Readers Speak Out: August 19-26, 2018

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  • August 27, 2018

Starlight, star bright

Re: Forgiveness is the greatest miracle (July 22-29):

Fr. Rolheiser states that “the miracle” of a starlit night sky “goes mostly unnoticed; we watch television instead.”

Deeper reasons for this may be involved. Humans spill so much light into the sky that few of our present generation have ever experienced what the natural night sky looks like. Most of the lighting industry displays a stunning indifference to this issue. And the amount of  “light-pollution” continues to increase by about six per cent annually in most places.

Sleeping in insufficient darkness suppresses our immune systems. Artificial light disrupts the life-cycles of insects, birds, amphibians and other animals. Many people think responsibility for our environment is a religious issue and light-pollution is certainly included in this. Does your porchlight shine upward?

James LaFramboise,

Thornhill, Ont.


Conscience and court

Re: Petition reminds Ford to keep his promise (Aug. 5-12):

I wish to clarify one aspect of the article in The Register about conscience rights. It stated: “The court case, however, would be moot if the Ontario government passes legislation similar to a law in Manitoba which says that health care workers cannot be forced to go against religious or ethical beliefs.”

This is not true. The court case is about a variety of controversial procedures, including abortion. The Manitoba legislation dealt only with MAiD. 

Rather than the Manitoba legislation we have been advocating the text of a private member’s bill proposed by cabinet minister Jeff Yurek when he was in opposition. This provides much more protection specific to the Ontario context.   

An even better solution would be to have legislation that protects all conscience rights so that doctors, nurses and other caregivers do not have to worry about being disciplined for following their moral convictions about causing the death of a patient. It is possible for government to provide access while respecting conscience rights. It just takes a willingness to sit down together and work it out. 

Larry Worthen,

Executive Director, Christian Medical and Dental Society of Canada 


No choice

Re: Blame the parents (Readers Speak Out) July 22-29:

I read this letter with sorrow and disbelief. 

For responsible parents, fear for their own lives and that of their children could prompt them to enter the U.S. illegally. Fear of seeing them slaughtered, raped or tortured is often a reality. 

Add to that a life of hunger, repression and loss of basic freedoms that we take for granted. There are no easy avenues available to many. When avenues are available, they are slow and refugees need fast solutions when fleeing war and persecution.

I applaud the Catholic bishops for being wise and faithful to Catholic teaching and supporting these people of God. As Christians we simply don’t have a choice.

Marilyn Holmes, 

Oshawa, Ont.


Street checks

Re: Gun violence and the dog days of summer (July 22-29):

Recent gun violence in Toronto prompts Bob Brehl to ask if there’s “a link between the increased shootings” and the banning of police carding, also known as street checks. As a retired Toronto police officer, I know that street checks are necessary to help prevent gun violence.

Compounding the problem, Mayor John Tory has decided to save money by reducing the number of officers employed. 

Brehl is right, politics are “getting in the way of policing and keeping us safe.”

Claudio Ceolin,

Toronto


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