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Empty vials of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine are seen at The Michener Institute, in Toronto, Jan. 4, 2021.


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Re A Third Wave Looms Over The Country (March 30): All my friends and family in countries as widespread as the United States, Britain, Israel and India are now vaccinated. I’m the sole individual in most of my groups (ages 40 to 70) who hasn’t received even a first shot.

There should be a study on what went wrong with Canada’s vaccine procurement strategy in months to come. We were naive to think that, just by paying for vaccines, we would be ahead of the curve for access to vaccines.

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Ranjit Vazhapilly Mississauga

Thousands of vaccination appointments for seniors remain unfilled this week around Toronto. Meanwhile, deadly variant cases are surging among younger people who compose the majority of our workforce. We should open vaccinations to anyone who wants one and focus on workplace transmission.

Shannon Duncan Strange, Ont.

Vaccinated! All the hours, days and months of lockdown – missing my friends and their happy hugs, dreading daily headlines and absorbing all the superfluous suffering – came down to a tiny syringe filled with a clear liquid. A concoction of the best of science, the best of human intellect and the best of bold endeavour.

I felt deep gratitude to get my dose of wonder.

Paula Jessop Toronto

Re Tam Criticized For Supporting ‘Indefensible’ Assessment Of COVID-19 Risk (March 29): I’m tired of the negativity broadcast by those who offer their opinions on decisions made in the past by individuals in positions of power. They come across to me as trying to impress with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight.

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I wonder how many of these folk have any experience dealing with circumstances subject to frequent and significant changes, in which they were called upon to present decisions with life and death consequences? Sure, lessons should be learned, but not by taking shots at the messenger.

A more positive approach would be to frame any comments as suggested lessons learned, instead of pointing fingers.

Norman Hubley Toronto

Commonwealth care

Re Let’s Learn From Australia On Elder Care (March 30): As columnist André Picard so rightly points out, we don’t need to reinvent the wheel on reforming our response to the increasing needs of people who are aging or disabled. We should demand immediate investment in non-profit initiatives that enable people to live at home as they choose, or in small home-like settings in their own communities.

I see no supportable arguments that can defend the current practice of institutionalizing people in the name of “care.” There have already been comprehensive initiatives that saw institutions for people with developmental disabilities closed and residents repatriated to community-based supported living settings. The needs in long-term care seem extremely similar on all counts.

It can be done. We should do it, and it should be non-negotiable. As Mr. Picard notes, “Our elders can’t afford to wait any longer.”

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Linda Till Sharon, Ont.

Inquiries and royal commissions appear to be a cover for inaction. Elder care is health care. Elder care should be included in our government-funded system.

Personally, I would vote for a 1-per-cent income tax to fund health care. I believe burying it in general taxation contributes to an ongoing argument over a lack of funding, which becomes an excuse for poor health care.

Clarity as to what I am contributing to fund health care, for myself and my fellow citizens, makes sense to me.

Winnie McDonagh Toronto

Provincial powers

Re Carbon Conclusions (Letters, March 29): A letter-writer worries about “the delicate balance of constitutional powers Canada has long enjoyed,” and wonders “what provincial powers are next?” I would like to see national child care and health care, where Canadians from coast to coast are afforded the same services regardless of what province they live in.

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The same taxpayers who pay for both federal and provincial operations should be afforded a clear vision of who is responsible, rather than confusing bickering with no consequences.

Robert Marcy Toronto

Letter-writer Preston Manning might want to give the provinces more constitutional authority, but how many Canadians would agree? I was born in Alberta and have lived in Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. If pushed for a choice, I would describe myself as a Canadian.

I wonder whether the majority of Canadians would say the same? I would not want the federal government disabled.

Nicholas Tracy Fredericton

In conclusion

Re U Of T Hiring Not Affected By Judge: Report (March 30): I fail to understand the relevance of the Cromwell report’s conclusion regarding the University of Toronto law school and the hiring of Valentina Azarova.

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The issue seems to be whether Tax Court Justice David Spiro attempted to influence the hiring, not whether his attempt was successful. From the evidence, he did make such an attempt. Under the circumstances, whether Dr. Azaroa could obtain legal immigrant status to work here should be irrelevant.

It would appear that the terms of reference were incorrect, or the wrong issue was addressed by former Supreme Court Justice Thomas Cromwell.

Walter Sopinka Georgetown, Ont.

Wider than a mile

Re Suez Canal Debacle Highlights The Price Of Cost-cutting (Report on Business, March 30): My grandmother used to use the expression “lazy man’s load.” When I first heard it, I thought it meant a light load. Later I learned that it meant carrying far too much – a lazy man tries to shorten the task by carrying everything in one trip, and often comes to grief.

My wife pointed out that the Ever Given, the huge container ship that blocked the Suez Canal with its oafish bulk, is a perfect example of a lazy man’s load.

Harry Duckworth Winnipeg

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In modernity, we may think that our lives are governed by man’s inventions and especially our powerful computers. The moon and its effect on us may be ignored by many, but the full moon is of great significance at this time of year. Ironically, it was the full moon and its prominent tides that helped to finally free the Ever Given in the Suez Canal.

The Passover seder always occurs on a full moon, since this is relevant to the Israelites’ departure from Egypt. Similarly, Easter is not fixed on our calendar because it occurs on the first Sunday after the full moon after the vernal equinox.

Tonight, when looking up at the moon, remember that it is exerting much more influence on us than many realize.

Irv Salit Toronto

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