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Green Seal of Dissaproval

Written By Stephen Eli Harris on Wednesday, December 21, 2005 | 12/21/2005 05:08:00 pm

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This is my response to the Jim Harris' stance on the commercial Seal Hunt.

The Green party of Canada is founded apon six fundamental principles; Ecological Wisdom, Social Justice, Non Violence, Sustainability, Respect for Diversity and Participatory Democracy. All of these values are extreamly important however, the one I believe is essential to the growth of Government is the latter of the 6. The Green Party strives for a democracy in which all citizens have the right to express their views, and are able to directly participate in the environmental, economic, social and political decisions which affect their lives. One of the ways they've already started to impliment this is by way of the Living Platform; an online discussion of all the Green party's values whereby anyone of any age, gender, race or political affiliation can have their say on how they think a Green Party government should be ran. Their wish is to open up debate to more people than ever ensuring that everyone has their say on thier future.

This brings me to my point. Recently, Jim Harris (Leader of the Green Party) visited Newfoundland and Labrador and expressed his views on the annual Seal Hunt. Many were angered when Mr. Harris said that "It's time to end federal support for the seal hunt and instead use federal programs to develop sustainable jobs that will bring Newfoundland and Labrador international praise". I was one of those many.

As a supporter of the Green Party I can understand Mr. Harris's view however, the leader truly doesn't understand how important this industry is to Newfoundland and Labrador. It seems only those who are native to the province can understand the importance and it's truly sad that so many "upalongs", "mainlanders", non-Newfoundland a Labradorians are mislead about the seal hunt. It's not an industry of brutallity and 'baby seal whacking' (on a side not, I agree with Cathy Jones, Bill Lankhof IS an asshole) that everybody believes it is. It's astonishing that so many people assume that baby white coat seals are clobbered just because organizations like Green Peace use it as thier poster child when in fact, these seals aren't even harmed.

I do agree that it's time for our province to start pursuing sustanibile industries If the seal hunt is mananged property to ensure only what's needed is taken and all that is taken is used, then the industrly would indeed continue to be sustainable. I'm a strong supporter of the ways of old where thousands of people existed by way of hunter/gatherer. These people would scour the land gathering food and killing animals to feed apon... however, they would only take or kill what they need. There was no stockpilling of meat or sport hunting thus ensuring that there would always be plant and animal life to live off for generations to come.

This is my participation to the democracy. I want Mr. Harris and the rest of the country to hear my voice on this issue and will do whatever possible to make sure all of the voices of Newfoundland and Labrador are heard. A well managed, publically informed hunt is a sustainable way of life and should never be banned completly. The effects to the people of Newfoundland and Labrador are too severe to do so.

Stephen Harris
Green Party Candidate

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