The fatally flawed Order of British Columbia must be scrapped. Rushing to aggrandize themselves and their own financial backers, BC Liberals destroyed the award’s intended essence. It was supposed to recognize:
“those persons who have served with the greatest distinction and excelled in any field of endeavour benefiting the people of the Province or elsewhere.”
Over time, the statement has mutated to include a part two, which reads:
“those persons who have served the BC Liberal party with distinction and excelled at benefiting themselves and their associates without concern for the people of the Province or elsewhere.”
The Tyee offers a solution: The People’s Order of British Columbia. Readers are invited to nominate candidates for the award and The Tyee will select a short list everyone can vote on. Apparently, none of The Tyee’s donors, editors and contributors have an inside track.
I already submitted my first nomination. It was for Alexandra Morton, a choice that will not be unique because she is a certainty for the short list. This is part of my nomination,
“Alexandra Morton has for many years sustained a selfless but articulate struggle against governments, industry and other financial beneficiaries of questionable ocean science.
“Her recent focus has been on fish farming techniques but she began living in isolation on the BC coast more than 30 years ago to study the marine environment of Orca whales. Her views have consistently called for preservation of natural ecology and application of the precautionary principle favouring preservation of natural order.
“She is a scientist, an author, an activist and, perhaps most importantly, a symbol of an individual’s ability to peacefully confront larger and more powerful forces over issues of conscience. For most people, the combined strength of opponents would have been overwhelming but Morton has untypical perseverance and courage.
“She has added to the base of ocean science knowledge and she has mobilized countless ordinary citizens, including those not involved in scientific exploration, to take notice of threats to the Pacific Ocean. Citizen involvement may have moderated human sourced jeopardy but the marine environment remains at risk. Morton’s actions are needed more than ever today.”