Letters to the Editor

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

Thanks to incredible staff at Haven Hill

Dear Editor:

After getting home from Haven Hill Retirement Centre in Penticton today, visiting my Mom, I was feeling great about the attitude of the staff and thought I should share it.

I am sure this has been a very difficult year for the team but they are always so friendly and caring. The team at the front door and up on the second floor Bartlett deserve a lot of credit for their great work as I am sure the rest of the team does.

Thanks for caring. Much appreciated.

Brenda Todhunter

(daughter of Jeanne Pritchard)


Live a life of fullness and freedom

Dear Editor:

Most of us don't grow up thinking about death and it doesn't hit home until we grow older. Our teenage years are spent thinking we are invincible, and when we hear stories of death or tragedy we feel sorry then move on. But death does catch up with us.

It's a hard concept to accept but we all come with an expiry date. We sometimes try to defy the odds by clinging to the belief that if we do everything right we will live longer. Some of us will even go so far as to avoid people or situations that might jeopardize our chances of extending our life span.

We might improve our quality of life, but death is inevitable. So when it does touch us and those we love, it affects us to the core of our being.

I believe we are meant to live a life of fullness and freedom. I believe we are never done learning or growing. So why are there so many people crippled with fear and anguishing anxiety? Isn't this a good time to take inventory of our lives-evaluate how we are or are not living but simply existing with the hope that all will change soon? Suffering always has a way of shaking us, but it is our response to it, of not cowering in fear that is the power.

JRR Tolkien's great trilogy "The Lord of the Rings" compellingly dramatizes the human experience. In the first volume Gandalf and Frodo have a profound conversation about the nature of evil, pity and destiny. They are lost in the Mines of Moria. Frodo exclaims, “I wish the Ring had never come to me."

Gandalf responds, "So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us."

While we wait for life-life passes and there is no refund on an unused life.

Mary-Anne MacDonald


Interior Health must stand up to Province

Dear Editor:

Amateurs paid six figures by the Province continue their mindless propaganda on behalf of the likes of David Eby and Adrian Dix.

First we saw amateur staff at BC Housing try to solve homelessness by trying to open a second homeless shelter. I am not an expert, but I searched on Google how to end homelessness and not a single article recommended shelters.

Maybe Eby should invest in some training for his amateurs.

Now we see the amateurs at Interior Health publicly state they are OK with substance-use addiction, and are going to make intentionally try to make it worse (closure of Pathways) and no attempts to address it (propaganda they recently shared in the local news).

Instead of paying professional experts on promoting propaganda, Health Minister Adrian Dix can sit down with the city council in Penticton and come up with actual solutions. Why? They are the only ones making any suggestions around solutions!

I hope Minister Dix replaces all the decision makers with people willing to look at the evidence instead of being political puppets. Media need to also step up and hold Jana Abetoff, Carl Meadows and Susan Brown fully accountable for their lack of leadership and willingness to be political ponies for the NDP.

Please read: recoverydaybc.ca/evidence-that-supports-bed-based-addiction-treatment-and-recovery/

Georgia Miles


Train letter brings back fond memories

Dear Editor:

“Kettle Valley Railway needs our support” (Herald letters, April 27) took my memory back 67 years.

I got my first summer job as a water boy for the CPR in Port Coquitlam where I earned one dollar and 16 cents per hour.

The rail yard was getting a new service line, labour supplied by an Italian section gang under the watchful eye of Fred Fransen, a true railroader if there ever was one.

I asked Fred one day if I could pound spikes into the new ties with the Italian crew who all laughed, but I got the chance to try.

My first mighty swing, I hit the top of the rail and I thought I was on the way to the moon as my arms vibrated from the impact.

However, I got the hang of swinging a nine pound sledgehammer and also the manual tamping in the new railroad ties.

Before summer ended, Fred arranged for me to work in the roundhouse and learn to be a wiper, who fired up the monster steam locomotives for active duty.

After a short time I was taught to back the steam locomotive onto what was called a turntable that took the engine to the desired track which was the service track I needed.

I could drive the engine and spin the drive wheels, that is till Fred caught me and scolded me.

The end of summer came and school was about to start. Fred asked if I would like to work as a wiper on weekends and “YES” was my answer.

Sadly steam engines were becoming obsolete and my railway working days were over. I joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1956 and travelled back east on a train pulled by a locomotive powered by steam I think diesel electric engines were replacing steam engines in the railyard.

I was welcomed aboard Engine Number 3716 many years later enjoying pleasant memories from so long ago.

I thank my friend Craig Gray, a wiper at the time who lives near by and can attest to my letter.

Tom Isherwood


38-years-sober doesn’t support beach booze

Dear Editor:

Come one, come all to Penticton.

In the middle of a worldwide pandemic — Covid-19, where you are invited to drink on our beautiful beaches by our council. You can get and early start by 12 noon.

Be sure to visit our liquor stores and wineries. We have a shortage of RCMP, so this makes it safer.

Bring your children, so they can watch responsible consumption of spirits. We all know that liquor helps to heighten our intelligence and behaviours.

