Letters to the Editor: Aug. 19

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Frustrated driver

I have been driving on the London roads for more than 50 years and am disgusted with current drivers. Their lack of road rules, lack of courtesy and common sense leaves me frustrated and angry every day.

When did they think it was legal to turn left on a red light? Were they not taught or tested on the rules that only one vehicle is allowed to enter an intersection on a green light, proceeding when the way is clear. Nowhere does it say two or three vehicles can enter an intersection to turn left on what is certain to become a red light.

I believe that if our police officers manned intersections watching for these law-breakers, rather than trying to give speeding tickets when traffic is too heavy most of the day to speed, or six or seven cruisers gathering at a minor accident, they would be earning their salaries.

Genevieve Grech


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Taxpayers foot bill

Regarding the article Politicos push province for money (Aug. 15).

So our mayor and band of eight merry councillors who attended the Association of Municipalities of Ontario conference are out to push the province for their fair share of borrowed money that future generations will have to repay. This seems like one irresponsible administration is encouraging an even more irresponsible government to make things worse for taxpayers.

Perhaps as they wine and dine on our dime, they can pool their brainpower and figure out that BRT is a want and affordable housing is a need. With 2,900 families waiting for affordable housing and a $225-million deficit for maintenance of current housing, it should be obvious as to what the priority should be.

The next election cannot come too soon.

Frank Pontarelli


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Cellphones benign

In his Aug. 12 letter Cellphone safety, Harvey Easton takes issue with my Aug. 14 letter Phones not potent.

He claims there are “credible studies on mortality of amateur radio operators that show a direct link between exposure to radio frequency energy and increased incidence of leukaemia.” While these studies may be common knowledge within the amateur radio community, they are unheard of elsewhere. I would prefer to hear this from an oncologist or epidemiologist.

Interestingly he makes no correlation between amateur radio operation and reduced sperm count.

Second, his letter does not take the ubiquitous nature of radio and magnetic energy into consideration. From all of the electronic devices in our homes, neon light ballasts and high-tension electrical cables, we are virtually bathed in radio. So why blame the cellphone?

He does not consider the effect of the inverse-square law. If the distance between a body and an energy source is halved, the dose rate to the body is quadrupled. If a cellphone in a thigh pocket is giving a harmful dosage to the testes, then the bone marrow in the femur will receive four times that dose, and the skin nearest the phone would receive around 500 times that dose.

David Nielsen


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Stiffen sentences

The last three drunk drivers that have killed innocent people in the London area this year have averaged four years punishment in jail. One in particular was driving at three times the speed limit and was three times over the alcohol limit. He got the longest sentence at seven years.

I read in The Free Press a few weeks ago where the columnist said we are finally cracking down and giving these drunk drivers suitable penalties. Is this a joke! You can go out and have a great time partying, get in your car and kill someone and be back at the party in four years.

Bill Reidhead


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Fires preventable

Every year we read and witness fires, but we never seem to change our behaviours.

We have been the keepers of the flames since prehistoric times. We should know what burns and what does not, yet we keep having uncontrolled fires.

We can make homes out of concrete, steel, aluminum and other fire-retardant materials. We can separate one forest from another one, yet having annual forest fires is seriously affecting the amount of oxygen available to sustain life.

Paul Leinweber

St. Marys

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Statues hallowed

I am surprised that our government has not spoken out against the destruction of statues. In George Orwell’s book 1984 the Ministry of New Speak was used to alter history. Have we started to alter history?

We thought the Taliban and ISIS were barbaric to destroy statues that offended them, but radicals are doing the same here.

History cannot be changed by destroying statues. We know slavery is abhorrent yet it was considered normal for victorious armies to take slaves. All cultures through the ages used slaves. ISIS is using slaves now. In the Middle Ages Christian and Muslim armies took slaves. Here in Canada First Nations tribes regularly took slaves.

We know slavery is wrong but in the past it was considered acceptable and what was past history should remain as history.

Graham Forster


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Respect first step

Given this unique opportunity to experience democracy at its best requires one to be able to both speak with respect, and also listen with respect. The recent altercations in Virginia demonstrated the lack of respect when two opposing ideologies come together.

