I used to think former vice-president Al Gore was an idiot. He was portrayed as such by the media. And people, like myself, bought into this unfair caricature. It was not until I read about David Suzuki’s encounter with Mr Gore that I was given a different perspective.
Mr Gore as vice-president used to avoid environmental issues in political campaigning. It was something of a dead platform he believed. The American people simply weren’t ready to hear it. And he knew it would not give him a chance in elections.
And how right he is. Politics isn’t about the issues. It is about choosing the right issues that win elections. How sad it is that something as important as the environment – our future – should be left out of the political discourse because it lessens one’s chance in winning elections. It says something about the fickleness of politics, particularly democracy.
And now that Mr Gore is no longer a man with political ambitions he can say what he wants, say what really is on his mind. It is truly a pity that good men (as well as the bad) in politics must spend much time and effort to deceive the public during the election campaign in order to do what they really want when they get into power. It is this deception that has led us to the environmental degradation today. But I blame not politicians (though they have a hand in it) but also voters must learn to see the political rhetoric for what it is and make better choices for our future’s sake.