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Letters to the editor: ‘Why we stopped watching the CBC’

A monitor displays a word cloud created by the CBC to illustrate a list of 18 words it says should not be used.

‘Strike CBC from our language’

Re: CBC’s 18 words you can’t say is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard, Jesse Kline, Dec. 1

Thank you Jesse Kline for reminding me, and probably others, why we stopped watching the CBC long ago. Having to pay income taxes to support this rubbish is a never-ending thorn in my side.

Fred Perry, Maple Ridge, B.C.

I look forward to the day when “CBC” will also be stricken from our language.

Peter Birks, Mississauga, Ont.

Reading about the CBC’s latest progressive pronouncement of the 18 words we are no longer allowed to use, I was reminded of an old interview with the late, great Frank Zappa in a 1980 edition of High Times Magazine. The interviewer had asked Mr. Zappa about the language used in some of his lyrics that many found offensive, and his answer was :

“What do you make of a society that is so primitive that it clings to the belief that certain words in its language are so powerful that they could corrupt you the moment you hear them?” He could have been talking about today’s CBC.

Harry Koza, Toronto

‘Debates on individual freedom should include debates on the role of the courts’

Re: COVID has cost Canadians their freedom. It must be restored, Bruce Pardy, Nov. 20; and Vaccines save lives, Dr. T. Weinberger, Letters to the Editor, Nov. 27

Canadians have been willing to accept an erosion of their individual freedoms for a long time. They have accepted supply management restrictions in agriculture. They accept limits on the rent that landlords can charge. They are happy with a health system that is hostile to private enterprise when the rest of the world has managed to combine public and private delivery of health care. Canadians do not appear to be too upset with government proposals to approve what can be seen on the internet. Canadians want more government involvement and, as a result, less freedom in the provision of day care and long-term care. The restrictions imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted the issue of individual freedom. Maybe the pandemic will force us to confront the many areas where individual freedom is being reduced.

Bruce Pardy and the others point a finger at the courts. We expect the courts to be neutral. The courts have used climate change and the pandemic to justify more government intervention. The Supreme Court decision on the carbon tax is an example. The court appeared to agree that the imposition of a carbon tax was a provincial matter but because climate change is a significant threat, the federal government has the right to step on provincial toes. Since when did Supreme Court justices become climatologists? When did they become public-health experts? The debates on individual freedom should include debates on the role of the courts.

Rick Hird, Whitby, Ont.

Dr. Weinberger justifies the government’s COVID measures by comparing the current situation to “war footing.”

There is a fundamental difference between our past war efforts and the COVID measures: In the wars, Canadians gave up their lives to preserve their liberty. In fighting COVID today we are giving up our liberty to save lives.

Lubomir Poliacik, Columbus, Ont.

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    Letters to the editor: 'We will not bow to any attempt of malicious suppression' by China

  2. None

    Letters to the editor: Here's what we should be teaching our students

‘We might as well close the Parliament buildings’

Re: O’Toole accuses Liberals of hiding as House of Commons moves to resume hybrid sittings, Nov. 25

We might as well close the Parliament buildings and save on hydro and heating, which would benefit the environment and save taxpayers.

Surely there are laws or parliamentary rules forbidding such things as the Liberals’ ‘hybrid’ virtual Parliament, and if not, they should be put in place now. We’re not Russia or China yet, as Trudeau seems to believe.

Canadians deserve better.

R.A. Cameron, Whitby, Ont.

Getting back to another era

Re: The Beatles: Get Back is an often painful depiction of how the band broke up, Colby Cosh, Nov. 30

Growing up, we always looked forward to a new Beatles album for Christmas.

The Get Back film is a postcard of an era where a Paul McCartney could sing about Mother Mary’s wisdom on Let it Be. Billy Preston, sometime pianist with the Beatles, had his own hit, That’s the Way God Planned It. Eric Clapton fronted a band called Blind Faith with a song, Presence of the Lord.

It was an era that began with Rabbi A.J. Heschel accompanying Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. on his civil rights march and finished with Rabbi Abraham Feinberg coining the phrase “Give peace a chance” in conversation with John Lennon. You know the rest.

Today, religion is evacuated from schools, outlawed in civic space, and reduced to folklore when it’s found at all in our public spaces. Clerical figures are heeded by what’s left of their parishioners but are not listened to by the general public. Our politics is informed by absence of religion and little in the way of guiding principles from the Old or New Testament.

Fifty years hence, the postcard of today will be a testament to our ignorance.

Howard Greenfield, Montreal

Disney Executive Chairman Bob Iger attends the Exclusive 100-Minute Sneak Peek of Peter Jackson’s The Beatles: Get Back at El Capitan Theatre on Nov. 18, 2021 in Hollywood, Calif.
Disney Executive Chairman Bob Iger attends the Exclusive 100-Minute Sneak Peek of Peter Jackson’s The Beatles: Get Back at El Capitan Theatre on Nov. 18, 2021 in Hollywood, Calif. Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images

Canada’s ‘inhumane betrayal’ of its Afghan allies

Re: Canada’s former employees forced out of Afghanistan safe houses as Ottawa fails to pick up cost, Nov. 8; and Taliban executing ex-security forces, witnesses say, Nov. 30 (print only)

At the same time that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was calling “the most important” election in decades, our Afghan allies, who acted as vitally important drivers and interpreters for our Canadian soldiers, were desperately trying to get their families out of Afghanistan. Canadians as a whole expressed extreme concern over the plight of these people. It would seem that that concern has now turned to indifference except for ex members of our military who have raised $2 million for the cause. This group asked the federal government for an additional $5 million but it would seem that the request has fallen on deaf ears. I call on the Opposition members of Parliament to demand instant aid for our brave allies. The government’s inaction on this file is not only an inhumane betrayal but a black eye for all Canadians.

Bob Erwin, Ottawa

Send message to China by putting Chiu in senate

Re: China’s disinformation campaign against Canada’s election is undeniable, Terry Glavin, Dec. 1

If Prime Minister Trudeau wanted to send a clear message to Chinese President Xi Jinping, that Canadians won’t tolerate interference in our elections, he would put former MP Kenny Chiu in our senate immediately, so that Chiu’s voice could still be heard in Ottawa and around the world, ensuring that the Communist Party of China did not benefit from its wrong.

Terence Young, Oakville, Ont.

‘Politics is not about brain surgery or rocket science’

Re: ‘I want to help’: The multiple journeys of interim Green leader Amita Kuttner, Dec. 2

The fact that the Green party’s interim leader, Amita Kuttner, is an astrophysicist is really neither here nor there. Julie Payette was a rocket scientist, but she proved to be nothing but a train wreck. It seems to be a North American trait to judge, access and place more emphasis on what people do, rather than on who they are. Politics is not about brain surgery or rocket science — it’s about character, strategy, public service, and trying to help others, rather than simply furthering one’s own agenda. Politics is also mainly ingrained; it can’t be learned in school. Having more degrees than a thermometer doesn’t necessarily mean success.

Douglas Cornish, Ottawa

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