July 24, 1998
I can't get over it sports fans. The highest level of violent crime in Canada is in Regina, and Saskatoon is number three. From what I can see, the press is just shrugging it off. The police chiefs of both cities said that more money needs to be spent on social programmes, the provincial government responds with nods and nothing, and a few are demanding increased levels of policing. The British North America Act stipulates that there shall be "Peace, Order and Good Government." So if a balanced budget is good government, is one out of three acceptable?
Look everybody, this is a matter not only of safety and civility, but it also involves pride and concern for the lives of all of us. I want to hear some shouting about this. Mumbled comments about social programming and more police is "lip service" when you are the Detroit of Canada you better "do" something instead of cheap low cost talk.
Law enforcement does not mean jackboots, riot squads and German shepherd dogs slobbering and pulling at their chains to attack innocent people. Law enforcement means enough uniformed, well trained officers, out and about the neighbourhoods showing that they care for the safety of the public, response to a 911 call in minutes, not hours, and attention, hard nosed get your man attention, to each and every case, big and small. No spitting on the sidewalk, no littering, no graffiti, no jay walking and your in court this afternoon for petty shop lifting.
The cuts in the court system, returning and remanding for years on end, has made a mockery of the legal system and the blame rests firmly, like a pile of cow pies on the balanced budget premier's desk. He is responsible and he has failed in his duties. Cries for his resignation would be appropriate.
Unemployment and overcrowding in Regina and Saskatoon coupled with alcohol and drug abuse that is going completely unchecked, are turning both cities into ghettos. The folks who have left their reserves because of unemployment, no opportunity, no privacy, no place to live and no hope, has driven massive numbers of people into the urban areas. NO ADEQUATE RESPONSE HAS COME FROM PROVINCIAL OR FEDERAL GOVERNMENTS. The cities have had to cope on their own from their own tax base and they just can not handle the problem. This is not to say that the high crime rates rest solely with any specific ethnic group because poverty and loss of hope affects everyone. With huge numbers of unemployed aboriginal people the level of acceptance of some folks being poor is extended and instead of action, the response is food banks and the degradation that comes with welfare. (Remember folks every time you contribute to a food bank you are adding to the misery of the poor. Instead of a solution being found by people having to rely on food banks, the situation is perpetuated and you are smugly thinking you have done your part, when you only have fed someone for a day, tomorrow they will be hungry again. That poverty is a direct result of government policy and your contribution endorses the concept that our society needs lots of poor people.)
On top of all this, the level of caring and concern by the middle class is appallingly subdued! That attitude that, better it be someone else, rather then me, comes from years of low expectation from the economy and the oppression that comes with ultra low minimum wages, even for those who work, while major employers shirk their responsibilities by forcing their employees to accept part time work as opposed to no work at all. This acceptance of conventional broadly based poverty is especially the view of the suits who have been elected. They want balanced budgets and no hassle What they have produced is the highest violent crime rate in the country, with more murders, more assaults, more rapes and more pain and suffering then anywhere else in Canada. Think about that folks, more then Vancouver with is hordes of HIV positive druggies, more then Toronto with its massive ethnic populations of new Canadians, more then Montreal with its organised Motorcycle gang crime syndicates, Shame, Shame Shame.
If you know a politician, any politician give him hell, no mercy, no excuses, no "we're doing the best we can", they take the rap for this and the premier should ask for the resignations of each of the members of his cabinet, he should then resign himself and call an election.
Timothy W. Shire
Please tell me what you think, send email to me email@example.com, snail mail: Faster Than Light Communications, Box 1776, Tisdale, SK, S0E 1T0 or fax 306 873 2155.