The question of civic duty

Liberal critic Marc Garneau considers the philosophical question of the census.

The equation in my mind is a simple one, and it has to do with fairness: My country does many things for me and it’s only fair that I reciprocate. I do not start from the premise that the state has no business in my life and that it should get out of my face. That’s a selfish approach.

That might be acceptable if I lived in the woods and never called upon any government services to help me out. But because I do rely on government for a multitude of services, I feel that answering a few questions is not the end of the world. In fact, I insist on it, because I expect my government to make wise decisions based on sound information.

On that note, Gilles Duceppe says perhaps, instead of fine or imprisonment, those who refuse to fill out the census should be threatened with the withholding of government services.

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