August 14th, 2020

Prevailing local attitude backs environmental destruction

By Letter to the Editor on July 31, 2020.

Lethbridge citizens recently learned about misconduct by Lethbridge Police Service officers, who were trying to prevent the protection of the eastern slopes watershed and to enable harassment of environmental advocates. Chief Scott Woods released a statement in which he said he was satisfied that the officers were held accountable, by a reduction in rank.

No apology for the specific actions was forthcoming in this statement, nor any offer to follow up with the victims to see if further investigation is warranted. This highlights a prevailing local attitude backing environmental destruction that is disturbing. When authorities such as the LPS tolerate such activities with a wrist-slap, it gives the community at large the impression this is an attitude our leaders generally endorse.

The Lethbridge Herald is among the public entities responsible for encouraging anti-environment activism. The Herald has been known to publish editorials of climate denialism, such as on June 30, in spite of the scientific consensus that humans are causing catastrophic climate change. One has to wonder what reason the newspaper has for doing this. Are the publishers stockholders in fossil-fuel companies? Are they beholden to such companies for advertising dollars? Are the editors simply too lazy to Google the fact that 98 per cent of the world’s scientists agree on the causes of climate change or too irresponsible to care about promoting harmful practices?

Regardless of the reasons, the effects of this attitude are clear. Law enforcement officers are willing to abuse their power to intimidate and harass citizens. Our community fails to embrace opportunities to reduce fossil-fuel consumption and too many people don’t understand the pollution-based causes of catastrophic floods and hailstorms.

We must call out our civic leadership whenever they promote and excuse these dangerous actions and spread misinformation. Our community deserves to hear fact-based reporting and condemnation of activities that put the health and safety of our citizens at risk.

We also need to commend Shannon Phillips and the other members of the community that took the lead in crafting solutions to lead us to a more sustainable future. In our city, they shouldn’t have to fear retaliation for making such a contribution. These are the true leaders in our community. Let’s hope the rest of our leaders learn from them.

Tom Moffatt


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23 Responses to “Prevailing local attitude backs environmental destruction”

  1. John P Nightingale says:

    I would respectfully suggest , the Herald has every right to publish opinions, articles, letters that are contrary to maintain-stream consensus. Such is the right of the so called “free press”.
    Reasoned debate is welcomed but often, especially with some contributors to “comments”, the language and ad hominem attacks on writers is unacceptable.
    All this being said, Tom Moffat’s subject matter and his conclusions are correct and highlights an increasingly worrisome trend in SW Alberta as a whole.

  2. Citi Zen says:

    Yes, the prevailing local attitude is wrong, and Phillips is right. Duh! Environmentalists gone mad, again!

  3. IMO says:

    Well! As mentioned by JPN, that didn’t take long for the no contribution to the debate and ad hominem to appear in the comments.

  4. old school says:

    Ms. Phillips has been involved in “underhanded” actions -re big horn meetings,herself and has shown she is not to be trusted.
    She Was willing to do whatever it took to fulfill her agenda.She is /was part of the same party that pushed so hard for the
    S C S. We all no what that turned into being run by NDA supporters. To me it was no surprise that people who care about the environment and freedom to enjoy it were concerned about her and her “meetings”.

  5. baxter says:

    The officers were completely justified in their actions and should not have been punished at all. The fact that they had to be punished because of a vocal minority of idiots shows just how wrong the letter is.

    The fact we have to cowtow to a bunch of whiny babies when officers are out there doing what is best for our community show that small interest groups have way too much power in our PC culture.

    Instead of whining about some BS “environmental destruction” perhaps Tommy Boy could get out there and support the necessary progress we are making in using these areas for what they should be used for, economic advancement and the betterment of Alberta’s citizens.

    • gs172 says:

      The officers were completely justified in their actions? How? Was Ms Phillips under investigation? These were 2 officers putting their personal opinions ahead of their positions and responibilties as law enforcement. Would you have the same opinion if let’s say one of the officers thought that someone was having an relationship with their ex and ran every license plate on a street to find out who it was? It happened and it’s no different. I wish the new chief all the luck in the world if he has to deal with actions such as this.

      • baxter says:

        Phillips should be under constant investigation considering what an absolute piece of garbage she is and her actions to try and harm the province of Alberta and its citizens.

        • adamb says:

          Enjoy the LPS salary while it lasts because you re soon going to see that society will not tolerate the tyranny of your police department. The limited education, steroid taking attitudes make for short-lived careers. Good luck with it.

          It’s absolutely in line with racism to excuse the surveillance of a public official because her political agenda doesn’t align with yours. Get a life.

  6. chinook says:

    While the Herald has the right to publish whatever they want, why would they publish anything from those who deny man made climate change? All it does is keep those who don’t follow science confused. The consensus is clear…burning fossil fuel for over 300 years, humans have filled the atmosphere with so much C02 that heat is now trapped and weather has changed. Ironically on this day, Cosmos our local vocal climate denier gets his propaganda published. Shameful.

  7. johnny57 says:

    “One has to wonder what reason the newspaper has for doing this”…Hmm maybe “Freedom of the press” No can’t be that can it? All forms of media MUST kneel at the altar of Political Correctness!

  8. Citi Zen says:

    I don’t condone the questionable activities of the police, but i am also suspicious and resentful of SP holding secret meetings with stakeholders over issues that should be dealt with total transparency. How many deals were made by SP and the NDP over lunch or beer in out-of-the-way restaurants?
    Perhaps there’s more to this story than is being reported.

  9. IMO says:

    The tinfoil appears to be flying off the grocer’s shelves in some neighbourhoods!

  10. Seth Anthony says:

    Hi Tris,

    You seem to be honestly interested in determining why so many of your comments are deleted. I suspect that most members here are surprised that you haven’t figured that out yet. You mention a possibility that it’s due to you regularly criticizing the idea of religion, but that’s not the reason at all.

    Tris, other members regularly criticize religion, the NDP, the UCP, etc, yet those comments aren’t deleted. The reason is because in general they’re actually constructively criticizing those things. You on the other hand, manage to blanket insult all religionists, men, and UCP members in almost every single one of your posts. You also do so when the topic of discussion has nothing to do with religion, gender, or a political party. Heck, even in your above post requesting the Herald explain why your comments are being deleted, you managed to insult religionists and UCP members. lol

    So there’s your answer Tris.

    BTW- Hey Herald mods, when you delete a comment, how about leaving an explanation as to why the comment was deleted?

  11. Fescue says:

    Good letter, Tom.

    I’m interested in your idea about calling out civic leaders (and others who pose as ‘experts’) who continue to create inertia around addressing climate disruption, and undermine the important social role governments should play in a substantively functioning democracy.

    Perhaps it’s time to organize (hey, you’re good at that!) a group to counter The Energy Coalegium, and The Cranky Old White Men Against Everything (or whatever group snowman speaks for). Maybe these good letters could be raised to Herald Opinions!

  12. adamb says:

    Clearly, we have some of our local police or their acolytes on this thread making moronic comments about Ms Phillips. I think we re tired of seeing our tax dollars being used to fund the anonymous ad hominem comments.

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