Earth Matters by Jacqueline Milner – Will your Municipal vote be a vote for the Environment? – Cornwall Ontario – October 14, 2010

Cornwall ON – About a week and a half ago I was driving along the highway with my window half open as it was a marvelous warm sunny afternoon.  Suddenly I felt a sharp stabbing pain in my back under my left shoulder blade.  The pain was such that it caused me to raise my back away from my seat, away from the pain.  This however did not relieve the pain.

So I stopped my vehicle to search for the object causing such irritation.  I could not find anything protruding from my seat so I continued.  Once on the go I felt the pain again so I stopped to make another search.  This time I found a struggling bee on the floor.  Obviously the little creature had inadvertently flown into my seat and my weight on its tiny little body had caused it to sting me in the interest of self preservation.  I had been stung in the knee as a small child so I wasn’t concerned about any adverse allergic reaction.

The irritation and swelling due to this incident subsided after some 12 hours.  Why am I bringing this up?  I am in the midst of reading a book entitled “Keeping the Bees”, why all bees are at risk and what we can do to save them.

The author, Laurence Packer, is a melittologist at York University in Toronto.  Packer has and continues to travel world wide searching for and identifying new bee species.  Everywhere he has traveled has led him to the same unsettling trend. Our bees are disappearing.

A world without bees would be much less colourful and could certainly result in our own demise. These tiny partners of ours play an invaluable role in the ecology of our earth.  Bees are responsible for up to one-third of our food supply world wide.  China is fully aware of the consequences of us not taking action to protect them from pesticide use and habitat loss.  Portions of China have seen bee populations wiped out in specific orchards so the flowers now have to be pollinated directly by human hands using special pollinating paintbrushes.

Unfortunately people rarely understand the interconectedness of species and the reliance of one species existence on another until it is too late or we find its continued existence is at extreme risk under current conditions.

We are in fact not helping our own bee populations here in Cornwall, Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry counties.  Our County’s Road Department continues to spray our county road sides with chemicals that many professional associations are concerned about.  These road sides are being sprayed to control wild parsnip when non chemical means of control can be used and also noting that these chemicals kill off other broad leaf plants which include food sources for bees and other living organisms.

Our monoculture farm lands filled with corn and soy cannot sustain healthy bee populations.  I have also noted that some farmers do not leave hedgerows or buffer zones around streams and creeks through their fields stressing the populations of bees further.  Bees and many other life forms require these last bastions of land to live and thrive.  Places that they can find shelter, food and cover.  We cannot survive without these things and neither can the bees or any other life forms.

So why am I mentioning this today.  It is an election year.  I will be making the rounds to our ‘all candidate meetings’ and asking questions.  Will you?  Looking after our environment, insuring there are wild, clean places for our people, our populations of birds, fish, animals and insects to live is important to me and for our future generations.

We owe our children and all the entities that we share this land with our respect and our forethought to keep us and them healthy.  My vote is for the candidates that understand if they make decisions considering the health and welfare of our water, air, land and the fitness of all the living things that reside with us; they are doing the best they can for me and my community.

Your commentary is encouraged and welcome below or at


  1. In Cornwall municipal elections, the environment is seldom a hot topic.

    The environment seems to be viewed as a place that is somewhere else, rather than our very own surroundings. Why else would we have a growing and leaking dump in the middle of town? A dump recently filled with contaminated soil that could easily have been remediated, locally –creosote polluted soil from the Domtar No-Co-Rode site at Cumberland and Seventh.

    And there is often a snicker or knee-jerk reaction to suggestions that drive-thru’s be phased out, or that street lighting be directed downward and off of private property, or that wind turbines be examined more closely for the number of animals that they seem to be killing and the effects on human health — and there has been little study done on the underwater generator blades proposed for our particular river environment.

    Sure our air is much better, but there is a huge amount of mercury pooled around Lamoureux park, the Harbour and St Lawrence college, with lesser amounts around Gey’s Creek …areas that ARE!! of concern, regardless of the governments “labelling” system.

    So despite the rush to “delist”, all of these things remain my utmost concern.

  2. Wait you’ll only vote for someone who wants to take of the bee’s? O.K., know I have it all!

  3. Matt…would you kindly rephrase your question and comment. I do not understand what you are trying to say.

  4. Neither does he Jacqueline

  5. My original comment was removed and that’s why it doesn’t make sense! Your article was long winded and I believe that clearer examples of change that you would like to see would be more productive than a tale about a bee encounter!

    We are talking about politics right or are we just making blank statements like ” Don’t forget the environment!” or “Shop Local!”!

    I hate it when people are ignorant to the facts!

  6. Author

    Matt can you slow down the caffeine intake. We try not to be too abusive here on TCWFN.


  7. Matt, what ARE the facts?

  8. Hi Jacqueline Milner,

    I address several key green/ environmental issues in my platform, which you can read here on my blog:

    If you or anyone else has any questions or ideas, please address them to me at:
    jasonsetnyk at gmail dot com.

