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Courageous Locals sharing their experiences overseas & locally around arising, on-going concerns.

Updated: Dec 8, 2021

From reports out of Amsterdam:

"Under rules in place at the time, more than 600 passengers were able to board the KLM airline flights from Johannesburg and Cape Town on Nov. 26 with either proof of vaccination or recent negative COVID-19 test results. Dutch health authorities on Thursday (Dec. 2nd) said most of the 62 people who tested positive for COVID-19 after arriving on two flights from South Africa last week had been vaccinated, lending weight to a call for pre-flight testing regardless of vaccination status.

In addition, all 14 passengers who were later found to have been infected with the Omicron variant were vaccinated, health officials said on Thursday."

Now the question is, when the adherence to one metric is met by 2 or more, where does the extension of emergency powers end? Where do authoritarian mandates end? Where do perceived threats end? Where does the cycle of fear end?

Is the next move for our leaders to convince the public that those with only 2 shots are the enemy to those who have 3? It appears that is where this story continues to lead. Someone needs to take the fall right? Will we fire more essential workers if they aren't up to date? One moment our leaders are saying passports and mandates would never occur in Canada, as we are not a nation to discriminate based on religious or personal conviction, then the next people are losing jobs and can't board a plane or a train, in a matter of months. When someone has booster 4, what happens to those with only the original 2 or 1? Does everyone get levels of freedom?

I understand that people just want to do the right thing for themselves and for others, but after seeing our media and leadership use grotesque and far over reaching tactics of making members in our society the enemy of others, quite successfully and quickly I might add, largely for click bait and likes, or political appeasement and virtue signaling, one can only conclude the same tactics will continue to occur. There will always be another variant, just as there has always been various 'strains' of the flu. There will always be a reason to extend emergency powers, to take control, to remove rights and freedoms. Our once strong and revered Charter of Rights and Freedoms was cast aside with little concern. The Nuremberg Code, don't worry about that, it doesn't apply here. Canadian medical ethics surrounding informed consent and refusal, oh don't mind those, this is different. The united nations universal declaration of Human Rights, meh, just some recommendations, nothing to see here.

We have strayed far away from Canadian values and we certainly have lost sight of what health truly and fully encompasses. Canadians and humans around the world deserve more transparency, more honesty, and more concern for regaining our autonomy. Our leadership has far too much power and the concern now really is how far along can we go before they will ever be inclined to give it back.

Take care of your metabolic health. Eat well, sleep well, exercise often, moderate alcohol, quit smoking, get fresh air, get sunshine, practice good hygiene, help people, love people, be well.

Link to CBC article

Article in Smithers Paper- Interior News:

Link to Article or read below:

Picture this scenario. My six-year-old son is hungry and asks if he can have something to eat.

“We have to wait a bit till I pick something up from the store,” I inform him.

A couple hours later, I return home and my son runs up to me. “Dad, did you get some food? I’m really hungry. My stomach hurts.” I empty the groceries into the cupboards. “I decided you will just have to wait,” I inform him. “And I don’t want you to ask again.”

This is how many faith communities in northern BC are feeling in response to Northern Health’s decision to indefinitely close worship services and seemingly plug their ears to the earnest pleas from these communities about the harm and hurt the order is causing.

When the order was first announced in mid-October, Dr Henry explained the rationale: “To lower the rates of transmission, to allow our hospitalizations to stabilize and enable us all to come back together safely to celebrate during the upcoming holiday season — I hope.”

Since then, COVID cases and hospitalizations have indeed dropped significantly. We expected this good news would result with an announcement that would allow us to safely resume the activities that are essential for many.

Instead, our hearts were crushed when, on November 18, Dr. Jong Kim, the chief medical health officer for Northern Health, extended the order on gatherings and events indefinitely. He added: “I will not be accepting requests for reconsiderations of this order.”

Given that Terrace (which had 52 daily cases per 100,000 population last week) and Nisga’a (74 cases per 100,000), have more cases than Smithers (17 per 100,000) and Prince George (15 per 100,000) and yet are excluded from the order, it seems evident that the goalposts have changed.

It is hard to see how the decision is based on cases. My best guess is that a factor is the per cent of the population that is double-vaccinated, with the western part of the region having a higher rate. Nisga’a at 86 per cent and Terrace at 81 per cent make the cut, but Smithers and rural Prince George at 74 per cent do not.

But there is a serious problem if the public has to be guessing why our fundamental freedoms are being undermined.

It is obvious our government has an interest in vaccination rates increasing. But this infatuation with vaccinations doesn’t give a licence to governments to do whatever they want. This is Canada. All people shouldn’t have to come to the same personal health decision to maintain their basic rights and freedoms.

For some of us, our spiritual health matters. Restrictions and vaccines may help extend life but Jesus Christ gives eternal life, where there will be no more disease or brokenness. I realize that others don’t believe this, but that doesn’t give a licence to government to supress it.

Canada is supposed to be a free nation. Our Charter of Rights and Freedoms lists freedom of religion and association as fundamental freedoms. These rights aren’t given by the government to the citizens when they approve of our behaviour. They are something the citizens possess apart from the government. The Charter was intended to be a shield to protect citizens from the powerful government.

We know that there are consequences to the health system if people choose not to vaccinate. But the same can be said about choices people make about their diet, lack of exercise and many other things.

Orders like this one come with a massive cost on the well-being of British Columbians. The recent flooding in B.C.’s Lower Mainland reminds us that there are more things to be mindful of than just one virus. Churches were among the first to provide assistance to the victims of the flooding and landslides. Thankfully, their doors were open.

If our government can indefinitely undermine our fundamental freedoms based on their ever-changing COVID goalposts, it shouldn’t be surprised when it sees a breakdown of trust. “Be kind” applies to the government as well.

Mark Penninga is the Executive Director of ARPA Canada and lives with his family in the Bulkley Valley.

I continue to thank all those courageous people who question what is going on and share their truth and concerns. None of us should be afraid to speak and ask questions around important matters. If you feel called to, please share your thoughts through the surveys found on Event page and Home page...

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