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Letters March 9: Truck convoy not welcome in Victoria; nurse practitioners can ease MD crisis

A trucker convoy driving to Parliament Hill in Ottawa to protest measures taken by authorities to curb the spread of COVID-19 and vaccine mandates on the highway near Kanata, Ont., in January. Letter-writers suggest a similar convoy will find few supporters in Victoria. FRANK GUNN, THE CANADIAN PRESS

A better idea than a legislature protest

Re: “Trucks on way to occupy Victoria streets, convoy organizer says,” March 8.

Saddened to hear of this so-called freedom convoy making their way here. What makes them think they are welcome?

We are an “NDP stronghold” for a reason — our choice. Still wearing masks — our choice. I am also proud of the leadership shown throughout this pandemic by Bonnie Henry and Adrian Dix.

We don’t need or welcome the U.S. Trump style of politics.

I challenge you to do something meaningful with your life — sell those 16,000 hamburgers and donate the money to help Ukraine. They more than ever need our empathy and support during their time of need.

Try walking in the shoes of those being bombed daily and families being torn apart and you may feel what “loss of freedom” really means.

Liz Wight

Why do we allow city-choking protests?

The news that a convey is going to shut down Victoria in front of the legislature from March 14 onward has made me very angry. My wife will be receiving post-op malignancy care at Royal Jubilee Hospital on the 15th. The Laurel Point Inn has a program that caters to people receiving care at the cancer clinic. The anti-vaxxers — who represent less than 10% of B.C.’s population — will block our reasonable access to the hospital.

I support the police and government, but have no confidence at all in our freedom to reasonably obtain access to medical care through the streets in that area. I have no faith at all in the police or government preventing this so-called “occupation” from occurring. Shame on our system for allowing a small group of people to do this.

Greg Smith
Qualicum Beach

An open letter to the premier

Dear Premier Horgan,

In today’s Times Colonist, the Troublemaker Convoy proudly announced plans to descend upon our city to repeat the chaos they perpetrated in Ottawa for weeks on end. Their “plan” is to “show” you that you cannot “break” their interpretation of our laws, by tying up Victoria as they unlawfully did in Ottawa.

You know, as do we all, that this will not be a “peaceful protest” any more than in Ottawa, but rather a free-for-all, to the detriment of our province and our city. I urge you to learn from the mistakes made in Ottawa; to take pre-emptive action to, (a) keep them out of British Columbia, or (b) keep them off our Island, or (C) at the very least, keep them out of Victoria, before the damage is done.

Please, show the leadership and intelligence that was so sadly lacking in Ottawa.

Terrance G. McAlister

No thanks, convoy organizers

The people of Ottawa suffered for three weeks of being terrorized by the so-called “Freedom” Convoy. All three levels of government, including the police, were scared to enforce existing laws and bylaws that the truckers were openly breaking.

The statements by Victoria police seem to me to indicate that the same situation will arise in Victoria with the convoy currently en route. The citizens of Victoria should demand that all our laws be 100% enforced against these truckers. We should be aware that the black smoke emitted by the diesel trucks contain carcinogens, so they pose a health hazard to Victorians.

On the other side of the world, brave Ukrainians are fighting to preserve their country and democracy against Putin. Russia has spread disinformation (such as to help Trump get elected in 2016) with the aim to disrupt and demoralize western democracies. Russia is also spreading disinformation about COVID vaccination, with the aim of encouraging organizations like the “Freedom” convoy.

Canadian government agencies need to investigate foreign funding of these organizations and disinformation campaigns.

Kenneth Mintz

Nurse practitioners can help with MD crisis

Many people assume that doctors are the only professionals who are licensed to provide first-level medical care. In fact, in June 2020, B.C. launched the Nexus Primary Care Clinic, to provide the first nurse-practitioner-led team-based primary care services to residents of Nanaimo.

They declared that: “Nurse practitioners are health practitioners who can work on their own, or with physicians and other health professionals, to provide care across a person’s life span. This includes diagnosing and treating illnesses, ordering and interpreting tests, prescribing medications and performing medical procedures.”

The Ministry of Health and health authorities could address some of the “doctor shortage” issue by redefining it as a “primary care shortage” issue and creating more opportunities for nurse practitioners.

Elaine M. Gallagher, BSN, MN, PhD

Tesla needs to support Islanders

As a Tesla Model 3 owner, I am happy to read of the service centre planned for Langford 18 months from now. But Tesla needs to do more, and do it sooner. Driving Vancouver Island is impractical outside of the CRD and Nanaimo because Tesla has no charging stations elsewhere.

I could drive to Winnipeg, but I can’t drive my environmentally friendly Tesla to visit the UNESCO Clayoquot Sound Biosphere. I can’t even visit friends in Campbell River and return.

If you own a Tesla in Cowichan, the hour drive to a Tesla charger in either Victoria or Nanaimo and back would result in a severely depleted battery. Tesla has a convenient online trip planning tool. Use it to find all the places on Vancouver Island where you can not travel in a Tesla.

If it is true that “there are more Tesla cars on southern Vancouver Island, per capita, than in any other region in Canada,” Tesla should be embarrassed by the lack of charging infrastructure for the best car I have owned.

Ernie Gorrie

Be the change for a cleaner world

After over 30 years of denying, avoiding, posturing, deceiving and delaying by whichever major party held power, greenhouse gases have continued to increase to the point beyond which we dare not go to maintain a liveable future. Under the power of the fossil-fuel industry, political will has, for the most part, remained political rhetoric.

In this critical time, we the people must summon wisdom, compassion and courage to bring about the substantial, meaningful change required to re-create a liveable future for us all. We must individually “be the change” and turn our worry into our own meaningful action. We can do this with a few life-supporting changes that will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions but enhance our well-being.

Check out the Victoria Action for a Just Transition on March 12 at Centennial Square. Write your MP and MLA. Every thoughtful attempt can help change a world gasping for breath, and badly in need of refreshing.

Gail Meston

Ukraine’s fate in hands of the Russian people

It should be no surprise that Putin invaded Ukraine. In spite of words to the contrary, the military buildup showed his real intent.

People are asking if sanctions will succeed in getting Putin to retreat. The answer is no, because his lifestyle won’t change, but the sanctions will be felt by the Russian people, and together over months or maybe years of Russians returning in body bags the Russian people may have had enough.

Only internal dissent of the Russian people would change Putin’s mind; that’s why Ukraine’s President Zelensky spoke on television yesterday, in Russian, trying to appeal to the Russian people.

Autocrats like Putin and China’s Xi are not afraid of the ballot box, Putin can cheat and China doesn’t permit elections. It was reported Xi and Putin were horrified when they saw the Jan. 6 attempted U.S. insurrection. Their only fear is an uprising of their citizens.

So whether it’s Trump and his big lie and attempted coup, or in Canada, the new Conservative interim leader Candice Bergen’s support of the truckers, the only way to detour bad behaviour of political leaders is political action by the people. Bergen’s photo of dinner with the truckers or wearing a Make America Great Again hat speak volumes, but were lightly reported.

Fortunately in Canada we still have the ballot box to punish power-hungry, self-serving politicians, but as evidenced in the U.S., democracy is becoming increasingly fragile.

Wayne Cox


• Email letters to:

• Mail: Letters to the editor, Times Colonist, 201-655 Tyee Rd., Victoria, B.C. V9A 6X5

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