Michael Harris writes that it's approaching high noon in B.C:
This coming Saturday on Burnaby Mountain will be a little like Gary Cooper’s classic western High Noon.
It will be a reckoning with big-time consequences for both the federal government and First Nations in their continued collision over the Kinder Morgan pipeline.
There will be some star power attending the protest of the pipeline expansion that day, including 82-year-old David Suzuki. At noon, “bold action” is planned. That has usually been code for people getting arrested — which 200 of them have already been. The leading man of the show will be one of British Columbia’s most revered Indigenous leaders, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip.
Trudeau continues to claim that Canada can mine and ship bitumen while protecting the environment. British Columbians don't believe him:
First Nations people are not the only ones who reject Trudeau’s have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too approach to the conflicting realities of resource development and protection of the environment. The late Farley Mowat told me that a day would come when those two activities would collide, and that big government would always resolve doubts in favour of resource development.
Carl Rosenberg, who lives in the riding of Vancouver Granville, wrote a letter to PM Trudeau on one of the National Days of Action against Kinder Morgan’s project. It reflects Mowat’s view:
“You must decide whether your commitments are with Canada’s people (including its First Nations), with the environment, or with Canada’s oil industry.”
Internationally acclaimed writer, Ronald Wright, author of A Short History of Progress, is puzzled over how Trudeau has handled this file. As Wright told me at his home on Salt Spring Island, there is not much to be gained by his course of action politically speaking.
“Why is Trudeau spending so much political capital ramming through pipeline and tanker traffic? No matter what he does for Alberta, Alberta will never elect Liberals.”
This is an issue where you can't split the difference. But Trudeau continues to believe you can. When the two sides collide, it will not be pretty.
Image: National Observer