Strathroy protest turns angry

by Randy Richmond, London Free Press

STRATHROY — A peaceful march down a typical smalltown main street erupted into an angry confrontation Saturday that spells continuing trouble over Ontario’s green energy plan.

About 80 protesters, many shouting, some in tears, repeatedly drowned out beleagured Liberal MPP Maria Van Bommel as she tried to defend her government’s wind turbine policy.

No matter what the Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP tried to say, protesters cut her short, demanding she work to stop construction of wind turbines until independent research proves they’re safe.

“I am really pleased to see all of you. I think certainly the sun and weather is helping out a great deal,” Van Bommel said when she saw the crowd.

“It’s passion, passion!” a protester yelled.

“The truth brings us out,” another shouted.

Even when Van Bommel engaged protesters one on one, she got an earful.

Stephana Johnston, 81, told Van Bommel she lives on the north shore of Lake Erie and has been forced out of her home because turbulence from dozens of nearby turbines are affecting her sleep and health.

“We are suffering and it is a horror and you are responsible because you agreed to the Green Energy Act,” Johnston said.

The protest started much as most do, with some speeches, then a march down Front Street,

Chanting “McGuinty must go!” and “We’re not your guinea pigs,” protesters marched 550 metres from a plaza to Van Bommel’s office, the closest a wind turbine can be built to a home.

Opponents say turbines emit low-pitched sounds that disrupt the body’s rhythms and cause headaches, tinnitus, dizziness, nausea, rapid heart rate irritability and problems with concentration and memory.

Van Bommel’s riding has more than 500 wind turbines in the works, said protest organizer Esther Wrightman of the Middlesex Wind Action Group.

“She will have a lot of people affected. There are people already affected from her area.”

After the hour-long, heated debate outside her office, Van Bommel said she undertands the anger.

“It’s a very emotional issue and I think we have to recognize that. But when we look at it terms of the science we see .. there really is a need to do this.”

Van Bommel said she’d keep a promise made to protesters to take their concerns to her Liberal caucus.

With the next Ontario election only five months away, wind energy — opposition by many to the growth of wind farms, vs. proponents who believe it’s a good way to help replace dirty coal-fired power — is on track to become a huge issue.

Wind farms have been proposed in many areas of Southwestern Ontario, a 10-riding region dominated by McGuinty’s Liberals in the last election four years ago.

21 thoughts on “Strathroy protest turns angry

  1. “It’s a very emotional issue and I think we have to recognize that. But when we look at it terms of the science we see .. there really is a need to do this.”

    In terms of science….best sciences….extensive research….based on science to date…..puhleeeze give us all a break…it just doesn’t cut it anymore. You and your caucus have abused people to the point of no return. Your words ring hollow.

    Maria, Report back on your chat with your caucus about this protest and this issue.
    We are waiting

  2. She has constituents in favor of the Green Energy Act? Amazing!

    Ask her to share the poll with us — and the methodology.

    She made the statement –ask her to prove it!

  3. Good for them!
    God bless them all! Wish I could have been there to support them, but too far away from me.
    There will be many more to come, bigger,louder each time, until the dictating, treasonous, Liberal ba///rds are gone.
    Keep speaking up & out folks, to everyone you encounter.
    Don`t worry about becoming a pest with your family or freinds.The issue is far too important for that. We must save the democracy, that our ancestors fought & died for. To do anything less, would be an insult to their sacrifice.

  4. David ,she was in her office when she mentioned that her other constituents who agreed with the green energy act in her riding was not with the crowd.We were outside her office when she made that remark. I think she certainly would have got-ten an earful from us if she had said it to the crowd. She certainly did not feel at ease at all. Wade a go Esther and Ian and all the rest it was rewarding to be a part of this today.

  5. I enjoyed it immensely! Every time Maria spoke her garbage, she was shot down, and really, who the heck wants to listen to her self-patting speeches anyway??? She wanted to use the same old script, but NOT TODAY!! Thanks to all who came out, and to anyone considering holding their own “550m March to your MPP’s Office”, DO IT, it’s easy and we need to tell our MPP’s that rural Ontario is not happy anymore!

    Just for the record, Maria flat out refused to put a Health Studies BEFORE Wind Turbines sign in her window – what does that tell you? So we taped it on, and as soon as we were gone, she had it ripped off. Embarrassed about the lack of a health study, maybe?


  6. Great signs, great crowd! Her other constituents in favour of the Green Energy Act, who she says she also has to consider, are probably the ones who have signed contracts for IWTs. You know, they’re the ones who’ll be getting fat cheques in the mail, at the expense of their neighbours.

  7. Even though her riding has many municipalities who have asked for a moratorium on Wind Turbines until further health studies, she had no clue as to which municipalities supported Industrial Wind Turbine development, though she claims there are some. She mentioned Watford/Warwick, what sneaky deals are they cooking up there? She mentioned the mayor of Watford met with them. And she reiterated the fact that she stands by the Green Energy Act.
    I don’t know what story she is going to give those at Queens Park, but being there before; she ignored us then, she’ll probably ignore us now.
    She even had no compassion when a former friend confronted her about placing Industrial Wind Turbines around her house.
    One of the most cruel and coldest people out there.
    Thanks again to Stephana who has attended so many of these information settings. I can’t imagine how devastating and frustrating these must be, but you bring a very human voice to the plight of those suffering Industrial Wind Turbine Syndrome.

