LETTER: Bill C-51 paves way for abuse of power

Reader Larry Bridle lists some recent examples of what he considers abuses of power.

I am hugely worried about Bill C-51 and the railroading/non-democratic process our current government is using to finalize this bill. The more I learn about this bill, the less I like it, the less I trust our government and enforcement agencies. And I’m learning that my experience agrees hugely with the rising tide of public opinion against C-51.

Our current government and enforcement agencies have demonstrated to me, again and again, that when they get power of any kind they have and will abuse it — for their own political benefit and against the people they are supposedly serving.

Thanks to a CBC commenter, a sampling of our current government’s recent misuses of power includes:

• Barred government privacy watchdog from testifying in C-51 committee;

• Put ruling party in charge of elections;

• Muzzled and de-funded Elections Canada;

• Added 30 ridings in Conservative areas;

• Limited debate of bills and sent them to Conservatives-only committees;

• Repeatedly crafted massive omnibus bills and did not give MPs time to review them;

• Muzzled and de-funded scientists;

• Restricted public access to information;

• Made the RCMP answer to government;

• Stopped NAFTA scrutiny of environmental effects of the tar sands;

• Demonized environmentalists, Muslims, aboriginals, democracy activists;

• Told Parliament that Canadian troops would not do combat in Iraq, then sent them into combat;

• First government in over 100 years in the 54-member Commonwealth of Nations to be in contempt of Parliament — effectively, in contempt multiple times;

• Used the Canadian spy agency to monitor targets for special corporate interests.

Adding Bill C-51 to the above without adequate parliamentary review and oversight leaves me more worried and fearful of our own government and protection agencies.

We need to stop C-51 now, before it’s too late!

Larry Bridle

Nelson

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