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Re (Un) equal Access (Letters, January 7): Addressing the question of the consequences for delayed vaccination, a letter writer says “directly”. I say “right arm”.
Ron Freedman Toronto
Those who compare smoking to choosing not to vaccinate should be aware that one is an addiction and the other is a belief (albeit a mistaken one).
David godman Toronto
Re Quebec extends passports for vaccines to liquor and jar stores (January 7): Bravo, Quebec. If not being able to buy alcohol and drugs doesn’t motivate those who resist vaccines to finally get the vaccine, then I don’t know what will.
Remember, there is money to be made by those vaccinated entrepreneurs willing to procure said items for a small fee.
Bruce burbank Woodstock, Ont.
I completely agree with Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé: “If they don’t want to be vaccinated, they can stay at home.
When I returned from the United States last spring, doubly vaccinated and triply tested, I was considered a potential public health risk and could not leave my property for 14 days. Unvaccinated are a known public health risk – keep them at home.
Karen fuller Wasaga Beach, Ont.
So what about vaccination clinics at liquor and pot stores? If space is tight, the blackberry vodka coolers might be able to move around for a few weeks.
Chris harrison Hamilton
Re “A Safe Supply” of opioids is one of the best tools to deal with the crisis (January 6): I would like to thank doctors Bonnie Larson, Ginetta Salvalaggio and Claire Bodkin for their response to Vincent Lam’s criticism of secure supply (First, do No Harm – Opinion, November 20).
As the provincial health worker for British Columbia in 2016, I declared a public health emergency in response to the increase in the number of overdose deaths in the province. Six years later, despite the heroic efforts of peers, public health practitioners and first responders, these deaths continue unabated – in fact, they have increased.
The death toll is unreasonable, especially since effective tools to reduce it are at hand. As doctors point out, a secure supply through a public health approach, rather than a doctor-centered approach, could save many more lives.
Exemptions from section 56 of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act are needed to facilitate this. However, the political will seems to be lacking to extend this intervention beyond small programs in a few provinces. This suggests, unfortunately, that some lives are worth less than others.
Perry kendall CM, OBC, FRCPC; Clinical Professor, School of Population and Public Health, University of British Columbia; Vancouver
To look closer
Re Divided They Stand (January 6): I have decided that the midterm elections in the United States in November should be monitored by foreign entities to ensure fairness. The recent elections in Ethiopia would provide a good model.
David Rive Richmond, BC
Choose your fighter
Re Defending the Arctic Requires Purchase of F-35s and Modernization of NORAD (December 29) and Give Peace A Chance (Letters, January 4): It took over six years for this government to replace our aging fleet of CF-18 fighter planes with the F-35. All of our NATO allies have chosen the F-35. Even countries like Norway, Finland and Denmark have chosen the F-35 over competitor Saab Gripen E.
Canada has also contributed nearly half a billion dollars to Lockheed Martin’s development of the F-35, and it is the only fifth-generation aircraft remaining in the competition. For reasons of operational compatibility with other NATO allies, the choice of the F-35 should be obvious to the Liberal government.
JG Gilmour Calgary
The government would better serve Canadian interests by building our own military aircraft instead of waiting and paying for foreign applicants. The investment should go into Canadian technology, Canadian engineering and Canadian jobs – and it should happen soon.
Smaller countries like Sweden are doing it with the Saab Gripen E. We can too. We have the know-how, the industrial capacity and certainly the manpower.
Russia and China have shown interest in our Arctic. We should push aside our military weariness and face the facts of contemporary realpolitik.
Grant Bourdon Kingston
New day dawns
Re New National Security Advisor is Hawkish on China (January 6): The encouraging news from Jody Thomas’ appointment is that the Trudeau government appears to be taking seriously planning for Canada’s future, in a world where we will have to fend for ourselves as at no time in our history.
Having the, uh, backbone to hold on and look Beijing, or anyone else, in the eye shouldn’t be seen as hawkish – that’s a rule of thumb.
Kevin Cavanagh, St Catharines, Ont.
For example, Jody Thomas “was known to have rubbed some high ranking generals the wrong way for insisting on changing the culture of sexual misconduct in the military.” Is there a right way?
Marty Coutelier Toronto
Re She Said (Letters, January 7): Meritocracy should definitely be the only criteria for selecting a healthcare professional.
Relying exclusively on a female specialist, as one letter writer suggests, could make it impossible to get the best treatment.
Alison kyba Guelph, Ont.
Oh, be a fly on the wall to watch Gloria Steinem’s reaction if she read a letter suggesting that women should do their jobs well, stay silent, and wait for meritocracy to enter.
I hope she didn’t choke on her morning coffee. I know I did.
Tom scanlan Toronto
History has proven time and time again that meaningful change happens precisely when people speak out – and speak out loud and clear. Kudos to these women in medicine who are brave enough to do so and will not be silenced.
Ingeborg James Toronto
One letter writer states that “100 years ago there were no women in medical schools.” My grandmother Clara Olding graduated from Dalhousie University medical school over 125 years ago, in 1896, and she was not the first.
As Enid Johnson MacLeod documents in Petticoat Doctors: The First Forty Years of Women in Medicine at Dalhousie University, dozens of women graduated from this medical school between 1894 and 1921.
Gordon hebb CQ; Chief Legislative Counsel, Nova Scotia House of Assembly; Halifax
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