Coun. Michael Oshry, tongue deeply in cheek, suggested Tuesday that Edmonton might consider revising its slogan to "City McCityFace." He did this as council spent yet more time not devoting itself to addressing things like homelessness or sprawl or, you know, issues.
But despite Oshry's joking, City McCityFace is the slogan we currently deserve.
Edmonton seems torn in two between those who look to the past as our greatest times and those who see the city as needing a whole lot better in the future — and I count myself in the latter camp.
That we've spent so much time debating City of Champions appearing on welcome signs — for people flying past at 130 kilometres per hour — shows you how powerful the nostalgia lobby is in Edmonton. But that we continue having to worry about this lobby's feelings and concern for the good old days is the unexamined and damaging power of populism.
Our city is happening in the future. Nostalgia, most especially around sports and sports venues, is currently affecting simple decisions over the future of Northlands and the Coliseum. If we need a slogan, we need City McCityFace. Why? Because it highlights just how ridiculous all the time we've spent debating City of Champions really is. And it underlines how corrosive populism is to actual progress.
Thankfully, the motion to re-examine the slogan failed Tuesday.