Speak Out in Defence of Mackenzie's Workers, the Community and the Rights of All!

The Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada thinks the mill closures in Mackenzie affecting hundreds of workers directly and hundreds more indirectly are unacceptable. The economic collapse in the forestry sector underscores the irresponsibility of those who wield political and economic control of the decisions which affect people's lives, a situation that must change. Within these conditions, not only do the working people exercise no control over the productive forces on which their lives depend; they have no control over the politics of the province and country either. Confronting this difficult situation, they are determined to make informed decisions as to what should be done. Their August 22 Mackenzie Matters rally and meeting made the views of the workers and community known. Their aim is to find a way forward that favours them.

The workers' lack of political and economic control over the decisions that affect their lives has a direct bearing on the fate of the community and the well-being of all. By speaking out, we can make a crucial difference because it holds those who control the direction of the economy to account. Governments must also be held to account because the political decisions are taken to favour narrow private interests. They must also not be permitted to spout false promises or make statements intended to fool the gullible. Are they or are they not taking up social responsibility for the consequences of the mill closures?

Mackenzie Matters. That is a fact which concerns who we are as a people, as a nation.

Stand with the working people of Mackenzie who are determined to defend their community and organize the defence of the people's livelihoods and rights. By upholding their right to be informed, to be properly consulted and decide and be in control of their lives, a way forward which favours them will emerge.

To consider that people's lives can be abused and that what belongs to them by right does not have to be respected and provided with a guarantee is not an option. Social wealth and positions of power should not determine whether a worker and their family and community have the means to be stable, healthy and educated. The behemoths which own the mills in this day and age seize plenty of social wealth from the productive work and natural resources of the people and if they are to close these facilities they must take up their social responsibility. This is a fundamental question. It must be addressed in a manner which favours the people who created that social wealth in the first place.

To suggest that BC lumber is not needed in Canada, China, Japan or elsewhere is ludicrous. The world as a whole is modernizing and needs housing and other facilities and Mackenzie has the wood fibre, expertise and facilities to deliver them.

Destruction of productive forces -- including communities, schools, health facilities and local social organization -- are anti-social and anti-people. They are also irresponsible nation-wrecking which leaves Canadians adrift, even as claims are made that the economy is thriving and that Canada is a paradigm of democracy and human rights.

In the 21st century, how to have a sustainable forestry and sustainable communities is well known. That is not the problem of the 21st century but how the people can exercise control over their lives is. In this regard, the Mackenzie Matters rally and meeting show the determination of the people to speak out in their own name and organize to make sure their rights are not sacrificed on the altar of profits. Their right to a livelihood which provides security belongs to them by virtue of being human. If that is taken away through no fault of their own, guaranteeing their security and that of their families falls to society, and governments are duty-bound to uphold this. They must hold those who control the forestry industry to account and get their priorities straight.

Canfor and the government must be put on notice that the people cannot to be trifled with and that, no matter the circumstances, they must be cared for properly; their rights must be upheld. Furthermore, the people must be consulted on all potential investments and avenues which are being explored so that they can have their say and not be made targets of constant worry, false promises and fraud.

For their part, the working people of BC and the entire country must make sure the community's dignity and honour, which are our dignity and honour, are not trampled in the mud.

All Out to Uphold the Rights of Mackenzie!