Letters April 23: Beacon Hill Park realities; columnist should try a run for office

Walking after midnight in Beacon Hill Park

After the latest attack in Beacon Hill Park something must be done.

The mayor of Victoria and each councillor must be made to walk alone and unarmed through Beacon Hill Park for two hours after dark. They should be made to do this for 30 days straight.

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Let’s see how harmless they think the tent dwellers are then. Time for all camping on any non-campground-zoned sites to end.

Tough enforcement needs to be enacted immediately. Put all these criminal campers into the homes of all the snowflake advocates and bleeding hearts protecting them.

Joe Dingman
Victoria

How do we measure the qualities we need?

“Look to the future, not to the past!” That should be good advice to the Conservatives.

They spend a lot of time looking back, to “glory days.” They rarely come forward with good reasons to vote for them in the future. They rarely admit errors.

Gwyn Morgan’s comments on the quality of the achievements of some government leaders have not been appropriate. He is critical of the qualifications of Justin Trudeau and Chrystia Freeland.

They both have degrees, at least a positive. They have both had jobs where they were held accountable.

Former Prime Minisetr Stephen Harper’s claim in employment is with a lobby group accountable to no one. Jason Kenney failed at university and his job record is similar to Harper’s.

Andrew Scheer was not even a licensed insurance broker, yet his résumé lists him as one.

Morgan was successful in the oilpatch. The private sector does not operate like government.

Is success in the oilpatch better than a career in teaching? Or in a career as an international journalist?

Is a career as a lobbyist or a failed insurance broker better criteria for governing better than a career in the oilpatch?

Why did Morgan not go into government if he has all the answers?

Robert Townsend
Saanich

We need to stop poisoning with drugs

Big news this week about U.S./NATO troops leaving Afghanistan, thus ending the longest-running war in our history.

But wait, the longest-running war in the West is the one on drugs, and given the deaths last year, it is a war we are not winning.

A recent letter to the editor, asking for suggestions, ends with calls for prayer, hope and hard time for selling hard drugs. No, it was not penned by Nancy Reagan. Remember the four-pillars approach: harm reduction, prevention, treatment, enforcement?

The first pillar is reducing the harms, which would seem to mean safe access to a safe supply used in a safe manner.

Prevention and treatment involve counselling and mental health services, always in short supply.

Then there is enforcement, or the “hard time” suggested in the earlier letter. There is no thinking person dealing with this issue that believes any solution involves policing, either by increasing numbers or improving police techniques.

If we stop poisoning addicts with fentanyl, we end the “crisis.”

I would guess for the majority of people the crisis is defined by the numbers of dead as opposed to the numbers of addicted. That is where the two middle pillars are needed.

Drug addiction is an illness, and right now, addicts are being poisoned.

Hope and pray for an end to the poisoning.

Mark R. Fetterly
Victoria

Blame a drunk driver, not high bumpers

Re: “Those high bumpers can kill ­people,” letter, April 21.

I agree that the raised bumpers can cause devastating injuries in a crash.

But let’s be clear: The ever-constant hazard that caused Cst. Sarah Beckett’s death was a drunk driver.

A driver who had absolutely no regard for his fellow drivers. A driver who could care less what damage he inflicted.

A driver who was drunk.

Darlene McDonald
Courtenay

Quebec comparison is apples and oranges

B.C.’s new target date for a return to balanced budgets is seven to nine years, after the government announced Tuesday that the province’s deficit for the fiscal 2020-21 year is $8.1 billion.

Wednesday’s editorial in the Times Colonist noted that Quebec is projecting a balanced budget in just four years. Gee, I wonder what B.C.’s financial outlook would be if, instead of zip as always, it could count on receiving more than $13 billion a year in federal equalization payments, as Quebec did in its calculations.

Earl Fowler
View Royal

Listen to countries without opiate deaths

Epidemiologically, facts tell us to look no further then Japan, the country that did not buy the medicalization of opium when the founder of the U.K. Royal Society of Chemistry synthesized the product at the turn of the last century.

We know that addiction starts with a “prescription,” either for pain or to relief a person’s emotions that affect their sleep or state of well-being.

Medicalization encourages as normal what are addictive habits, increasing a street market, which ended up being a state of emergency for B.C. public health officials.

Opium has won both Eastern and Western wars, trading as agricultural and pharmaceutical chemical products to dominate, and now “we” must confront our public health “emergency” disaster that clinical medicine created in the name of “science”!

K.A. Maloney
Oak Bay

Three protests, but let the rest of us live

So, there were three protests in one day. Three groups whose cause trumped anything else or anyone else.

Can you get your message out without disrupting others’ lives? It seems you cannot. What was the cost of the extra police resources that were called upon? (In one case over a four-day period.)

Has it ever occurred to anyone that the same police escort accompanies visiting dignitaries, although with VIP training for the latter. Have we given these protesters VIP status?

The old saying goes: “Give them an inch and they will take a mile.” Well, we gave that inch and they in turn have taken over our bridges, our highways, our busy thoroughfares, our railways and our ports as they see fit.

Has any protester even for a fraction of a second thought what the job of the police is like as you lie on the ground in protest or chain yourself to some object and they are to safely and quietly remove you?

You, the protester, hoping all the while that the police action is being filmed so that any real or perceived violation of your rights is there for the world to see.

Protest, let your voices be heard, but in doing so remember there are other voices, other causes and surely you can get your message out there while at the same time letting people go about their daily lives.

Merle Somers
Victoria

ICBC reimbursements akin to idiocy

Here we are a year and a half into a global pandemic with increasing infections, hospitalizations and deaths all on the rise. Most government leaders and health officials plead with people to isolate and not travel except for essential purposes.

So what does ICBC do? It sends out belated “pandemic reimbursement” cheques (often for minuscule amounts …some as little as one dollar) that require people to go to their bank.

This needlessly increases their exposure to the COVID-19 virus.

Since most people pay their insurance with a credit card, ICBC could have eliminated this risk entirely by crediting the customer’s credit card.

No wonder there is so much waste at ICBC. It’s clearly run by morons.

Gary Korpan
Nanaimo

We don’t need that roundabout

I am temporarily giving up my policy to never hopelessly complain again to City Hall just like a lot of my fellow citizens have.

The proposed installation of a roundabout on Richardson Street at the junction of Cowichan and Runnymede has pushed me over the edge.

This is the most foolish waste of our tax dollars yet. More bike lanes along Richardson is another expensive waste of our tax dollars.

The problem is speed and careless behaviour of drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.

I have been in the neighborhood for 80 years and the only problem I see is speed and the use of communication devices while driving.

I have also given up on traffic policing. City police do not have the resources to monitor traffic on a constant basis.

They need a mandate to form a traffic control division of at least four new traffic-trained and fully qualified police officers. They do the best they can at this time with the staff they have been alloted.

Education of existing rules of the road needs to be established for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians like Steve Wallace does with his column every week. Thank you, Steve.

Police presence on our roads day and night will help to deter improper behaviour by vehicle drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.

Ed Brown
Victoria

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