Gardening a Crime In Canada, Too

Growing vegetables in this yard, on Canada's Vancouver Island, could get its owners six months in jail. Note the unsightly piles of dirt, and the criminally edible produce.

A couple who live on Vancouver Island (off Canada’s western coast) has been threatened with six months in prison for growing food on their 2.5-acre lot in a semi–rural location. When Dirk Becker bought the property in 1999, the soil had been stripped down to bedrock and sold by the previous owner — that was perfectly legal. Since then, Becker has been slowly and laboriously building soil, in which to grow fruits and vegetables. That is illegal.

The Beckers were first informed that they had violated the “unsightly premises” statute of the district in which they live, with “piles of manure and soil all over the property.” (From their property they can see cows and horses grazing — legally — in their neighbors’ fields.) Turned out that was one pile of soil that was semi-legal, so they moved it.

Then they were notified to stop “all agricultural activity” under a law that prohibits growing “crops” on land that is zoned “residential.” This is not a matter of front yard or back yard, lawn or garden, even anal neighbors (although apparently it was one such who started all this for the Beckers).  If you grow something and eat it, you’re a criminal.  This on an island that has two days’ supply of food available on any day.

If you can read the details of this stone-stupid law and its enforcement (they are available here) and not despair over the survival of a society thus governed, you really have to explain.


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9 Responses to Gardening a Crime In Canada, Too

  1. Icarus62 says:

    Barking mad. I honestly think that a lot of jobs only exist because work is generated to keep the jobs going. This is probably a case in point.

  2. Razza says:

    You know…I just read an article about this same thing happening in the States.
    First thing I thought was “That would never happen in Canada…we have a bit more sense than that”

    Apparently….we don’t. I’m so ashamed of this it isn’t even funny.

  3. In 2008, 180 countries declared that their citizens have a fundamental right to food. Only one country voted against this rudimentary right. Can you guess which country that was?

    How can the proclaimed land of the free and home of the brave justify such a mean spirited decision? And is it in the best interests of their citizens or in the best interests of someone else?

    Instead the United States made it’s intentions perfectly clear and voted against the right to food for it’s citizens. There is no right to food in the USA, nor is there any right to food legislation pending. Pretty simple isn’t it?

    I’m wondering if the USA’s refusal to participate in The Universal Declarion of Human Rights provoked the growing grassroots right to food movement and the real food revolution? Is the war on food just beginning to heat up?

    The Industrial Ag Giant is dying and making every effort possible, with the complicity of federal agencies, to kill all access to healthy, natural food.

    Vote with your dollars by rejecting synthetic food like substances.

    • Pearl says:

      There’s a fundamental difference between the right to be self-reliant and grow your own food on your own land, which this article is about, and the demand that the government tax some of your fellow citizens in order to give you your food, which is what the UN’s “right to food” is all about.

      ANY right to something you haven’t earned is a right to enslave others to provide it for you. I swear, if the Thirteenth Amendment were being considered today, “progressives” would have demanded that slave-owners who really NEEDED their slaves be allowed to keep them, and set up a massive regulatory agency to supervise the whole thing.

      • Joe says:

        Look at immagration controls or the lack there in for your slave labor and its regulation.

        • Tom Lewis says:

          We’re getting into the weeds a bit here, Pearl and Joe. This is not about the UN, taxation or immigration, it’s about petty bureaucrats at the hyper-local level actively preventing people from growing food by threatening them with imprisonment. That’s the outrage. Focus.

  4. The right to grow one’s own food is a universal right. Any bureaucrat who thinks that right should be taken away has exceeded the mandate they have been issued. In the old west, nasty bureaucrats and criminals like this would be disposed of by any means necessary. It won’t take long to put them out of power–clearly they do NOT have the interests of common people at heart. Petty bureacrats CAN BE, and will be removed. NO citizen of any country should be prevented from growing their own food, –without exception. Many bureaucrats have forgotten what the REAL mandate of government IS–and that is to do common good FOR the people collectively what the people cannot each do as individuals–and that is their ONLY genuine mandate.