Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 6/10/2011 (2145 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Re: AirCan's downtown takeoff about cash: Katz (Oct 6). As I walked around Portage and Main last weekend, searching for an open coffee shop, I realized that this city has, for all intents and purposes, given up.
I grew up here. I suppose I even enjoyed it. But after living in Montreal for three years, I find Winnipeg now seems tired and sad. When one of your most recognizable landmarks is surrounded by closed shops on a weekend, when the sidewalks are bare, when not even the panhandlers bother to make an appearance, you know you have a problem.
Montreal has plenty of panhandlers, even more than Winnipeg, and yet its streets are full of shoppers and tourists. Why can't Winnipeg bring them downtown? After the predictable outcome of the provincial election, it's rather obvious: We don't care to. We whine and fluster, but we continue to make the same, predictable choices with the same, predictable people.
I'm a young guy. The world is my oyster. Give me a reason to stay. Somebody stand up and give this place a radical new plan for its future. Somebody take a chance, take risks.
This city needs a fire lit under its ass. Who will be the one crazy enough to fuel it?
JOHN PHILIP NEUFELD
The following are City of Winnipeg crime statistics for 2011 as of Sept. 30:
-- All of Winnipeg: 7,046 reported incidents.
-- Downtown Winnipeg: 424 reported incidents.
-- Percentage of Winnipeg crime occurring in the downtown: six.
Downtown is defined as being from the Red River to the University of Winnipeg and from the Assiniboine River to South Point Douglas.
Winnipeg's adult population is approximately 450,000. Of those, 70,000 come downtown every day to work, 15,000 come to attend school and 16,000 live there.
With one-quarter of the population coming to the downtown every day and only six per cent of the crime, it would seem that the reality of downtown safety does not match the perception.
With 94 per cent of Winnipeg crime happening outside of the downtown, it is curious that the area has such a stigma.
For comparison, the Polo Park and St. James industrial area, where the majority of airport hotels are located, experienced 205 reported incidents of crime last year, with a far lower population density.
It is also interesting to note that crime overall in Winnipeg is down 22 per cent over last year.
I for one applaud the actions of Air Canada in its efforts to keep its staff safe. My most recent visit to the downtown area was to view the Titanic exhibition. Upon exiting it at 2 p.m., my children and I encountered no less than six individuals who appeared intoxicated, two of whom aggressively requested cigarettes and money, and this was in the half-block walk to our car.
As we drove down Donald Street, we counted the number of people who also appeared intoxicated. Between Portage and Broadway we counted 19 persons, some lying down and some sitting in the middle of the sidewalk.
I have been to bigger cities many times -- Toronto, New York, Chicago -- and have never experienced what I see here.
Shame on Air Canada for singling out the flood evacuees as the culprits. In spite of the euphemisms used in their memo, it was clear who they meant.
Stereotyping and unfounded accusations are unacceptable. It's time for Air Canada to take responsibility and offer a genuine, unconditional apology.
I am contacting Air Canada to request that they send me details of their safety and baggage-handling errors with respect to their competition.
After all, only the safest airline is good enough for my family's travel arrangements.
Jim Graham's Sept. 29 article, Examine all environmental issues, finally addressed the issue of how much coal could be replaced by the additional hydroelectric power that could be conserved and saved with the east-side route for Bipole III.
Graham says the emissions equivalent to 40,000 Honda Civics could be saved by the additional power exports. That amount does not include the significant emissions saved from the coal-mining equipment, the loading equipment at the rail line and at the power plant, as well as the thousands of trains that haul all of that coal out of the Rocky Mountains to the coal-fired power plants in the central states.
Continued consumption of fossil fuels at our current high rate may make saving the small strip of forest that Bipole III line would require on the east side irrelevant.
ERROL G. Dickson
Plebiscite is the answer
I take exception to Harold Shuster's implication in his Sept. 30 letter, Improper context, that the majority Canadians are against the death penalty.
I believe that if a plebiscite were held today, a majority of Canadians (even politicians who won't admit it publicly, because it's not politically correct) would agree with the use of the death penalty in cases like Clifford Olson's, or for others guilty of premeditated first-degree murder.
An ideal solution would be to include a separate ballot on the issue during a federal election. It would be democracy at its finest, the will of the majority being heard and acted upon, and not as it is now, with politicians having to vote along party lines.
Surely, Shuster would have no problem with a simple and fair democratic solution to this divisive issues?
Re: Toddler left fatherless after fiery fatal crash (Oct. 4). After the tragedies of this past weekend, I thought I would add some food for thought for drivers.
The next time I, or another police officer, stop a vehicle for speeding, talking on a cellphone or drunk driving, remember that the actions of the police officer might just have saved one or more lives.
Don't get mad at that policeman. The life he or she just saved might be yours or a family member's. We are just trying our best to keep the roads safe, not make quotas.
Logic of poverty
In response to Robert Tollefson's Oct. 5 letter, Feeling hopeless, I would like to say only this: We may live in a First World country, but that doesn't mean that no one here lives in Third World conditions.
JASON M. J. ATHAYDE
A winning team
Re: Refugees getting their kicks (Oct. 4). Wow -- boys going from refugee camps to competing in the Canadian National Club Championships.
Congratulations to everyone in the community who stepped up to ensure all of these children, regardless of their circumstances, had an opportunity to benefit from all of the life lessons sport has to offer. It takes a community to raise a child, and this community is doing it.