Letter: What freedom means

Letter: What freedom means


I have been intrigued by the ongoing debate around the National Park Reserve (NPR) proposal, especially the use of the word “freedom” by some folks who are opposed to the creation of the NPR. What does it mean when a sign says National Park – No/Freedom – Yes?

Freedom to disturb wildlife and access environmentally sensitive areas with my off-road vehicles.

Freedom to spread invasive weeds when grazing my cattle.

Freedom to deny wildlife a harassment-free territory.

Freedom to intimidate and pressure those who don’t share my views.

Freedom to deprive my descendants of any surety of pristine, undisturbed wilderness in my community.

Freedom to ensure my personal interests take priority over other’s.

I am all for freedom and the opportunity to share in our natural environment, but with freedom comes great responsibility. Our local community includes strong hunting and outdoor recreation enthusiasts whose interests are no more valid than those who promote environmental protection. Tolerance and compromise will promote dialogue in this matter and  go a long way to ensure diverse opinions are freely shared and respected. That is what I hope freedom continues to mean in Canada. And with my freedom, I say yes to the park.

M. Chantler


  1. Allowing Parks Canada to enter into the South Okanagan will bring the Federal Species At Risk Act to its full potential with groups environmentalists prepared to see the SAR Act fully enforced. The aquatic section of SARA and there moratoriums have the ability to encroach onto private lands so you better be familiar with section 32 & 33 of SARA. You should also be familiar with portions of the Parks Act which gives the Park Warden the right to trespass without a warrant and issue very expensive fines. Sarah Boyle and Parks Canada have skated around this subject deliberately not to scare the shit out of people of what lurks in the parks act. Last week Global news did a story on the Rocky Mountain mussel in Vernon the bad news, these red listed muscles are found through out the South Okanagan waters to Osoyoos Lake and come with SARA’s full red listed protection. One would of thought the mayor and council would have had a changed their stand but instead continue with their full support for the National Park Reserve and now we can say at any cost. We were made aware of these muscles in the North end of Osoyoos Lake along with 31 other SAR & 104 potential SAR, 5 plant SAR, plus Sensitive Ecosystems and critical habitat all noted in the South Okanagan from FLNRO’s Feasibility Study released in March of 2018 yet Mayor McKortoff said nothing. The mussels are only one of the 31 Species At Risk in the study that could bring this valley to its knees. The Oliver Council has obviously realized the crippling effect this NPR will have on the agriculture and tourist industry. The mayor of Osoyoos still hasn’t offered any proof to South Okanagan residents that the National Park and the Species At Risk Act will have no real negative threats to the agriculture and tourist industry. The time is now for Okanagan residents to send a strong message to the Osoyoos mayor and council that their commitment to this park and the SARA will have serious consequences over time that will be irreversible.
    South Okanagan SARA information: Environment Feasibility Study Kettle Valley Railroad, South Spur Trail.

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