Re: "15-minute cities," Airdrie City View, editorial, Feb. 16, 2023
I appreciate very much the many articles the Airdrie City View publishes that are positive, uplifting, and focus on the remarkable city that we all share.
However, a recent editorial seemed very out of character with the general tone of this newspaper. I found the Feb. 16 Airdrie City View issue's editorial about the 15-minute city controversy quite disturbing. The piece was certainly not very helpful in leading readers to understand a complex topic and come to an informed decision on what could be a very significant matter for all municipalities going forward.
First of all, using a label like "conspiracy theorist" for those who may have concerns about this concept is incredibly dismissive for a journalist to use. It does nothing to further intelligent discourse. A year ago, our prime minister used the label "fringe minority" to dismiss protesters and recently had the decency to publicly apologize for using it. I hope it doesn't take the author of this article that long to apologize for using a similar label.
The second grievous concern with the article was how one-sided it was. By the description given, who would not want a 15-minute city? Amenities. Exercise. Support of local business. It's all a bed of roses! Yet there was no effort to investigate the real concerns of those who may see substantive problems with this measure.
Should this pass as journalism? To add injury to insult, the article contains a survey to poll readers' opinions on the subject. Would an article that uses a divisive label and unbalanced coverage then presume to measure public opinion on such a vital topic?
I hope a better-balanced, well-researched and more nuanced article is forthcoming soon.