Skip to main content
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
Enjoy unlimited digital access
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
// //

The Canada Border Services Agency inspection station at the Douglas-Peace Arch Canada-U.S. border crossing in Surrey, B.C.

DARRYL DYCK/The Globe and Mail

Keep your Opinions sharp and informed. Get the Opinion newsletter. Sign up today.

Border run

Re Making It Up As They Go: The Liberals Don’t Seem To Have A Plan For The Border (Online, July 8): We are U.S. citizens who have been property owners and seasonal residents of British Columbia for over 50 years. To say that we love Canada would be an understatement.

Naturally, we are frustrated and disappointed that fully vaccinated Americans cannot enter Canada. But our frustration pales in comparison to the economic hardship inflicted on thousands in B.C. who depend on tourists and seasonal residents for their livelihood.

Story continues below advertisement

The stories we are hearing from the many business owners we would patronize are heartbreaking. Their savings have been depleted; many have sold assets to make ends meet, others have simply gone out of business. It is for them that the border should be opened.

The current restrictions make no sense to us. The risk of transmission from the vaccinated is so low.

Patrick Connolly Pebble Beach, Calif.

U.S. relations

Re Why Is America’s History With Indigenous Peoples Held In A Harsher Light Than Canada’s? (July 8): A series of presidents, from Richard Nixon to Ronald Reagan and beyond, articulated a new government policy to facilitate a nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous peoples.

Today, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Tribal Program is approaching 40 years old. Under this initiative, U.S. tribes are treated on a government-to-government basis.

It is well past time that the Canadian government did more to foster a nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous peoples in this country.

Scott Grant Toronto

Story continues below advertisement

Staying alive

Re Canada Sending Vaccines To Overseas Staff (July 6): A sick or dead unvaccinated Canadian diplomat or soldier is of no use to the host country or local Canadians they are supposed to serve, and a looming negligence lawsuit for the government that sent them into the field.

As a former head of mission in a conflict country, duty of care for both Canada-based and local employees was always top of mind. We can only assist in sharing vaccines if we are alive and operational to do the policy and program work required.

Roman Waschuk Toronto

On defence

Re Looking For Defensive Stocks? Try Defence (Report on Business, July 6): I am sad and disappointed to see encouragement to invest in war and destruction. Why would anyone with a good conscience, or with a hint of humanity, invest in the war machine?

General Dynamics sold more than $15-billion in vehicles to Saudi Arabia, which has been in conflict with Yemen since 2015. According to Amnesty International, “over 233,000 Yemenis would have been killed as a result of fighting and the humanitarian crisis.” Is this what people should invest in?

Grace Batchoun Montreal

Story continues below advertisement

Housing woes

Re Red Tape – Not Greedy Companies – Is The Real Cause Of The Housing Crisis (July 6): Contributor Steve Lafleur’s prescription is the reduction of regulation to open up markets, incentivize housing starts and presumably lead to a boost in affordable shelter for working families. Yet in the north-of-Toronto small-town belt near where I reside, where there’s plenty of land, I see green space cleared and expensive homes popping up all over. Talk about a crisis!

I fail to see how paving over Ontario’s Greenbelt will lend itself to affordable housing. Nor in the event that land is freed from the shackles of “red tape” do I see developers building modest homes for mid- to low-income families squeezed out of the market.

It was shameful speculative freedom that got us where we are today, not “red tape.” For starters, we should not have more freedom for speculators and big paydays for corporate real estate chains, but a robust regulatory framework that prioritizes decent affordable housing as a human right.

Todd Stubbs Barrie, Ont.


Neptis Foundation research shows there is more than enough land already zoned for development within existing urban boundaries. Instead the problem would lie with suburban developers, who throttle housing supply because it keeps prices high, and with downtown developers, who promise community-appropriate density then propose soaring towers and no green space.

The grab for Ontario’s Greenbelt is driven by land speculators wanting to make 10,000-per-cent profit. But it’s local taxpayers who will foot the bills for increased infrastructure costs, all while losing more farmland, forests and natural spaces that make the region so desirable.

Story continues below advertisement

What we should have are clear rules to build urban density that matches people’s housing needs and pocketbooks – and an end to more planet-killing sprawl.

Tim Gray Executive director, Environmental Defence Canada; Toronto


Red tape is there to accomplish things such as protecting Ontario’s Greenbelt. Density regulations are there because cities have to make sure neighbourhoods can support increased population, schools, traffic, sewer and water capacity etc.

Red tape is just another term for regulations that have been set up to protect average citizens. These regulations have been fought for since the beginning of this country.

I do agree with contributor Steve Lafleur that developers are not the villains; they are seizing a market opportunity. There are no easy solutions to the housing crisis, but bypassing regulations is not going to make it go away.

Jason Langan Oshawa, Ont.

Story continues below advertisement


During my five-block walk last night, I went by three ghost houses built on farmland in the past 20 years. Our elected representatives have forgotten the basic monetary principle: Bad money drives out good.

Where is comment from the buyer who bids $200,000 over asking? In 18 years as a real estate lawyer, I cannot ever recall acting for someone who had this sort of financial freedom. Such buyers are immune from interest rates and Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. requirements.

Canadian home buyers and farmers are suffering – and will likely suffer long-term – from the willful blindness of our governments.

Heather Fayers Delta, B.C.


Re Best Way To Combat Spiralling Prices Is To Build: CMHC Head (Report on Business, July 8): As a former director of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp., I applaud and support president and chief executive officer Romy Bowers. Unfortunately, she will find that the solutions to this problem rest with provincial governments and municipalities that are reluctant to take on vocal ratepayers who are very much NIMBY in their outlooks.

While federal actions to promote affordable housing are helpful, let’s be honest: Most people want to own their home, be it a condominium, townhouse or single-family home. But CMHC has a useful role as a bully pulpit to push governments generally to address this major issue.

Story continues below advertisement

Brian Johnston Toronto


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

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies