Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 13/1/2012 (2961 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
A toast to progress
Re: Movie, popcorn ... and booze (Jan. 13). I was shocked to discover while on an exchange to Belgium in 1996 that I, as a 16-year-old, could purchase a glass of draft beer along with my popcorn at a local movie theatre. That pint of Stella Artois made Keanu Reeves' dialogue in Speed 2: Cruise Control almost bearable.
The experience opened my eyes to how good it feels to be treated by government as a responsible adult, even when I wasn't one. Amazingly, Belgian society hasn't crumbled despite allowing its citizens to simultaneously drink and watch movies.
So I was glad to see my home province of Manitoba move incrementally towards treating its citizens with the same level of respect with its new law allowing alcohol to be served in some theatres.
The arbitrary requirement that a cinema have a minimum number of screens and seats notwithstanding — after all, what would a Manitoba liquor law be without some arcane, arbitrary rules? — this is a small step forward in the maturing of a society.
Ignoring the experts
Re: Pipeline hearings stacked? Well, yes (Jan. 12). Am I living in Canada? Perhaps I woke up in Wonderland. The federal minister of Natural Resources, the guy we pay to protect our air, water and wildlife, wants to limit environmental reviews and participation by non-Canadians.
I quote: "These groups threaten to hijack our regulatory system to achieve their radical ideological goals." In other words, the use of smart, articulate experts who care for the future of the environmental and do not hold the same opinions as our minister are now considered radicals.
Enbridge, the company that plans to build the pipeline from the tarsands to B.C. may look Canadian, but six of its 12 directors are American. Last year, an Enbridge pipeline leaked 840,000 gallons of crude oil into the Kalamazoo River in Michigan.
The Harper government says the pipeline is in the nation's interest. They are responding to the oil industry lobby by promising to shorten the review process. When did the health of our children, our land, air and water become less vital to the nation's interest than an oil pipeline? When did we become a country that listens only to those who agree with us?
Making sense on water
After reading Bartley Kives's Jan. 7 story, We're all wet, I nominate Shannon Stunden Bower as our much-needed water commissioner for Canada.
It has been a long time since I have read such a common-sense explanation to the water problems that are being experienced in Manitoba.
In the Jan. 11 story Residents want violence to stop, Justice Minister Andrew Swan is quoted: "Please promise me that if you know a house where drug activity is taking place, you will call and report it."
What he didn't say is that there is a backlog of more than 100 investigations pending that the Community Safety Act staff can't get to because of the demand. One of the things we have learned in North Point Douglas is that residents give up if they call and nothing happens.
The Community Safety Act, brought in when Gord Mackintosh was justice minister, is a great tool to defeat crime. However, as criminologist Rick Linden implied in a recent article, for crime prevention to work the criminal must face certainty that there will be repercussions for his criminal behaviour.
Also, we need to emphasize that neighbours need an absolute guarantee of anonymity when they report a crime.
She's a classy critic
Re: Food for thought (Letters, Jan. 11). I am writing to publicly apologize for what I had said earlier in both a tweet and a Facebook post. I am at times amazed as to what the public will view as outrightly objectionable; this is something I need to work on.
What I am even more amazed by is the class and dignity with which Free Press restaurant critic Marion Warhaft comported herself. If we could all behave in this manner during times of duress, the city would be a much better place. I would also like to apologize to my friends and family, who stand by me no matter what but who also know that I am above such petty comments.
I of course do not think Warhaft is a slut, and she has never once slighted me. So, again, I apologize and look forward to her reviewing my restaurant.
SCOTT DAVID BAGSHAW
Doing their job
As someone who was in a car that was hit by a driver who ran a red light, I have an issue with Todd Dube's crusade.
If photo radar and red light cameras make one person slow down and take more caution when driving, they are doing their job.
People see accidents all the time. The cars are cleaned up and nobody thinks about it again. After 52 chiropractor appointments, 24 physiotherapy appointments, many doctors appointments and a six-week, two-hours-a-day reconditioning program, I will never forget that day on which someone ran a red light.