If you live in the Comox Valley and are on social media, you might have heard about Take Back Comox Valley. The organization bills itself as a “grassroots network of concerned citizens doing our part to make Comox Valley a better place to live, work and do business.” Who can argue with that?
The group gets a few things right. They highlight the housing and doctor shortages as critical local issues. That’s beyond debate. But after that, things get whacky real quick with this so-called “grassroots network.”
It’s basically a clumsy rehashing of the populist “Us vs Them” playbook. It’s all about fear, finger-pointing, slashing taxes and demonizing local politicians as foreign agents.
Their website asks people to join them, saying, “After all, if you don’t fight for Comox Valley, foreign-funded actors who want to control our community will.”
I don’t know about you, but we’re not laying awake at night worrying about the Russians invading Comox Harbour or even foreign spies infiltrating local city councils?
Take Back also accuses local politicians of doing nothing about the doctor shortage even though most of the critical decisions are made in Ottawa and Victoria. The doctor shortage is a systemic, decades in the making, nationwide challenge without a quick and easy fix for municipalities. It’s kind of like blaming local councillors for not controlling inflation.
Take Back also tries to paint the Comox Valley as a cesspool of skyrocketing crime. Yes, there’s crime here, but it’s not the out-of-control epidemic they’d have you believe.
They also suggest that progressives are pushing to defund police, but you might want to ask who the real de-funders are?
Hasn’t anybody told these Take Back Comox Valley tax cutters that cutting taxes doesn’t exactly make for a well-funded police force?
With the Truckers Convoy as a lightning rod and the growing populism of Berneir and Poilievre, it’s not surprising that divisive platforms like this, which trade on fear and falsehood, will start appearing at the municipal level.
It’s not the first, and it won’t be the last. In Victoria, a similar grassroots extremist group is also making waves.
Thankfully, most reasonable people can see through the bullshit. Unfortunately, Take Back Comox Valley is full of it.