We are all immigrants
Dear editor: There is a pattern here.
Who do fossil fuels benefit? The people who make the machines that dig it up and process it. People who buy it to run their cars and heat their homes. People who invest in it.
Not the people whose homes are dug up to put a pipeline through. Surely not the people whose water and air are polluted. As we now know, where water is more abundant, icecaps and glaciers are melting and floods are more common. In areas where water is scarcer, droughts and fires are more common.
From a health perspective, who benefits from smoking or alcohol? People who work for and invest in the companies that make and market these products. Surely not the people whose lungs are tarred and vulnerable to cancer. Not the people with liver disease and alcohol-related brain damage.
Who did residential schools benefit? Who did it benefit to displace indigenous children and families from their homes when European settlers first came to North America? Who does it benefit to remove people from their homes to put through a pipeline?
Immigrants. I believe we are all immigrants. We all come from somewhere and have wound up somewhere else ... but removing people from the homes they own. What about the rule of law?
Are we living under the false assumption that we truly own the land we live on or can the government or industry come along and sweep away our lives wherever and whenever they foresee a profit?
Our collective addiction to a history of colonization of indigenous peoples is the pattern I see being perpetuated by governments world-wide working together with industrial forces originating centuries ago in Europe.
Damage to the environment in which we all live continues, without due regard to the consequences. And colonialism is so pervasive that many oppressed peoples speak out in favour of it, because they have bought into the benefits of jobs and money, as if those are the most important things in life. Just like the addict who says, “I know I should quit. I’ll quit tomorrow,” and overdoses before the turn of midnight. Kim Dawson Kelowna