In the face of corporate power, government spying, and painfully sycophantic Postmedia News editorials, opposition to the Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan pipelines (more importantly, oil tankers) has not faltered. In a climate where “environmentalist” has become “terrorist”, where “radical” can describe the majority of British Columbia, standing resolute are student and worker, urban and rural, First Nations and Canadians of foreign ancestry, politicians and citizens alike.
They are speaking out to defend the environment; for the world, their province, and their communities. They know their coastlines and salmon cannot afford an oil spill. They have seen spills affect their own homes. They are voicing their concerns in any way they can, from protests to hearings. They believe, correctly, that they deserve a say in such potentially dangerous projects.
To reduce them to mere fringe movements is disingenuous. Most of them are just ordinary citizens. Like the Quebec student protesters before them, they are exercising their rights, their freedom. Even Christy Clark and the B.C. Liberals were held accountable, if only somewhat.
And in the face of the most undemocratic government Canada has ever seen, democracy is alive and well. Despite the fear of inevitability, the province will not go down without a fight. And thus, as an Albertan, I stand with the province of my youth. They are an inspiration, a shining hope that we may still be able to prevent climate catastrophe in Canada and worldwide. That in the end, the power of many is still more powerful than the power of the few wealthy.
A concerned citizen of Canada