Well, it’s a beautiful Sunday and I have been working hard and heavy on the by-election campaign all week. Poor Stewie (pictured below) has been feeling terribly neglected as of late and today felt like a perfect day to head on down and check out Druh Farrell’s anti-car event on Memorial Drive. The pictures taken are not of the best quality as they are vid-caps. I plan to get around to making another Youtube video but as you can understand dear reader, I am pretty tight for time for a bit.
Well I have to give it to them, I was actually quite impressed with the “festival” There was a variety of booths and activities and people generally seemed to be having a good time. It was a nice little gathering for people to get out and about on a weekend.
Why did I put festival in quotes you ask? Well for new arrivals to my blog I will give a bit of background on this one. You see, Druh Farrell bypassed council discussion and arranged to close two lanes of Memorial Drive for every Sunday in August. Druh intended to expand those closures in the future to possibly encompass the entire summer. At that point, there were no plans for any sort of festival or events. The goal was simply closing lanes on a busy road next to the river. Those familiar with Calgary know that Memorial Drive is one of the few major east/west routes through the city and it is always busy.
When the public rightly became inflamed with this pointless idiocy, Druh was forced to back down and reduce this to simply one day in summer with hopes of expansion to more days in the future. Despite this concession, the public was still rightly revolted by the pointlessness of this move. Next a “festival” was slapped together in the last few weeks to try and justify this. Anybody and everybody was invited to show up and try to promote green things or something.
Either way, there was a decent turnout of exhibitors and people presenting activities such as facepainting.
Now, lets get to the important part; the closing of two lanes on a major road.
It is August and it is hot out there. I am back early as Stewie had consumed 2 litres of water in a couple hours and he simply could not take more of the heat.
Clearly people felt the same way.
You see, all of the activity booths/tents were all set up in the shaded parkway and bike-paths that are right next to the road. While two lanes of important roadway were closed, virtually nobody utilized them. Why walk on blazing hot pavement next to thousands of drivers caught in a traffic-jam when there is a park right next to you? Didn’t we ask this question many months ago?
Druh herself had to make an appearance of course. A few from the media were about too. It will be interesting to see Druh’s spin in trying to justify ruining the day of thousands of drivers.
Yes, I am saying thousands of drivers and I mean it. The traffic jam was horrendous. This too of course was all predicted months ago and was ignored by Druh and a handful of her cronies.
We all know that the traffic only gets worse as the day progresses. My shots were taken at noon and traffic was at a standstill as far as the eye can see in either direction. Drivers were clearly infuriated as they sat parked on a road in the summer heat while watching two empty but blocked lanes right next to them.
An irony in all this is that Druh Farrell is usually front and center in trying to get anti-idling laws passed and banning drive-throughs and such in a misguided effort to curb automotive emissions. Now what sort of carbon footprint did Druh cause by making thousands of vehicles idle for an extra hour with their air-conditioning running at full blast?
I have read and listened to a few apologists who are trying to frame anybody who opposed this idiotic event as being “anti-festival neanderthals” and such. Many of these people seem to be revolted with our city and constantly try to claim that we have no culture and such.
Listen folks, there are a few festivals every weekend all summer. Music, food and cultural events are happening constantly and nobody is opposing them. This idiotic road-closure is not in the class of such festivals and anybody with common sense may oppose this free from guilt.
Across the river we could hear the music of some sort of live band event going on. We also saw acres and acres of empty (and taxpayer funded) green-space that could have hosted this event next to the river without closing any major roads.
People, this whole event was simply the actions of anti-vehicle extremists who wanted to thumb their noses at those Alberta heathens who dare utilize the combustion engine. There was no reason for this aside from making a point of delusional principle at the expense of taxpayers, drivers and the residents of this now congested neighborhood.
You know what? I hope Druh does this again next summer. The next municipal election will be only a couple of months after the “event” and I really would like residents to have a fresh image of what their very well paid elected representative is doing with her time and our money.