Exploitive politicians tap into populism

Really? Do we need more legislation about trespassing in Saskatchewan? Or is this just another ploy to speak to a voter base?

Think about how public buses and film tax credits in the province were handled and whether governing for the all is taking place or just for the ones that brung ya. I think the latter might be true in this case as well.

While it might be a minor issue, in the grand scheme of all things related to buying my votes with my own money, putting forward an amendment to the trespass legislation in Saskatchewan has less to do with encouraging a lower crime rate and more to do with distracting voters from bigger issues.

A law is only as good as the ability to enforce it. The old property rules were good. If you were asked to get off, get off. If you were running an all-terrain vehicle or snowmobile, stay off without permission. For hunters, permission is encouraged and, if posted, required. If you damage something while you are using private land, say a crop or building, you are liable for it. These are simple rules.

Adding to them will encourage conflict. And farmers won’t be seeing any new rights when it comes to dealing with trespassers, even if new regulations are put in place. All that is allowed for any landholder is to call the cops, no matter how long it takes for them to get there.

In a worst-case scenario, a frustrated landowner might feel justified in enforcing a new law himself, and nothing good will come of that.

Remember, farmers in these challenging times need good public relations more than a bone a populist politician might offer them.

The attention of rural elected representatives should focus on basics, despite their attempts to distract us: education, health care, responsible resource royalties and social programs that create the opportunity to prevent lives from falling into crime and encourage the illness of addiction.

Rural crime won’t be solved by making more activities criminal, but it might be avoided by focusing on the expensive and difficult issues that cause it. And it definitely won’t come to an end by distracting voters from their responsibilities to hold their elected representatives responsible for their actions, or lack of them.

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