James Jewell's Have traffic ticket 'quotas' turned police service into a massive money-making machine? Feb. 3 is spot on. The issue not touched on is the co-operative relationship between the police who collect the money and the public works department that refuses to post proper signage.
We are the only city that doesn't put speed-reduction signs on both sides of a divided road and the only city that doesn't follow engineering standards with speed-sign installation.
An officer was enforcing the reduced speed on Brookside Boulevard every day for a six-month period while the speed-reduction sign was laying in a swamp. During that period, public works claimed they wouldn't replace the sign because they were too busy putting up signage on Chief Peguis. When I approached that officer one day to try to tell him the sign was laying in the ditch, he said he wasn't interested and told me to move on.
This has nothing to do with safety and is an abuse on the public. I truly feel sorry for those who got tricked by this trap and lost a day's or more wages.
East St. Paul
I attended a social on Saturday night that raised funds for the University of Winnipeg Students Association and the Children's Hospital only to deal with ticket frustrations the next day.
Knowing the next day was a Sunday and that parking meters and rush hour rules would not be a problem, I left my car a block away from the university on Ellice Avenue. Since I had a fair bit to drink I called my brother to pick me up at the end of the night. After getting back to the university, I found a $50 parking ticket on my car for being parked on a "snow route" even though no snow fell that night and the street had not been cleared.
If anyone wants to know why people avoid downtown and why, even in this day and age, people drive while intoxicated, I think they need to look at the way the people of Winnipeg are nickle-and-dimed to death by parking and police officers.
Time for change
Thank you for the article on the Liberal leadership race (Candidates seek traction in Manitoba, Feb. 2). I believe voters in every province are looking for an alternative in our country's federal leadership and Manitobans will not be left out. My answer to Mia Rabson's question "how many people will notice?" Many more than we think!
In my opinion, the next federal election will be completely different from any of the past, young people will show up like never before, the Conservatives will have been in Ottawa a decade and it will be time for change!
Head turning, spinning
When I read the line in the article Three Tory MPs ask RCMP to investigate some abortions as homicides (Jan. 31) "From 2000 to 2009 in Canada there were 491 abortions..." I almost flipped the page. Then I read the second half of the sentence, "...of 20 weeks gestation and greater that resulted in live birth." How does this make any sense?
I tried to block out of my mind the images of the painful deaths these tiny souls experience. In the last paragraph I learned that no one is responsible because "the baby is born alive and then dies as a result of the injuries..."
My heart breaks for these mothers, and cries out helplessly for the nameless child. I just completed a book about the 'faceless' people in Cambodia's killing fields -- people who were tortured and died of their injuries. We turned our heads then. What is wrong with us, people?
Suffer all religions
In response to the May 26 mass worship service at the Investors Group Field stadium (Christian gathering will kick off new football stadium, Feb. 2). I, a Mennonite Christian, was surprised and disappointed to learn the United Church and the Roman Catholic Church have not been invited to participate "in any way" by the planners, One Heart Winnipeg.
Surely, if the event does not involve communion/eucharist, reasonable Christian leaders of most denominations could agree on enough to plan public worship for thousands.
I urge the present leaders of One Heart Winnipeg to prayerfully examine Jesus's plea (John 17: 21-22) for unity among his followers.
DAVID REMPEL SMUCKER
Water rights ceded
Dave Ennis (Letters, Jan. 31) claims the aboriginal people did not surrender the rights to water on the ceded lands. The wording of the treaties is really quite clear and assumes that water is included with the trees, minerals, and other all other resources.
Treaty 7 allocates land along the South Saskatchewan and Bow rivers to the Blackfeet, Blood and Sarcees, "reserving to Her Majesty, as may now or hereafter be required by her for the use of her Indian and other subjects, from all the reserves hereinbefore described, the right to navigate the above rivers, to land and receive fuel and cargoes on the shores and banks thereof, to build bridges and establish ferries thereon, to use the fords thereof and all the trails leading thereto, and to open such other roads through the said reserves as may appear to Her Majesty's Government of Canada, necessary for the ordinary travel of her Indian and other subjects, due compensation being paid to individual Indians for improvements, when the same may be in any manner encroached by such roads."
There is no such provision in that part of the treaty which refers to the lands being ceded. Only a lawyer would try to argue that the water rights were not included in that description.
Return the money
If figures cited in the Free Press are accurate, Chief Theresa Spence is among the wealthiest income earners in Canada. Statistics Canada's 2010 data peg her salary of $250,000 at $49,000 above that which qualifies as being in the top one per cent of taxpayers in the country. This translates into $30,137 (plus expenses) that she was paid by her community while on her so-called 44-day hunger strike, or roughly $1,000 for each pound she reportedly lost.
We have heard no mention of her or her entourage donating their band-expensed incomes -- collected while otherwise engaged -- back to the reserves that are so desperate for additional funds.
The first step in the healing process is assuming responsibility for the good one is personally capable of delivering.
That is the sort of self-reliant leadership model that needs widespread expression if the Idle No More movement is to succeed.