We must stand up for the environment

There is simply no more time for procrastination. We should urge our governments to act on environmental issues and the economy now.

There is simply no more time for procrastination. We should urge our governments to act on environmental issues and the economy now.

In my view, we have not done this to any significant degree of satisfaction.

Trying to get through to government is a little like trying to walk up a steep icy incline. It takes a lot of effort and sooner or later you begin to realize you’re wasting your time.

Individually many people in the government care about the greater good, but they are swallowed up, like many of us are, by a system that is very much like a living machine.

We smash ourselves against it, looking for some measure of humanity. Our government is simply not doing enough to fix many of the problems we face as a community.

The evidence is all around you. Look at the economy, pollution, big business and corruption, two-income families, health care, and the erosion of what for many has become something out of reach, a piece of the dream we all want.

We are settling for so much less than we deserve. Instead of leaders who can guide us towards a new future with more promise, we get lawyers who quibble and quack at each other for days on end while accomplishing nothing.

Ask any politician a direct question and I can assure you, you will get anything but a direct response. They say things like “economic stimulus package,” “economic growth initiatives” and “environmental protection measures.”

What does it all mean though, when you look around and nothing is ever any different?

The environment is still getting polluted; the economy is still in the toilet; greed rules the day; families are struggling more than ever on two incomes, trying to pay for homes that are priced two or three times more than their real value.

What it means is government has not done its job.

It means that government is either unable or unwilling to do the job we pay them a lot of money to do.

This government does not have the answers honest hard-working taxpaying Canadians are looking for.

Some of us are hoping for change, some of us are asleep like the government and others just don’t care or are too busy to do anything.

The government has become so process-orientated that its purpose has become blurred.

It needs direction from the people and the people are too busy to give it to them. Together that makes us teammates in the biggest game of “drop the ball” ever.

There are so many projects our government could be investing in to secure the future of the economy and the environment. The government seems willing only to wait for the public to lead the way with a new direction while they tag along for the ride.

There seems to be little political will do what needs to be done on the scale it needs to be done at in order to get the job done. Instead, we have to settle for half measures and catchy slogans until governments decide to do what is needed.

Ordinary people can’t do this without the government’s help, we simply do not have the resources.

Big business will never get it done because they govern themselves on a profit-orientated system that cares little for the greater good.

So I ask you, if governments won’t step up to the plate, how will anything ever really change in a meaningful way?

Renewable energy, better built homes, (substantial) green incentives, affordable housing and land values, 100 per cent recycling, zero land fill waste, and serious punishments for polluters are just a few of the meaningful directions our government should be working towards in a proactive way, not just in fancy speeches.

This government needs to take a new and real direction instead of dumping money into poorly conceived ideas that time has proven to be inadequate.

We can all see where our past has taken us. Can we really look around and say this is good enough?

I urge you to send as many emails as you can to as many elected officials as you can. Tell these men and women that you want a future that is filled with promise and tell them to protect the environment.

Protecting the environment is the new business model of tomorrow and there is profit in it, both monetarily and spiritually. Nothing will ever be more important.

Jason Velkjar

Red Deer

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