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Letters, week of May 21

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Sex ed protesters misinformed

Sir: It is disturbing to me to see children protesting against changes to the Sex Education curriculum, manipulated by their parents to do so and denied the opportunity to be in the classroom with their teachers and friends.

These are the tactics of social conservatives who want to impose their beliefs and values on society at large and to dismiss the rights of the majority as irrelevant.

The values of social conservatives are at odds with the larger society’s values of equality and tolerance, which are supported by the findings of science, reason and logic.  Society must, therefore, embrace opportunities to protect our children from exploitation and abuse, while allowing them to develop wisdom and understanding about human sexuality.  The new curriculum will help to achieve these goals.

Parents are important partners in teaching their children about sexual development and health but most parents are not naive to believe that they can do it all by themselves. I speak from experience.

The province’s new curriculum may not be perfect, but it is a very important step in the right direction.  It is shameful that many protestors clearly have not studied the changes and instead choose to misrepresent the curriculum’s content and intent.

Only the misinformed and those with a different “agenda” would oppose the updated curriculum.

Allan McKeown                                                                                                  



Solar Farm story ignored power prices

Sir: I generally enjoy reading the articles in the Journal, and the colour pictures are very good.

The May 7 picture and article regarding the Sarnia Solar Farm is an eye-catcher and makes the facility sound like the best thing to happen to power consumers in Ontario.

I have no quarrel with the technology, and it is good to hear the solar farm “lived up to the expectations” of Enbridge.

But perhaps your reporters should cover the full story.

A large part of the way Ontario’s Liberal government implemented this technology includes the expectation of ever-increasing electrical power costs, to the point many people have to chose between paying the rent or paying out-of-control electrical bills. (Projections are for another 40% increase?)

The Ontario Clean Energy Benefit of a 10% reduction to your bills, which apparently is disappearing with the next budget, is a political slight-of-hand that “returns” part of the exorbitant energy costs charged to you in the first place, as a political trick.

People may be impressed that the 80-megawatt power production from the Solar Farm can serve up to 12,000 homes per year.

The average consumer has little idea what a megawatt is, nor does the average consumer realize that Lambton Generating Station was capable of producing 2,000 megawatt of power, serving 25 times more homes at about 5% of the cost the government guarantees to the Solar Farm’s owners. No wonder Enbridge, Suncor and others are fighting lawsuits so they can hang on to 20-year guarantees of lucrative profits.

Of course solar farms produce meaningful power only when the sun shines. To provide electricity at night and cloudy days the government had to build natural gas-fired generating plants.  By now we all know how the Liberal government wasted over $1 billion relocating two partially built gas plants for the political purpose of winning election seats.

Do people know that on a sunny (windy) day when these facilities produce more power than the grid can use, the “excess” is sold to American utilities at about 2% of what the Ontario consumers paying?

Solar and wind technology have their place if priced competitively, but the economic and political decisions made by Ontario’s Liberals can only survive because most consumers have no idea why power rates continue to rise.

Ever wonder why Toyota, GM and other industries are relocating production elsewhere?

Unfortunately most Hydro customers in Ontario cannot “vote” in this way.

Gunther Tippelt



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