Lawrence Martin wants us to think that Justin Trudeau has a big leg up in the Liberal leadership race because of his lifetime of experience gained growing up in the household of his father, Pierre Trudeau (Trudeau Inexperienced? Think Again – Feb. 26).
Puts me in mind of another similarly blessed son, George W. Bush.
Allison Smith, Ottawa
Lawrence Martin claims that “living all your early life at 24 Sussex” somehow counts as political experience worthy of a future prime minister. Justin Trudeau’s political immersion at 24 Sussex as a boy no more qualifies him to be PM than my boyhood years in my dad’s Chevy qualifies me to be a mechanic.
Vic Stecyk, Richmond Hill, Ont.
Hollywood isn’t alone in reading Canada out of the script of world events (The Canadian Caper Goes Hollywood – editorial, Feb. 26). Read the chapter on the Suez Canal crisis in Henry Kissinger’s Diplomacy (1994) and see if the name Lester Pearson turns up.
Howard M. Greenfield, Montreal
Irving Abella paints a more benign picture of Canada’s current immigration policy than he should (Never Again May None Be Too Many – Feb. 26).
Canada has recently added Hungary to its designated country of origin list; refugee claimants from such countries are now fast-tracked through our legal system because their countries are deemed democratic.
Canada has also been advertising in Roma areas in Hungary to warn people that refugee status is now harder to get in Canada. This puts the Roma at increased risk from the fascist Jobbik hoodlums and from a government one of whose own members considers Roma to be animals.
We may not have a “none is too many” policy for Roma, but we do seem to have an “any more is too many” policy for this group.
Rhoda E. Howard-Hassmann, Canada Research Chair in International Human Rights, Wilfrid Laurier University
It’s hard to believe that 30 years have passed since the publication of None Is Too Many, the seminal study on Canada’s historical racist immigration policies.
Today, some may find it hard to believe that politicians and immigration bureaucrats turned a blind eye to Jews fleeing for their lives from the Nazis. Yet, Canada’s decision to name Hungary a “designated safe country” has the dark consequence of going back to the future, that “none is (once again) too many.”
Bernie M. Farber, Thornhill, Ont.
Canada owes a debt of gratitude to Irving Abella and Harold Troper. Our history of intolerance wasn’t limited to Jews, and None Is Too Many reminds us we must still be on guard against hatred.
Jodey Michael Derouin, Ottawa
Re Is It Time To Ban Junk Food? (Feb. 26): Bad food addiction needs more than “Just say no.” When the chips are down, such non-food is a pernicious drug, not a life choice. In fact, it’s a slow death choice, and government intervention is required.
Ken DeLuca, Arnprior, Ont.
Many years ago, during a tour of the Quaker Oats factory in Peterborough, Ont., someone asked our guide about the nutritional value of the products we were viewing. He replied with the business slogan of one of the company’s former presidents: “No fat, no salt, no sugar, no sales.”
Larry Davies, Toronto
Don’t eat my horse
Re European Horsemeat Scandal Spreads To IKEA’s Meatballs (Feb. 26): I am a 14-year-old girl in Grade 9. This horsemeat scandal has stood out for me because, for the past 10 years, I have been an active horseback rider and have connected greatly with these amazingly talented animals.
I find it unfair toward the horses and the humans eating them. The living conditions for horses in the “kill auctions” are brutal, and it’s very sad that these meat producers want to kill innocent horses and lie to the people eating them. I find that extremely disgusting.
I can’t imagine eating a horse.
Emily Lewis, Toronto
Your article Britain’s Austerity Trap (Folio, Feb. 26) was welcome, but it didn’t mention the main reason why Canada’s economy was able to grow in the 1990s despite spending cuts. Interest rates were cut from almost 15 per cent in 1990 to less than 5 per cent by 1997. This provided a very large monetary boost to the economy together with a lower dollar that counteracted fiscal constraints.
We’re in a different situation now with interest rates close to historical lows and little where to go but up. That’s why we’ve seen austerity measures fail both economically and fiscally in the U.K., fail in Europe and why they’ll continue to fail elsewhere, including in Canada.
Toby Sanger, senior economist, Canadian Union of Public Employees, Ottawa
Armed in America
The images of children being trained by well-armed delusionists to fight a war against their own government are truly chilling (Gun Manufacturers See Sales Shoot Through The Roof – Feb. 26). The irony, of course, is that anyone insisting they need weapons to defend their interpretation of the Second Amendment against government “tyranny” is exactly the sort of individual one would wish to see disarmed, and quickly.
Michael Lennick, Toronto
I’ve just finished reading your scintillating article about the exciting field of boredom research (Canadians Lead In Hot New Field Of Research: Boredom Studies – Feb. 26). It’s this sort of activity, I think, that can give the field of psychology a bad name.
Common sense says most people can identify the feeling of being bored and probably know why they’re feeling that way. It will take a long-term study to evaluate the suggestions that boredom can cause “depression, overeating” etc., and who wants to be in the control group and remain bored for that long?
If being bored is a mental health issue, perhaps greater access to individual counselling to alleviate it would be the way to go, rather than spending valuable funds on this airy-fairy type of research.
Ann Sullivan, Peterborough, Ont.
If this is front-page news, someone at The Globe and Mail is really bored.
Leo J. Deveau, Regina