Penticton Letters

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Ashton silent when Penticton needs him

Dear Editor:

Penticton MLA Dan Ashton has been missing in action over the homeless issue in Penticton.

The citizens of Penticton help him collect a nice big paycheque as an MLA, but then he disappear when the city needs him the most. He should be outraged over the actions of Housing Minister David Eby.

Eby is violating the rights of the citizens of Penticton. This should bring outrage by the Opposition BC Liberals and our local MLA. The precedent being set is BC Housing allows them to buy land in any city, even when it’s zoned for apartments. They can then turn around and state after purchasing the land, “we are building supportive housing there.”

No input from the elected city council or the citizens. The provincial government then says, “We are forcing the project through on paramountcy.”

This seems to be only happening in the cities which elected a Liberal MLA. Where is the outrage from Ashton? Has the good life that he enjoys as an MLA made him forget the people who put him there?

Mike Hawley


Downtown parking unfair to merchants

Dear Editor:

As a store owner in the 200 block of Main Street, I would like to voice my frustration and disappointment to Penticton city council on the new paid parking.

It has had a very negative impact on my business. Not only with noticeable reduced revenue, but also with customers voicing their displeasure and frustration when they only want to pick up a phone order for a bag of tea which is $5. They feel penalized, having to pay an extra charge of $2. I have heard many customers saying they will shop somewhere else or online.

I like to think our downtown is a welcoming and pleasant environment, but paid parking has changed this.

When lockdown happened last year, we had a successful in-and-out curbside pick-up with regular tea buyers phoning in, placing and paying for their orders in advance and then being able to run in to pick up. Now they are expected to pay for this service.

I know the paid parking is in place, but it would be greatly appreciated if there might be some consideration of having meters that allow patrons to pay for 15 minutes or a half- hour instead of $2 for an hour.

I would also suggest that the two parking spots that are used by bylaw officers be used as free 15-minute parking for pick-up customers to our downtown businesses.

The bylaw officers are vigilant and doing their job, but they are also off-putting to customers, and when tourists can come back, I feel it is not the best way to greet them.

Claire Keys

Teas & Weaves


Liz Cheney should form her own party

Dear Editor:

I have written before that the U.S. political system needs a viable third party which is not a subset of one of the existing parties like the Tea Party.

Following Liz Cheney’s removal from her leadership position in the House of Representatives, it strikes me that this is the golden opportunity that is needed. If she can round up the anti-Trump Republicans in the Senate and Congress and form a new party to take a middle-of-the road position, the new party could successfully push Trump and his hangers-on into the background.

If she could persuade her father (former Vice-President Dick Cheney) to be the chairman of the new party, I predict that, with their dual profile, it would take off like a rocket and we would see a very different election in 2024 with the battle being between the Democrats and the new party with the die-hard Republicans and Trump losing support big time.Will she take this opportunity?

I certainly hope so.

Brian Butler


Hurry up and wait in medical system

Dear Editor:

There’s no use complaining as there’s little explaining.

My wife went for blood work as directed by her doctor on May 6. On May 13, she phoned health care to inquire about her results. My wife was told, her doctor would see her at 11:15 a.m. on June 2.

This extended medical wait certainly confirms the “hurry up and wait some more” exists for most everything, in this bubbled, over-pandemic created world.

What if after, many tomorrow’s diagnosis come too late? Can the medical bubble be burst?

Excuse me, I have to leave my bubble to put the garbage out for collection, as pick-up is right on time, just as my Penticton Herald delivery is 99% of the time.

Stay well everybody and avoid the pandemic created confusion and flip flop of our shared daily routine orders.

Tom Isherwood


People don’t grasp laws of probabilities

Dear Editor:

Last October, the Liberal government announced it hopes to admit 1.2 million new residents to Canada between 2021 to 2023, equivalent to 3% of Canada’s population. Even among high-immigration countries, Canada stands out.

The Minister for Immigration, Marco Mendicino reminded Canadians that at current birthrates within 15 years our ratio of workers to pensioners will fall from three to two, making immigration a key element of Canada’s economic recovery and long- term prosperity.

It has been the pandemic that has shaped a new zeal to import foreign talent. Canada is still choosy about who we offer the chance to stay, our foreign-born population is the best educated of all OECD countries. Canada offers the most to the “economic class” of migrants and their families, based on a points system.

But on April 14, Mendicino announced Canada would open new pathways to permanent residency for more than 90,000 temporary workers already in the country. Most work in healthcare, agriculture and other essential occupations.

Our health emergency forced government to be more flexible and receptive to all types of essential workers. The past year has shown how important workers with less schooling are to the Canadian economy.

Jon Peter Christoff

West Kelowna

Immigration key to long-term prosperity

Dear Editor:

You all have heard numerous media reports of provincial officials stopping the access to some vaccines because of the possibility of developing a blood clot, the main cause of stroke.

