What will next year have in store for the citizens of this province, this country and the world in general?

Message from Tom Black, OLA President

Tom Black
Tom Black

As we near the end of 2013, I wonder what next year will have in store for the citizens of this province, this country and the world in general? Weather extremes, political extremists, religious extremists and animal rights extremists, all weigh heavily on the peace and security of the individual. For most of us in this country, in the baby boom generation, it has been a very safe, peaceful and productive 60 plus years. This can lull one into thinking that this is the normal expectation for life on this planet.

History however, has shown us otherwise as many great civilizations that seemed indestructible at one point in time, have crumbled into ruins and disappeared.

So what can we do as our part in securing the future for our families? For those of us in the British Commonwealth, the blueprint for success was established when the Magna Carta was written, with the many checks and balances that have served us so well this past 800 years. These rules have given us a society that is the envy of the world, and because of it, many people come to join us to better their own situations. This is all fine until people forget what made this country so good. The individual and his or her rights are at the centre of our greatness. That means when there is a dispute over the rights of an individual versus the state, the individuals rights must always persevere or we risk losing this great society by diluting the value of the individual.

The foundation of these individual rights is the right to own property and to enjoy it at the exclusion of others. To that end we established a justice system to ensure the individual is protected. The only role for the government in this society is to protect the individual, for in so doing, it protects all. If it becomes OK to sacrifice the individual for the good of the masses, then the masses are automatically put at risk because we have now put a price on freedom and eventually, we will reach the market value for the price of the freedom of those same masses. The laws created to protect individuals, have to be applied with that in mind. When the police ride shotgun on raids by the DFO, the MNR, the Conservation Authorities or the OSPCA, they must be there not only as peace officers, but also as upholders of the law that was established to protect the individual because this slide down the slippery slope of control by the masses is hard to stop once set in motion.

The old saying that “Man does not live by bread alone” is true in the case of justice. Those who have never felt the sting of the barbed whip of injustice can never imagine the toll it takes on people’s self-esteem and wellness, on their ability to be productive citizens and family units. Injustice leaves people stuck in a time warp with no way to go forward, for the foundation of their life has been shattered. When salt of the earth people are set upon by officials in uniforms that represent society’s will, and no one steps in to ensure their rights and freedoms are not abused, as has happened of late in this province, then our place in history, as a “GREAT NATION” will not extend very far into the future.