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Letters June 17: Where will electricity come from?; Courtenay doesn't need that bridge

Rendering of the proposed 6th Street active-transportation bridge in Courtenay. VIA CITY OF COURTENAY

We need more electricity, but where will it come from?

I am amazed and alarmed by the obsession with electrification of every piece of our daily living.

I understand the need to reduce fossil fuel use but there seems to be little concept of how electricity is created, transmitted and managed to ensure longevity of supply. We are constantly bombarded by information and advertising about converting vehicles, home cooking and heating, industrial processes and commercial outlets such as restaurants to electrical energy versus any other form of energy.

This seems to be akin to operating a huge ocean freighter without a captain or for that matter anyone else in charge.

B.C. is now a negative producer of electricity, purchasing excess requirements from cheapest source, potentially from suppliers who don’t care about what source of energy is used to generate it.

This outsourcing of electrical supply cannot be green washed as we may have no choice on how it is created. As climate and weather changes are radically affecting the rainfall in most parts of our province so does it affect the power generation capabilities.

We need to pull our heads out of the sand and not blindly follow the rhetoric but ask questions and demand a plan be developed by government to ensure there is and can be an adequate supply of electrical power to meet all of the differing initiatives being pushed upon the public.

Remember all of the negative pushback on the Site C dam and it is yet to be completed.

We will possibly need several more Site C mega projects to meet projected electrical demands and these projects are polluters by their used of carbon emitting construction methods.

Mike Wilkinson


No need for a new bridge in Courtenay

I cannot understand the reasoning for Courtenay to go ahead with a pedestrian/cycling bridge a block from the Fifth Street bridge, considering that the taxpayers are on the hook for 51 per cent of the cost! In a time when people cannot afford groceries, fuel, basic necessities, and homelessness is at an all-time high, how can $3.38 million be spent on this?

If it was a free bridge paid for by some philanthropist, green light the project.

I speak as a citizen of Courtenay who was just hoodwinked into a garbage program that went from $237.50 a year to $357.35 a year (34% increase) and a property tax increase of $1,297 (21% increase).

How is this even tabled? Every level of government is spending other people’s money at an unforgivable rate. This bridge is exclusive to such a small portion of the community, usurping the need of the rest of the community.

I would sooner use this money to help homeless people versus a pedestrian or cyclist that might have users go an extra few metres to use the Fifth Street bridge to cross the river.

Unbelievable! It’s time to rethink who our leaders are in this community.

Maybe putting our glasses on versus wearing them on our head might be the more educated thing to do and correct this ill-considered project.

It can sit for a few years while spending, interest rates and a more qualified city government is in a more favourable position to allow such non-essential projects to be approved.

Wade Kropelin


Antisemitism problem in B.C. schools

A Grade 6 teacher used Oct. 7 as a teachable moment to justify Hamas violence against Jews.

A social studies exam asked students to present an argument for why Israel should exist and argument for why Israel should not exist.

The B.C. Teachers’ Federation “Israel-Palestine Conflict” curriculum has a blatant anti-Israel bias. Why is this even part of the curriculum??

BCTF just took down the online Anti-Oppression Educators Collective (the AOEC) which encouraged students and teachers to attend anti-Israel rallies organized, in part, by Samidoun, a group whose members praise the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas.

The new BCTF antiracism teaching modules exclude antisemitism in Canada while documenting racism against almost every single other ethnocultural community.

Post-Secondary Minister Selena Robinson (who is Jewish) was fired by NDP Premier David Eby.

Education Minister Rachna Singh has ignored antisemitism complaints.

There needs to be an independent investigation into B.C. schools.

Anita Colman


We need Pride because we all belong

Keep on rising.

We rise up to heal from our own history of violent threats, living in fear and rejection from our own family and friends.

We rise up to give voice to those who feel trapped or cannot defend themselves.

We forge a path against the flow, so those who follow in our footsteps can see the path toward freedom.

We raise our flag to be visible and to unite our communities in our history, present and future.

We raise our flag for Matthew Sheppard and every other queer person who lost their lives to violence or suicide by way of expressing who they are.

For the questioning youth who read all the comments feel the dark shadow of increasingly unfiltered hatred.

