Letters to the editor – December 22, 2016

Electoral promise

Re: the Liberal survey on elections in Canada

What a vague and stupid survey — please take it yourself and see first-hand what the Liberals think of the voters.

It is now very clear by their language that the Liberals will back peddle on their promise for a fair voting system — a change for better choice and fair choice. The Liberals are afraid of the change since it will make them give up the “dictatorship of a party with less than 40 percent of the vote” to a Parliament with MPs that will actually have a say and not have to wait for an “appointment” to speak or be forced to vote “party lines.”

Regarding “forcing voters to vote,” that is nonsense. A system of tax credits for “voting” will get most people out to scratch their ballot. This tax credit can be adjusted by the tax rate for all. This is an incentive, not a punishment. Your voting ballot will have the tax slip attached to include with your tax return. Not complicated at all. (Former prime minister) Stephen Harper did not introduce the choice to change first past the post, either. The Liberals did make the promise but will they keep it? Please don’t hold your breath waiting for the change. There is a mere six months to introduce the brief.

Canadians of 16 years of age can read and write, so why should they not be encouraged to vote — the more the merrier.

Voting online is not safe. The computers can be hacked. The speech by Democratic Institutions Minister Maryam Monsef in the House the other day clearly shows what the Liberals think about us Canadians — contempt. Please show the Liberals some contempt at the voting booth next election if they fail to keep their promise.

Jorgen Hansen
Kelowna, B.C.

Over-reaction to blood

Re: Bleeding cow images, WP Sept., 15, page 64

As a livestock farmer, it upsets me when people assume the worst when they see an animal bleeding and blame the transporter or farmer. Do they show the same empathy for the human race?

I wonder if these people have ever been on a farm or watched the reactions of animals when a strange animal is brought into the mix, no matter what species. Example: even within a herd that has been with each other all their lives, if separated for a time, when put back together, they will fight.

When cattle are loaded on a transport truck for slaughter, they don’t all come from the same place. There will be fighting.

As with humans, the weaker one will be bullied. The one with horns will bully others and use those horns to their advantage to slash, sometimes causing bleeding.

It is impossible for the transport driver to stop just anywhere, let the cows out, find some way to get the cow that’s injured out of the truck and find a vet to tend to her injuries or put her down.

Would you be willing to pay for all this? Help out, until you are satisfied everything that could be done has been done?

The truck driver is on a schedule that he has to meet. If he is delayed, there is a domino effect.

Maybe the Bearing Witness organization would spend their time better at 1:30 a.m. seeking out and posting videos of human carnage and figuring out ways to stop that.

Brenda Finch
Kelvington, Sask.

Poverty decreasing

It is a pity that good news doesn’t sell. As a result, so few people know that we have made huge strides in eradicating extreme poverty worldwide. At the same time, as the world’s population has increased exponentially, poverty has been decreasing, according to an Oct. 8 article in the Economist, entitled, How the Other Tenth Lives.

The article states that in the 20 years between 1993 and 2013, those subsisting on $1.90 or less per day decreased by one billion, from one in three to one in 10. The greatest strides have been made in China. At the same time, the greatest challenge to eradicating poverty is the deeply embedded caste system in India.

In some ways, it could be likened to the problems facing Canadians in finding ways to lift some of our northern First Nations out of the grips of poverty. It is complicated, but that does not afford us the excuse to do nothing. While 767 million people worldwide still go hungry, the progress is worth noting. It should give us more than just a glimmer of hope that we can, if we choose to, eradicate poverty.

A boost to our international aid would be a great first step, as would a strong commitment to our First Nations. We’re back, remember? Isn’t it time that we joined the U.K, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Luxembourg and the United Arab Emirates in donating at least .7 percent of our gross national income? Should we not follow the great example set by the Danish government in caring for their Inuit Greenlanders?

Christmas is a good time to be generous both at home and abroad to continue to create a good news story. With budget time just around the corner, let’s remind our leaders to think globally and act locally.

Connie Lebeau
Victoria, B.C.

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