‘Open, respectful conversation’ required in regard to Bella Coola’s bear situation

‘Open, respectful conversation’ required in regard to Bella Coola’s bear situation

Dear Editor,

I have to say I am kind of stunned at how arrogant, rude and threatening the letters from Corissa McNeilly, “the Schieck family” and Kiff Archer have been. Corissa refers to people as a “loonie contingent” and “a small yet manipulating and intimidating group of folks;” the Schieck family refers to people as “frightened lawless little men;” and both Kiff and Corissa threaten to trespass at will on our properties.

The only “snowball rolling” that Corissa et al. has started is one of bitter divisions and misinformation.

No one I know likes to shoot bears, but there are in fact times when it is necessary for the safety of humans, livestock or property.  Even the CO’s recognize this. As for the shoot and shovel thing, that has more to do with a healthy aversion to bureaucracy and arbitrary fines, than some evil minority plot.

I am thankful for all those who protect our children, ourselves, and our properties from bears who are posing a threat. Every gunshot helps set the boundaries of our respective “territories.” Good boundaries make for good neighbors.

I am also thankful for the profound respect shown by the people of the Valley for the lives of bears and the other creatures here, above and beyond any economic, tourism value.

I think people might be open to a real conversation about the bear situation in the Bella Coola Valley, but it would need to be done with respect and appreciation for all opinions and real life experiences and history.

All respect,

Anne Fletcher