Letters: week of July 30

Taxpayer offers token of gratitude for brilliant use of his dollars


Sir:
I would like to thank the City of Sarnia and all the other organizations that so effectively use our tax dollars.

I thank them for the opportunity to pay the highest property taxes I could ever have imagined, and get so little for it. And for passing rules that mean I cannot use a plastic bag for my yard waste or recycling items.

I truly appreciate the experience of the mandated paper yard waste bags. The cost is higher, and they certainly respond well to prolonged damp or moisture. I have to re-bag them on most occasions, adding to the overall experience.

I thank them for their leadership and initiative in helping the downtown business community by dawdling on the decision to make Christina Street a walking space. Maybe they thought it would be appreciated if they put more nails in their economic coffins.

By the time this is printed they will most likely have come to their senses, but it goes without saying their overall response to local business struggles is particularly encouraging.

And thanks for managing our tax dollars so effectively. Many millions of dollars (yes millions) in overruns on project after project: Centennial Park, the Boat Ramp, Great Lakes Secondary, to name a few. It goes without saying the $2-million increase in the recycling contract was especially well done. It’s always appreciated when you can pay 40% more for an essential service and get absolutely nothing in return. In fact, it’s even better if it means inconvenience and extra cost to those providing the funds in the first place.

The list goes on, but closer to home, my appreciation is always elevated when I drive onto my street after a rainstorm and find it flooded. It only costs me $250 a foot for that recurring spectacle.

So thank you, for putting our money and resources to such good use.

 

John Schaw
Sarnia

 


 

Like seatbelts and stoplights, mandatory face masks save lives

Sir: To say I’m disappointed that wearing a mask in indoor public places isn’t mandatory is an understatement.

How can our county and city councils choose to vote against mandatory masks? They’re ignoring the science that shows masks, along with social distancing and washing hands, all WORK TOGETHER to keep COVID-19 cases low.

London, Windsor, and over 20 communities have approved this simple, life-saving measure.

We watch as cases surge south of the border and, although late, many states are finally mandating masks. How many lives would have been saved if those states had mandated them when they were at the level we are now? Do we want to follow their lead?

Cases in Sarnia started to rise last week, before we entered Phase 3. Next, we want to open schools. How will children, teachers, staff, and the people they go home to be protected? Can we expect children to wear a mask without adult example? At first, most people wore masks, but as time passes I’ve noticed only about 30% of shoppers and few employees still wearing them, and many are ignoring distancing.

I have family working in Kingston where masks are mandatory. They tell me it was a hassle at first but now 80% are wearing them and those that once argued against it say little.

I beg you, if you care about your family, friends, or yourself, please, wear a mask. People under 50, including children, have died, lost limbs, and been left with permanent medical issues after battling this virus. COVID-19 doesn’t care who you are, your age, or your social status.

Like seatbelts, stoplights and headlights, masks save lives.

I beg Sarnia council, county council, and stores to require masks, since higher levels of government refuse to.

As I say when I leave my friends these days, “STAY SAFE AND WEAR YOUR MASK!”


Val Conway
Sarnia

 


 

Political inaction on mandatory face mask wearing disappointing

Sir: I do not understand why, as communities across this province are making face masks mandatory, Sarnia is not.

Why is Dr. Sudit Ranade, Lambton’s Medical Officer of Health, continuing to ignore the science?

Why did Lambton County council think declaring “its support and encouragement” to those who cover their mouth and nose with a mask in indoor public settings is going far enough? Who advised them on this matter?

I am beyond disappointed to hear Mayor Bradley had the support of only two councillors to call a special meeting to pass a mandatory mask bylaw for indoor public places. After being relatively free of COVID-19 for weeks, new cases have started to appear again. This is telling us something.

Masks have been politicized, for better or worse. In my opinion, this means we are politicizing life and death. Why?

The truth is, wearing a mask is a sign of solidarity, something our country and the Sarnia community is usually very good at. There is strength in numbers. When we collectively take action by choosing to wear a mask, everyone benefits.

We should all be willing to accept this small inconvenience for the well-being of our fellow citizens. With one, small gesture we can all be unsung heroes.

Wearing a mask is a proven tactic to fight the spread of disease. It is also a symbol. It shows others you care about yourself and those around you.

I choose to wear a mask so that one day we won’t have to.

Sincerely,


Claudette Gasbarini
Sarnia

 


 

Government hypocritical on wearing of face masks

Sir: I would like to address the climate of shame and general mistrust in Canadian communities being promoted against those not wearing masks.

There seems to be an unwarranted fear caused by government over-reach at all levels – federal, provincial and municipal – and a great deal of hypocrisy being accepted from governments which claim to strive for the best interests of Canadians while legalizing and expanding MAID (euthanasia and assisted suicide) to both old and young, healthy and sick people.

 

Marie-Paule Wilkinson
Bright’s Grove