Letters to the Editor

Write: letters@pentictonherald.ca

Youth-obsessed culture is selfish

Dear Editor:

Re: “Kelowna under threat from invaders” by Helen Kaulbach (Okanagan Weekend letters, July 25).

Thank you Helen for saying exactly how I’ve been feeling for years, but even more so this year with the threat of COVID-19. Every summer tourists invade our village of Naramata. They take over the beaches, fill up the tiny restaurant, coffee shop and store and clog the road into town as they meander from winery to winery.

We too have been in isolation since March and when the province moved into Phase 3, we thought we’d finally be able to go out for dinner again, or at least coffee. But we won’t risk it now, not with the sudden rise in community outbreaks, caused solely by arrogant, selfish, youngsters.

But that shouldn’t really be a surprise. I’ve been aware for a very long time how utterly youth-obsessed our culture is. Growing old has been viewed as something tantamount to a dreaded disease and elders are mostly ignored, certainly undervalued.

But now, with COVID, it has come to light that we are completely expendable. We can be left to starve to death, die from septic bedsores or infected with a deadly virus in understaffed seniors homes. Or we can be forced into constant isolation while the young enjoy all the amenities we spent our lives creating for them.

You asked it anyone had a solution. I’m afraid there isn’t one. I don’t expect to see in my lifetime a sudden change in our Western culture from worshipping youth to valuing elderhood and until that happens we will continue to be marginalized.

Audrey Anderson

Naramata

Enjoyed editor’s column on birthdays

Dear Editor:

Re: “Pandemic birthday was a lot of fun,” (Okanagan Weekend, July 25).

Hi, just wanted to express how much I enjoyed James Miller’s column on Saturday. He made so much sense regarding staycations and social distancing.

Belated birthday greetings.

Helen Hudson

Penticton

ICBC bosses should take 40% pay cut

Dear Editor:

It appears that our provincial government, along with ICBC, have snuck another one under the radar.

I was flabbergasted after buying a five-year-old Harley Davidson, only to discover I was being taxed at 12%. When I inquired about why I had to pay both taxes on a used vehicle, I was told we only pay the PST, but an amendment brought in by ICBC and the John Horgan government puts the PST on used vehicles at 12% (at least that's how I understood the explanation.)

Another unconfirmed incident from a local Facebook page stated that a senior recently went to renew his auto insurance, only to discover the price had inexplicably increased by $300. When he inquired as to why, he was allegedly told by the agent that ICBC is $1 billion in the red, and that they had to recoup it somehow. If this is in fact true, then I must say that I am sick and bloody tired of the 99% paying for the mismanagement of the 1%. I also think that if this is true, then ICBC executives should take a 40% pay cut straight across the board — but we all know you have a better chance of winning the Lotto-649 twice in the same week before that would happen.

What happened to rewarding good drivers and punishing the bad ones? Was all that just a bunch of hot air? I guess so. Only time will tell. I renew my truck insurance in November, and do not have so much as a speeding ticket on my record. We will see how much they want this time around.

I will get back to you all on this.

Mark Billesberger

Penticton

Carters have been stellar in community

Dear Editor:

Mr. and Mrs. Carter, owners and operators of Your Dollar Store With More, have not only been members of this community for several years, but they have also supported many community events. They are courteous and respectful to their customers and often will go out of their way to assist the customer. I have also heard them refer a customer to their competition knowing it takes business away from them.

To be subjected to the treatment they received from the mayor must not only be humiliating, but discouraging.

I have more respect for people who are kind than those who try to intimidate others because of differing opinions or who are simply trying to serve the public needs. I am not impressed with how the mayor treated the Carters. Bullying by anyone (and that means intimidation) should not be acceptable behaviour, but it is more deplorable when it comes from a person in a position of authority.

I think the Carters are owed a public apology. However I understand that the mayor is refusing to apologize. This sets a dangerous precedent where one preaches about equality, tolerance and anti-bullying but feels they themselves are above reproach.

Wow!

Mary-Anne MacDonald

Summerland

Mayor’s actions were inappropriate

Dear Editor:

We learn from the past. We make mistakes and by learning from those past mistakes we move forward. We need to sit down together, respectfully, to work out a better way and set good examples for our next generation.

You do not command respect, you earn it.

Bullying to get others to share your views should never be condoned. The pendulum has swung too far one way and, with so, many challenges facing the entire planet. We need to find the middle ground for all.

Continuing to rant and rave against anything perceived as racist is another form of bullying. Protest it respectfully, gain knowledge, try to find change that is needed but begin with yourself. Your actions. Being radical, tearing down statues, burning flags and rioting does not change the past. Attitudes and respect will.

Our mayor showed neither of those traits on July 18 at Your Dollar Store with More in Summerland. If she was there as the mayor, it displayed blatantly unprofessional conduct. As a public figure, a person is held to a higher standard.Yes, personal beliefs and ideas shape who you are, however, when expressing your own viewpoints surely you know it will be received as coming from a public figure first therefore, you would act respectfully.

Why take Black Press with you if you are not looking for a confrontation or grandstanding and for what purpose? If you were there as a private citizen with concerns, I defend that you have every right in the world to disagree on a personal level, but there are so many better ways to have handled the issue.