For the people in your families who are still in hiding.

For the 49 souls who lost their lives in a nightclub bombing.

For those who wonder why we insist: we come together in memorial, in defiance, and in celebration of ourselves.

Our agenda is education, love and freedom.. and the right to exist as we are in peace.

If you find our visibility or existence somehow radical or fascist, question yourself as to why that is.

Come join us as we celebrate progress and remember the Stonewall Riots.

All are welcome under the rainbow.

We all belong. That’s the whole point.

Barry Roberts


When a museum has to deal with theft

I read with interest a BBC report that the FBI is going to help the British Museum with theft from their displays.

Ironic that! Since a great many of the items on display were originally the loot of empire.

So, let’s start by returning the Elgin Marbles, which the present owners profess they can look after better than the Greeks – just another dash of pomposity and jingoistic from the people who gave us those two words.

P.G. McEneaney


Solitary confinement means we fail the test

One test of a just society is how that society treats its prisoners. I was disturbed to hear that solitary confinement has become more common at the provincially administered prison in Hamilton.

The United Nations recognizes 15 consecutive days of solitary confinement as torture. In Hamilton, Ontario, the threshold of 15 days is being violated and overall, the rate of solitary confinement in Hamilton is four times the provincial average. The reason given? Staff shortages.

In response to two court decisions, the House of Commons passed a law that seemed to eliminate the practice of solitary confinement. However, the law introduced the practice of “structured intervention units.”

Without interventions, due to staff shortages one can assume, the practice of solitary confinement will continue in Canada. Until the practice is eliminated, we cannot claim to be a just society.

Kip Wood


After unprecedented heat, why are we helping industry?

Re: “Carbon capture rollout lags as industry, Ottawa at odds over who shoulders risk,” June 5.

How is it even possible that we are discussing this? The fossil fuels industry made this mess with the environment, and they knew since the 1960s that this would happen if the emissions of CO2 sent to the atmosphere by the manufacture and use of their products were not adequately addressed.

They were told this by their own scientists, and instead of acting they chose to ignore and bury their reports. Things would be so different now if they would’ve done the right thing.

Now they want the clean up to be profitable for them and they want that you and I make sure that it is by paying them if their clean up operation goes sour. And that is likely to happen with the current carbon capture technology being proposed.

The federal government is already investing more than $90 billion “to help Canadian companies decarbonize.” They want more.

I frequently see letters criticizing what’s being spent in trying to make the city of Victoria more livable, more walkable. We should be jumping up and down complaining about what we are being forced to pay to the fuel companies instead.

The UN chief has just told us that we just had 12 consecutive months of unprecedented heat. And we are in the right lane to repeat this performance next year.

Why do we even think of helping the main actors behind this misery?

J.G. Miranda


Criminal element lives on another island

Re: “Senior whose house was ransacked gets new home, thanks to donors,” June 5.

Sometimes the only convenience that comes to the mind of a criminal is the want of knowing. When someone is away from a home, a business, or most likely to be careless about the want of security.

They live on an island different from ours. One that can’t offer them the kind of neighbours able to give and to return some sense of residence after a horrible act of theft.

Perhaps they own only the motive to repeat a crime, time after time. Instead of becoming something of a neighbour, themselves. A hard act to follow, for some indeed.

The title to pride that it owns is not within the instinct of thievery. An impersonal choice never finds reward in the keeping of a better sensation, perhaps.

Yet, knowing a neighbour can be enough to stymie that loss, even where the criminal mind persists. Want of neighbourliness is subject also to a want of security.

Those who prove us wrong in finding it also make the means to commit again of another crime. Which, in time only offers the benefit of imprisonment, with skills unwanted as a whole.

It is a practical art, living, and it is a host to so many other benefits outside of insecurity. Which is what fosters the independent mind of the criminal.

They who have no other lead to kindness. It simply utters something to what made them sure of an inconvenient truth, in the first place.

The subject of which threatens only where there is no host of goodness to answer for the badness in kind which is summoned up of hopeless criminality.

It is an island in itself. Thankfully, it comes and goes with the tide.

Roger Duddridge



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