Commentary from raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt:
Are we at War?
As the news spreads fast about the latest assault on a small farm in Eastern Ontario I ask myself if we are entering into a new and dangerous face of bureaucratic aggression. The door to door searches and the searching helicopters certainly suggest exactly that.
At the same time I do understand the frustration of those in power, thinking that everything supposed to be under control, people will comply, and do as they say.
The underhanded tactics by the C(F)IA to quickly establish the fictional existence of scrapie in those shropshire sheep, the posting of farm security guards at Montana Jones farm gates during the night, and the Saturday morning confiscation of her 9 remaining sheep should make us all extremely nervous. What will be next?????
Was there any rationality or urgency to act. Even if in fact this one sheep had scrapie would the co-operative approach not have been better to establish public credibility?
The denial to have access to the testing results for a third party review does not establish any credibility or due process.
The denial of a legal review of their actions by coming in on a Saturday to take the sheep does in itself disqualifies the legitimacy of their powers.
Montana Jones is right when she writes that this recent action is nothing else than a revenge for the sheep taken into “protective custody” by the Farmers Peace Corp.
The Globe and Mail describes it rightly as follows: this is a tale worthy of a mystery novel, replete with the threat of a killer disease, a kidnapping by a shadowy group, the fate of a threatened species hanging in the balance, the Kafkaesque actions of a government agency and – this being Canada – a constitutional challenge for good measure.
Let’s take a moment to look at the current escalation of this case.
The official language has clearly changed in respect to the factual dangers of scrapie. More and more you find internet postings linking scrapie, BST and, Jacob Kreutzfeld desease. This will help, to turn public emotions based on fear around to in fact support the dictatorial behaviour of the C(F)IA.
The C(F)IA is evading the necessary legal scrutiny by simply erasing evidence and evading the request for accountability.
I am not at all familiar with all the details in regards to the negotations between the agency and Montana Jones, but the request for a judicial review seems to be fair.
Montana Jones on several occasions posted publicly her willingness to work with authorities in the interest of the sheep industry but also in the interest of the genetic diversity of the gene pool, trying to preserve a rare breed.
Let’s put aside the emotional accusations here on the Bovine between individuals, sorrounding the source of a dead sheep in Alberta and forget the technicalities of registered pure shropshires. The fact that we are neglecting our diversity and cleansing our genetical pool to eradicate a certain desease is like killing all human beings to eradicate the chances of dying.
Exactly the same scenario is currently playing itself out in Michigan in regards to pigs. Armed raids are underway and all the heritage breeds will eventually be erased.The chickens will be next because of some designer flu, the cows and horses will probably follow.
We are in a fricking mess to say the least. It almost feels as if the final assault to erase the small farm has begun.
It was indeed refreshing to read about the action of the Farmers Peace Corp. Who are they and what are their motivations?
The name alone suggests that they are not out there to wage a war against the Government.
I have to admit I was relieved when I saw the postings that they have been taken into “protective custody”. No word in their handwritten note about fighting, no word about further actions except, let’s find a way to establish conclusive evidence before we destroy unnecessary heritage sheep.
If bureaucrats use this as an excuse to abandon due legal process than at least we know that we are in fact at war.
The war against the natives has brought out the darkest sides of governance, this same destructive spirit is emerging now against the farming community. Just think of the imposed government regulations on small abattoirs as a result of massive failures in the corporate meat industry. Or the devastation and neglect of the local community which is reflected in the thousands of destroyed barns along roads and highways. Yes we are at war my friends.
There comes a point where we ALL need to realise that silence is the act of concenting and therefore empowering the emerging faceless dictatorship.
We need peace not war.
We need dialogue not confrontation.
We need courage not fear.