I'm starting to wonder if there's a huge generational divide in the upcoming transit plebiscite.
Earlier today, a caller to the Straight informed me that his two elderly parents are both voting no.
They have a car and don't need to use buses or SkyTrain to visit their doctor.
Then I canvassed a half-dozen young people. They told me that most young people support a 0.5 percent increase in the sales tax to fund $7.5 billion in transportation and transit improvements in the Lower Mainland over the next decade.
For many millennials, it's expensive enough to keep a phone and a roof over their heads, so they don't bother buying cars. In Vancouver, they're far more likely than baby boomers to rely on the transit system to get around.
Statistics from ICBC show that the percentage of young people without driver's licences has increased sharply over the past 20 years.
Part of the reason is that after these young people get a U-Pass card at college or university, they learn that buses and SkyTrain do a decent job of getting them around town.
This generation is probably looking forward to a Broadway subway and light-rail from Surrey City Centre to Guildford, Newton, or Langley.
These lines are far less likely to be built in the near future if there's a no vote.
Many prosperous aging boomers, on the other hand, already own their homes. After they retire, they spend much of their time in their neighbourhoods or going on exotic vacations. They couldn't give a hoot about an expansion to rapid transit.
Let's be really blunt: some of them aren't going to live long enough to get on one of these trains.
These prosperous aging boomers have already turned the atmosphere into a garbage dump, ensuring that future generations will pay a high cost in the form of extreme weather events, droughts, and food shortages.
This generation has consistently supported tax cuts, which have made postsecondary education more expensive and sharply increased child poverty.
Now, selfish aging boomers just might vote down improvements to the transit system that would help their grandchildren deal with the mess that they've left behind.
A no vote does nothing for traffic congestion. It does nothing to shorten the commuting time for students to postsecondary institutions. And it does nothing to give young people south of the Fraser River any hope that they'll spend less time on the roads reaching jobs in other municipalities.
But to some of the early postwar generation, none of that seems to matter in comparison to paying an extra 50 cents in provincial sales tax on a $100 pair of trousers.
My guess is that these no voters are too vain to feel any shame about this.