So you might have come across this post because you saw that I wanted to share the story of my time spent at Fairy Creek yesterday, May 29. With the one big day, this big invitation of many people showing up, I want to share my story, because there are teachings, there are misunderstandings, and there are new understandings that as I feel pretty well educated, yet, I feel like I don’t have enough lived directly in-person experience, too confident to confidently tell people what to do and how to do it.
That’s not where I’m coming from. You, might recognize that the majority of the stories that I share just come from a place of authentic sharing of where I’m at what I understand what my history is, what I’m doing and why I’m doing it. And I’m certainly open to positive constructive feedback, and, and add a new perspective. So with this sharing, I want to invite you if you feel strongly about information that you think that I should have, and you’re willing to share it publicly so that other people can learn from it as well. Please feel welcome to reach out. If you’re a hater, and you just feel likes, like laying down some random stuff. Thanks. But no, thanks. I’m not interested in just general negative Talk, I’m looking for constructive, positive, constructive feedback. So here’s my story. I have never gone to a blockade before I’ve never gone to a heated rally before I have gone to, you know, where, you know, we’re going to go for a short little walk. And we’re going to, you know, yeah, it’s all been very, very tame the types of things that I’ve gone to.
I have an MA in Environmental Education and Communication. And I’ve been an outdoor guide for 20 years, I’ve lived on Vancouver Island my whole life. And that brings a few different perspectives. So one perspective, for example, I lived on this island my whole life, and I have seen clear cuts my whole life. And so to me, seeing another clear cut doesn’t bring tears to my eyes as quickly as it does for somebody who is hits brought to tears to their eyes, who are seeing it for the first time.
Yet, it still brings me to a place of why the hell is this still happening?
Why have we not taken on different logging regimes?
That, you know, I have heard the terms of sustainable logging and selective logging. And I know of doctors who, who have studied this work and are proving the benefits of very specific things, as well as you know, research and information that has shown that old-growth logs are not that functional, in terms of what we would be using it for. So why would people be logging old-growth forests? So the other side of it having never attended a heated rally or, you know, standing face-to-face with RCMP members brings another element of not exactly fear, but like a visceral, heated experience. And to me to try to maintain curiosity while feeling very intense and very slightly overwhelmed by the presence of the people who were heated around these RCMP members and questioning what is the job of RCMP members. Do I recognize with a blockade, basically, from what I understand, we are stepping on to other people’s land whether it is a company’s land or its crown land, or stepping onto their land saying, “no, we don’t believe in what it is that you’re doing.” And so the RCMP are meant to be there to keep the peace and if we are the ones that are obstructing the action that is happening.
We are the ones that are not bringing peace. So it’s I’m very curious about what this feels like and how we’re showing up in the space and what we’re doing and why we’re doing it. And in what way so when I arrived there wasn’t a lot of information. It wasn’t very clear. And I can honour that maybe that was on purpose. So I was okay with that. So once we got enough information to be in a place that felt useful. So for example, when it was time for critical mass to come to the blockade and walk through it. We’d arrived just moments before that started. And we didn’t know what to bring, we didn’t know how far we would be walking. We didn’t know exactly what was happening. And it was only through conversations with people as we arrived, that we found out more information and got to make decisions as we went. There was this moment right before where the blockade was where the line was. So there was a line in front of five RCMP vehicles. And a bunch of RCMP members was to me when I was standing there, it didn’t feel superheated. And there was a bunch of cheers when everybody started walking forward.
When we got to that actual physical line, we asked ourselves, “okay, this is the moment where we need to decide if we’re willing to put ourselves out on a limb here or not.”
And when I looked around, I noticed many elders, children use babies. So it seemed pretty safe to me to walk across this line, so yeah, we decided to walk across. And when we did, it was like, okay, I felt like, unsure about my steps as too, am I going in the right direction? Am I? Did I pack enough food? Like, how long are we going to be up here? Is there going to be any information? Is there going to be any resources for us? Are we, you know, are we expected to keep hiking up to these different locations. And so it was, it was a lot of unknown and a lot of hearsay, based on what other people were speaking about, and concerns and questions. And people who sound sounded like they were certain yet, their certainty wasn’t factual. So it was interesting for me too, you know, I packed some drums, I packed a chair, one of those chairs that I could sling over my shoulder, I packed a whole bunch of food and water. And I wore this red dress and, and flip-flops because I’m pretty comfortable with the landscape and knowing that we’re walking up a logging road, it’s just a logging road to me. I’m looking around at all the people and what they’re wearing, and there’s a whole bunch of hiking shoes. And, you know, some people ready to camp for the night. And most people just they’re wearing red supporting in the day, it was a profound mass critical mass of people, I think I physically witnessed about 200 people. Yet, I know that over the day, more and more people flooded in and flooded out. And so you know, they’re talking numbers of up to 2000 people that attended and that day. And it came to a point where I felt like I wasn’t able to keep hiking up to where everybody was going. And then I heard that not everybody was going up there. So it was interesting that you know, they’re wanting to sort of establish a space. And the reason I’m not naming anything is that it’s not my place to name specifics. But I’m just sharing more from my personal experience. So when we sat and ate lunch, just on the side of the road, in the shade, I just kind of recalibrated with, why am I here? What am I doing? Why am I doing this? And what it came down to for me is that I don’t know what I don’t know about a lot of what’s happening here right now.
But what I do know is I’m a pretty powerful person, and I’m not here to command or control anything.
