Highwood MLA needs to be leader
By: Wheel staff
| Posted: Wednesday, Sep 18, 2013 11:23 am
By fanning the flames of discontent in her constituency Highwood MLA Danielle Smith is doing more harm than good as the community tries valiantly to recover from the disastrous June flood.
As leader of the opposition Wildrose Party, Smith should be questioning the provincial government when it is warranted, but a short-lived fundraising campaign which accused the RCMP of looting and vandalizing homes in High River is shameful.
Last week a fundraiser was launched on the party’s website asking residents to contribute funds for a Wildrose radio campaign demanding the Province pay for the doors damaged when RCMP were searching homes in the wake of the flood.
The goal of their “money bomb” was to raise $10,000 because, “Wildrose wants to be able to tell the stories of those High River residents who had their houses looted and vandalized by those who should have been protecting them.”
The fundraising plea stated, “While the residents of High River were struggling to save their homes and families from devastating floodwaters, little did they expect that their homes were also in danger of being broken into and looted. Not by thieves or burglars, but by the very people who were charged with keeping them safe – the RCMP.”
The campaign has been removed, but the damage was done.
Does Smith and the Wildrose party truly believe High River, Okotoks and Alberta RCMP officers conspired to plunder residents’ homes?
The accusation is absolutely ridiculous and Smith who, ironically, stayed in her High River home after the flood should be embarrassed.
Officers worked tirelessly during the rescue and she should be standing behind them not throwing them to the wolves. They were following protocol checking homes for stranded residents, pets, gas leaks and, yes, firearms not properly stored.
The RCMP has committed to compensate everyone who had damage to their doors and legal firearms have been returned.
The damaged doors should be a non-issue, especially considering all the other substantial obstacles the community is facing.
The majority of High River residents are working hard to rebuild their community and they could certainly use the positive support of their MLA.
Instead Smith is wasting people’s time inciting infighting.
Besides, families and businesses are struggling to regain their financial footing — this is not the time for a shameless campaign for political contributions.
Smith is the party leader and she has to take responsibility for what can only be described as a disrespectful campaign.
Highwood’s MLA needs to drop the rhetoric and campaigning, grab and shovel and get to work helping her constituents rebuild.
If not, get out of the way.