A simple no comment is not going to cut it.
While such a response does sometimes have its place, in many if not most cases it’s a cynical tool employed to avoid accountability and clarity. Hide, obfuscate and dodge. It’s a bad look on any public administration whose reason for being is to serve the public.
It’s alleged the City of Surrey tried to minimize at the least – and block their participation at the worst – Mounties in red serge and a Surrey MP from joining, in an official capacity, in the Surrey Canada Day celebration in Cloverdale.
The irony here is profound, considering Mounties in red serge are as much a national icon for Canada as baseball and apple pie are for our neighbours to the south.
Surely if a mayor, councillors, MLAs and other MPs are deemed worthy of being on a stage, the MP for Surrey-Newton should have been given his place.
What sets Sukh Dhaliwal apart, then? While he’s not yet confirmed if he’ll be running for the office of mayor on Oct. 15, the concept is not exactly a closely guarded state secret. If he does, that makes him the current mayor’s rival.
And what sets the RCMP apart, other than the current mayor and his council majority’s determination to replace the Surrey RCMP with the Surrey Police Service? Giving Mounties the cold shoulder on Canada Day is like barring hockey from ice arenas and maple syrup from breakfast tables.
The optics here speak for themselves.
That’s why the City of Surrey is therefore beholden to addressing these allegations of what amount to censorship on Canada Day, instead of proffering a lame “no comment” as has been done here.
We all deserve better.