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The Canadian prime minister's residence, 24 Sussex, from the banks of the Ottawa River in Ottawa on Oct. 26, 2015.Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press

The PM’s address

Re “Trudeau shouldn’t reject Chrétien and Harper’s offer on 24 Sussex” (Opinion, April 4): I applaud former prime ministers Jean Chrétien and Stephen Harper for their proposal to raise money to restore 24 Sussex Dr. as an official and historic residence for our prime ministers. It is not that complicated. A very young Jackie Kennedy was able to restore the White House with donations from U.S. citizens. The money raised from an information booklet and tickets to tour the White House covered much of the cost in refurbishing their national treasure. How wonderful it would be if Canadians had a residence for the prime minister that would make us proud.

Linda Bunting The Blue Mountains, Ont.

If 24 Sussex was unique for a particular reason aside from just being old, I’d agree with Lawrence Martin. Rather, I suggest the building at 24 Sussex Dr. be demolished and replaced by a modern home that’s been designed by a Canadian architect (chosen with an appropriate competition). A new residence could incorporate the latest in design technology including appropriate security features, modern windows, appropriate levels of insulation, a modern heat pump etc. A projected cost of $37-million to refurbish the existing structure is simply ridiculous.

David Enns Cornwall, Ont.

If the prime minister’s official residence at 24 Sussex Dr. is such a historic property, the Government of Canada ought to pay as much as it requires to restore it. I will vote for the first politician who supports this.

Let’s get this done.

Bruce A. McDonald Ottawa

Canadians love the stars of HGTV and I think they can save this historic landmark and allow it to become the jewel on the Ottawa River again. Even if Justin Trudeau stands in the way of progress, create a national television special in which the stars of HGTV using 3-D home design software show us their vision of a restored 24 Sussex Dr. This gleaming showcase example will create such a tidal wave of support for this proud Canadian institution that not even Mr. Trudeau can stop the restoration of 24 Sussex Dr. I can’t wait to see the reveal.

Chris Robertson Stony Plain, Alta.

Corporate pay

Re “Loblaw paid new CEO $22-million last year” (Report on Business, April 2): Our latest Loblaws bill came to $350.23 – which will feed a retired couple on a fixed income for about a week. When recalling your headline stating Per Bank was paid $22.1-million, I felt sick. Every Loblaw employee deserves a share of that ridiculous sum that has been squeezed from people who need to eat.

Pat Butler Toronto

Re “Suncor Energy pays new CEO $36.8-million in his first year” (Report on Business, March 26): Suncor is cutting charitable donations. With this as a stated plan for one of Canada’s major corporations, it’s no surprise that inequality in Canada is increasing, bringing with it many negative long-term consequences in poverty, education, health care, climate change and crime.

R. Winston Revie Ottawa

Plane thoughts

Re “Airlines uphold the miserable status quo” (Opinion, March 30): Similar to a 15th-century pope, the federal government essentially drew a line across a map of Canada, basically decreeing that east of that line Air Canada would be the dominant airline and west of it WestJet would be the dominant one. As a result, those two airlines control about 80 per cent of the market.

As Robyn Urback points out in her excellent column, Canada’s transport agency has a backlog of approximately 70,000 passenger complaints one year after the federal government announced a whopping $75.9-million in additional funding over three years to help address the backlog.

Canadian airlines – protected from foreign competition – currently have absolutely no incentive to improve customer service.

The solution is obvious: Allow foreign airlines to fly passengers within Canada.

Open Skies Now!

John J. Reilly Victoria

World of intolerance

Re “Ugandan court upholds anti-gay law, cites U.S. ruling” (April 4): What is the point of this law? Does persecuting gay people serve as a distraction? I just don’t understand.

It makes no difference to me who loves who and who sleeps together. I want people to live their true and authentic lives and to be happy. What does matter to me is living in a world of hatred, intolerance, fear, injustice.

It’s a sad day in Uganda and for all LGBTQ people around the world and those of us who support them.

Jan Vanderwal Toronto

Saving the animals

Re “Ontario court voids parts of law targeting animal-rights activists” (April 4): Why is it that animal activists are the ones putting themselves at risk to expose the inhumane treatment of animals? Why aren’t undercover government-sanctioned investigators out there “infiltrating” these farms to ensure that there is no inhumane treatment of these sentient beings?

Three cheers for Ontario Superior Court Justice Markus Koehnen’s ruling, as it protects free speech, animal-rights activists and the valuable work they do. But it is time that governments step up to ensure animal abuse does not happen.

Jan Vanderwal Toronto

Notwithstanding, again?

Re “N.B. not ruling out use of notwithstanding clause to force some into drug care” (April 4): Here is yet another example of a province considering the use of the notwithstanding clause to shield a law from judicial review, despite clear Charter violations. If this trajectory continues unabated, how long before the Charter of Rights and Freedoms becomes an ancient artifact – some dusty old document that we keep in a museum, powerless to hold any sway?

Nicole Chrolavicius, lawyer and lecturer in constitutional law at Osgoode Hall Law School Toronto

Civil dissent

Re “Civility and its discontents” (Letters, April 4): A call for civility shouldn’t be equated with stifling dissent. Good-faith opposition rarely requires shouting abuse, indulging in conspiracy theories or accusing the other side of imaginary crimes and perversions.

Remember how it seemed a bit much, when a few people put “Stop Harper” stickers on their cars back in 2015? Now that feels almost friendly, compared with how people talk about Justin Trudeau every day.

David Arthur Cambridge, Ont.

RIP Joe Flaherty

Re “Comedian became a household name during time on SCTV” (Obituaries, April 3): Your excellent obituary of Joe Flaherty from SCTV doesn’t mention the fact that some seasons of the production of SCTV in Canada took place, not in Toronto, but in Edmonton. Those shows, and the iconic opener with the televisions flying out of upper-storey windows, were jointly produced by Old Firehall TV Productions Ltd. and Allarcom Ltd. at Global TV on Allard Way, in South Edmonton.

Greg McMaster Edmonton

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

Editor’s note: A previous version of this day's letters indicated that SCTV was initially produced in Edmonton. The show’s production began in Toronto and later moved to Edmonton. This version has been updated.

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