Husband, dad and small business owner Sean Wood posted an item on Facebook that is worth our attention. With permission, it is repeated here, with comments added below:
I had the opportunity to sit in the Nanaimo courthouse yesterday and listen to legal teams’ closing arguments from Teal Cedar, the RCMP and Rainforest Flying Squad regarding extending the court injunction in Ada’itsx / Fairy Creek. A few memorable quotes from Justice Douglas Thompson:
Somebody did the work to have thin blue line patches on uniforms. I think it’s reasonable that officers at least have an identifying number.
In court, we identify ourselves by our names. Our identities keep us accountable.
There are problems associated with anonymity.
Obviously it’s imperative that the public be able to identify the members policing, whether by name or a number.
Justice Douglas Thompson again:
It’s interesting that the word incursion is used regarding protestors. If it were lawyers or media on the scene, would we use the term incursion for those groups as well?
The RCMP legal team is asking for a wide capability of search and seizure in addition to stronger exclusion zones. Their argument is that without these tools, they cannot keep supplies from reinforcing the blockades and therefore cannot effectively enforce the court’s injunction.
We could keep all illegal drugs out of Downtown Eastside in Vancouver if we searched everyone going in or out of that area, but we don’t do that for obvious reasons.
In the end, all three legal teams, Rainforest Flying Squad / Teal Cedar / RCMP, were united in the opinion that the current situation is escalating and unworkable.
The entire situation rests on the B.C. Attorney General David Eby and B.C. Premier John Horgan.
Both of these elected officials have put the RCMP, Justice Douglas Thompson, Teal Cedar, Rainforest Flying Squad tree protectors, Pacheedaht and Ditidaht First Nations and the public in this unworkable position.
If Mr. Eby won’t prosecute charges that the RCMP lay, what is it they want the RCMP to do exactly? If the tree protectors can’t have their day in court to fight charges, then why the catch-and-release arrests?
Instead of sending RCMP up there to do your dirty work, while you’re telling protestors to go home from the sheltered safety of a microphone hundreds of kilometres away, why not go to Ada’itsx / Fairy Creek yourself, Mr. Horgan?
You would meet the same good people I’ve met there.
Show the courage to speak to them yourself.
Physically go to Ada’itsx / Fairy Creek and experience the situation that Mr. Eby and yourself have put everyone in.
The forestry workers brave the elements, as do the RCMP, as do the tree defenders, while you’re warm and dry in your blue suit and tie sipping a Mai Tai in a cozy restaurant downtown.
If you wanna lead the band, you’ve gotta face the music.
You’re both very present when it’s time for a fundraiser dinner. But that’s the easy part of the job, isn’t it?
Respect all the voters, not just your own.
Now that it’s being called the largest act of civil disobedience in Canada’s history with over 1,000 arrests, perhaps it’s time that Eby and Horgan stop hiding behind other people and quagmired legalese, and find the courage to make important decisions between protecting quarterly profits and forestry work that can be found elsewhere and what remains of sacred, irreplaceable old-growth forest.
The injunction remains for a little while longer, at least, until Justice Douglas Thompson decides his ruling on extending it or ending it.
A comment by Douglas Gook on Sean’s Facebook quote is also worth repeating:
Very important post Sean Wood.
Considering the number of supposed ecology ‘champions’ in the Christy Horroragain government (Heyman, Donnelly, Eby, Rankin, Ma, etc.) and the fact that their silence is deafening on Old Growth/environmental failures.
Let’s hope the Vancouver Island Sept20 federal election vote exposes the BAU NDP disconnect of ‘campaigning with ecological assurances’ and then governing to corporate captured planet murder.
I’m all for a Vancouver Island/B.C. Green Wave!!!!
August 9th, on International Indigenous People’s Day, was the one year anniversary of blockades being established to protect the Fairy Creek watershed (Ada’itsx.) in Pacheedaht Territory. This unique rainforest is the last intact unprotected old growth watershed in Southern Vancouver Island, outside of parks. On this anniversary, Fairy Creek Headquarters were raided by the RCMP and the RCMP ERT (militarized police) dropped in with ATVs by helicopter to take over Heli Camp…
Ms. Cogan presents a disturbing account of police brutality towards an 5-foot tall Indigenous woman with disabilities.
John Horgan has spent much of his career in politics, polishing the ability to tell people whatever he thinks they want to hear and making them believe he is sincere. Attorney General David Eby’s professional work led us to expect a more principled public official.
Eby had been Executive Director of the BC Civil Liberties Association. Before that, he was an advocate for police accountability while he worked with the Pivot Legal Society, an organization focused on Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. For the 2010 Olympics, Pivot and BCCLA combined to train legal observers to “serve as the ‘eyes and ears’ on the ground that will record how human rights and civil liberties are being upheld during the games.“
When Eby was appointed Attorney General, many thought he would bring change to a department that badly needed it. Instead, the department seems to have changed Eby.