Letters, Dec. 24


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By the numbers

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By the numbers

Re: Manitoba deficit set to shrink as economy and Crown energy utility rebound (Dec. 20)

I suppose some sort of congratulations are in order for shrinking the government deficit.

It seems odd, though, that we still have deep poverty, a declining health-care system, crumbling infrastructure and a destitute education department.

But perhaps I am missing the purpose of government.

Max Johnson


Health-care gong show

It is heartwarming to find out this government, along with its bureaucratic arm, Shared Health, is more concerned about money and numbers than the health of Manitobans. It appears 1,000 visits per year to an emergency department and the almighty dollar are what the health of rural Manitobans hinges on.

I am “tickled pink” to know that, as senior citizens, from the summer cabin my wife and I may have to travel more than 200 kilometres to receive emergency treatment if, not when, the emergency department at Beausejour is open.

All this is going on under the leadership of Health Minister Audrey Gordon and, once again, in a health-care controversy, she claims to be “unaware of a proposal to close 16 emergency departments.” Then to put rural Manitobans’ minds at ease, she proceeds to state “More details about the next phase of the transformation plan will be released early next year.”

I, for one, wonder, if she claims ignorance on the closing of 16 emergency departments, how does she know about the next phase? Is she the health minister or not, as she seems to never know what Shared Health is “up to” when it involves the health of Manitobans?

With these people running things, is it any wonder our health system is broken? No amount of money from Ottawa can fix this gong show.

Kim Trethart


Re: From hallway medicine to driveway medicine (Dec. 19)

My question is why this couple was sent to the hospital in the first place. It looks like they didn’t need oxygen or IV antibiotics.

Why did the doctor not just give them a prescription for antibiotics and send them home? This doesn’t help with overcrowding in our ERs.

Donna Loewen


Right move on surgeries

Re: Cleveland Clinic offers relief for suffering Manitoba hip recipient (Dec. 20)

Premier Heather Stefanson said in her state of the province address that she wasn’t going to allow ideology to stand in the way of getting Manitobans the surgeries that they need, and Kevin Rollason’s article has confirmed the government is following through on that promise.

The premier and her government have given the people in the queue, waiting for surgery, an option to wait no longer, and an early Christmas gift.

Air travel has made the world smaller, and the cost of new medical equipment and the availability of specialist surgeons has necessitated mobility. We help residents of Nunavut with their medical needs, and some Manitobans, if they are able and willing, can now get their lives back. Kudos to Premier Stefanson and our government for caring for the well-being of its citizens.

Peter Kaufmann


Don’t lump officers in

Re: Police service needs overhaul (Letters, Dec. 22)

While I agree with the content of Randy Clinch’s letter criticizing the Winnipeg Police Service, the public has to know that in each instance he cited, it is a small group of members in management that made these decisions, not the men and women on the street.

It is very important this distinction be made, because the decisions of these few affect how the public view the members, and being constantly criticized can only lead to low morale.

Stan Tataryn, retired WPS member


Setting an example

I have rarely read an article with which I agreed more wholeheartedly than that by John R. Wiens about public speech (“The alarming decline of public speech,” Dec. 20).

Language and attitudes which in the past, as he says, had no place and were not tolerated, have now become tolerated and even celebrated. He continues, “Deliberate lies, other deceits and vile slurs flow virtually unchecked. Freedom of speech never meant an unconstrained free for all. Its original intent was to ensure nothing was held back out of fear of reprisal.”

He goes on to declare this lack of decency is unchecked and most alarming when children can see, hear and participate, thus learning these bad examples of public speech are normal and acceptable. They are not, and we all know this … or we should!

The old saying that “it takes a village” to raise a child has never been more true, since current social media are available to all and provide an example — very often not a good one — of what is acceptable and normal.

Until we parents, grandparents, teachers and others concerned with the welfare of our children, and society in general, weigh in when we see and hear bad practice, things will continue to decline. Don’t let those with power and influence get away with this degradation of society! Tell those in power and those whom you’ve elected that this is not acceptable. Write letters. Don’t accept it as normal, and of course, be careful of your own speech and what you tolerate. We can make a difference.

Margaret Mills


Chief tweeting officer

Re: Musk says he’ll be Twitter CEO until a replacement is found (Dec. 20)

Elon Musk has stated, “I will resign as CEO as soon as I find someone foolish enough to take the job!” Well, here I am!

I have never been hesitant to try something new and am always willing to give my opinion on most topics, even when some people might not want to hear them. I am not going to be silly enough to ask people whether they want me in the job and then accept that, so I will be able to fill the position into the distant future.

I would come into the position with no biases and would welcome suggestions on how to manage Twitter, as I don’t actually use it, so I might need some professional development. Although I am a defender of free speech, I would have no problem banning Donald Trump from the platform.

I await your employment offer with anticipation.

Dennis Fitzgerald

Melbourne, Australia

Farewell, Franco

Re: In Franco Harris, the Steelers found a hero … and a Way (Dec. 22)

Franco Harris was a legend, but you’d never know it when you spoke to him. As humble and kind as any athlete I’ve ever met or covered.

A superstar Pittsburgh Steelers player, but an even better man. Heaven gained a true angel. RIP Franco.

Paul Bacon

Hallandale Beach, Fla.

Bon voyage

On Tuesday, I was denied boarding to Milan, via Montreal. Reason? My passport had moisture damage. It had lifted and erased a letter or two along the scanner line. Upon further examination, the binding was bent, as well.

Alas, I sadly bid adieu to my husband and children and sent them on their way. “Don’t worry, I’ll be there soon,” I promised.

A wonderful Service Canada phone call assured me the Main Street passport office staff would do their best. Indeed they did! At 8 a.m. Wednesday, I had photos and paperwork all ready — the security guard, pre-screening and booth No. 7 were so cheerful and supportive. Thank you everyone who had the new passport ready by 3 p.m. Italy, here I come!

“Grazie” to all who helped, especially my sister, who drove me downtown three times.

Gail Aubin


A bygone era

Once upon a time in Winnipeg, visiting Assiniboine Park was fun and free. There was no admission charge to visit the zoo. There was no admission charge to enjoy the tropical plants in the conservatory any time of the year.

Today, the fairy tale is gone. There are hefty charges to enter the zoo, and to enter the new ”Leaf” that replaces the old conservatory.

Robert J. Moskal


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