Re: Cull protesters crossed the line (Our View, Nov. 28).
This editorial “crossed the line” when it tried to compare the DeerSafe Rally on Nov. 23 in Oak Bay to an act of vandalism on Victoria Mayor Dean Fortin’s car and home three years ago.
To compare a peaceful group of people, singing carols in front of the mayor’s home for less than five minutes, to an act of vandalism is nothing short of ridiculous.
To infer that the mayor was intimidated by this and could have been accosted at his door takes it beyond the point of ridiculous to sublime – we had no weapons except our posters, an elderly Jack Russell terrier with an ear-splitting bark and, possibly, a senior member in her wheelchair who could have tried to mow him down if we had encouraged her.
This is not a violent group of people.
Another inference was that DeerSafe has not been following the proper channels to make their argument. This is totally wrong: DeerSafe people have been attending meetings at the CRD since Feb. 22, 2012, when 11 people from our group made presentations to the board of directors. Other meetings and more presentations were made as well as numerous letters to the CRD, the mayors within the CRD and to the provincial government.
As well, hundreds of hours were spent on research, phone calls and emails by members of DeerSafe trying to get the facts about the non-effectiveness of a deer cull and presenting them to the authorities.
When the CRD set up a Citizen’s Advisory Group, we applied to have a seat on it and were turned down in lieu of three farmers, one bow-hunter and several more pro-cull people. Three who were appointed, who were not pro-cull, felt intimidated and frustrated and stepped down.
Our members have stood on the streets and at markets, distributing literature and trying to educate the public about the reality of a clover trap bolt gun cull. Most people have been shocked to learn about it.
We have submitted petitions to the CRD with more than 3,000 names. Our members have been writing letters to the media, attending council meetings, meeting with the mayors, in fact, we have been trying to “make our point in the right forums” for more than two years in the most civilized way possible.
We will continue to fight but we will not use violence nor vandalism. We may resort to tears, I hope the mayors will be able to tolerate that.