Friday, November 16, 2007

bitch-slap ahead

I always enjoy reading The Republic of East Vancouver, and this week, there is a good article about Dan Rather coming to Vancouver with a camera crew (hacked up below). This may be unwelcome coverage for The Best Place on Earth (TM) in the wake of the homicide by police officers of a new immigrant to Canada, the inquest into the police culpability in the death of Frank Paul, and of course, the on-going problems of the DTES. The torched bus on Commercial Drive would have been a cool backdrop for this pre-Olympics survey.

It is easy to pull out cliches right now - like The Wizard of Oz, The Emporer's New Clothes, and another few that I forgot in my drunken musings, but this arrogant city is in for the bitch-slapping that it deserves (no misogyny intended or implied).
Oh my God, what have we done? Everyone’s afraid what skeletons Dan Rather’s gonna find in our closet.

The famous American broadcaster... came to Vancouver this week, and he brought a camera crew with him.

Understandably, the local Mayberry Chamber of Commerce, in double-time rethink mode about all this talk of putting Vancouver on the map, is nervous.

Where is Rather going? Who is he talking to? Why is he looking over there?

Putting aside all value judgment and blame for the moment,...the downtown eastside has come into being. It is what it is, and unless we want to get real ugly with buses and cops and tazers, it’s not going away in time for the media frenzy that is the Olympics, just 27 months away.

Vancouver is one nervous city. Dan Rather risks being shot showing up here, now, with his camera crew. Not now! the city screams in terror behind the shut curtains, too early! We’re still getting the party ready!

Unfortunately, there’s no help. We’re just at the front of this parade and the whole world is behind us thinking we’re the ones who must know where we’re all going, or else we wouldn’t be in front. But what nobody behind us can see yet is the wall we’re staring at in front of us. Yeah, we are the new capitalism and globalization, and yeah, we’re making a whole lot of money. Now what?
Read the whole article here.

1 comment:

Gianni33 said...

Says the Vancouver Sun reporter:

"But as I have written before, the Downtown Eastside isn't Vancouver's Shame, it's a testimony to its citizenry's humane approach to drug addiction and poverty, and to the forbearance and patience that citizenry has shown. Has it been frustrating, infuriating, expensive? Hell, yes. But it's something to be proud of, not ashamed of."

Says Dan Rather:

"This is as bad as it gets in North America," said Rather. "Having said that, I admire Vancouver and the people here."

"We know that in terms of HIV and hepatitis that until recently, and perhaps still this particular HIV and hepatitis, are on the level of Botswana. And to have that happen in North America, this is a disgrace for all of us."

I'd have to agree with Dan on this one.