Some of them also tell you of the probability that you will get a clot if you take that vaccine. One of the recent ones that I have seen says 0.0004 % from AstraZeneca, 0.05% from birth-control pills, 0.18% from smoking and 16.5% from a COVID infection.

The problem is that very few of the public understand these probability numbers.

The general reader has difficulty grasping the meaning and significance of different probability numbers. People don’t think naturally in terms of probabilities; “it will happen” or “it won’t” is our default mode. That general public rule seems to apply in my field, the probability of earthquake shaking. They believe the 1-in-500 probability shaking (0.002%) “won’t happen”, but a 10% chance of happening in 50 years (the mathematical equivalent of 1-in-500) “might happen.”

That is why we used that terminology for the probability for the new seismic zoning maps, so that people “might” believe it and take it seriously.

If you find yourself a member of the public that is considering this issue, be as a reader above and say that 0.0004% “won’t happen”, but take your vaccine and feel safe; it is a better chance of staying alive than crossing a street and being hit by a bus.

Peter Basham


Thank the CBC  for ‘Schitt’s Creek’

Dear Editor:

In response to Guy Bissonnette’s recent letter trashing the CBC, I would advocate the opposite.

I think the CBC needs to be fully funded in a similar way to the BBC, Deutsche Welle, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, etc. In an infinitely commercialized and commodified world, the need for an independent public broadcaster cannot be emphasized enough.

Further, the CBC has produced award winning documentaries and world-renowned shows over the years, the most recent being “Schitt’s Creek” and “Kim’s Convenience,” which are also viewed on Netflix and other carriers, so may not show up in the direct CBC viewing stats.

Other programs, such as “Still Standing,” take us across the country while affirming the hard-working people in the featured communities.

Additionally, the news reporting and thorough political commentary are excellent. The constant need to supplement funding with commercials is irritating to viewers and compromises the intellectual and creative integrity of the programming.

If salaries at the upper levels have become inflated, these could be reviewed and changed to be comparable to what private networks are paying.

Improve the management, keep the service and make it even better.

Patricia Giannelia


Anti-NDP rant from a Conservative

Dear Editor:

Well, surprise, surprise!

Kaleden Conservative party hack John Thompson is at it again. Another of his anti-government rants without a positive word in the piece (Herald letters, May 13).

As usual, Thompson is attacking the NDP for its support of the federal Liberal government. He attacks the NDP rather than the Liberals directly because our local MP Richard Cannings represents that party.

He talks about “irresponsible spending” as if programs for wage and rent supports for business, funding for childcare and payments to seniors in a time of stress resulting from the COVID pandemic are irresponsible.

His loathing is such that he resorts to ridiculous hyperbole — “gong show.” “fractured and impoverished country.”

He even goes so far as to refer to the “Great Reset” conspiracy popular with right-wing Trumpists in the United States.

Other than as a partisan political rant, it is unclear what the purpose of Thompson’s letter is. He supports the Conservative party, but nowhere in his letter is there any reference to any policy or principle that would encourage anyone to consider voting for them.

In spite of pandemic-related stresses, he says, “We need an election.”

Well, John, you’ll get your wish sooner or later and we’ll see how well your fractured and impoverished party does then.

Peter Benson


Misplaced money repulsive, sad

Dear Editor:

Re: “Mayor misplaced money,” (Courier/Herald, May 13).

It appears Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran got caught with his hands in the cookie jar and the best lame and weak response he can come up with is an insult to the citizens of Kelowna, it would be laughable if it wasn’t so repulsing and sad.

Terry Kramer


Advocating for our disabled golfers

Dear Editor:

For about 10 years, I have tried by positive tactics to get Interior B.C. golf clubs to make available a single-rider electric golf cart which would enable handicapped paraplegic persons to play on the golf course; with no luck.

Perhaps it now may be time to do so some criticizing.

Most golf clubs have gone to considerable expense to provide wheelchair access to their clubhouses, eating facilities, and washrooms; presumably because it was required or was the right thing to do.

Yet not one club has been willing to commit a few thousand dollars to enable paraplegic access to the golf course itself, including my own club where I have been a paying member since 1990.

The specialized, single-rider carts have been available during these years, and are in use in various clubs in the U.S. and in eastern Canada. These carts come with seats that tilt and swivel to allow a golfer to play from either a supported standing or fully seated position.

They have been proven to go anywhere on a course without causing any damage. Once available, through either lease or purchase, they provide revenue even with reduced rates for paraplegics, plus additional regular fees for friends that accompany them. Hopefully some golf clubs will decide that paraplegics deserve a chance to play the game on their course.

Somewhat ironically, one year ago I lost the use of my legs because of an incurable medical condition so I can no longer stand on them.

After many years advocating for others, I find myself needing the special service myself.

Since no golf club was willing to provide a special cart, my family and friends chipped in to buy a Solo Rider cart for my own use to enable me to continue with some golfing. I am now practicing to learn new skills to golf sitting down.

I expect to soon be able to golf a few rounds on my golf course as the directors see no reason to prevent its use.

Tony Brummet