May 22: Canadian Forces, hold your ground

Re: “DND, cyclists battle over rifle range,” May 18.

The Department of National Defence had every right to restrict people from being on its property who have no business being there.

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Mountain bikers and other recreationalists have more unrestricted land available to them for their pursuits than DND has available for firearms training and the like. DND is training our military on its own land, for the day that combat-ready personnel are needed to engage in or end conflicts worldwide.

Cyclists’ recreation desires do not compare. I can assure you that on the front lines, your mountain-biking abilities and hiking abilities will do you little good, if you want to stay alive.

Use some common sense. You do not have the right to cut fencing and enter land that is posted for your protection.

People who continue to disregard the message should not be given a paltry $100 fine. Instead, send them and their mountain bike, hiking/running gear or pet to the front lines, so maybe they will finally get the message: Stay out of DND lands permanently, no exceptions, if you do not belong there. Simple.

Canadian Forces, hold your ground. You have no obligation to accommodate the walking, running and biking culture. What they fail to recognize is that they have the freedom to enjoy that culture only because of you, training our military to put their lives on the line for those of us at home.

Karen A. Chaster

North Cowichan

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