In 1970 my Father was furious that I was hanging out with hippies and always carrying a tambourine. During one of our arguments (at a neighbourhood party no less) I told him that all people over the age of 30 should be sent to farms. When I turned 30, my father handed me a birthday card and asked me when I was leaving for the farm. Touche Arthur Knight-touche!
The town of Carleton Place either had a band of hippies ride through town and park themselves at Riverside Park, or their youth were changing and the townsfolk wanted nothing to do with it.
Tonight- three edited letters from 1970 The Carleton Place Canadian from the files of the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum for your enjoyment. Then a story dedicated to my hippie youth.
Edited for length-1970
I visited your town recently and noted with interest the battle being waged between the establishment and a certain group of people your town is referring to as hippies. As an ex-resident of Carleton Place I have an vested interest and know first hand the problems that can arise.
The hippies are right in one context. They are not hippies–the original hippy had a purpose–to show the world how ugly and materialistic it has become. You shouldn’t worry about drugs, as who on earth would destroy their brains and mutilate their future by take drugs? There is one importance though. The hippies have given a haven of interest and activity to the young people in Carleton Place.
Well the summer was good enough for them and now they are probably afraid of being cold or wet. Don’t want to work for your shelter? And, how about that local drop in centre for kids? You have all sorts of centres around Carleton Place like: homes, libraries, schools etc. They are all natural and already there. What reason for a special centre do you need—unless you want to smoke pot or dabble with the interests your libido might provide. New fresh virginal bodies do provide interest don’t they? Carleton Place has a bevy of very attractive young people from what I have noted. The argument that there is nothing to do in that town is ridiculous! Take your youngsters in hand and teach them the world of physical form in a gym.
You can provide a million toys and a dozen centres to a child, but without the interest being there you are still left with a dull child with a vacant mind. To you hippies or cops outs- you don’t want our society- you don’t want our values— and thanks to our democratic society you have a right to get out of it. But be that as it may- possibly our laws some day will correct your institution.
In the meantime stay away from our children and stay away from the rest of us. We don’t have time for your ignorant whining, your complaining, and your unintelligent and unqualified views.
If you haven’t the man-hood, or guts to live life, then disappear into your holes and leave the thinking hard working people-us-of getting the job done. You are of no use to anyone or anything- just a mutant vegetation.
G. Gaber Toronto
Buy Linda Secaspina’s Books— Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac– Tilting the Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place and 4 others on Amazon or Amazon Canada or Wisteria at 62 Bridge Street in Carleton Place