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A man takes his leashed dog for a walk in Toronto's High Park on Mar 26 2020.

Fred Lum/the Globe and Mail

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That’s a fact

Re The Antidote To Fake Facts: Real Ones (Opinion, Dec. 19): Suppose that everyone who receives the COVID-19 vaccine were offered a button or lapel pin to wear indicating receipt of vaccination. This would not function as an “immunity certificate,” since at this stage who knows how long immunity will last? It would just be a note that the wearer has received the vaccine, is alive and walking around and apparently well.

As these proliferate, those hesitant to take the vaccine would start to notice increasing numbers of people who are vaccinated and not dead yet. For some people, this might be very convincing: facts that they can see with their own eyes.

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John Horman Waterloo, Ont.

What really ails us

Re The Real Cure For COVID-19 Is Repairing Our Relationship With The Planet (Opinion, Dec. 19): Tucked away in the last third of the Opinion section was a beautiful, insightful, intelligent piece on what is at the root cause of increasing disease in ourselves and our planet. For those who have followed the deep connection between our health and the health of our environment, it is a welcome view and perspective that should have much more coverage, because a vaccine can’t regenerate the lethal damage we have inflicted on our ecosystems and ourselves.

Jennifer Allen Midhurst, Ont.


Collectively, we need to move from talking about issues of climate change, biodiversity loss and Indigenous peoples’ inequality to substantive action. The recent “Jane Goodall Act” introduced by Senator Murray Sinclair in the Senate aims to help move Canada ahead in this direction.

Ultimately, as Dr. Goodall frequently states, it is our “disrespect for animals and nature” that continually creates challenges such as COVID-19′s zoonotic disease transmission from wildlife to humans. These problems, their causes and the urgent need for leadership on solutions need to be taught in boardrooms and classrooms across the land.

David Smith CEO, The Jane Goodall Institute of Canada; Toronto

Tired of Canadian Tire

Re Tire Change (Report on Business, Dec. 19) I want to love Canadian Tire, but I just can’t. Rebranding is not the fix the store needs, I think, but a major overhaul on friendly, helpful, available customer service. It all comes down to the people.

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Kerry Ballard Montreal

Setting priorities

I wish that all elected politicians would read and reflect on last Saturday’s letters to the editor. Contributors stress that now is the time to rethink and overhaul our priorities in government spending. Let’s keep demanding that our governments use this time of crisis to make meaningful and lasting changes that address the inequality and destructiveness that’s become painfully obvious in our society. There’s still time.

Gordon Yanchyshyn Toronto

Leaps for mankind

Re Man On The Moon (Letters, Dec. 19): Three letter-writers complain that Canada is involved in the space program while other pressing issues are unresolved. There are two problems with this thinking. First is the logical extension that there is a hierarchy of issues, that somehow we’ve agreed that Problem A is worse than B. Second is the implication that space projects are vanity ops for governments and not research projects. Space expeditions require massive leaps in technology that then find their way into our daily lives. Societal issues should be addressed strategically. Address the immediate problem, but work toward long-term solutions. Space programs contribute strategically in that regard.

John Madill Oshawa, Ont.

Revising history

Re The New Marxists Rewriting U.S. History (Opinion, Dec. 17): Columnist Konrad Yakabuski is right to support caution in the wholesale condemnation of previously revered political heroes. There are no perfect human beings. This does not mean it is not useful to pull these figures off their pedestals to achieve a balanced view. His portrayal of those who challenge the reappraisal of historical figures as rabid revolutionaries doesn’t fit with anything I see or hear.

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In the United States, it is largely the right who demonize, accusing middle-of-the-road liberals of being socialists (code for communist, anti-freedom and un-American). An American origin story that documents the role of slavery and the wholesale theft of Indigenous lands can also include the positives of American democracy.

Peter Crosby Toronto

Waiting for change

Re Close To Home (Opinion, Dec. 12): Canada’s At Home/Chez Soi was the largest study of “Housing First” in the world. When funding was announced in 2008, many of us hoped that this would represent the first instalment of funding to create the 56,000 units of supportive housing recommended by Senator Michael Kirby in 2004 in the Senate report Out of the Shadows At Last. Sadly, despite the successful implementation of At Home/Chez Soi, we are still waiting for the 56,000 units and a national strategy to end homelessness in Canada.

Steve Lurie CM; Chair, Service Systems Advisory Committee, 2007-2012, Mental Health Commission of Canada; Toronto

Full house

Re Under One Roof (Opinion, Dec. 19): There’s nothing wrong with living in a multigenerational household. There is something wrong, I believe, with encouraging it – as does columnist Elizabeth Renzetti – as a response to rising living costs. Each person should have the right to live alone or in community. The choice should not depend on the market. Rather, fair and democratic government should ensure it’s an affordable option for all.

Paul Salvatori Toronto

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My mother is 98 years old. She has lived through the Great Depression, the Second World War and two immigrations. Today, she reads, prepares meals, volunteers in a knitting group and walks every day. I believe one of the reasons she continues to thrive is because she has lived in a two-generational household since becoming a widow 26 years ago.

Thanks to columnist Elizabeth Renzetti for encouraging us to consider this important alternative to caring for our elders in their later years.

Jane den Boer-Batterink Port Perry, Ont.

Puppy love

Re Year Of The Dog (Dec. 19): How I long for those moments of companionship and unconditional love so beautifully captured by reporter Erin Anderssen. I’m reminded of my own wonderful and quirky granddog Bob every time I put my hand in a coat pocket, only to find an unused poop bag. We lost our precious Bob in October, and this year his Christmas collar hangs on the tree. Oh, for one more walk with Bob.

Nancy Alexander Hamilton


Photographer Kaylee Mandel has captured everything one needs to know about the bond we have with our dogs in her wonderful cover photo of Gracie. Steadfast, calm, devoted, intelligent, focused. Brilliant work.

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Steven Jacobs Guelph, Ont.

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