Identifying a problem is the first step in finding a solution. So although finding oneself may sometimes come with internal struggles, having our own superiority complex as we Canadians do, adds extra steps in identifying our true self.

So it is with courage and respect that we struggle throughout our lives, accepting our own frailties and accepting our neighbours, who travel with us on their own journeys. Whether we can touch each life with love, or with hate depends on the courage and respect we carry with us.

Christine Morgan


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Dangerous bluster

Intimidation is and always has been a tool of provocation in the annals of war. What North Korea and Kim Jong-un are doing to the U.S. in demonstrating their ability to reach our continent with a ballistic missile carrying a nuclear warhead is the highest level of intimidation we have witnessed since the Cuban missile crisis of the early 1960s.

What concerns most of us at this time is the response by an American president, who has often been described as psychotic. The American decision to again proceed with their yearly sport of military “exercises” in conjunction with South Korea will definitely appear to the North Koreans as intimidation and we can only hope that these unwise moves do not provoke the North in doing anything in retaliation.

The leaders of both sides of this conflict lack concern for human life and the consequences of their actions. We have little influence on what to do about the leader of North Korea, but we must, as neighbours of the U.S., make it loud and clear that their leader Donald Trump is not welcome in our neighbourhood and the Republicans in Congress must stand together and remove him from office before something real crazy happens.

Jim Paddon


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Strength needed

Regarding the letter Not just a U.S. problem (Aug, 14).

C.D. Parker should have been listening to Bill Clinton’s appeasement rhetoric when he said North Korea would never have nuclear capability because of the deal he made with them and the appeasement rhetoric of every Democrat since. Appeasement never wins in the end. If you don’t take evil on with immediate strength, you and many others will pay the price.

President Donald Trump is surrounded by the highest level of military minds and he is listening to their advice. Is that psychopathic? Parker and everyone else who has been listening to the mainstream media about Trump since he entered the race, better change their news station and start listening to what this man is truly saying.

Trump never was part of their political scene and that scares them to death. Thank God the electoral population of America gets this. Only the lost and confused are listening to the daily lies and spin coming from politics and most of the mainstream media today.

Jennifer Blazak


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Economic solution

Regarding Lorrie Goldstein’s column PM, climate minister are reality deniers (Aug. 11).

This is true. Why? The government has committed to an increasing carbon fee for only five years, which won’t be enough. Businesses need a stable price signal for innovation and to adjust their business plans.

We can avoid a recession (and a cash grab) if we enact a revenue-neutral carbon fee. How? By charging a steadily increasing fee on fossil fuels and returning 100 per cent of that revenue to households as a monthly dividend cheque. The dividend creates hundreds of thousands of jobs, carbon emissions go down and climate change is brought under control.

We don’t need to know exactly what the emissions count will be in the future. We need a solution to climate change that keeps our economy growing while reducing emissions. Carbon fee and dividend is a solution that will bring both those aspects into reality.

Greg Dyson


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Trust the experts

Regarding Ray Roddy’s letter Nature fickle (Aug. 12).

Nature may be fickle but the fact is 97 per cent of climate scientists are certain that human activity is disrupting the climate.

If 97 doctors told you that you had a deadly disease that was curable if you phased out some bad habits and three doctors told you to ignore what the other doctors are saying, what would you do? Most people would heed the advice of the majority.

Given that hundreds of millions of lives will be negatively impacted by the climate crisis, it is even more important to follow the advice of the majority of the scientists, since it is not just our own lives we are putting at stake.

Cathy Orlando

National director

Citizens’ Climate Lobby Canada


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Nazis pure evil

In the event that society’s leaders are looking for some persuasive responses to the activities of neo-Nazis and their ilk, I offer some historical perspective:

• Neo-Nazis and their predecessors are complete failures. No society has ever adopted their values and built a future.

• Representing evil in its purest form, they attract only the weak, the defeated, the hopeless and the completely misguided.

• Gen. Dwight Eisenhower stated: “The price of democracy is vigilance”

• Today and into the future, civilized people of all nations will maintain that vigilance and will remain united, in maintaining one perspective: neo-Nazis are completely useless — now and forever.

Bruce Stock


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