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Letters Oct. 15: Keeping North Saanich free of urban sprawl; the ethics of COVID-19

Old community ideas are no longer workable Re: “North Saanich needs to be a complete community,” commentary, Oct. 13. If every community across Canada was “a complete community,” what an environmental mess our country would be.
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Construction of the Canadian Tire store in North Saanich in 2018. Letter-writers suggest North Saanich’s agrarian character will be damaged with accelerated development of commercial and residential properties. ADRIAN LAM, TIMES COLONIST

Old community ideas are no longer workable

Re: “North Saanich needs to be a complete community,” commentary, Oct. 13.

If every community across Canada was “a complete community,” what an environmental mess our country would be.

The population of Canada is growing and becoming more mobile. There is a chronic housing shortage across Canada. We are all facing some difficult decisions about density, farmland, water, green space and services. Each community is going to have to accept and accommodate their fair share of density increases.

But an old-school approach of solving these problems won’t work this time. This is different.

If we simply build more homes, more people will migrate to Victoria, demand will increase and prices will continue to rise. The developers will get rich and the housing crises won’t be solved.

The divisive and narrow-minded views expressed in the commentary won’t get us any closer to the urgent solutions needed to keep our neighbours housed.

We need to start a different conversation. A new way of seeing housing. New perspectives. New solutions.

The commentary mentions Trumpism. This is a divisive tactic and uncalled-for in this important conversation.

Let’s stop worrying about where the pub will be and let’s work together to solve this urgent problem.

Suze Cumming
North Saanich

No, North Saanich does not need another pub

Re: “North Saanich needs to be a complete community,” commentary, Oct. 13.

The writer asserts that what North Saanich really needs is another pub to be located at the junction of McTavish and East Saanich roads.

The Roost restaurant is already at this junction. There is a pub three minutes south in Saanichton called The Prairie Inn. There is a pub three minutes north called Mary’s Bleue Moon Café.

Five minutes away is the town of Sidney with several pubs, restaurants and cafes. Surely the LAST business North Saanich needs is a pub in this location.

If one has the temerity to suggest this is not a great idea, one is rudely labelled as a wealthy, selfish, NIMBY person who should just shut up and allow development to occur all over the municipality in the name of being a “complete community.”

No wonder there is a lot of attention being paid to the development of a new Official Community Plan in North Saanich.

Bert Slater
North Saanich

A chance to get away from urban sprawl

Re: “North Saanich needs to be a complete community,” commentary, Oct. 13.

I was offended by this commentary on the “derailing” of the North Saanich Official Community Plan.

I moved to North Saanich 20 years ago in retirement. The reason for my late wife’s and my decision was based on living in a community situated close enough to major urban centres, allowing a modicum of nature by virtue of surrounding farms and trees, and most important, permitting us to get away from the “cheek and jowl” urban reality.

There is a persistent attempt by a minority living here to develop, develop, develop! Why?

I don’t consider myself to be a wealthy person, so the author missed his mark in shaming me as a privileged person. I resent the use of the disabled, First Nations, et al to push his agenda, which might possibly not be selfless.

People like myself moved here to get away from urban sprawl. Let’s preserve North Saanich.

Ernest Wahl
North Saanich

North Saanich agenda driven by outsiders

Re: “North Saanich needs to be a complete community,” commentary, Oct. 13.

Like many others In North Saanich, I am concerned about the Official Community Plan and a lack of regard for the current residents of this small rural community.

The mayor and council have engaged outside interests to draw up a plan which includes a lot of outside developers/financial agendas and seem to be pressing ahead with an agenda that does not include the residents and those that voted for the current council.

Sharon Brink
North Saanich

A terrible price to pay for resisting a shot

Re: “Let’s cool the hatred over ­vaccinations,” letter, Oct. 13.

I’ve resisted writing a letter on this topic so far because better minds than mine have pretty much exhausted the list of arguments in favour of vaccination in their letters.

However, since the debate rages on, I would say that I bear no hatred towards people who refuse to get the shot.

Just a lot of frustration: that they can’t understand the science; that they see it as a form of government control, rather than as a life-saving measure; that they are behaving toward their fellow citizens in a way that’s deeply dangerous.

The media, on both sides of the border, have carried multiple stories about people who either lost an unvaccinated loved one to COVID or who contracted it, suffered deeply before recovery and are now living with the after-effects.

People in both camps are going public to say the same thing: “I wish I/he/she/they had got the shot, but now it’s too late — don’t let it be too late for you.”

It would be lovely to have a “respectful dialogue” with members of the unvaccinated community, but their side of the conversation consists of my rights, my freedom, my choice. And so here we are.

The vaccinated “side” of this equation will only become larger as those on the other “side” either get sick and die or possibly suffer a great loss and become convinced that way. What a terrible price to pay, either way.

Lorraine Lindsay
Saanich

Difficult choices raise ethical questions

Re: “With COVID-19, where should ethical lines be drawn?” column, Oct. 10.

Congratulations to Lawrie McFarlane for putting this subject to the attention of the public.

Medical personnel are bound by the Hippocratic oath to “do no harm.” However, there are other ethical issues, such as greatest good to the greatest number.

I contend that we need to leave the decision regarding who gets the ventilator etc. to those who have studied the ethics of medicine and abide by their decision.

We may not be happy with their decisions, but someone has to have the courage to make these difficult determinations.

Ann Isaac, retired RN
Victoria

Vaccinations no, ink injections yes

A friend of mine commented today how ironic it is that so many of the anti-vaxxers think nothing of being tattooed but object to a vaccination.

To think they paid to spend hours having ink injected into their bodies when a one-prick vaccination that could save their life costs nothing.

E.J. Rayner
Mill Bay

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