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Letter to the editor


Treasures mined from the Pique

I find it interesting to live in a community where the local papers are so widely read that they form an integral and important part of the communication process and the sharing of ideas.

In last week’s Pique (May 24, 2002) two writings stood out for me. Both of the articles were written by people I know and respect, both expressed opposition to the status quo, and I agreed with most of what had been stated in both. Yet the styles were so different, they provided me with insightful observations of the varying attitudes and approaches that coexist in this town and reinforced the idea that our lives, community and future are formed by how we choose to be.

The letter to the editor written by Garry Watson; A failure in tax reform (page 5) was masterfully researched and finely argued. I’ve worked with Garry in various volunteer capacities and know him to be at his best when he’s driven by passion to research, investigate, formulate and analyze an issue with the intention of increasing community-wide understanding and motivating people to action.

All possibilities exist at once and so the choice of what to believe rests solely with each of us. I could choose to believe that Garry is motivated to reduce his personal taxes and that his article has nothing to do with local sustainability issues, but I do not. I believe that Garry is attempting to educate people and motivate them to oppose the current taxation formula using the idea that affordable housing is one means of moving Whistler toward sustainability. From my perspective, his vision and actions show him to be a Maker – a person that creates. For me, it’s not whether Garry’s efforts succeed or not, but rather it’s his vision of how Whistler should be and his attempts to make it so, that’s important.

Next is the article written by G.D. Maxwell: Physiotherapists big winners in sustainability initiative (page 66). The column, as usual, is masterfully constructed with cynicism throughout.

A while back, in one of Max’s writings, he observed that cynics are idealists that have been hurt or disappointed once too often. That’s an insightful observation and I thank him for it. Despite my enhanced understanding of cynicism, I still perceive Max to be an Unmaker – a person that destroys. This is not a judgement, but an observation. I don’t see right or wrong in creation or destruction, only choice.

If Max persuades all of us to give into the hurt and disappoint that he feels – destroying our vision for other possibilities – where will our collective consciousness take us? There are many who believe that in the last 50 years of this century, approximately 9 billion people will perish as humanity hits the wall from the accumulation of unsustainable activity.