I’m not here to facilitate anything. There are facilitators here already. I’m not here to do anything but physically show up and be an additional body as a presence on this land. I started hearing about some of the stories and about you know, people being arrested, people being injured. People putting themselves out on a limb literally, the Flying Dragon. You’ll see in some of my posts this incredible obstruction blockade. People getting helicoptered out of trees like it just I came to a place of truly wondering like, why is this happening? Why has this been happening for so long? When I think of Cliquot. And, and what has happened way back then there were even some, you know, people that were with us that was like, why am I here? Again, when we did this many years ago that was like, what, what is the misunderstanding here? Because it, it does seem like the perspectives that are coming from both sides are not hearing each other, or maybe one’s hearing the other, but the other ones not listening. And I and I don’t know who all the stakeholders are. Teal-Jones was a name that got thrown about, I wonder who that is? And what power do they have? And what is their intention? If I dug down to what is their intention? Do they even know? And who’s asked them? And where’s that information?
I come from a background of facilitation and coaching and guidance. And I wonder, why aren’t all of these stakeholders coming to the table? So I poked around a little bit, and I asked a few questions. And, you know, people are saying the only way we can get these people to come to the table and have these bigger conversations is if we create blockades like this, and we forced them to come to the table. And I thought, Gosh, why is it coming to this? But again, you know, I’m not the only one asking these questions. So we stayed there, and we drummed and we played music, and the intention was to just bring peace and love and witness to what was happening. I heard a few people say something that scared me. “Well, yeah. It’s not a place of fear but a place of sorrow.” And just like I don’t understand, why is it that we have to put Indigenous Elders at the front of a mass of people, for there to be a change made? I just close my eyes and I think because I never got to see these Elders at the front of the line. I was so far back in this big group of people.
Why do we have to force them to stop having their daily life, force them to come and stay in a place like this just for things to change?
Why is it the elders? I mean, yay, like support to these elders? Oh, my gosh. But why? The amount of strain that they’re putting on their bodies, their emotions, their physical health, their mental health, their spirituality, they’ve, they’re stopping their whole lives just to show up and make a stand against these people? What is this about? Like, I just, oh, a big piece of me wants to burst into tears. That piece of me wants to rage out loud. Like why? Why is this happening? And I feel like there’s so much that I just don’t know enough about yet I want to know something about and I want to do something about it. So the basic, most simple thing I can do is take as much true factual information that I can and share this information with other people, you probably have seen me do it before. That’s what I’m hoping to do for something to change. And I’m in a position of I want to be involved in protecting the earth.
I’ve always wondered why old-growth trees would be cut down? What is the benefit there? What like, if you think about an entire ecosystem of trees, it’s not just one type of tree that is in a whole stand of forest, especially in an old-growth forest. It’s so many different types of trees and so many different types of flora and fauna. When it cut that whole thing down, and then you just go tree planting. Do you know what happens when trees are just inefficiently planted in the ground just for numbers? What a mass of the same type of tree in a landscape will do to the ecosystem. There is no ecosystem left. It’s a mano system. It is not ecologically connected with anything else. It just becomes a Stan of one type of tree. What the hell is that? That is not. That doesn’t help. Gosh, there are so many things I can say to this.
And then you know, just so you know, I have family members who are loggers. And I don’t resent them. I don’t I don’t feel bad about having loggers as family members because yeah, they need to feed their families. Absolutely. I support that. What is sustainable logging? That does not feed families. What is selective logging? That doesn’t provide employment? I get that it takes longer, it costs more money. But what were, where’s the gap here? What’s missing? If these humans need to have income, and they think that logging is their only solution, then? What are we missing here? If if the only thing is is that we’re not feeding families, there’s a whole lot of training out there for all sorts of different types of skills for driving vehicles that can happen.
People who are connected to forestry would if their jobs were shifted a little bit more to protecting the forest rather than destroying it. So yeah, I just, I have a ton of questions. And I am piecing together the information. And truly invite people like yourself, now that you’ve listened to my whole story here, if you are interested in providing some information and resources that you want to share with the public, my little social media stream is a place I’m happy to share perspective, as long as it’s honourable and respectful. And comes from a place of providing information and not no ranting, I’m not interested in receiving rants and negative language. I just want to finish by saying it was profound, to physically be there, and witness what happened so much so that we ended up staying many hours later than we had intended, because of the power of people the power of their story, and what is currently going on. The Fairy Creek Blockade Facebook page is a great location to find information, I hear that they have a Tic-Tok as well, I can’t remember exactly what it’s called. But just keep you know, searching and all the different social media platforms to follow the information and try to get ahold of the correct information. And feel welcome to reach out to me and share your concerns and comments.
I’m happy to, open a dialogue about this. I by no means have any answers. And I have no interest in coming across as a person who thinks, thinks I know everything, where I’m at, is I am in a place of curiosity, and I am seeking answers. And I am seeking resolve in this. It doesn’t make sense that this has been happening since September, like what is going on? Why is this taking so long? So join me on this journey of seeking answers and resolve so that we can send these elders home and they can be with their families. And that loggers will feel peace in their heart so that they trust that okay when people stand up and they’re asking for something that they don’t get defensive that they actually will stop and have a conversation around the table and find a solution before things escalate to this level.
Thanks for watching. I appreciate it. It’s been a journey.
And yep, we’ll find a resolution I’m sure.
Have a lovely day.
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