A Modern Political Platform, From 1918

January 15, 2018


One hundred years ago today, Mary Ellen Smith (or “Mrs Frank Smith” as she was usually known) published her platform for the Provincial by-election in Vancouver that year.  Many of its planks are remarkably still relevant today, including minimum wage, equal pay for equal work, juvenile justice reform, and proportional representation:

“Vancouver World”, 15 Jan 1918, p,5


She won the by-election, becoming the first woman elected to the BC Legislature.

Image: Coaster #5

January 15, 2018

Poem: Just Like In The Movies

January 15, 2018

they circled the building on foot



as the rain pelted down

hard like hail


on the street

they mugged as tough guys

in the streaming glass

of shop windows

images bouncing from the curved edges

of drops


in the back lane they each had time

to be shy with themselves

wish themselves luck

to be quiet and to suck up

the fear


the third time round

soaked to the skin

they had had enough

headed for the door

she had on a false nose and a hat

gap-teeth and a grin

he had a honey-blonde wig and a gun


the bank was silent

no more


“Hands Up!”