Uncommon sense: South Delta a land of contradictions
This is the first column of a regular feature that will focus on issues of local, regional and sometimes national importance.
By way of introduction, I'm into my sixth month of reporting at the South Delta Leader, and in that time I've come to learn a great deal about what former Delta Museum and Archives Director Mark Sakai refers to as the "three solitudes of Delta."
There's the largely populous, bustling, development-friendly north, which follows a sprawl example of big brother Surrey.
There's the vast rural areas in the Agricultural Land Reserve and protected wetlands of Burns Bog separating the north from Ladner, which is still steeped in a small town spirit and fierce opposition to change.
And then there's Delta's well-to-do beachcombers in the south, a mix of modern, latte-sipping golfing enthusiasts with bird watchers and naturalists who enjoy the sight of the odd snowy owl.
Like any municipality, Delta has its quirks and quarrels, as each person who professes to love their home has a different idea on how it can be improved.
Some of those ideas can even be contradictory, as evidenced by the calls for more green, environmentally-friendly developments being rejected by the unsightliness of a square building in historic Ladner.
Or the opposition to property tax hikes whilst simultaneously refusing to consider any number of homes being built along Highway 91 and 72nd Avenue, or a rural residential community in Southlands.
Or a regional growth strategy that ignores growth and seems to pretend Tsawwassen First Nation isn't about to explode in population and commercial development.
But we can save such topics for a future column. For now, a brief explanation about me.
Writing opinion is a return to my roots, so to speak. I began my journey to journalism backwards. I blogged for the National Post for two years before going to college and becoming a community news reporter. Over that two-year span I've written columns on everything from economics, poverty, and politics, to global affairs, philosophy, and religion.
I look forward to sharing my views with South Deltans.
A final explanation about the name of my column. My essential view is that common sense isn't commonplace in today's world. Which means my column is a dose of common sense if sense were common.
That's not to say I'm not open to new ideas. As with all things in life, I look for common ground.