Monday, April 2, 2012

Witnessing






This is me. This is the bay I live by. These mountains are the east wall of the fjord that holds the island that I live on.
Years ago a well known islander gave me the advice about living here that, if I'm in it for the long haul, I would need to develop a practice of witnessing. In the ten+ years I have lived here a lot has changed and I'm finally beginning to realize what that role of witness means.
There is a sharp division here between private and public, growing sharper every year. I believe that the rejection of a national park here was a testament to the strength of the view that public stewardship of public lands is dangerous. I happen to think that view is incorrect but I think that drove the opposition. and I think unchecked, that view will wreak havoc.
We now have here on our island a sharp line. It seems the role of our Council is tilting towards protection of private rights instead of stewardship of the public good. In the paper last week it was revealed that a private developer had cut dozens of trees in a newly established public park on the edge of his development. Not only that but he built a storm water ditch right through the tiny park to deposit rain water and associated detritus right on the public beach.
We have very little public land left that is easily accessible. It's the height of arrogance to presume that one has the right to encroach on it for private gain.
So to witness and call out acts that violate the community's assets, our public treasures, our few remaining places to experience wildness on an island that should be rich with wilderness.
I'll be submitting a document opposing the construction of docks across the public Cape Roger Curtis foreshore. I'll be opposing a loop road through what is left of Crippen Park. I'll be asking that the developer responsible for selling the trees compensate us with money at the least, more parkland would be better.
Time to focus on home and powerfully witness what is going on around here.
You with me?

Location:Cardena St,Bowen Island,Canada