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People walk near The Chicago Theatre, May 18, 2021, in Chicago's famed Loop.

Shafkat Anowar/The Associated Press

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We did it?

Re This Week We Out-vaccinate The Americans (Editorial, May 18): How Canadian it feels to congratulate ourselves on “out-vaccinating” the United States while many parts of the country are still in lockdown. Americans can shop, hug their grandchildren, gather with friends, play golf and know that if they need a second vaccine they can just go to the pharmacy.

It’s nice that we are making progress, but this is nothing to crow about.

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Jennifer Camelford Toronto

Americans are receiving their second shots on dosing schedules proven to be effective by data from clinical trials. They will see their country open widely by July. There is no real timeline, other than a “two-dose fall,” for a Canadian reopening.

All of this looks like the result of truly woeful vaccine procurement by the Liberal government.

John Harris Toronto

One likely reason why Canada will soon surpass the U.S. in first-dose vaccinations: trust. Canadians, for good reason, trust the advice of our health authorities.

Although there has been confusion around the AstraZeneca vaccine, the persistent message from experts is to get the first vaccine one can, as the benefits far outweigh the risk. Americans seem far more skeptical and less willing to take advice from authorities. Because of such distrust, getting or not getting a shot is seen by many as a political statement.

We can be a bit smug on this one.

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Mark Roberts Gananoque, Ont.

The last line of The Globe and Mail’s editorial – “this country is, suddenly, a lot closer to the end of the pandemic than to the beginning” – caused a visceral reaction: I cried. I hope we get there safely, and kindly.

At the grocery store, a manager had to politely but firmly escort a mask-refuser out of the building. He actually argued about it. Seriously?

A cashier told me it happens about once a day. She said she has to work despite her fears of infecting her immunocompromised husband. She is astonished that people don’t care how the small act of mask-wearing can affect others.

Thinking about her, and others who have to work at risk, must have been in the mix when I cried over The Globe.

Barbara Legate London, Ont.

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No go

Re The Games Must Not Go On (Opinion, May 18): As Japan battles a fourth wave, the Olympics should not take place in Tokyo this summer as planned. With the never-ending financial and performance scandals associated with this event, one must ask: Why?

The pleas that young athletes spend their early lifetime training for these competitions only remind me of hockey-hungry parents envisioning their children as future Gordie Howes. Let Canada show the world leadership and say “No.”

Martin Pick Cavan, Ont.

Fracking folly

Re Planet’s Pathway To Net-zero Means No New Oil And Gas Developments: IEA (Report on Business, May 18): The story of King Canute and the tides shows a wise ruler’s effort to demonstrate man’s futility to control the elements. The International Energy Agency’s most recent report seems almost Canutian.

Although the IEA finds that new oil and gas developments must stop, the oil and gas giants will likely continue on with their drilling, gouging and fracking. Most unfortunately for humanity, the Anthropocene seems to be lunging toward a sixth extinction.

For what it’s worth, the IEA is whistling into the wind – or into the tides.

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Steve Sanderson Quispamsis, N.B.

In the dark

Re ‘Sunshine Lists’ Help Fix Gender Gap, But Ottawa Won’t Commit To One (May 17): While the publishing of sunshine lists may or may not be of use in calculating value for money received from public servants, they do shine a light on those workers whose names are largely missing.

Teachers are arguably more important to our well-being than police officers and firefighters on a long-term basis. Paramedics are also far from inclusion on any list, despite providing crucial services that we literally cannot live without.

Colin Lowe Nanaimo, B.C.

Fiscal outlook

Re As The Pandemic Begins To Ebb, Newfoundland’s Fiscal Fire Roars Again (Opinion, May 12): Columnist Andrew Coyne writes that Saskatchewan is “in nearly as rough shape” fiscally as Newfoundland and Labrador, a position based on the Parliamentary Budget Officer’s Fiscal Sustainability Report 2020, which provides a 75-year projection of provincial finances.

I do not believe the PBO report is a fully informed forecast, in part because it assumes there will be no response by provincial governments to the costs associated with an aging population. Today, Saskatchewan has the lowest net-debt-to-GDP ratio in Canada, at 18.2 per cent. We have the second-highest credit rating in the country. We have a growth plan to ensure that the province can meet the challenges of the future.

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Mr. Coyne believes that Newfoundland may look to a federal bailout as opposed to taking measures to improve its finances. Saskatchewan will not be looking for a federal bailout – now or ever.

Donna Harpauer Deputy Premier and Finance Minister, Government of Saskatchewan; Regina

Calgary cares

Re A Breath Of Fresh Air For India (May 13): I am well connected with Child Foundation, a Calgary-based medical charity that operates a 20-bed hospital in the 60,000-person “village” of Sarurpur, near New Delhi. Over the years, it has received a great deal of funding from Rotary clubs, and its board now includes many medical professionals from Alberta (some with roots in India) who provide telehealth services to the hospital.

So far, they have raised something in the order of $100,000 for lifesaving equipment, which has been successfully delivered. The two-hour Zoom calls between the folks in Alberta and those in India are awe-inspiring. If I could think of one heart-warming thing to come out of the pandemic, it is the chance to sit in on those calls.

Peter McKenzie-Brown Calgary

Front-row seat

Re Couple Trade Tech Jobs For A Drive-in (May 17): We were an army family and my father was posted to Camp Picton in 1960. I was still a kid in Grade 7, but my sister, who was almost five years older than me, was a high-schooler. Her then-boyfriend invited her to a movie at the Mustang Drive-In.

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To placate my parents, it was agreed that I would go with them. Times were much different then, and it took me a couple of years to figure out why I was allowed to have the front seat of his Plymouth all to myself.

Ron Newton St. Catharines, Ont.

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