Ignore the people at your peril

A writer questions why people are so willing to comply with orders from on high.

Dear Editor,

You have to ask yourselves: who makes the rules and regulations that make life a little harder for people? Rules that would deprive volunteers at facilities like our Extended Care of a cup of tea or coffee? We could easily get around this niggardly, parsimonious order from a bureaucracy in another city three hours’ drive away. How? By simply ignoring the order. By supplying our own tea, coffee, etc., and enjoying it with the people we love serving, asking nothing in return but the pleasure we get from doing so.

As long as we are willing to comply with orders like this, we support them, and get what we deserve. We don’t have to be victims; we work around it. Which leads to another issue.

Ashcroft doesn’t even have a gas pump. We have to go to the Ashcroft Band facility to get gas, or go to Cache Creek. Dozens of houses are for sale throughout the village. Small businesses are suffering or closing their doors. Our once beautiful hospital has been dismantled. We have vacant lots like a mouthful of missing teeth in our downtown core. Yet we are contemplating and eagerly awaiting (it seems) permission to get ourselves into a debt that would take us more than a generation to pay for, because of “orders on high”.

Ashcroft is blessed with clean water. There have been no outbreaks of intestinal or gastric problems in our community. Our water is soft, clear, and drinkable from the tap. We have been drinking it for years without consequence. Some have inexpensive filter systems attached. Some had them, and stopped using them, feeling them to be unnecessary.

Advice and orders that have not made people a priority are becoming all too frequent. Like the New Yorkers did with Robert Moses’s freeways that destroyed dozens of neighbourhoods, that tore the heart out of the city, one man’s madness came to an end. Urban activist Jane Jacobs was instrumental in ending this senseless destruction.

The moral of this letter? Ignore any order that ignores people.

Esther Darlington



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