This morning I went down to the Stephen Harper Canada Post Office here on Salt Spring Island, BC. The X-Mas cabal is in full swing at the Stephen Harper federal public establishment and there were about 20 people ahead of me as I joined the queue. I was getting bored when I spotted the post card rack featuring a large postage-paid postcard of a beautiful healthy wolf, smiling at the camera, busting with health and wild freshness. No doubt, all merchandise offered for sale in Canada’s Post Offices will have been carefully vetted and approved by senior government bureaucrats in Ottawa. How lovely I thought, -I’ll send some of these wolf cards to my European friends…~but just then I noticed that, “CANADA” was loudly emblazoned in fancy curlicues across the bottom third of the card…
That led me to thinking about how badly Stephen Harper has shamed and humiliated Canada before the world with his ongoing lackadaisical, illiterate and obstructionist environmental efforts. In Stephen Harper’s Canada, wolves are wantonly and routinely poisoned and shot from helicopters. I realized that I was too embarrassed to send a “CANADA” postcard of a wolf to a friend. Disappointed, and sinking back into boredom, I idly turned the post card turnstile…~and I could not believe what next I saw before my eyes!
Here, in the Stephen Harper national postal institution, on another big postcard, was a beautiful baby Harp seal smiling up at the camera. And again, “Canada” was scrawled prominently across the card. Now I don’t know about you folks, but this was starting to weird me out. In Stephen Harper’s Canada, hundreds of thousands of helpless baby Harp seals are brutally clubbed to death in front of their screaming mothers, while the rest of the world watches in disgust. No friend of mine would appreciate being sent such an icon of subhuman greed and cruelty.
I turned the rack again, -and there, to my horror, was yet another “CANADA” card featuring two beautiful youthful Grizzly bears, in their fullest glory of health and vigour. All of the wakened compassionate nature-loving world knows that in Stephen Harper’s Canada, the Grizzly bear has been virtually exterminated by humans throughout their natural range, ~except here in British Columbia, where Stephen Harper’s Neocon side-kick Gordon Campbell, whose first order of government upon his accession to power was to reinstate the Grizzly bear trophy hunt these magnificent bears are being slaughtered. Every year in the Stephen Harper and Gordon Campbell Canada, hundreds of Grizzlies annually, are shot, gutted, decapitated and then left to rot, ~and not for their meat, simply for some perverted macho ego-thrill.
And with one last turn of the rack, the final hypocritical insult came into view, -a postcard of a fabulous Humpback whale in full breach against a backdrop of one of BC’s magnificent steepsided forested wild fiords. And we all know what’s coming down the pipe for Humpback whales in Stephen Harper’s Canada. A giant, thousand mile pipeline bisecting our province, spewing daily, a half a million barrels of filthy Alberta tar-sands oil product, into a veritable traffic jam of hundreds of humungous giga-tankers annually, that will thread their way, dodging Humpback whales, through the most treacherous rock-pile that is the British Columbia Pacific coast. And just yesterday, in Canada’s parliament, every single member of the Stephen Harper government voted to support massive oil and gas development off the British Columbia coast.
From where I live in my Canada, -amongst my family, my friends, my community, ~everyone around here, bar none~ recognizes the clear global emergency. We are all involved, changing our lives, getting activated. All across this country, and around the world people have woken up to the ecological catastrophe and are demanding, en-masse, that our habitat, our most precious and magnificent ecology, our myriad fellow beings, our air, our water, our land, our biodiversity, our environment must have immediate, serious, credible, stringent protection.
The biggest threat to Canada’s most magnificent iconic wilderness marvels, the wolf, the Harp seal, the Grizzly and the Humpback, is the most careless and brutish big-oil-lackey Stephen Harper government. They have brought great shame and embarrassment down on this country. I cannot, in good conscience, send the blatantly hypocritical Stephen Harper Canada Post postcards to anyone.
INGMAR LEE lives in British Columbia. He can be reached through his website.