LETTER: A solution to tent city

LETTER: A solution to tent city

In the movie Contact with Jodie Foster, the government constructs a spaceship/dimensional portal from instructions given to them from an alien deep space communication. They take it upon themselves to add a secured chair to the otherwise spherical interior. A chair that subsequently interferes with the vessel operation and spoils the launch, injuring Foster’s character.

This is what has happened in Victoria’s response to the B.C. Supreme Court ruling recognizing the right to sleep which, implicitly, meant it was a Charter violation to arbitrarily prohibit tenting on municipally owned public-access property. The billion dollar tourism industry’s response was the chair.

The notion of an existing state of emergency was lost on it and instead of embracing the expertise of tent-city veterans they relied on the general public’s apathy towards new laws that ‘only’ prohibited sleeping during the day, nullifying the proposal of Constitutionally compliant community-run tent cities that had official municipal sanction; a ‘light’ declaration of a state of emergency.

But no. Mostly because if everyone living from paycheque to paycheque who’re perpetually on the edge of nervous breakdowns realize they don’t have to accept a monopoly on sleep anymore, they’re not going to. The BDTI (Billion Dollar Tourism Industry) now enables and savours the addiction epidemic that resides amongst the rebelliously naïve who’ve seen hope’s futility because there is no greater weapon than a flailing drunk manufacturing contempt via association.

At this point, tent-city isn’t the protest, total noncompliance with tyrannical government is, and to do that we must become cavalier about mortality and smarter than all instigation. The best demonstration of hypocrisy is a raging taxpayer. Patience be with us all.

David Arthur Johnston

Victoria