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Letters Dec. 9: Maritime museum belongs in Steamship building; remembering Pearl Harbor

The heritage CPR Steamship Terminal would make an ideal home for the Maritime Museum of B.C., a reader argues. TIMES COLONIST

A perfect location for the maritime museum

The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority is seeking to hand back control of the CPR Steamship Building to the provincial government.

The B.C. Maritime Museum desperately needs a central waterfront location to showcase its wonderful collection celebrating our maritime heritage. This sounds like an obvious berth to me.

Jamie Alley

Personal memories of Pearl Harbor

Eighty years ago, on the Island of Oahu, Territory of Hawaii, a small boy and his mother walked to a store to buy the Sunday paper.

While walking they saw and heard planes rising and diving over the naval ships at Pearl Harbor. To the young boy, the planes sounded like angry bees.

So they bought the paper and returned home. A few hours later the mother learned that her husband had been killed during the Japanese attack. She grieved and her sister Edna was there to comfort her.

The little boy never grieved because he never knew his father, he didn’t know what a father was, his father had been at sea all his young five years of life.

My story.

James West, age 85

Am I my brother’s keeper?

While one generally gets along best with folks who share a similar worldview, there may be notable exceptions. Imagine our surprise and disappointment to learn this week that not just one, but two, sets of our longtime friends are confirmed anti-vaxxers!

My personal search for truth has often, and increasingly(!), found me at odds with those around me in matters of social mores, as well as of theology.

Obviously, I accept differences of opinion. Yet, as we live in a community, it behooves us to find modes of just-living — behaviours that respect not “just us,” but social “justice” — not just me, but also my neighbour.

It is interesting to reflect on the social attitude shift, during our lifetime, from a sense of community to one of singularity.

When we were children, we received our round of life-saving vaccines at school, no questions asked: just line up, be brave, get your poke. As a result, society has wrestled almost to non-existence many of the plagues of humankind: smallpox, typhoid, diphtheria, measles, polio.

The well-being of the larger community was perceived to be paramount, superseding personal preference.

Today, in the face of a pandemic, believed to have killed over five million people worldwide to date, we have people in our circle who would put individual preference above concern for neighbour.

If I have the virus in my body, I can infect someone else just by breathing near them, or by contaminating a surface that they may subsequently touch before putting their hands to one of their body’s mucous membranes.

At our house, we sought out our vaccinations at the first opportunity. This week we are privileged to get our booster.

Ryon Johnston

Compare numbers to see what virus can do

Re: “We are along way from the worst death toll,” letter, Dec. 7.

It would have been nice to see the writer give credit where credit is due when he compared lives lost due to the Bubonic plague in Europe (circa 1350), to lives lost to COVID-19 in Canada in 2021.

In this day and age, we are fortunate to have our public health officers guiding the response to the pandemic with the latest science, and here in Canada, we have been fortunate to have vaccines available to us.

Just look at the numbers though in Yemen, where both public-health initiatives and vaccines have not been readily available, and it tells a truer story of what this virus is capable of doing.

Joanne Wiggins

Cruise ship could bring virus and its variants

Re: “We gain millions from the cruise industry,” letter, Dec. 7.

The Norwegian Breakaway docked in New Orleans last Sunday carrying at least 17 passengers and crew members with breakthrough COVID-19 infections, despite the fact none had symptoms and only the fully vaccinated were allowed to board.

It has now set sail again with new passengers. That is just one cruise ship.

Cruise ships were an early source of COVID outbreaks at the start of the coronavirus pandemic and, with Omicron on the horizon, perhaps Victoria would be better off without these world travellers and their money until we get this pandemic more under control.

Lorraine Mainwaring

Let’s fix Clover Point after the election

On a recent visit to Clover Point, I was fortunate enough to find a parking spot in the “lucky zone.” For over half an hour, from the comfort of my car, I was able to watch the high waves generated by the prevailing windstorm.

There was a steady stream of cars coming in behind me. Most of them turned around in the tiny circle at the end of the road, and left. A few of them got lucky like me and found a space. I couldn’t help but sigh when I remembered how easy it used to be.

I also got out of my car and went for a walk. I studied the damage that the city “experts” have inflicted upon the area in the name of “improvements.” I realized that it wouldn’t cost much to undo this damage: move the picnic tables off the roadway unto the grass, and remove the post barriers.

With that in mind, and with a municipal election coming up next year, I have a suggestion for all candidates.

Part of your campaign could include a phrase like “Let’s fix Clover Point.” It’s not too late.

Rob Schott

Prepare yourself for a major emergency

Re: “Simply put, we are not ready for a disaster,” letter, Nov. 18.

I’d like to strongly suggest that people, yes the public, you, need to be prepared. We all have to dig deep when there’s a widespread emergency. You are the one and only one responsible for yourself and those around you.

My husband and I lived through a 7.7 earthquake (which we could be expecting) and no government, no matter how well prepared, will be “there” to help you immediately.

Count on yourself to have your BBQ and propane full, a camping stove — if you have one — with a full tank as well canned goods that may have to be eaten cold (no electricity), cereals, bars and such.

Stay calm, be practical and be ready to hunker down, and perhaps help those who can’t help themselves. Be ready to become the best of yourself.

Dee Raimbault


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