Week of August 26

Future of the waterfront: escalators and a Ferris wheel?

Sir: After reading the article “Survey says: City waterfront needs more things to do” (Aug. 12), I had to wonder if the 1,800 people polled were actually residents of Sarnia.

The only way that the waterfront could be better connected to downtown would be by adding an escalator between the two. That would be somewhat unique.

Are the people that were surveyed aware of the existing coffee shops, bars and restaurants that are aching for customers?

The people that want “something to do” can go to a casino or go axe throwing on the Golden Mile.

Investment in Centennial Park and the waterfront? Plant more trees and benches and solve the goose problem. This is a park, not an amusement park. Take Five.

Sometimes I think the only people that know how to appreciate the waterfront are the group who gather near the foot of Davis Street. Most mornings, and nearly all year, they socialize and fish.

A few have mobility issues. If they can get there, so can all the whiners.

Rob Woodward

Sarnia


Vaccine passports needed if we’re to return to normal living

Sir: With all we’ve been through over the past year and a half, and with what appears to be a fourth wave of COVID-19 upon us, it is incomprehensible that Ontario is hesitating on vaccine passports.

I took an inventory of my existing cards, which in no particular order include: a passport, driver’s licence, health card, debit card, library card, credit card, birth certificate, social insurance card and grocery store discount card.

I also have a phone number, three email addresses and a personal website.

My point is this: anyone who wants to make the argument about constitutional rights, the right to privacy and government intrusion should locate a time machine and go back to the 1950s.

No one is advocating against a person’s freedom to not get vaccinated. But we are well past the point in this struggle of trying to return to some form of normal day-to-day life for the unvaccinated to not pay a price for disregarding the health and wellbeing of their fellow citizens.

There are people who have medical issues that preclude them from being vaccinated, and exceptions can be made for them. For decades, there’s been a growing trend in our society to elevate the rights of the individual (The Me Generations) over the rights of the majority. But in our present predicament it’s time to think of the We, not the ME.

Will vaccination passports be an inconvenience for restaurant staff, educators, retailers and concert ticket handlers? No doubt it will.

But don’t we all want to shed our masks and have our children and grandchildren go to school and play tag and interact with their friends? Don’t we all want to attend a wedding or celebration of life, and go out to dinner with family and friends? Don’t we all want to put COVID-19 in the rear view mirror?

So contact our local MPP (email bob.baileyco@pc.ola.org or call 519-337-0051) to let the Premier know it’s time Ontario immediately joined the growing number of provinces issuing vaccine passports.

Brian Clarke

Sarnia


Federal election campaign good a time to reflect on recent events

Sir: We’re heading for a federal election, despite an ongoing battle with COVID-19 and a fourth wave of a deadlier variant.

The media reports it will likely be a majority Liberal government, although some polls put the Liberals and Conservatives closer together.

Our Prime Minister is crossing the country promising taxpayers’ money to many organizations and causes, rightfully or not, including a one-time bonus of $500 to those 75 and older. Incidentally, persons 75 and over suffered the largest number of deaths from the pandemic.

I currently belong to no political party, nor am I an expert on politics. However, my 68 years has given me a common sense approach to the art of voting.

The highest priority of any government should be the health and welfare of its people. All else flows from that priority.

Though SARS was a wake-up call to the danger of epidemics, the current federal government has, in my opinion, botched the COVID crisis from day one.

Mixed health information, a lack of proper safety equipment for front-line heroes, and the failed attempt to secure vaccine from a country that doesn’t respect human rights left many confused, and many seniors living in retirement and living-assisted homes died while waiting for vaccinations.

One can make bold statements about the government’s work since then, but who is accountable for those who died while waiting?

If the old adage is credible that past performance predicts future performance, then how do I vote for a leader and government that accepts no responsibility for the thousands who died or suffered financially, and accepts no responsibility for the waste of taxpayer dollars or its political scandals.

And let’s not forget the issues of climate change and treatment of Canada’s Indigenous people.

Maybe the thousands of family members who lost a loved one in a senior home can find some consolation in knowing their loved ones didn’t die in vain, because the seniors 75 and over who are still living will received a $500 bonus.

Phil Nelson

Sarnia