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I knew this would happen. I woke up this morning to find my house pelted with
jarred prunes, and had to fight through an sea of waving canes and medi-
walkers to reach my car, only to find a soiled adult under-garment plastered
to my windshield……sigh……but I digress. Yes, it is indeed meant as satire, but
at the same time as social commentary on the incongruence between action and
image . And no, it is not meant to reify certain age groups as being inclined
one way or another. It is targeted specifically as people that use purport one
image, but engage in behaviours that bely their true nature. It is targeted at
that specific sub-section of the anti-MTB rally that trumpet a specific brand
of moral superiority. If anything, the older riders in the MTB community and
the widening inclusiveness of our sport reveal the sterotypes as a lie. The
stereotype is used because it is false (thus the satire).
There are no politics driving this. The tar sands and rainforest are devices
in the story, to highlight the hypocrisy and pettiness of claiming to be
defending nature by attaching legitimacy to only your own narrow vision of
what comprises acceptable recreating. However, if you ask me, yes, I am dead
against the way the tar sands are currently being developed, and I have many
opinions about the way society interacts with nature.
Now to punishment. If the person is found to be guilty as charged, what would
I like to see. Jail time? No, absolutely not. Incarceration is seldom helpful
in improving people or changing behaviour. I would however suggest a temporary
trail ban, coupled with volunteer time. However, not trail building, how about
volunteer time at a care center for people with spinal injuries or for the
Rick Hansen institute or something. For people to truly understand the
consequences of their action, let them be confronted with the real potential
impacts, and not the angry mob.
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