Column serves to alienate more

Staff writer
February 7, 2014 01:00 AM


Re: Stand up and ban the bullies (Coast Reporter, views, Jan. 31)

Those business owners who chose to make a public stand to politically support the current George proposal and who chose to signal that support in their store windows also took on the risk that they might lose some of their customers.

They took on that risk and now must deal with it.

I am perplexed by their "fear" and their claims that they are being bullied. When you are engaged in a boycott are you not supposed to tell the business you are boycotting why you are boycotting them? How else was Jane Degnan supposed to communicate her intention to boycott other than a private letter, hand delivered directly to the businesses involved? That this is bullying would be news to the many people who "vote with their dollars" in our democratic society.

Boycotting has been a part of civil, democratic participation since the days of the abolitionists in the 18th century. This form of citizen engagement is predominantly used by those who do not have the official power and voice of the majority. In this case, the people who support the current George proposal have taken over the official voice of the community in the form of the community newspaper.

In your column you equated Jane Degnan's democratic right to boycott (and to voice her concerns) with your own personal experiences of bullying and domestic abuse. This doesn't make any sense and can only serve to alienate even more customers and citizens of Gibsons.

May I also point out that those of us who live outside of Gibsons continue to support and promote Gibsons merchants and bring many tourists into the community. We are also an important voice on the proposed Gibsons waterfront development.

Laila Ferreira


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