I thought the mayor was better composed as a person and a mayor. Her behaviour, regardless of the role, is unacceptable.

In this great free country of Canada — a business pays a license fee and is free to sell anything, except illegal items. Their choice. Their business. Allan Carter and Your Dollar Store with More is a proud supporter of Summerland and I personally feel he is owed a public apology.

Whether you are a mayor, or a private citizen, nothing excuses bad behaviour.

Barbara Robson

Summerland

Misstep by mayor, missed opportunity

Dear Editor:

I would like to comment on the unfortunate incident that started with some misguided individuals trying to abuse and intimidate the Lekhi family by defacing and damaging their property with spray paint and rocks.

I was very pleased and impressed by the community’s response to this incident and how people rallied around the family to show them that the community supports and cares for them, and that these type of incident are not indicative of the community as a whole.

One thing that I was not impressed with though was the subsequent grandstanding and political pandering by the mayor of Summerland Toni Boot.

I have known Toni since we were children going to school in Summerland, and I like her on a personal level; but cannot agree with her actions in this case.

I speak specifically of her attempt to demonize the Your Dollar Store With More owner Allan Carter. I don’t know Mr. Carter, nor am I a regular customer in his store, but I imagine he is like every other store owner in this town who is trying to eke out a living from his business in Summerland.

One only has to drive through Summerland and see the empty stores and storefronts to realize that businesses here are barely staying afloat; especially in these times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To unnecessarily try to intentionally hurt another business in this community by shaming him for selling confederate flag bandannas (which he no longer offered for sale, and freely gave at no charge to the mayor, without knowing what her intentions were) is beyond the pale, and definitely below the office and responsibilities of being mayor.

The worst-kept secret in Summerland is that Toni Boot will seek the NDP nomination for the next provincial election, thus the praise on social media by NDP Premier John Horgan and other political figures.

That Toni Boot is willing to sacrifice local businesses and the good reputation of the Summerland community to further her political aims, draws into question her ability to act as this community’s advocate and leader.

Peter Holler

Summerland

Young people think they’re invincible

Dear Editor:

It is now more than five months since this COVID-19 pandemic started, and it is turning out to be like a war. Unfortunately at the rate we are going, young adults, who think they are invincible, are now the ones who are getting the virus.

Because they have become complacent and getting together in larger groups , the virus has spread again. Seniors, who are not in care homes have, on the whole and thanks to provincial health officer Dr Bonnie Henry, been diligent about safe distancing, wearing masks and using hand sanitizers. They are the ones who are surviving although they are more vulnerable.

I hate to keep harping back to the Second World War in England, but we were isolated in our own town for six years. We couldn't travel to other parts of the country, let alone overseas. We had Winston Churchill to keep us optimistic — keep calm and carry on.

Pixie Marriott

Summerland

Farm workers are getting the shaft

Dear Editor:

Re: “Fired farm workers call foul,” (Okanagan Weekend, July 25).

Regarding the two foreign workers fired for receiving a delivery, I am incensed at Bylands Nursery. I am not a customer of theirs though and never will be.

I realize you likely disagree with calls for boycotts, but aside from boycotts what other ways do we have of expressing our displeasure with businesses that act unethically or unkindly? Especially if they ignore messages or letters or phone calls?

If a business mistreats staff or customers, are we to just grimace and allow such mockeries of justice to occur? No!

Modern day employment is nowhere near like slavery, but disrespect and inhumanity are common to this era and slavery's era.

I once was verbally threatened by a former manager, they did not bat an eye when I reproached them for their threat and the former manager is a female not a male.

Even some police officers wantonly disobey or subvert the laws they are intended to and trusted to enforce.

Patrick Longworth

Penticton

Herald letter will be one for the ages

Dear Editor:

Re: “The Royal Wee for Justin Trudeau,” (Herald letters, July 24).

Penticton resident Joy Lang has written a letter with a line which will become world famous.

Future generations will refer to Lang’s line in her letter in the same context - perspective as Winston Churchills famous Battle of Britain quote: “Never in human conflict was so much own by so many to so few,” referring to Churchills’ quote about how the RAF’s fighter Command defeated the Luftwaffe (the German Air Force’s 1940 attack against Britain).

Her line which will be seen and heard around the world: “Justin Trudeau wee- wee-ed all over himself.”

Only a lady could write such a line; of all the letters Ms. Lang has written, this particular line could very well will be her most remembered letter. I will refer to the line in scores of letters I write to U.S. and Australian veterans. I will often refer to Joy’s line in the hundreds of letters I send to Canadian, American and Australian editors and publishers.

Ernie Slump

Penticton

American statistics serve as a warning

Dear Editor:

Watching the latest on the COVID-19 crisis in the United States and it is hard to get one’s head wrapped around how serious it really is, but there is always math.

U.S. population 331,002,651 (UN figure mid year). U.S. COVID cases 3,882,167 (CDC figures, July 22)

One in 85 US citizens have been infected with COVID-19.

U.S. COVID deaths 141,677 (CDC figures, July 22)

One in 2,336 US citizens have died from COVID. Goodness, I hope we are all social distancing and wearing masks.

Les Povarchook

Kelowna