Strathcona Park has been ‘brutalized’

Dear editor,

I've watched Strathcona Park being brutalized by one government after another for my entire life.

Dear editor,

I’ve watched Strathcona Park being brutalized by one government after another for my entire life, and I’ve always believed it was more than just a “park” problem.

I think it has to do with a glitch in human thinking that somehow allows us to become very easily confused in our values. To put it simply, our thinking processes are short-circuited by money, to the point where we often very forcibly push many of our other values aside.

Strathcona Park is a uniquely personal interest of mine, but in my lifetime I’ve also watched us brutalize countless salmon runs and ancient forests into extinction in exchange for money. We humans are now doing this as hard and fast as we can, on a global basis.

Why?

I think it’s because money somehow blinds us to our other values much the same as heroin blinds a junkie to anything but heroin, and becomes his/her reason for living.  Why else would we be so willing to destroy our surroundings (and ultimately ourselves) for something so ultimately worthless?

But we don’t just destroy our forests, our rivers, (not to mention our oceans) and all our other valuable natural surroundings; we also destroy our own institutions, which were created by us to serve our very own human needs and values.

Not only that, but we seem totally mystified when our valued institutions begin to break down as a result of our own actions.

I’m not talking now about how we brutalize valuable natural creations, like rivers, forests, and the contents of our parks for money. I’m talking about how we brutalize our own creations for the same reason.

I’m talking about our health and education systems and many of our other valuable institutions, which are suffering so badly these days.

Everything in life is a choice. When we choose one thing, we lose something else.

A junkie invariably chooses heroin. If we (and our governments) always choose money, we shouldn’t be surprised when we lose other values (which are often more important to us) in the process.

The effects of choices made years ago by government are now becoming extremely obvious in our failing health, education, and social programs.

It’s easy to see the results, but it seems much harder for people to understand that the present problems stem from decisions made years in the past, by a government determined to “balance the budget” at all costs.

Politicians are reputed to have very short memories, so perhaps this explains why it’s difficult for them to comprehend that problems in the present can be directly related to actions they took in the past. I have a suggestion to help mitigate this particular political blind spot.

It might be a good thing if all politicians were required to grow a small garden. Since the results of decisions made in a garden usually show up relatively quickly, (unlike the results of political decisions, which often don’t become distressingly obvious for years) politicians could learn (and hopefully retain) some basic rules of cause and effect.

An unusually perceptive politician would possibly even notice that gardens are in many ways quite similar to human societies and institutions.

Watered plants thrive. Brutalized plants wither and die.

A really insightful politician might even begin to discover that there might actually be greater values in our lives than money.

Just a suggestion.

Karl Stevenson,

Comox

Just Posted

WATCH: Teams gather in Comox for VEX competition

More than 40 teams across Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland gathered… Continue reading

Dementia village planned for Comox hospital

Providence Health takes ownership of St. Joseph’s April 1

Vehicle crashes into ground floor of Comox retirement building Saturday

A driver narrowly avoided injury to herself or others as her vehicle… Continue reading

Comox Valley libraries have plenty to offer during Family Literacy Week

Colleen Nelson Special to The Record Do you have a young reader… Continue reading

Strong winds up to 100 km/h for parts of Vancouver Island

Wind warning in effect for north, east and west Vancouver Island into Saturday morning

VIDEO: Students in MAGA hats mock Native American at Indigenous Peoples March

Diocese in Kentucky says it is investigating the matter, caught on video by onlookers

Want to avoid the speculation tax on your vacant home? Rent it out, Horgan says

Premier John Horgan and Sheila Malcolmson say speculation and vacancy tax addresses homelessness

Comox Valley libraries have plenty to offer during Family Literacy Week

Colleen Nelson Special to The Record Do you have a young reader… Continue reading

CONSUMER REPORT: What to buy each month in 2019 to save money

Resolve to buy all of the things you want and need, but pay less money for them

UPDATE: B.C. woman and boy, 6, found safe, RCMP confirm

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

PHOTOS: Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and beyond

Women and allies marched worldwide protesting violence against women, calling for equality

Anxiety in Alaska as endless aftershocks rattle residents

Seismologists expect the temblors to continue for months, although the frequency has lessened

Women’s March returns across the U.S. amid shutdown and controversy

The original march in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew hundreds of thousands of people

Federal Liberals announce former B.C. MLA as new candidate in byelection

Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh

Most Read