  8. Van Bommel won’t have to report to anyone in the House or whatever fake “caucus” will listen to her because she will be unemployed in 5 months…………along with all the other “cronies” that slap each other on the back every morning saying to each other what a great job they have done “screwing Ontario over for 7 years!”

    So Long Maria!….looks good on ya!

  9. Unbelieveably, Van Bommell told the crowd that she supports the farmers who want to make energy instead of growing food. This pretty clearly spells out the Liberal’s are planning on abandoning government support for Ontario farmers who want to grow food on their land and are now planning the industrialization of all prime agricultural land in Ontario. This has huge implications for the future of agriculture in Ontario. Farmers and their organizations may not exist in a generation if they don’t stand up to McGuinty’s insanity.

  10. The Liberals have confirmed their Wind Turbines everywhere and Solar Panels for everyone energy program as part of their Official Election Platform.

    Read the PDF.
    “Highlights of a Liberal plan for the environment, climate change and clean energy jobs”

    Some people wondered if Iggy was out of touch with Ontario voters.

    Wonder no longer.

  11. I guess Iggy doesn’t remember what happened to Stephen Dion when he tried this Green Crap on the electorate!

    The link above looks like McGuinty’s psycho babble!

    I firmly believe that all these “Parties” meet in private and hammer out a long term plan for “who will run the country” for decades ahead regardless of what they quack about publicly!………..we are nothing but “pawns” in the hands of these miscreants!

    Now some may call me a “conspiracy theorist” but I experienced some rather candid statements many many years ago from a “mover and shaker” in Ontario politics that said exactly what I have claimed above.

    Enough said for the moment….

  12. Quicote:

    No conspiracy theory needed when you are dealing with like-minded ideologues… But call me one too if need be.

    I am with you on this one.

    And yes they do meet and strategize at “Progressive” conferences. …and so do conservatives with “like-minded” groups. I hope this idea does not shock too many people.

    And then there are the blogs — some of them are quite radical you know. 😉

  13. Here is a list of different styles of government definitions what does McQuinty lines up with?

    A concept not often understood is the ranking by responsibility of the different forms of government. This is a descending scale of responsibility, stupidity and unawareness. Once the definitions are understood this ranking is self explanatory.

    Self government, a state where no government is necessary


    Republic, power is held by the people

    Monarchy, power is shared

    Democracy, power is held by special groups

    Fascism, power is held by corporations

    Socialism, power is in the hands of a bureaucracy

    Dictatorism, power is in the hands of a few people

    Communism, power is in the hands of a one person


    Slavery, is where no one is responsible for anything. Slavery is off to the side but is added as it can be used by some forms of government. It is included because it is the antithesis of self Government. Slavery becomes very apparent around socialism.

  14. David and all: Being called a “conspiracy theorist ” is like telling people you’ve seen a UFO and then you are laughed at, treated like a leper of society and other negative terms…………..this is one way which “discreditation” takes place.

    If one can carry on and stick with their outrage that we are living under an “Atlas Shrugged” society then it actually allows one to think “freely” and outside the “1984” mindset.

    In our “older years” we are less likely to give a Damn about being called names and being questioned as we don’t have the luxury of “time” on our side to debate issues that will never get solved within an exchange of words!

    One person CAN make a difference and if it’s even just one young person learning to “question” authority and dogma that sounds rather “off” then my job is done!

  15. What should be considered now is the sources of funding that will be recommended by the Liberal party to be employed in the installation of wind and solar in Canada.

    Who is going to be asked to pay for wind developer incentives? Money from Tar Sands again? Or all Canadians?

  16. i agree with you Quixote. Majority of people seem to avoid expressing their true thoughts on what you are trying to share. I appreciate your opinions and hope the younger ones educate themselves. Governments seems to be more self serving and this is why we are in this soup with these Industrial Wind turbines.

  17. Here is a question for both the NDP and Liberal Parties.

    Would you purchase 4 washers when each one only works 25% of the time in hopes that 1 will work when you need it? Or do you need to buy 5 just to make sure?

  18. When people say “It’s the way of the future” when talking about their apathy on the subject of Industrial Wind Turbines, it is meant to absolve all responsibility of recognizing their neighbours as human beings deserving of compassion.
    I’m sure Hitler considered his vision to be the way of the future, and he only succeeded in degrading and decimating populations of humans by having so many people agree to use this apathetic line.
    Stand by the health of Ontario for it’s citizens. Our neighbours are deserving of our compassion, the government is abusing its title. Health studies before wind turbines!

  19. When you think about the idea of using Dirty Tar Sand money to make wind developers rich it does have a certain appeal to it it now dosen’t it?

  20. Speaking of Hitler, he said, ” It is easier to make people believe a big lie than a small one.” BIG WIND is a BIG LIE.

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