by Terry Oliver on January 1, 2012

Maybe this year it’s the women’s turn at last to sort out the mess that we men have got us into? Recently, I’ve seen and read some encouraging signs that this  could be the case. And the bulk of these women are 3rd Agers too.

If we look at the Alberta tar sands for example, several of the First Nations chiefs are women and they are the most active and vociferous in defending their lands against the inroads of the oil corporations and their destructive pipeline plans.

Ranged alongside them is that most doughty of champions of our precious water resources, Maude Barlow, president of the Council of Canadians.  To hear her speak in defence of the world’s water against the giant international corporations trying to monopolise the water supplies of  3rd world countries, is to be inspired to get off your backside and join the struggle.

Another woman  doing battle with the corporations is Alexandra Morton.  She has fought long and hard to raise awareness of  the international fish farm industry, systematically destroying the wild salmon stocks up and down the Pacific coast in British Columbia. She has led protests to parliament and rallied marchers throughout BC in her attempts to save the salmon for future generations.

Perhaps our most famous 3rd Age grandmother is Elizabeth May, Canada’s and North America’s first Green MP and leader of the Green Party of Canada. Only recently elected in a hard struggle against her Conservative opponent, she has set out to single-handedly fight for green solutions to our myriad environmental problems, tackling Harper’s anti-Kyoto corporate government. A sharper, tougher, more experienced champion would be hard to find.

Unless we look outside government to the world of journalism and Naomi Klein. She has built a well-deserved reputation as a political analyst and writer of international calibre. I heard her most recently, rallying the Occupy Wall Street protesters as she gave voice and substance to their movement. After her most famous book, The Shock Doctrine, in which she exposes the ruthless methods of the corporate takeovers of democracy – when she speaks, people listen. As the articulate, passionate voice of the current socially active generation, we 3rd Agers can feel we have new champions to continue the struggle.

As a Canadian who has long despaired of our country ever finding its true voice, this is all encouraging news. We need our own champions and these women and others like them – Margaret Atwood, for example, have shown us that all is not yet lost in the fight for our planet and our grandchildren’s future.

I, for one, feel invigorated and inspired by their example.  2012 promises to be a tough year ahead on many fronts but I hope to find somewhere to lend a hand in the struggle.

Happy New Year.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Sheila Turnbull Reid January 4, 2012 at 2:42 am

I agree that it’s the women’s turn. Either we do it or it won’t be done! To Terry’s list of inspiring women I’d like to add many “3rd world” women who are leading the way under extremely adverse conditions. They are surrounded by heart-break as conditions in their countries deteriorate but they don’t hesitate. They are there for those who need them. We need to film these women and sit the corporate bosses down to watch.

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