    Thank you.
    -Jason Setnyk

  9. There is nothing wrong with caffeine if taken responsibly.

  10. Matt, the bee populations are at risk, Ill not get into all the facts, but knowing some people, I can start getting equally as long winded about what is going on to the bee populations. The article may be a bit long winded but that is the style that some people write in, Jacqueline shared her experience, and went on to write about it. Where’s the problem? And please, if people are so ignorant to the facts, why not post down what the real facts are and back up your statements?

  11. Will your Municipal vote be a vote for the Environment?

    No.But I will vote.

  12. We do not have enough farm land in the City of Cornwall to make this topic worth discussion. Also, the “greener” initiatives that need to be implemented in Cornwall should focus on Carbon Reduction and Waste / Hazardous Goods disposal. We are working on developing a waterfront and it is one the most talked about campaign items so why are we talking about protecting bee’s in Cornwall? I am sorry, I sounded a bit harsh but I guess it was just my first reaction and my filter obviously was not working!


    Thank You for the information and what would you like to see change in Cornwall?

  13. Save the bees abort the babies – something is wrong here! I wonder if such aborted souls have an “interest of self preservation”. God knows, and He says – “Vengeance is mine, I will repay…”.

  14. Yeah, well think about it Tom. No bees equals almost no fruits or vegetables. That means people will starve. Starving people rarely produce babies before they die.
    Or do you prefer people to die, so they won’t be tempted to have an abortion? I hope not.

  15. Matt, you’re right, there isn’t too much farmland in the city, but we’re totally surrounded by it. Also, how many Cornwallites have gardens, where they grow flowers and vegetables?

    You’re right, also, that Cornwall needs to focus more on getting off fossil fuels (i.e. carbon reduction), and the hazardous waste stream.

    Why don’t you come to the all-candidates debate on 21 October, and ask some of the old council why they haven’t done much about it. LED streetlights, for example, would save loads of money and energy, but the old council is totally ignoring the option.

  16. Pastor Tom what do bees have to do with abortion? In fact bees are good for babies….you’ve heard about the birds and the bees? You wonder if such aborted souls have an interest of self-preservation and you say God knows….if you think that then ask God or whatever godly being you serve that keeps bringing you back with such diatribe.

  17. Hey Matt, this paper is also read in Glengarry, Stormont and Dundas which coincidentally are also having municipal elections. Not all things revolve around Cornwall.

  18. Matt…I would like to see our elected community leaders in Cornwall and all other Municipalities provide for and balance the needs of their communities with careful consideration and respect for all living things. This means insuring that we (all entities) have clean healthy air and water and the necessary spaces and habitats to thrive and grow. As for the bees Matt, I am certain there are many people in Cornwall who are thankful for the bees that pollinate their fruit trees and vegetables making it possible for them to enjoy the fruits of the bees labour. Bees provide pollination services in cities as well as in the countryside.
    Mr. tdpreacher555…nowhere in my article was there any mention about aborting babies, the only mention of such things is through your writings.

  19. I’ve heard that if the bee population totally collapses, the planet’s food supply will be reduced by about seventy percent. We know that the bee population has been dying off at at alarming rates for several years now, and there seems to be no explanation for it. Could be chemicals, or electrical interference, but nobody has figured why it`s happening, except for the preacher, who says his god is causing it because his god is pissed off at us.

  20. It is like this Jacqueline, most environmentalist, including yourself, are more devoted to the environmental gods then to the sanctity of human life. Is it not true we humans – human over population, according to the environmentalist priests of our day, are the cause of all of the world’s problems. So abortion, forced sterilization, reducing the number of children, getting rid of the old and aged, and, of course, all the non environmentalist, which is all part of the plan to save Mother Earth – Gala. Israel of old sacrificed their children to the Canaanite god Molech in order, as they were instructed, to guarantee fruitful harvests (by the way God judged them for it), but we today sacrifice our unborn to the god of Environmentalism (which includes Feminism, and some other extremist groups) to the abortion’s/ butcher’s knife! Different gods, but still for the same reason.

    And by the way, Jacqueline, still waiting for an answer to my question – remember?

  21. Dat is one sick preacher!

  22. Cojones Kid – and being an abortionist and having an abortion is not sick? Yes, it is beyond sickness, it is MURDER!

    Exo 21:22 -23 “If men strive and strike a pregnant woman, so that her child comes out, and there is no injury, he shall surely be punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him. And he shall pay as the judges say And if any injury occurs, then you shall give life for life…”.

  23. Jacqueline article was well written in her creative style. She examined environmental issues as is normally her expertise. This does not mean that she doesn’t care about other things. The preacher has struck again with his narrow minded “cut and paste” of things written centuries and centuries ago. Much of it is make belive. Is it any wonder why religion is losing its grip given his extremist views? The preacher is one ignorant man. He is a sicko.

