“We’re on the end of a friggin’ pendulum and we’re hanging on for dear life,” Lori Ackerman told the crowd gathered at Calgary’s Stampede Park Tuesday afternoon. The mayor of Fort St. John, the town in B.C.’s northeastern interior that is the heart of that province’s oil and gas industry, had come to southern Alberta to deliver her message to what organizers hoped would be the largest event in support of the industry in Canadian history. “Resource communities are foundational to this nation,” she declared.
Kill Bill C-69 signs, replete with images of Uma Thurman, sword in hand, from Quentin Tarantino’s film Kill Bill, dotted the crowd. As Ackerman left the stage, a man stopped her: “Good for you, ma’am,” he said.
With a federal cabinet decision looming on the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, the pro-energy industry advocacy group Canada Action convened the rally, perhaps 4,000 people strong, to show support for the project and lay into two pieces of legislation that have become the focal points for the anger roiling the West.