January 16, 2001

Hendrick wrote:

"I come in and out of cyber-activism, believing in balance, and the need to fix my cabin and take my little land in hand. There is now another move, in BC and AB, to western independence, and I am willing to help these people at least include green
principles and monetary reform into their thinking. Some are already most of the way there. And now the water issue is big, and it may provide a platform for a greenie or two to run a good provincial campaign, since many know that the BC lib's are New
World Order types. Enclosed is a letter from Eloise Charest, who is doing a hunger strike for clean drinking water, and in solidarity with Betty Krawczyk."

The Last Stand For Air, Earth, Water - For Life Itself.
by Eloise Charest

I would like to talk honestly about the true nature of violence in our society: Thousands of women are walking all over the world to protest the violence against women and children. A woman is raped every 2 minutes; in B.C., 59% have experienced sexual abuse. Unfortunately, our policing task force has some of the highest statistics on record for spousal abuse.

Our children will have witnessed 400,000 acts of violence on T.V. alone by the time they graduate. No wonder accidents and suicide are their leading cause of mortality.

Violence is 30,000 people dying daily from tainted water.

Violence is Walkerton, and their chidrens' deaths are symbols of events to come.

Two years ago, while walking across Canada, 99.99% of the people were totally concerned about losing their pristine [water] source.  In one generation, our children cannot just swim anywhere, for fear of rashes, burns, infections, or parasites like the flesh eating ones in Long Lac, Ontario.

[Violence is] to see entire families in wheelchairs, or dying from some form of cancer, [saying] "Don't eat the fish".

Saskatchewan: the highest M.S. [rate] in North America, highest infant mortality rate. Do you really want wheat from that breadbasket?  360 chemicals were 'identified' in the Great Lakes, and that's just the tip of the iceberg.

One glass of drinking water across our nation is usually a lethal cocktail of between 20-100 chemicals: antibiotics, chemotherapy agents, painkillers, hormones, insecticide, herbicide, paint, oil, nuclear waste, anti-freeze, shit, nail polish remover, and a touch of disease producing bacteria. Three-legged frogs and toxic belugas are telling us something.

To clean [it] , they add chlorine, which causes birth defects and cancer.  If you don't drink it, you wash and bathe in it.

Violence is less than 1% pure water left in the world. Water is more precious than gold, oil or money. My grandmother told me: "Good Government is equal to the quality of water given to the grandchildren." Well, ours stinks!

In the last decade, Canada has become renowned as an environmental criminal by the rest of the world, and has held the highest record for childhood poverty in the western world.

Gandhi once said that poverty is the worse form of violence.  Now we are all being subjected to the greatest poverty of all: the loss of our sources and resources. Species are dying daily, [the earth's] poles [are] defrosting, and everyone carries [on] with business as usual.

A local B.C. judge decides that a corporation has more rights to water than a citizen.

A young man defending the Walbran: "They broke my fingers one by one, as an example to the others."

To those who dwell and swell on sensationalism and money power, let us look at the true nature of violence in our society, and with honesty, integrity and compassion try to solve the problem, rather than perpetuate it. We are tired of being called protester, hippy, extremist, radical, cultist, anarchist and more. We are actually people of all ages, colors, and walks of life. We have suffered scorn, intimidation, humiliation, injury, arrest and jail for such a noble cause as to try and save anything of life on Earth.

We have tried everything humanly possible to save our watersheds, but they keep falling to industry. Almost every village has lost their water around us. How much more can we do to convince the people of this disastrous economic situation that annihilates everything in its path and leave nothing for future generations? Has the world gone mad? I'm fed up- I've watched our 'leaders' squander our living legacy, and leave us poison to feed our children. "I'm fed [up] with [the] system, the stress and the sickness that is overcoming our humanity.

I am beginning a water fast for life, as one of the oldest forms of protest.  I am demanding immediate protection of all watersheds across our nation. I'm just a poor mom and a grandmother, and there is another one in jail, and we refuse to bury our children.

These are the times, the last stand for air, earth, water; for life itself.