Monday, March 17, 2008

jail bird

If you'd told me twelve months ago that I would be planning to break the law and go to jail I would have laughed in your face. As little as three months ago I sniggered when I completed my police check for a new job and boldly ticked a box stating I did not expect to gain a criminal record - after all, who really does plan on collecting criminal charges?! Not me.

I'm a good girl I am!

Perhaps I should rephrase that. I'm a good girl, I was! Yesterday Frank and I went to training in peaceful community protest techniques, and if we follow this through to the end of the line, we could end up in jail for six months for trespassing. Little did I know my journey into environmental activism could end behind bars! In view of the serious implications of all this for my new position as a school chaplain I am considering all my options very carefully, but at this stage with the pulp mill still scheduled to go ahead I will be taking action of one sort or another.

This is the current state of affairs: despite not having yet secured funding or the complete range of permits required for the project, Gunns keep rattling their sabre, boldly declaring in every form of media they can access that they will get the funding and the mill will be built, with construction commencing construction in the next six months.

The community remain appalled. More than appalled, we are angry. This is big business acting as if they own the resources of our state. This is the government forgetting they are here for the benefit of the people and bowing to the wishes of powerful corporations. This is environmental destruction on our doorstep. This is like having our mouths forced open and pollution poured down our throats.

If Gunns get the approvals they need, and if the bank gives them the necessary funding (we are campaigning hard against both) then we will fight. Not with guns or chains clamped onto vehicles, but with well thought out peaceful community protests.

We have to stop this monstrosity. For the sake of our planet, for the sake of our children, for the sake of our social and moral fibre.

(This link is very, very long, but it's well worth a read... I actually cried as I read it. It's a speech given by the former head of the committee that was supposed to review the pulp mill, until Gunns threw a tantrum, pulled out and the government rolled over to their demands. We aren't just fighting against a pulp mill, we're fighting against greed and consumerism and arrogance and pride)

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At 12:49 am, March 18, 2008, Blogger Cherie said...

Gandhi would be proud, Cecily.

I'm pulling for you guys!

Big corporations - phooey!!

At 6:55 am, March 18, 2008, Blogger Mike S said...

Try to avoid jail, as that silences you for the entire term. It's always the hidden agendas and investors who bear ferreting out and exposing to the light of day. Often, once exposed, they'll slink off to offend newer sensibilities elsewhere.

At 4:19 am, March 20, 2008, Blogger Deanna said...

Fight the good fight, there, Cecily, and do try to follow the wisest path. If enough people get involved, maybe there's no way they could send you all to jail (here's hoping).

At 7:08 am, March 20, 2008, Blogger Robyn said...

Go Cec Go! I hope you don't go to jail though :) I'm proud of you having the courage of your convictions.


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