As soon as the Marijuana Party begins to cost the taxpayers of Abbotsford real money, the community's patience with this fringe political group may also expire.
Let's hope that this lawsuit which the B.C. pot party has levied against the City of Abbotsford is nothing more than another of the all-too-numerous publicity stunts that this group uses to bring awareness to its cause.
The party claims that the city has torn down almost all of the 40 political signs belonging to Marijuana Party candidate Tim Felger. The city responds that it has not had his signs removed.
Will this really get to court? Unfortunately, it probably will, if the bong boosters think it will keep them in the public eye.
When he and fellow smokers staged a public protest, smoking pot in Centennial Park some eight years ago, and were predictably dealt with by Abbotsford police, it seemed a newsworthy act of civil disobedience.
Subsequent protests were far from spectacular. About two years ago, Felger planned a flag burning at Abbotsford City Hall. The protesters, perhaps too influenced by their wacky tobaccy, were unable to get the flag lit, and were forced to settle for merely standing on the Maple Leaf, while puffing defiantly.
In his most lucid moments, Felger has some great points to make about civil liberties.
But there are all-too-many occasions when the pot party candidate is rambling about CIA conspiracies, and contributing nothing of substance to the public discourse. At all-candidates meetings during the last federal election, Felger offered little more than unintended comic relief. During the federal election campaign he got a laughable 404 votes out of 48,000 cast in this riding, and in the just-past B.C. election Felger scored 302 out of 18,706. His credibility in this community is at an all-time low.
The Surrey school board is also being sued for not allowing a Marijuana Party candidate to attend an all-candidates meeting. Is the host of a political forum now legally obligated to invite every one-issue fringe party? We'll find out.
It will be interesting to see what happens in the Surrey case, because that is precisely the sort of cold shoulder that Felger and his party could soon be seeing in Abbotsford.
Abbotsford News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2005 Hacker Press Ltd.