Then again, unlike our American neighbours, we aren’t quite as sue-happy here, so most Canadians would probably let it slide.

But they shouldn’t – we shouldn’t. We should stand up as best we can on the ice-rink of sidewalks, and head on down to city hall, demanding the same freedom of mobility as our automobile commuters.

We shouldn’t have to walk like penguins to avoid slipping. We shouldn’t arrive at work covered in slush. And we shouldn’t be treated with any less respect than those using a car.

Because, even those of us driving to and from point A to B, must venture out onto the sidewalk sometime – and that makes us all pedestrians.

Call your city and towns councillors and demand action. Stop walking like a penguin and start dialling. Everyone benefits from a clean and clear walk – especially YOU.

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