Biased against the blue
I'm no longer surprised by your left-leaning political coverage, but one front-page headline Painting the town red (Nov. 26) takes the cake.
You claim to be a local paper for Manitobans, yet on the front page of your first edition you feature a large picture of federal Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and a winning Liberal candidate from Montreal.
There were two byelections held in Manitoba on Nov. 25, but for some reason that reporting was pushed back to pages 10 and 11. The two ridings here in Manitoba were won by Conservative candidates. Was this just a poor editorial decision or a concerted effort to keep the Conservative wins off the front page?
I think I know the answer to that one. Then add in your anti-Conservative headlines Tories barely cling to riding and Victory celebration fleeting for Tories and you get the full picture of the Free Press political bias.
Vote-splitting is the real story behind today's headlines. The Green party received a respectable 4.9 per cent of the Brandon-Souris vote and the NDP got 7.4 per cent, adding up to 3,391 votes.
If these two parties had announced their support for the Liberal candidate, or simply stayed out of the race, the Liberals would likely have overtaken the Conservatives' narrow lead. But with all parties playing politics as usual -- including the Liberals, who have rejected suggestions of a coalition or alliance -- Brandon-Souris remains in the Harper Conservative camp.
I hope the opposition parties are thinking over these results carefully. Unless they begin to co-operate, we will see Harper staying in power come 2015.
JUSTIN JARON LEWIS
I agree with Dan Lett that Brandon-Souris should have been a cakewalk for the Conservative government (Victory celebration fleeting for Tories, Nov. 26). With nearly 45 per cent turnout on a cold day at this time of the year, I believe voters had something on their minds. The "moral victory" in Provencher for the Liberals may be showing Stephen Harper's government that voters should not be taken for granted.
But most of all, I'd like to think Manitoba citizens showed up to tell the rest of us that ethics and accountability still count in politics.
Aquarium would calm
Re: Gravel lot won't do it (Nov. 25). May I suggest a subterranean freshwater aquarium at the Parcel 4 site, below a green-space park.
The aquarium, featuring Manitoba marine life, and the park above, would provide a calming and relaxing foil to the content of the adjacent Canadian Museum for Human Rights. The aquarium, as with Chicago's Shedd, would make an excellent educational vehicle, as well as a fine tourist attraction.
Targeting the deer
Re: That time of year to watch out for deer (Nov. 22). What is taking the city of Winnipeg, the provincial conservation branch and Manitoba Public Insurance so long to get together and realize the best and safest way to reduce deer collisions within the city is to have a regulated hunt? This would take some of the deer out of the collision equation.
The city of Thunder Bay came to this conclusion last year and is proceeding with another urban archery deer season this year. Even the police in Thunder Bay came to the conclusion that the hunt is not a safety issue, but the deer collisions are.
A controlled and heavily regulated hunt poses no problem no matter what the city. A reduction of the deer numbers within the city would lower the spiralling costs the taxpayers of Manitoba pay out every year through MPI.
Too many trucks
Your Nov. 23 story Truckers tickled after opening of gift of new highway reports some 18,000 trucks per week will use the 9.1-kilometre expressway that terminates at the west Perimeter. These trucks then use the roadway between the west Perimeter and Headingley.
Headingley is becoming more urbanized, which creates a real challenge for area residents. The recent closure of the Trans-Canada Highway created a traffic jam from Winnipeg to Headingley. Both lanes and the shoulders were jammed with trucks, making it difficult for residents to access streets to their homes. Some vehicles drove against oncoming traffic to get to their destination.
The number of trucks on this stretch is dangerous. Recently, a young man was killed by a truck on this stretch of roadway. Trucks should be relegated to the right lane only between the Perimeter and Headingley.
The only solution is to extend the Perimeter and bypass Headingley as proposed -- not years from now, but as early as possible.
So, there are a lot of happy truckers thanks to the CentrePort expressway. One of them is "laughing (his) ass off all the way home."
Given the amount of farmland that was destroyed as CentrePort's contribution to the permanent loss of arable land worldwide, he should be more concerned about his stomach than his keister.
War can be necessary
In his Nov. 19 letter, Who makes war call?, Jack Thiessen writes: "I am a... pacifist because I do not believe in the necessity of war."
Sir, I will defend your right to be a pacifist. But when Hitler decided to eliminate a specific part of the population, it became a necessary war.