  24. Jerry – Can’t refute my arguments, so you lower yourself to name calling! Typical ah!

  25. Jacqueline,
    Good article, I also believe a lot of different fertilizers and growing practices affect the plants we grow. When you buy plants today how often do they have a nice fragrance?
    There is some changes in that respect also. Now instead of just seeding a fertilizing for looks and size consideration in taken into account for the actual functionality of the flower, which is to say the ability to produce pollen and natural scents is apparently coming back.

    As for elections and the environment, take a look at the council meetings and see how many of the members car pooled or used local bus services to attend meetings. How many of them use the same practices when going to work? How many of them drive a car that cannot be tested for emissions and can achieve 1200Km on a tank of Diesel due to superior efficiency?

    The environment is only an election issue and has little or no part of the candidate’s actual mandate if elected. As Elaine is doing on her quest of eliminating nuclear contaminated materials from travelling along the St Lawrence River, it is done with heart but not much else. Keeping it on site until the CNSC allows the rules to change only creates more contamination for the future in Canada. If she really wants to make change on the Nuclear issue buy your power else where actually put yourself in the front lines by action.

    Change is possible at all levels and we can take a page out of the book being written in BC. They currently are in the process of holding a referendum to eliminate the HST. If we want things to improve be it health care, environment, infrastructure, maybe we can start by beginning the campaign in our own city

  26. If nothing else, the preacher’s comments serve as a warning as to how dangerous these brain-sucking cults can be.

  27. For such a staunch defender of the sanctity of human life, Tom Newton certainly has a morbid obsession with death.

    Jacqueline, it’s patently obvious he’s baiting you. Don’t fall for it.

    Another excellent article, by the way. Well done.

  28. To preacher – You can’t prove your own arguments except by “cut and paste” from largely fictional texts. It is up to you to prove your case based on reason and not blind faith. You are the one who calls people murderers.

  29. How does an article on bee populations have anything to do with abortion?

    To simply state that “most environmentalists are more devoted to the environmental gods then to the sanctity of life” is so overwhelmingly false and without factual evidence that it merits no response from anyone. I strongly urge readers of this site to simply ignore any comments such as the ones posted by tnpreacher555 on this website as they are clearly written to provoke. To jump in on such ridiculous statements only validates the “argument” and diminishes the value of the article and the website – and of the quality comments I come to read.

  30. Not with death PJA – but with injustice and wickedness! Abortion is murder, and those who committed abortion are murders! Exo 20:13 “Do not murder”.

  31. Interesting article on bees its amazing how a little creature can cause so much pain and danger to our lives but yet be so beneficial to our lifes .In fact in minutes a severe allergic reaction could have ended the authors life yes human life is as fragile as a bees fortunately we have a back up in plan in hand because the pain may have been a heart attack and instead of finding a bee she may have be dialling 911 for an ambulance not something available to bees. But think again I have been following the letter to the editor on ambulances situation in the three united counties by Bill Fry and recently check back to see just how many people have read it and how much concern it was generating : well lets say thank God it was a bee and no reaction because if it was something that needed a ambulance no one here seems to be concerned about human life do hope I am wrong !

  32. Exo 20:13 “Do not murder”…. unless its a preacher….

  33. No antipasta – not even preachers! actually specially not preachers. You must not count Jim Jones, David Koresh, and other “cult” leaders as the norm. It is not true and you can’t prove it. Due justice under the law for all!

  34. I think all of you “preachers” are basically wannabe cult leaders. Under your leadership there would be NO true justice under the law for anyone. Your “justice” is mostly over 5000 years old!

  35. And what do you – Antipasta wannabe?

    In fact, the Law has been around longer than 5000 years. God, our Creator wrote it on our hearts when He created the first man and woman. We are created in the image and likeness of God, therefore we are moral/spiritual being that are accountable to God. We were created for God and to love God! So each one of us knows right from wrong. The written revelation of the Ten Commandments reinforces what is already written on each of our hearts, so we are without excuse for not loving God as He has intended and as He deserves.

    “For whenever gentiles, who do not possess the law, do instinctively what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that what the law requires is written in their hearts, a fact to which their own consciences testify, and their thoughts will either accuse or excuse them on that day when God, through Jesus Christ, will judge people’s secrets according to my gospel” ( Rom 2:14-16).

  36. Hey preacher wannabe, “In fact, the Law has been around longer than 5000 years.God, our Creator wrote it on our hearts when He created the first man and woman.” thats what you say preacher. Now show us in the Bible where it says God wrote the Law on our hearts….

  37. Read Rom.2:14-16, but this time think about it, and even ask God Holy Spirit to give you an understanding of it. See Gen. 1:26,27 and then ask yourself, what does it mean to be created in God’s image and likeness?

  38. Sure hope somebody’s keeping an eye on his kids.

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