PM’s shame, M.I.A.
Re New Legal Battle Shaping Up Over Quebec Judge (June 17): I can only come to the conclusion that Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his government have no humility and feel no shame. If they were landscapers, the only equipment they would require for gardening work around government buildings – especially the Supreme Court – is bulldozers.
Bill Bousada, Carleton Place, Ont.
Scourge of asbestos
For many decades, with the goal of corporate profit, the asbestos industry and various governments have hidden or minimized the destruction of lives and health that asbestos causes. This includes the present federal government (No Safe Use – Focus, June 14; Eyebrow-Raiser – letters, June 17). I saw my beloved husband, a professional engineering consultant, die of mesothelioma. It is a terrible fate.
Labour Minister Kellie Leitch, a doctor, is “too busy” to speak to The Globe about asbestos exposures. For a medical doctor to be part of a government’s support for asbestos in any way is appalling: “First, do no harm.” I hope that after next year, the minister will no longer be “too busy.”
Elizabeth Quance, Westmount, Que.
Re Seeing Red (Report on Business, June 17): We loved being surprised by having an Air Canada Dreamliner jet assigned to one leg of our recent trip to Athens.
On the return journey, however, we noticed Air Canada had misspelled the name of the service on which we flew as “Rouge.” Based on our experience, it’s really its “Rough” arm – old planes, no on-board entertainment unless you remember to preload the access program on your device or rent one for a fee! No free wine or beer on international flights.
The only bright spot was the new troupe of freshly minted flight attendants and their endless patience explaining the “features” of Rough air to disappointed, confused and tired passengers. Kudos on Dreamliner, shame on Rough!
Dan Pearson, Regina
Amused – and not
I’ve long been a fan of The Globe’s editorial cartoons. They have consistently, in succinct and amusing ways, told a story in a way thousands of words often can’t. I was thus dismayed to see a menacing Mountie standing beside a night-of-the-living-dead Stephen Harper behind a threatening Minister of Justice Peter MacKay (And Don’t Forget, We’ll Be Watching You – cartoon, June 16).
To truly represent the situation, I’d suggest cartoonist David Parkins replace the Mountie with a sycophantic PMO/departmental minion in shorts, perhaps in the form of a gargoyle, who continues to give bad advice to his political masters – and not just on electronic surveillance legislation.
The RCMP serve Canada in the finest tradition of impartial professionalism to uphold the rule of law as it is. To imply otherwise is a disservice to them.
Marius Grinius, Ottawa
David Parkins’s cartoon now threatens from the wall above the computer where I pursue my “private” activities – what a wonderful acid take-down. And how quickly you dispatched the RCMP’s Moncton afterglow.
Peter Ferguson, Kimberley, Ont.
Re $83-Million Set To Honour Military History (June 16): An $83-million commemorative budget? Do the Conservatives plan on including a statue to commemorate the soldiers who have taken their own lives after being unable to access much-needed support and mental-health services? A terrible (and telling) display of priorities.
Christy Wilson, Ottawa
So, Stephen Harper is pro-military: How can one be pro-military and anti-veteran?
Michael A. Gilbert, Toronto
Re It’s Time To Stop Treating Pregnancy Like A Disease (Life & Arts, June 16): As with all areas of medicine, obstetrics is a balance of risks, interventions and outcomes. Unfortunately, the consequences of a negative outcome are much higher in obstetrics. While 75 per cent of labours proceed without any signs of distress, there are 15 per cent of cases where fetal well-being falls into a grey zone and 10 per cent where a C-section is clearly indicated.
In the grey zone, a decision is made by the patient and physician between a wait-and-see approach and an intervention. From the hundreds of deliveries I’ve been involved with, this is a consensus decision the vast majority of the time. I have never once seen the decision made for the physician’s convenience.
The cases that are really frustrating are the red cases, where the life of the baby is put at risk by delaying a decision for a C-section because of parental ignorance or because of false notions similar to those raised by your article: I’ve had care delayed while trying to undo preconceived notions at a delivery where minutes count.
Nicholas Potvin, MD, Peace River, Alta.
Re Israel Kidnapping Results In Conflicting Theories (June 17): Patrick Martin writes that though the abduction of three West Bank students took place “in territory fully controlled by the Israeli army,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu holds Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas “to account” and lectures him about the error of recently forming a unity government with Hamas.
Whether or not Hamas actually conducted this terrorist act, they openly celebrate it. Hamas is committed to the destruction of Israel as a Jewish state. More than any “lecture,” this shows the sad reality of why Israel can’t possibly make peace with any Palestinian “government” that includes Hamas.
If Palestinians want peace, they must say no to Hamas.
Michael Orr, Toronto
Hamas encourages the kidnapping of Israeli citizens so they can be used as bargaining chips to attain the release of criminals. While Israel works tirelessly to find the perpetrators, the rest of the world shouts its silence.
As long as governments around the world fail to clearly and strongly condemn these abductions, the terrorists are rewarded and encouraged to repeat their crimes.
For evil to triumph, it is enough for good people to do nothing.
Paulette and George Volgyesi, Toronto
If there were awards for satirical essays, Margaret Wente’s column on Saturday, How To Live Like A Parisian (While You Can), would surely win in the “damning with faint praise” category.
Maybe the song had it right after all: “Fifty million Frenchmen can’t be wrong.”
David McInnis, Ancaster, Ont.