The main takeaway from Tim Grant’s interview is his encouragement of voting for the Green Party, despite the apparent reality that they will not form government. Voting for parties whose agendas align with your concerns as students, particularly transit and affordable housing, allows for a per-vote subsidy. Funds are then allotted to parties to carry out their agendas over the next four years.
The Green Party’s central platform is to build a green middle class by further tolling highways to reduce traffic congestion, incentivizing use of subway transit, and increasing affordable housing within the downtown core. Given that gentrification is increasing the cost of living for students and youth, the party’s position on a guaranteed minimum income would prove beneficial. The party’s support for a Deputy Minister for mental health to coordinate between provincial agencies allows for further access to and funding for mental health services, which are lacking at U of T.
Although Grant argues that students in the riding would not benefit in the long term by voting strategically, the issue remains that the Green Party’s idealism is ill-suited for a political race driven by economics. Environmental laws, while of utmost importance, also stagnate development as projects become more cumbersome and more expensive. Tolling highways can only be effective if there is a substitute for those who depend on them. Secured annual income will only work if voters understand and accept that their taxes will increase.
By no means is this an attempt to discourage voting Green, for their values reflect my own, but these are just a few of the Green Party’s ideas, and, while commendable, they are unfeasible for an overtaxed and weary public. However, if you are willing to wait years to see tangible results from this party, vote Tim Grant.
Amaial Mullick is a third-year student at St. Michael’s College studying Political Science.