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Underfunding the problem

Re: Osborne House gets bad reviews (Sept. 24). The real problem for Osborne House is the underfunding of an essential service.

After all, what is more important than a human life?

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All of this money spent on reviews and studies should have been spent on proper funding so Osborne House would not have to waste time and energy on fundraising.




Your continued reference to Deputy Premier Eric Robinson's "do-good white people" comment is incomplete and misleading. Robinson actually said that the burlesque fundraising event "further demonstrates the ignorance of do-good white people without giving it a second thought."

Robinson's reference to "the ignorance of do-good white people" is offensive and racist. Robinson's remark went far beyond the fundraiser in question, to indicate that all white people who do good are ignorant.

Why does the Free Press keep omitting the most offensive aspect of Robinson's comment?




Narrow view of education

In her Sept, 19 column, Education should be an investment, Roslyn Kunin urges university students to view education narrowly as an investment, the goal being to acquire job skills. For Kunin, the "horrors" of student debt justify the plug-and-play argument.

This approach threatens the joy of learning and could be economically short-sighted. Universities should be places where students should learn to communicate clearly, analyze information, problem-solve, think critically and question deeply.

If we truly believe that education is a critical social investment, we could lower or abolish tuition fees as Finland, Germany, and other countries have done. In Finland, higher education is seen as a civil right. The World Economic Forum has ranked Finland as the most competitive economy several times this century, and in 2010, Newsweek named Finland the best country in the world.

Kunin belittles attending university to "expand your mind, to be fascinated by learning new and exciting things." Yet these are at the heart of educating for an unknowable future; all knowledge is good.

In these economic times, giving students access to an inspiring, debt-free education could be the best investment we can make to help our economy and our people develop and grow.




Hockey perspective absent

Re: High taxes sting Jet's chances (Sept. 24). So now the sports section is taking on the role of propaganda bureau for right-wing, private-sector anti-tax forces?

A comparison of the take-home salaries of hockey players without some sort of overall perspective is ridiculous. Most of these young hockey players, for example, will, in the near future, father children. What is the cost of medical services, from prenatal to delivery, in the various cities in this comparison -- not to mention family health services and access to safe schools and reasonable university tuition?

What is the cost of a home within 15-20 minutes of the stadium where they work? What is the cost of a country cottage and the distance to such a possession for a person with the wherewithal to buy one? What is the proximity to real wilderness many of these young men enjoy?

A comparison is only as valid as the parameters it includes. Without them, you are comparing apples to oranges.




Traditions are dynamic

What Debbie Wall fails to understand is that traditions are not static (Try chapter on snowmobiles, Letters, Sept. 23). They are dynamic and change over time.

Look in your history books to see how differently Christmas was celebrated 100 years ago compared to the huge capitalist monster it has become.




Taxing us to death

I agree with Gloria Johnston in her Sept. 20 letter, We have no choice but debt. Poor government decisions are costly to taxpayers.

In the Sept. 20 story Extra bucks hover over stadium, we read that the province plans to divert education taxes from the redevelopment of the old stadium site to help pay for the new stadium. How can we mutely stand by as governments continually spend our tax dollars inappropriately?

Education taxes are for the education of our children. What reasoning is there behind misplacing these much-needed tax dollars towards a new stadium? Programs are continually cut in schools. There is never too much money spent on the education of our children.

How can our provincial government make these decisions without taxpayer consent? We are taxed into debt by irresponsible decisions made by our elected officials. It is time for change.




Meeting firefighters' needs

With all the hullabaloo about the new fire stations, I think, as an engineer, that the most important point has not even been publicly discussed. That is: Do the stations meet the needs of our firefighters?

From my few questions to firefighters, I understand that the new stations do meet their needs.



Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 25, 2013 A10

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