Letters to the Editor

Write: letters@pentictonherald.ca, 400 words or less.

Still prefers print over online news

Dear Editor:

As this turbulent year ends, I would like to say thank you to the staff at the Penticton Herald for continuing to provide balanced news coverage for our region during this challenging time. While television news focussed on COVID-19, ignoring other stories that didn’t fit within their time slot, the Herald and other newspapers did what they do best by providing balancedjournalism.

I feel sorry for younger generations who have missed out on the pleasure of enjoying a morning read with their coffee. While electronic media tells you what to think, newspapers give you the facts making you think for yourself.

I would also like to say that the huge Christmas Crossword was brilliant and thoroughly enjoyed in our household. The answers made you think about events from the past year and before.

Keep up the good work!

Andy Richards

Summerland

Conservatives need sensitivity training

Dear Editor:

Independent Manitoba senator Mary Jane McCallum, who attended residential school since the age of five, brought forward a motion to expel Ontario Conservative senator Lynn Beyak, who in October 2017 refused to remove derogatory letters posted on her website about residential school and how residential schools did a lot of good for Indigenous children.

When in fact, Indigenous children suffered physical and sexual abuse and thousands died of disease and malnutrition at the schools. Throughout the controversy, Beyak presented herself as a champion of free speech and a victim of political correctness. She was suspended without pay May 2019, but her suspension ended when parliament dissolved for the fall federal election.

However, in February 2020 the ethics committee voted again to suspend Beyak without pay, calling her apology “perfunctory” and “her sensitivity training a fiasco.”

She eventually did offer a second apology, though it was not perceived genuine by the grand chiefs, but she did complete her four day virtual education program of sensitivity training. So by June 2020 the ethics committee recommended rescinding February’s suspension and the senate broke for summer recess without further discussion.

The suspension prematurely ended in August 2020, when Liberals prorogued parliament. Beyak was quietly reinstatement as a senator without her peers ever deciding that should happen. McCallum says, “The way the senate has dealt with Beyak is an example of institutional racism.”

Confusing messages from Conservatives when an life-appointed conservative senator is suspended because she refuses to adequately atone for insensitive public comments and the leader of the Conservative party Erin O’Toole is publically shamed forced to admit his racism in hope of recapturing lost political capital; — while others prominent conservatives like Conrad Black use his recent op-ed in the national media to deny “institutional racism exists in Canada.” It would appear some sensitivity training would help many Conservatives.

Jon Peter Christoff

West Kelowna

First day of spring three months away

Dear Editor:

Wonderful news. By the New Year, we will be welcoming the first day of spring in less than three months.

Joe Schwarz

Penticton

Summer skid marks tell the whole story

Dear Editor:

Further to Taylor Hilchey’s letter of local traffic concern in Kaleden (Herald, Dec. 24), there is a traffic directive anomaly observation to re-enforce one of her concerns.

Just north of the two reputable and useful commercial establishments bordering Highway 97 on the east side is a contradictory and seemingly ill-advised highway advisory sign.

The coloured PC logo location advisement depicts a left-turn arrow. Unhappily, this is the continuing area of a double-yellow centre line. Vehicles heeding the sign slow and even stop in the inner passing lane occasioning abrupt evasive turns and harsh braking, Summer skid marks tell the story. Hair raising at best.

Perhaps the Ministry of Transportation should consider replacing the left-turn recommendation with a good old blue and red no turn sign.

Jean Thomas

Okanagan Falls

Penticton needs its own airline

Dear Editor:

The upcoming arrival of Pacific Coastal to take over the Penticton-to-Vancouver service abandoned by Air Canada is most welcome.

However, I seriously doubt that this can be viewed as a long-term solution to the desire to promote our airport and encourage both tourist and convention traffic.

In my view, what is needed is a Penticton- based airline which can operate a number of routes once we are in a post-pandemic travel situation. Such an airline would operate to several destinations such as Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna and Edmonton, with occasional service to key centres in northern B.C. and Alberta to which Penticton residents who to work in those areas travel regularly. It could also operate occasional services to other destinations in connection with events at the Convention Centre.

A regular (perhaps morning and evening) flight to Kelowna would enable passengers from Penticton and the South Okanagan to park their vehicles in Penticton and make connections to and from Kelowna without having to fight their way through the traffic jams leading to the Bennett Bridge and then having to find a parking spot at YLW.

I would also like to see regular service to Spokane, Wash. where passengers could link with U.S. carriers offering discounted flights to destinations across the U.S. and overseas. These services are popular with people from the Okanagan Valley but, even pre-pandemic, traveling to Spokane meant driving. If one wanted to connect with these airlines by air, one would have to travel to Seattle.

Penticton City Council should be courting local business owners to invest in such an airline. It would not be necessary for such investors to be experienced in airline operation because a company with experience in this field could be contracted to operate it. Such a company would have the necessary connections to bring in larger aircraft at times of peak demand.

The important need is for it to be based here and to operate services for which there is demand. It is possible that such an airline could operate to destinations not served from Kelowna which would mean that people from Kelowna and the central Okanagan would make use of Penticton Regional Airport.

Brian Butler

Penticton

Recovery benefit came through quickly

Dear Editor:

I would like to thank the B.C. Government for the B.C. Recovery Benefit.

I applied for it on Dec. 20 and it was in my bank account three days later on Dec. 23. Right in time for Christmas.

When people choose to be accountable and organized, things go smoother and faster for all concerned.

Oh, and I have a question for those that rage against what they perceive to be our fiscally wasteful “socialist” governments. Did you take the money?

Ralph Perrich

Kelowna

Questions procedure for COVID testing

Dear Editor:

Just a question on COVID-19 testing and tracing.Why if someone tests positive for COVID and serves out their mandated quarantine period are they not re-tested before being allowed back into circulation?

It seems that they are simply told if they are not feeling ill, or have no obvious symptoms they are good to go. Why are they not retested to ensure they are clear?

Thomas Lalonde

Peachland