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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Empire Fading?

Funding for Empire Days cut by council

Editorial: It's time to end the debate on event name

As most folk know I have been a staunch advocate to eliminate 'Empire Days' as a celebration in the City of Nanaimo.  Below is a letter to the editor I wrote in response to this comment from the story;
"City council voted to cut funding for the Empire Days Celebration Society at Monday night's meeting unless the organization changes its name. Coun. Diane Brennan tabled the motion, which passed with a 7-2 vote. Jim Kipp and Gord Fuller were opposed."

Re: Funding for Empire Days cut by council

The following statement in the story needs to clarified; “Coun. Diane Brennan tabled the motion, which passed with a 7-2 vote. Jim Kipp and Gord Fuller were opposed.”

I have received a number of calls, one by the story writer, with regards to my vote as it is well known that, over the years, I have been one of the most vocal in the community against our celebration of “Empire Days.” 

Why choose to oppose the ‘motion’? It was simply because the recommendation that “the society be exempt from the 2015 budget for operating grants, festivals and events” was tied to a broader motion to approve the Cultural Operating Grant Recommendations being awarded to a number of organizations that were before council that night; which I did oppose; the reason a story for another time.

Over the years for my stance against I have been labeled a professional agitator, funny never did get paid, and in one instance, which I have saved, had a message left on my answering machine accusing me of trying to ruin Nanaimo and its’ history; that I should get, ‘bleeping’ real; get a ‘bleeping life’ and get a ‘bleeping’ job.

As an Advocate for Social Change in the community for close to two decades, prior to being elected to council, my opposition to the celebration of ‘Empire’ is one I am most proud of.

The British Empire faded into history years ago and it is well past due that Nanaimo’s celebration of it fades away as well.

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