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About 40 citizens showed up at St. John’s city hall Monday to protest the sad state of sidewalks in the capital. The protesters were there to tell council members that they have had their fill of not being able to get around the city because sidewalks are left wanting in favour of keeping streets clear for vehicles.

That latest protest is just one of many that are being organized by citizens to attack an issue they feel local councils are mishandling or ignoring.

That specific issue aside, it’s good to see citizens taking a stand when they feel they aren’t getting the treatment they feel they deserve.

It no doubt makes thing uncomfortable for members of councils who are the target of upset voters, but even they should be happy voters are engaged and interested in municipal issues.

Many of us don’t even bother to take the time to cast a ballot when municipal elections were being held.

Even if they do cast a ballot, many voters put a council in office for four years and ignore what their representatives are doing until election time rolls around again.

That seems to be changing — for the better.

It’s much easier these days to organize a group of like-minded individuals through social media.

Any call to action can spread far and wide through Twitter and Facebook in a matter of minutes.

This in essence is what democracy is, or should be, all about — government for the people by the people.

Politicians at all levels would be wise to pay attention to what their constituents are saying and thinking.

Voters evidently aren’t going to stand for being told what they should settle for anymore.

They are going to demand to be heard ... if not at the ballot box then by waving protest signs or with 140 characters.

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  • Roy
    April 02, 2014 - 08:05

    A protest by 40 people in a city of about 100,000, that's only 0.04% of the population. I guess even a whisper can be called a message.