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Letters Feb. 19: Using fossil fuels; solving the drug problem; making streets safer

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A letter-writer suggests tiny homes — like those that were part of Victoria’s Tiny Town, at 940 Caledonia Ave., could help make the city’s streets safer. ADRIAN LAM, TIMES COLONIST

We’ll sue them while we still use them

So it seems like Saanich wishes to sue the big evil oil and gas companies.

I guess they will will drive to the courtroom in that massive fleet of fossil-fuel-operated vehicles they own.

Talk about hypocrisy.

Brad Smith

Victoria

Like it or not, it’s been 100 years

Re: “Here’s a recount of the air force’s history,” letter, Feb. 14.

As stated, the Royal Canadian Air Force was established on April 1, 1924, which means April 1 this year will be its 100-year anniversary.

As to the approach, “then it wasn’t and then, it is again” and therefore does not deserve the 100-year designation, I wholeheartedly object. I rather imagine many long-serving airmen and their families will feel the same way.

Just because there was a name interruption, so to speak, it does not change the objectives and commitments of the organization or the courage of the members.

Many, like my father, served during the war and through the name changes. He would definitely call “bull crap” on the nit-picking.

On April 1, 2024, the RCAF will have been in existence for 100 years and recognition is well deserved.

Dawn Devereaux

Victoria

Adults, please stand up to solve the drug problems

I am shocked and saddened to read the recent doublespeak about illicit drug use in British Columbia. Gone are the “drug addicts,” replaced by “people diagnosed with opioid use disorder.” Gone are “drug overdoses,” replaced with “accidental drug poisoning.” No more “just say no.” Now it’s “safer supply, please.”

Where is the accountability? It is not my fault that I chose to purchase and use illicit, I mean “decriminalized” dangerous drugs, it’s the drug’s fault, it’s the dealer’s fault, it’s society’s fault.

And don’t forget about those bad actors who put the poison in there to create a “poisonous supply.” Have we strayed so far that we are forgetting the fact, that even medical grade prescription heroin use is not safe? Oh, but at least it is “safer.”

The effects of illicit drug use are apparent in cities of all sizes across British Columbia: The open injection and smoking of hard drugs adjacent to schools, libraries and town halls, and addicts appearing lifeless as they hunch over in a daze are such common sights, even the kindest of humans step past as if it wasn’t even there.

I am shocked by the doublespeak, but I am saddened by how a purportedly progressive provincial government bends over backwards to help keep addicts hooked and on the streets.

Where is the compassion? If you want to treat drug addiction as a disease, where is the unwavering support to help these poor addicts get treatment?

What happened to the institutions of old where people could be housed, fed, cared for and supervised as they are assisted in regaining control of their lives and gain a sense of purpose and self-worth?

Where is the big push to get dangerous hard drugs off the streets and to get dangerous drug use away from libraries and schools?

Shame on you. Shame on all of you who feel that giving someone what they want, in order for them to keep harming themselves, is the right thing to do.

If your child asks for candy before bed and refuses to brush her teeth, would you support that behavior just because that is what she wants? You should know better.

Would the adult in the room please stand up?

Kieran Amidon

Courtenay

Two possible ways to make streets safer

Here are two policies that I feel that could make our streets more safe again.

1. Maclean’s had a story titled “The housing hero of Fredericton” about a tycoon who funnelled his fortune into a planned community of 99 affordable tiny homes.

Why should we have to wait for a rich citizen to do what our governments should be taking care of with some sort of continuity guidance to a better path forward for the housed?

Capital Regional District responsibility might have a better hope of accomplishment since it would represent the entire region.

2. Build mental institutions where there can be supervised treatment and protection for the community as well as the patients …. and not helter-skelter little treatment centres hard to find, already full, etc.

Toni Blodgett

View Royal

Many global issues to cause us concern

The letter writer who feels safe drug supply is futile should be reminded that we have a safe supply of alcohol which is, without doubt, the most destructive of the drug options.

During Prohibition many people died from drinking a variety of unsafe substances. With safe supplies, people have the possibility of recovery. Death is hard to recover from.

Also, he can’t possibly know that it is not making a difference, as the street drug supply is getting increasingly contaminated with more deadly additives. Furthermore, talking with any person who peruses the news, you will find there is a definite sense of worry about the state of global affairs.

Perhaps people are “treating” themselves more, with a variety of chemicals (including alcohol) as a coping mechanism. This is speculation of course, as was the opinion of the letter writer.

We would need a hard epidemiological look to ascertain exactly what is going on.

Finally, plastic, fossil fuels, etc., while giving us easy lives for a number of decades, consequences of this ease have been piling up (literally in the case of plastics).

This is a deep ditch which is going to be difficult (euphemism) to climb out of. Every move, I would imagine, has a ditch or two as a possible destination. We can only try to staunch the misery that is particularly egregious.

Deborah Crawford

Saanich

Fix some real problems to make Victoria better

Re: “Fountain is the beating heart of Centennial Square,” commentary, Jan. 27.

I, too, wonder who decided we should just tear out the Centennial Square fountain and spend untold tax dollars changing the square without any public input on that decision.

Victoria is rapidly becoming a embarrassing joke. I ventured downtown the other evening to have dinner at a restaurant.

Getting through the maze of closed roads, hundreds of signs, bike lanes and bollards everywhere, must be utterly bewildering for visitors, not to mention us locals.

To pick someone up, or drop them off at some location, on a windy, cold, rainy night, is impossible, if not dangerous, in many locations.

Finding parking is a real challenge and leaves one with a very uncomfortable feeling when one looks at the homeless community that occupies our sidewalks these days.

Downtown Victoria has become a very unfriendly place.

City council decided to spend $10 million on the Fort Street bike lanes; $11 million to buy two buildings so they can tear them down and create a park (which will instantly become a new tent city); and $750,000 to redesign Centennial Square.

They have made many more discretionary decisions that raise the questions about priorities in this city.

Do you not think we have real problems that need to be addressed? Do you not think the police budget might be more important than further destroying the downtown area?

Do you not think it’s time for a whole new approach to choosing the politicians we elect?

Bob Wheaton

Victoria

That blitz won’t help if they are back on the street

Blitz: A sudden, energetic, and concerted effort, typically on a specific task.

I would hope that shoplifting blitz by Victoria Police and the RCMP was well planned, not sudden, energetic, and possibly on a specific task.

Other then recovering a lot of stolen property, nothing was accomplished. It was noted some of the individuals involved had done this several times.

They know they can keep doing this and nothing will happen to them – other than being told “do not do it again and get caught.”

Shop owners are going out of business by the failure of the justice system to act. You cannot treat these persons with impunity, or they will take advantage.

We need to get away from the idea that these persons have problems and we have to be respectful.

They have many problems, but they need to know there are consequences. They might understand terms of incarceration.

A blitz is a waste of energy because it just turns into a merry-go-round. A concerted, continuous effort is needed.

Where are the police personnel going to come from? That is up to the three levels of government. They seem to be too involved in their own quagmire to do anything.

Ed Iddins

Victoria

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