The group Cube of Truth held a silent multi-media protest at the Langley Ribfest. (Heather Colpitts/Langley Advance Times)

Ryan’s Regards: Should I be protesting too?

A response to the RibFest protests

It was… shall we say… peculiar, in my view, to see protestors in masks, just like the ones from the movie V for Vendetta, holding TV screens playing factory farm footage and standing in an ominous circle outside Langley RibFest.

Growing up on a pig farm and later leading a 4-H Swine Club, I will say, I did take offence; but continuing on a bothered walk past them, helped me digest their opposition to meat.

I’m sure, to their delight, the piggy-protests did get me thinking. Not about my bacon consumption, but about protests in general.

I’m in my 20s and have been wondering lately if it is at all strange that I have not been part of a protest at this point in my life. There seems to be one every day… and that’s just in our small docile community alone.

I’ve already covered a few in my short career as a journalist; starting with the Occupy Wall Street camp-outs in 2011.

Living in Yaletown for a brief period of my life, I could often hear the fur protestors a couple blocks down howling like coyotes to get their message across.

Friends of mine in the Fraser Valley make it a point to protest oil pipelines on a regular basis while friends in Alberta, well, do the opposite.

I get invited on Facebook almost daily to aid in every alarming cause under the sun from yellow vest marches to anti-fascism rallies.

Trips to my my favourite place on the planet, the movie theatre, aren’t even safe anymore; the controversial release of the anti-abortion film Unplanned had people chanting outside the Cineplex.

My own grandfather, at the ripe age of 80, was just telling me the other day that he just participated in his very first protest, voicing his concerns over his city’s controversial safe-consumption-site.

Maybe it’s a problem of ignorance due to my age, but have there always been such an exorbitant amount of protests going on? And how do you get the time to attend and put in the the hours of planning necessary?

It’s positively exhausting keeping up with all of the rah-rah-ing and finger pointing going on. And while an over-abundance of opinion also stirs up headaches, frustration, and a former-farm-boy to question his past… it also, after the jets cool, instills gratefulness and community pride.

You look at the death and oppression happening in a very contentious Venezuela. Hong Kong is escalating by the day with the use of petrol bombs and water cannons. Mexico City is being rocked by women’s marches fighting against years of abuse at the hands of the police.

We are free to speak our minds in Langley and free to live our lives. Protests are soft and mild compared to so many others happening in the world today.

The RibFest opponents certainly stirred up a bitter response amongst many attendees, but if that’s the biggest battle we have to butt heads about, I’d say we are pretty lucky to live where we do.

I personally don’t see much of a reason to protest anything about Langley-life, but I am thankful that we have that right.

Read More: Ryan’s Regards: Mexican Meals – a taste testing odyssey

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Email: ryan.uytdewilligen@langleyadvancetimes.com

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