I was there last night but left with mix feeling about the whole event.
I asked in advance to attend this VERY GOOD fund raiser and I was told that I could.
I expected something like the State of the Province that is held every year.
Once at the Convention Centre, I had no problem walking into the Event. < They must have been told that I was coming >
I quickly noticed that all the Activists against Poverty were there. Also were people who are on the Welfare system were also present.
You could tell by their Facial expression they were honored to attend such an event and mingle with the higher ups.
Myself, I was there to listen to what Frank had to say about Poverty and what can be done to combat this awful issue in Fredericton or better yet? The whole Province.
You see, I'm not one of the those people that's thinking - Ohhh this is Frank McKenna...the guy who used to be Premier of this Province and the Canadian Ambassador in the U.S. I might add Frank is the same guy who travels and mingles with many world leaders such as Bill Clinton.
I remember the Frank McKenna that I had many dealings with when he was Premier. I might add that he always replied to his emails.
Last November, I saw Frank McKenna for the very first time in 10 years.
Click below -
I never blogged my little story but I wanted my picture taken with Frank and David Alward. These are the only two Premiers that replied to their emails.
It was hard work but I manage to get the two together et Voila.
This evening, I wasn't there to have my picture taken with the Premier.
I fought hard with Frank Mckenna not to pass a law that everyone is force to wear a helmet. 16 or 18 years or younger should be the law.
Here's a letter to the editor I wrote about this issue -
I was told by an employee that a table was set for the media. It was table 59!!!
I was surprised there was a table because the media usually sits in the back and watch the event. I wasn't expecting a meal.
Once at the table, I noticed I was the only so-called media guy at the table.
Oh well....later on a few other people < not media > joined in to enjoy a meal -
CBC Journalist Terry Seguin did a wonderful job as Host!!!
Fredericton Councillor Mike O'Brien spoke about the issue of the importance to find homes for the homeless.
He said - People used to attend Council meeting to denounced a location < not in my neighborhood > but not as much these days so we are making progress but more can be done!!!
I think this Councillor heart is at the right place and I believe he's the one that can find a solution between the Police and the less fortunate. < Especially the issue of Cycling >
Premier David Alward made a video -
Brian Jones took the stage and chatted about the time he played the role as a homeless.
I haven't seen him for a while.
Click below for a story of the day I hunted him down -
ADVENTURER BRIAN JONES IS HUNTED DOWN BY BLOGGER!!!!
Then came Tim Ritcher from Calgary.
He recognized me from a couple of years ago when Mark Horvath came to this City.
Mark Horvath is the King of all Poverty Activists around the world!!!
Click below -
Mark Horvath from InvisiblePeople.tv is followed and confronted by the Blogger in Fredericton!!!
Here's Tim Ritcher and Tim Ross -
Click below -
Then came Mayor Brad Woodside and of course he's one guy that everyone loves to listen to because you never know what's going to come out from his mouth.
He just came from Haiti and he shared with the audience of what he saw.
Then came the man of the Hour!!!! FRANK MCKENNA!!!!!
The Mayor introduced the former Premier -
and it was Crunch time!!
What would the former Premier say?
I heard when he was Premier that he wasn't a fan of the less fortunate. Stories such as people lined up in the cold winter months to receive their monthly check?
I wouldn't know because in those days I was working at the Shipyard in Saint John and making good money. < Mind you I still wrote letters to the editor about Poverty >
He began with a few jokes about him tuned out to be a lawyer and a Banker.
Click below -
Of course any Guest speaker have to begin with some kind of good jokes in a speech. I used to give speeches all the time on my travel on a ten speed across the Canada and the U.S.!!!!
Click below for other photos -
Ten Speed Charlie rides a bicycle across the States!!!
I went back to my table and focus on his message.
I quickly learned that he was giving stories of poverty around the World. He wasn't talking much about the issues concerning poverty in Fredericton or this Province.
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Of course Frank finished his speech by giving $100,000 to the people who organized this event.
and he said - THAT'S GOING TO CHANGE STARTING RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!
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The speech was over and everyone was happy!!! The room was full of joy.
My god? It would have been the perfect place for a panhandler to stand outside the Convention. He or she would have made a fortune.
I went ahead of the room and waited a chance to interview the former Premier of the issue of the Bicycle Helmet law.
I quickly found out that Frank McKenna is a Rock Star. Everyone wants a piece of Frank. Sorta like David Alward when he finished his State of the Province Address.
I waited and waited.
I decided to chat with Tim Ritcher from the Canadian Alliance to end Homelessness -
Suddenly he was alone and I asked - Frank? Can I have a little interview with you?
He replied- Shoot!!!
I put the Camera on but suddenly a woman < that Frank didn't know > intervened and began chatting with him.
Of course, many of these people paid $175.00 per ticket so they have the right to butt in I guess?
Finally, I got the Premier and began the video....then suddenly a woman quickly pushed me aside and interrupted our conversation < which I made a promise that I won't pursue this issue >
This hasn't happened to me for a long time and we sure can't have a person on Social Assistant chatting with Frank McKenna can we???
Reminded me of Margot Spragg when she interrupted my interview with former Leader Roger Duguay. This woman REALLY got under my skin!!!! To this day...I'm still pissed....< Scottish >
Click below for story -
Margot Spragg cuts off Blogger interview with NDL Leader Roger Duguay!!!
Never have someone made me so upset....grrr....
Then someone told me that the media was waiting for a scrum!!!!
I said - Media???? I never saw them at the media table but sure enough they were there waiting for Frank McKenna.
If I would have known? I would have been in that group waiting for my turn.
I was distracted and couldn't really focus.
But I did manage to receive an answer from Frank -
Click below for video -
I decided to do a video of the media Scrum!!!
I might add that I joined in the scrum!!!
Click below -
I heard people mentioning my name and running around like a chicken with no heads. They knew I was upset with this certain individual cutting me off and we sure can't have a good evening ruined by a snobby citizen.
I was approached by an individual and I deleted the picture of the woman.
Lets not forget that I'm trying to lose weight so I haven't had a beer in 21 days so my Nerves are a little edgy.
These people must learn just to leave me alone at these events and everything will be fine.
Ok......never mind that!!!!!
So? Frank Mckenna didn't have a view on the Justice System and the less fortunate.
This is where the problem is!!!
THE JUSTICE SYSTEM!!!!!
Nobody in the room seem to believe this is a concern.
Grabbing the homeless from the streets for panhandling and escort them to jail for months is ok???
Something is VERY wrong here!!
The City makes the world believe that they do care but once it comes to deal with issues such as riding a bicycle on the sidewalk at 2:00am all alone. The Cops have the right to arrest the individual.
The Police are working to make certain the youths have a record on their file so they will not be able to locate work in the future.
This is the way the system works and we need leadership on this issue.
A good start would be to order the Rat Patrol to leave the people with mental illness alone on the trails.
They confront an individual with a mental disorder and if they fight back? They call the Cops!!!
But this will never happen.
As for Frank McKenna? Well the message I got is - Hey? Compare to other Countries around the world? You got it made!!!
Sorry...but this is not the message we need!!!!
The former Premier intent was good but local or provincial issues should have been addressed....
Action speak louder than words.
$100,000is a lot of money and the former Premier should be congratulated for this donation.
Hey? He did say it begins TONIGHT!!!!
Maybe he'll do a follow up and discuss this emotional issue more in details in months and years ahead?
Will Frank ever return to Fredericton to continue to debate the issue of Poverty???
Or was this a one shot deal???
Truly stay tuned!!!!