I am sure the RCMP, doctors, and hospital will be delighted with this “Trump” idea.

Also, Pathways Addictions Resource Centre has been closed where so many people have been helped over the past 45 years.

I am 38 years sober so I wish to be anonymous thanks to AA, Pathways, doctors and the RCMP.

I care about my hometown, Penticton!

Name withheld upon request


Political opportunism wins out over reality

Dear Editor:

I accompanied my father when he wired many Saskatchewan farm homes in the early 1950s. It was always magical when the lights went on.

People abandoned coal oil lamps and wood- fired cook stoves as relics of the past. No more trimming the lamp wicks and keeping the stove stoked for cooking and hot water. No more cellars and ice houses for food preservation. Water pumps eliminated water pails.

Electric stoves and refrigerators came first. Then the sky was the limit. We don’t appreciate things that we’ve always had. Electricity eliminated many time consuming activities and liberated women from household drudgery.

This country is approaching a crossroads on electrical supply, which is finite. Legislated conversion to electric vehicles will create additional, but uncalculated, needs. Increased demand will converge with constrained supply resulting from social and political insistence that electricity must come from wind and solar sources; versus fossil fuel and nuclear generation.

There’s an expectation that wind and solar power will happen because it’s believed to be an environmentally-worthy idea. But who knows the true environmental and financial impacts of the enormous wind and solar projects and backup electrical sources which will be required?

Most sources of hydro power have either been fully exploited or ruled out because of environmental concerns. Dams create huge environmental consequences, as we’ve seen with the James Bay and Site C megaprojects. Yet, the climate movement has now decided to re-brand hydro as green.

Will pinning our hopes on solar and wind power result in electricity shortages? Will we revert to coal oil lamps and wood stoves because of unpredictable or unaffordable electrical supply? What’s the cost to the consumer and the taxpayer per kilowatt of green electricity?

We should examine Ontario and Germany where an ideologically-driven embrace of wind and solar electricity resulted in excessive debt, high consumer prices and unreliable electrical supply. They’ve had to suck back on this. Germany has fallen back on coal-fired electricity and is mainlining more oil and gas with new pipelines from Russia.

Energy poverty occurs when six percent of net income is spent on energy. It’s estimated that 20 percent of Canadian households are already at this point.

But our politicians keep ratcheting up carbon taxes, and have legislated us into electric vehicles by 2040 without identifying the associated financial and environmental impacts. It’s deception and short-term political opportunism over reality.

John Thompson


Listen to science ahead of business

Dear Editor:

With the 30-day exception of India and Pakistan, the federal government is still allowing air travel in and out of Canada, including to and from COVID-19 devastated nations like Brazil.

Other than the travel-related industries, particularly the airlines, I’d say there’s no real benefit from such liberty.   

I believe that when the coronavirus crisis began, big business was the most influential voice to have the ear of government, when it should have been the independent health-sciences community.

Thus the result was resistance against an immediate halt in travel, including international flights — weeks of delay that may have translated into many additional and needless COVID-19 deaths. 

When the COVID-19 crisis is over, the same common yet questionable refrain may still prevail among capitalist-nation governments and corporate circles, perhaps even left as neglectful of human-health needs as before (which had resulted in the many

horrible COVID-19 long-term care-home deaths): best business practices, including what’s best for the consumers, are best decided by business decision-makers.  

And our government(s) too often fail to intervene, perhaps out of fear of being labelled ‘anti-business’ in our avidly capitalist culture. 

Frank Sterle Jr.

White Rock

Police, municipalities need to enforce rules

Dear Editor:

You may have heard about the visit of a notorious Ontario anti-masker in Kelowna last week.

Several hundred people were there. I can vouch for that, as I watched from across the street.

This person says that “Kelowna is the protest capital of B.C.” This man is accused of being a racist, anti-Semite, holocaust denying, anti-masker, anti-vaxxer, and for filming videos where he harasses staff in grocery stores.

People like him and our own organizers of weekly lock-down protests in Kelowna are emboldening local business owners to disobey the mask mandate.

The City of Kelowna had this absolutely pathetic response: “(The City of Kelowna) urges people to respect the public health orders, which include limiting travel to essential trips, wearing a mask and keeping a safe physical distance from each other.”

There was one RCMP cruiser present. Is this what you want for Kelowna? Do you want Kelowna to be a “protest capital,” a place where a far-right movement is being built? COVID numbers are climbing everywhere in B.C., including the Okanagan. With several hundred people that day with no masks and no social distancing, this could very likely become a super-spreader event.

I demand the City of Kelowna and RCMP do something about what is happening in Kelowna.

On May 1, there will be another rally in Kelowna. I demand City Hall speak about what is happening, and work with the RCMP and provincial government to fine and charge organizers of these events.

I am tired of getting no response when I contact officials and police (and others have found the same thing). You are showing no leadership for our city, and we deserve better. The vast majority of us are doing the right thing under COVID-19, yet we have to put up with these protests, which spread the virus, hate, and lies. I demand better from you. Will any of you have the guts to respond to me?

Terry Bridges