Letters, October 13 – Winnipeg Free Press

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Hang on, columnists

Re: Even thick skin is bruised (October 9)

Reading Melissa Martin’s column, I felt extremely sad, but also angry. Sad that some in our society seem unable to try to formulate a rational response when they disagree with a writer and can only resort to the vernacular of the unwashed.

I like to read a lot Free press columnists, even those with whom I disagree. If I wish to respond with a letter, I should try to express my point of view with a reasoned response as to what I think are errors or omissions in their opinions / arguments. Insults and threats should never be part of what we write.

I also felt anger that this aggressive style of behavior was encouraged by Max Bernier, who told his supporters in the People’s Party of Canada that they had to “play dirty”.

It is unfortunate that Martin and other journalists are confronted with the immature behavior of a selfish segment of society. I feel his work and the work of his colleagues at Free press worth reading, although I sometimes feel like they miss the mark. Hang on.

Tim Proskurnik, Winnipeg

When Melissa Martin writes that she is the target of hate, it’s possible her head needs a better connection with her heart, as in a previous column she tolerated the anarchist and lawless actions of the unruly mob that shot down the statues of Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth. Martin cries crocodile tears.

Ron Welker, Fort Frances, Ont.

I agree that the online abuse of women journalists has reached an intolerable level and must stop. I have seen published examples of this abuse, and it is disgusting. These answers are not divergent opinions; it is hate speech and should be prosecuted as such.

Bridget Wright, Birtle

Honorable public service call

Re: Downsizing the Civil Service is a Concern for Manitobans (Editorial, October 11)

What is not stated in your editorial is that many public servants have important responsibilities regarding the finances of their organizations and / or public safety. They’re the ones who run the organizations that keep the lights on, keep you dry in the event of a flood, provide clean water, and make sure bridges and roads are safe. Public service is more than just pushing paper and it is an honorable, albeit underappreciated, career choice.

Tom Pearson, Winnipeg

Distorted Christian teaching

D: PPC adopted by anti-vaccines (October 9)

Solomon Wiebe, the People’s Party of Canada candidate for Portage Lisgar in the 2021 federal election, reportedly said: “Demographically this region has Christian roots and I think they are more inclined to make their own choice.

It is an oxymoron and a sad misunderstanding of Christian teaching. For Christians, our own choice takes a back seat to our Lord’s mandate “to love one another as I have loved you”. For most of us, that means “Do whatever you can to take care of one another, serve one another, help one another, protect one another. Wiebe, his political party, and anti-vaccines around the world are focused on their own choice, saying they have the right not to be vaccinated.

Maybe the Free press would be so kind as to be of service to all of us and print out the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which apparently most people have not read. Nowhere in this document is there any mention of anyone’s right to ignore public health mandates. You will not find such a teaching in the Christian scriptures either.

René Jamieson, Winnipeg

311 more patience for the poor

Re: Patience is an increasingly rare virtue (Notice of October 9)

I love Carl DeGurse’s articles and tend to agree with him most of the time.

The ineffectiveness of the 311 telephone answering that he describes also isolates our poorest population. The poorest pay their minutes on their mobile phones. As soon as they are put on hold, they hang up because they have no idea how many of their precious minutes will be used up waiting. This increases their feeling of helplessness.

Boston had an interesting response to long waits on its 311 counterpart. As soon as the wait time exceeded a certain number of minutes, calls began to be redirected to clerical and administrative staff in city departments, including the town hall. This resulted in the hotline being fully staffed.

Sel Burrows, Winnipeg

Please continue to insist that patience, or lack of patience, has become an epidemic. It’s almost impossible to drive somewhere without hitting tailgaters. It seems that the speed limit is no longer sufficient.

Larry Stephenson, Winnipeg

Automotive cooperatives clarified

Re: Automotive co-op, a progressive success story (Avis, October 12)

Brent Bellamy makes some excellent points about auto co-ops, and at some point I plan to join one.

However, he slips when he says that Peg City’s 60 cars are taking nearly 750 cars off the road. It is based on studies which show that a cooperative car “takes 13 private cars off the road”. What this study means is that 13 people who would have owned a car themselves no longer have one. Instead, they use the cooperative car for shopping etc.

This does not in any way mean that they drive much less; it just means that they are using the same vehicle as everyone else when driving.

What the cooperative is clearly saving is the “waste” of producing, insuring and maintaining unused cars. A more rigorous study should be done to determine whether people drive less if they are part of a co-op.

When I join an auto co-op, it won’t be because I want to drive less, although I most likely will. It’s because I don’t want to, as Bellamy points out, pay for something that sits idle most of the time, sometimes for days.

JohnDavid Pankratz, Winnipeg

Rethinking charitable status

Re: Ending Charitable Tax Status (Letters, October 9)

Letter writer Irwin Corobow argues that all faith-based organizations should lose their charitable status. Its reasons are some of the many sins of these groups.

I would be curious to know if he thinks the same thing about political organizations which, incidentally, enjoy a much greater tax advantage. Should parties like the People’s Party of Canada that condone or even support anti-vaccine arguments keep their status? Should parties that accept candidates who attack immigrants or same-sex marriage, or trans people keep their status?

Diane Cooper, Winnipeg

British Columbia fan pleads with Bombers

Re: D Bombers dominate in 30-3 win over Edmonton (October 8)

As a huge fan of the Canadian Football League, born and raised in British Columbia, I would like to ask for favors from the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. But first, let me thank you for having an incompetent point kicker so you didn’t beat BC and Edmonton in the last two games worse than you did.

My favors are: Would the Bombers consider hampering a horse on running back Andrew Harris for at least half (anyone who knows horses knows what that means), and could you please play? an incompetent quarterback for at least half, so he would give other teams a chance?

I’m sure I’m speaking on behalf of the other seven teams in the league when I say thank you for at least considering my requests.

Robert Bishop, Kelowna, BC


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