Grateful for Citizen Engagement

Published on August 11, 2018

I do my best to answer everyone who writes as quickly as possible. This week, I thought I would share a response to two subjects that come up often - guns and the Woodbine Bike Lanes.

Dear Neighbour

Thank you for taking the time to write about my position on gun control and the Woodbine Bike Lanes. I appreciate your engagement and your obvious passion for the neighbourhood that we both love.

I'm glad we have a shared sentiment with respect to guns. As an Army veteran and someone who commanded an Infantry Platoon in Kandahar, Afghanistan, I’ve had enough experience with firearms to firmly resolve my position that there is no place for weapons of war in our civil society.

With respect to the bike lanes, I’m very clear that I am pro bike lanes. This isn’t a “wedge issue” for me. I’ve knocked on a lot of doors, spoken to a lot of neighbours, and I can hand-on-heart tell you that the concern about Woodbine isn’t a minority ploy. It is parents worried about speeding traffic on side streets from cars intentionally avoiding Woodbine. It’s bikers who complain about the lack of proper marking and cues to drivers and cyclists (especially at intersections). And it’s drivers who find themselves stuck in gridlock trying to get downtown from an area that isn’t especially well served by public transit.

I haven’t met anyone who says that the Woodbine Bike Lanes are perfect. But I have met some who feel that anyone who says that the bike lanes are anything less than perfect are anti-bike lanes. Truth be told, it seems to me that it’s these people that are making this a wedge issue. And it’s counter-productive. Because, like I said, I’ve talked to a lot of our neighbours who say the same thing: “I support bike lanes, but these aren’t working.” These people deserve to be heard.

Come canvassing with me any time and hear what I’m hearing. It would be great to have you along!

- Josh

PS – See my website for more detail on my positions on Gun Violence and Woodbine.