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Dear Editor:

We have known for a long time that the RCMP is broken, riddled with sexism, racism and bureaucratic inertia and incompetence. Oldsters like me remember that the Mounties burned down a Quebec barn in 1972, blaming it on separatists.

But illegal, often brutal, activities go much farther back: Google Estevan riot, three dead, and Regina riot, two dead in the 1930s, for details of the RCMP breaking the law to put down labour protests and suspected communists.

If the choice is “change or die” as the Globe and Mail headline says, the verdict is in: the RCMP must die in order to raise phoenix-like from the ashes as a new, functional, federal police service.

We don’t need a national organization providing day-to-day policing services in seven provinces. I urge the federal government to cancel the current RCMP contracts across Canada, reconstitute the provincial entities under provincial control, and refocus our national police, as is currently the case in Ontario, on federal and international laws.

When my old car breaks down again and again, with enormous repair costs, I junk it.

It’s time to junk the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Start over with a new mandate, new leadership, and eventually a revitalized new culture.

And change the name while we’re at it.

Michael Craig, Owen Sound



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