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British Prime Minister Theresa May has signed a letter to the European Union officially notifying it of the U.K.'s intention to leave the bloc. (Reuters)
British Prime Minister Theresa May has signed a letter to the European Union officially notifying it of the U.K.'s intention to leave the bloc. (Reuters)

WHAT READERS THINK

April 1: Britain’s troubled way ahead. Plus other letters to the editor Add to ...

Letters to the Editor should be exclusive to The Globe and Mail. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. Try to keep letters to fewer than 150 words. Letters may be edited for length and clarity. To submit a letter by e-mail, click here: letters@globeandmail.com

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Make donor consent the default

Re Melnyk Leads New Push For Organ Donors (March 31): There’s an easy way to have Eugene Melnyk’s Organ Project succeed: Change the default. If the legal default were that organs are donated unless one opts out (rather than opting in, as now), there would be no shortage and no waiting for those in need.

Christopher Albertyn, Toronto

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Britain’s troubled way ahead

Re Britain Leaves The Gate, Limping Badly (editorial, March 31): Britain should take a deep breath, draw on its famous stoicism and common sense at times of crisis, and hold a second and binding referendum on Brexit which asks the British public, knowing what it does now about the implications of leaving the European Union, if it wants to proceed.

Make the threshold at least 55 per cent, so there is a clear majority and clear legitimacy for the result. Then get on with it, whichever way it goes. My money is on Remain, with a comfortable margin.

Mary O’Neill, St. John’s

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As a Canadian and expat Scot, I’m enjoying the symphony of opinions about what is in store for the U.K. pre- and post-Brexit. Seems we should have little reason for optimism. Here’s the thing the negative nellies miss: The EU was always a union of convenience with too many liabilities and insufficient benefits. What the outside world might perceive as “muddling through” will be seen in time as a country which, having chosen a tough path, will commit to that direction and get on with what it has to do.

Despite the rainbow-chasing Scottish Nationals hanging on to its apron strings, Britain’s greater challenge is whether a multicultural society can be as committed to Britain’s destiny as the type of society that saw off pretty much every challenge it has faced in the past several centuries.

Recovering from Brexit might take a while, but when the dust settles, the British will have restored normal service to the U.K. ,while all those liberalizers around them will have run out of fringe groups to fawn over, and will discover that standing for nothing means they fall for everything.

Alistair Johnston, Langley, B.C.

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As someone who was born in Canada, raised in the United Kingdom and who returned to Canada in my 20s, I have always kept one eye on British politics. In 40 years, I don’t recall seeing photos quite like those on Thursday of a British Prime Minister posing with a Union Flag in the background: There was Theresa May “triggering Brexit” in front of an artfully arranged Union Jack. It was a remarkable image.

Given what’s happening in Scotland, and elsewhere in the U.K., I suspect we may not see its like again.

We live in extraordinary times.

Nigel Brachi, Edmonton

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Pride in battling discrimination

Re Pulling Pride Funding Over TPS Gaffe Would Send Right Message (March 29): I may be white, but I am also queer and have experienced the police at the Pride Parade as far back as the early 1980s, when police photographed us riding our motorcycles and took note of our licence plates. I was also at the Pussy Palace Bath House Party when it was raided in 2000. These were not pleasant experiences, nor were they long ago. People of colour experience much worse. Black lives matter. And it matters that black queers feel safe at the annual queer celebration.

Queer cops are welcome to come out of uniform, on their own time, to join us, as they have in the past, just like plumbers … and surgeons. Sadly, police have a long and recent history of harassing people of colour (and not so long ago, queers). When that stops, police in uniform will be welcome at the party.

In the meantime, pulling city funding for Pride is ridiculous. Pride is a protest turned celebration as we slowly win battles against discrimination. I prefer black queers feeling safe over uniformed officers being welcomed, queer or straight. It’s not a party for everyone. It’s not a police celebration. It’s a queer party for us. Friends and allies are welcome – oppressors are not.

Some would be afraid to sign a letter like this. But I’m white, and so I’m not afraid. That would change significantly if my skin were darker. That’s the part that we all need to understand – and change!

Nancy Irwin, Toronto

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Canada’s kids deserve better

Re Use Of Force On Children Isn’t The Answer (Life & Arts, March 31): It is more than distressing that the Criminal Code still allows physical punishment of children. In this, Canada is behind – wait for it – Turkmenistan, plus more than 40 other enlightened countries which have outlawed assaults on their most helpless citizens.

A recent U.S. meta-analysis of studies with 160,000 subjects across 50 years tells us that even “ordinary” spanking of children (not just abuse) is correlated with more defiance in kids and higher rates of mental illness, criminality and addiction in adulthood.

My experience of 30-plus years of mental-health work with children and parents strongly supports this conclusion.

Joanne Sawadsky, Roberts Creek, B.C.

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Rewarding Bombardier’s brass

Re Bombardier Executive Pay Drawing Fire (Report on Business, March 31): Could it be that Bombardier’s pay for its senior executives is not tied to the company’s fiscal performance, but rather to how much access they can get to Canadian taxpayers’ dollars?

K.R. O’Brien, Kingston

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