As residents started heading to the waterfront Friday to mark Armed Forces Day a group of concerned citizens gathered in the Regis Parkette (corner of Main and Fraser Streets) for a pro-democracy rally in response to the Harper government’s non democratic agenda, from prorogation to the omnibus budget Bill C-38.
“I’m here because I really see a steady decline in our government,” says Nicole Parker.
“We’re slowly becoming a fascist state. In the last year we’ve seen back to work legislation (for) three labour groups so taking away the rights for people to strike; there’s been the robo-call scandal which we won’t get into, federal scientists have been muzzled so they can’t speak on discoveries without first consulting with the government, the omnibus crime bill which I think is cruel and the continued development of the Alberta Oil Sands and just recently now the C-38 Bill that they want to pass.”
“So I think just currently just in this last year a steady decline and I’m outraged and I just don’t want to see this happen anymore.”
The group did not want to take away from the importance of celebrating local military men and women and the important work that they do, but at the same time felt it was important to send a message to Prime Minister Stephen Harper while he was in the Bay.
Organizers say they appreciate the sacrifices Canadian Forces personnel have made for democracy around the world for decades, "in 2012, it seems necessary for citizens to defend democracy here in Canada. “
“We need to stand up against voter suppression, the erosion of open debate in Parliament, and the distortion of information about the costs of the F-35s."
Speakers Scott Daley, Brennain Lloyd, Rejean Amyotte and Liz Lott addressed the issues of the robo-call scandal, the omnibus budget bill, and the stripping of environmental and worker protections.