To the editor:
Having participated in the recent No Pipeline/Idle No More movement in Kelowna, I am adding my small voice to the many voices who are in opposition to building the Enbridge pipeline.
I have lived my whole life (72 years) in the Okanagan Valley and have seen many changes.
As a child living in Peachland, I remember watching Trepanier Creek turn red with kokanee when they came to spawn, and drinking water from the creeks and lake.
With growth and development in the valley, the once pristine natural beauty that I enjoyed growing up is gone forever.
As a youth living in Westbank, I went to school with the native kids and also suffered racism and discrimination.
The Idle No More movement is about preserving the natural beauty of their lands, their rich culture/tradition and restoring dignity and justice. It’s also about recognizing the rights of indigenous people around the world.
Watching Grand Chief Stewart Philip and other First Nations people and supporters left out in the cold, while the Enbridge review panel controlled the agenda, was a slap in the face to the democratic process.
As Grand Chief Stewart Philip said, the Idle No More movement is a game changer.
It was inspiring and empowering to see so many people being part of history in the making.
It is time that Harper and “big oil” stop speaking with forked tongues, trying to sell Canadians a pipe dream flowing with dirty black snake oil.
It is time that the idle-way-too-much government listen to the voices of the First Nations people and honour their rights—and protect the rights of their grandchildren and their children.
Power to the people.
Hajime (Harold) Naka,