The price of democracy
I am appalled — no I am appalled, shocked and angry — by the unveiled threats made by two unnamed Yukon Party supporters toward Richard Mostyn, Yukon News editor, and Genesee Keevil, reporter.
Keevil was covering the Yukon Party victory celebration. In her October 13 Yukon News article she wrote that one person threatened to shoot her.
A second unnamed person threatened Richard Mostyn saying, “I’m surprised he is still alive. One of these days he’s going to be walking on the wrong side of the street at the wrong time.”
Now remember that this is the Yukon Territory, Canada. It is 2006. The ‘crime’ Mostyn committed was daring to challenge the record of the Yukon Party in an opinion editorial.
Every newspaper in Canada has a political leaning, and all submit their evaluation of a party before an election. That is democracy.
You can read it or not.
You can accept it, or you can reject it. It might influence your vote, or it can mean little or nothing. That is democracy and for one I cherish it and will defend it.
The first threat to democracy is the removal of free speech and debate.
Will Mostyn or Keevil avoid writing about a controversial issue because they fear for their lives?
If they do, their right to free speech has been removed and a piece of democracy has been lost.
Are there really Yukoners who would threaten someone’s life because of his or her political views?
Apparently, there are two Yukon Party supporters who would.
If the party members understand the principles of democracy, they will remove these two thugs from their ranks.
Recently The News reported on homeless youth in Whitehorse (Homelessness lives here, October 20).
It is shameful, sickening really, that the city of Whitehorse, the territorial government, local businesses and individuals have chosen to invest tremendous amounts of money and volunteer hours in the Canada Games when there are people in our city without shelter.
It is a sad commentary on our priorities. I hope that the new city and territorial governments will address this urgent need and encourage the people of Whitehorse to support everyone in our community.
In poor taste
I do not often write letters to the paper in response to comments or depictions that annoy me or that are incorrect.
However, I could not let the opportunity pass by to let you know how distasteful I found Wyatt Tremblay’s cartoon showing the mayor-elect celebrating her win.
To suggest that mayor Bev Buckway had won the prize of the Canada Games, when I’m sure that was the last thing on her mind when she decided to run for the mayor’s seat, was offensive.
The cartoon does you no credit. It was tasteless, inappropriate and bordering on the cruel.
As a politician I know what its like to hurt people unintentionally and I hope you will be more sensitive in future when trying to amuse. I was not amused.
Letter writers unfair to COs
From time to time letters appear in the local press alleging our conservation officers to be avid and trigger-happy killers, a danger, not only to wildlife but also the public, incompetent in their duties and altogether a despicable lot.
The writers are few and appear little given to rational discussion or the idea that anyone with views other than their own could possibly have a valid perspective.
To engage them in respectful debate appears impossible and I do not wish to try.
I write only to say that having been born in the bush more than 75 years ago, and having lived in considerable association with bush life ever since, I have known many game wardens, game guardians, conservation officers and others with similar titles.
With rare exceptions these have been fine people, dedicated to the wildlife in their care and fair in dealing with the public.
Of all their duties, they have cared least for those occasions, which do arise for reasons beyond their control, when they have had to kill an animal.
I know of no conservation officer in the Yukon who deserves, even remotely, to be vilified in the fashion employed by these few letter writers.