Readers Speak Out: December 20, 2020

  • December 17, 2020

Legal opening

Re: Liberals to implement UN’s Indigenous rights declaration (Dec. 3):

The Trudeau government’s vow to implement Bill C-15, legislation based on the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), is certainly a welcome move in that it will inject the full colour and spirit of that document into the Canadian legal system. At its core, the declaration expresses the uniqueness of Indigenous cultures, their ties to the land itself, their spirituality and the necessity of preserving their right to self-determination; this is necessary for their survival and undoing the harm of colonization and racism.

But the government should know that passing the declaration into law enhances its legal liability for injustices such as failing to meet its 2015 promise to lift remaining boil-water advisories in Indigenous communities by March 2021. This remains a national travesty. With equality goes litigation and the Liberals are rather late to the party. Perhaps in time the law will undo much injustice.  

Christopher Mansour,

Barrie, Ont.

Wise words

How happy I was to read about Fr. Richard Ho Lung’s People of Hope (Nov. 29). When he spoke one Sunday some 30 years ago at our Toronto parish about his work with the poorest of the poor, I approached him after Mass. Recognizing my feelings of frustration about how to help when there are so many needy in our world, he simply raised his index finger and said, “Help one.”

That same afternoon I watched a TV appeal promoting child sponsorship. Here was my “one,” and I immediately signed up. These days my child is sponsored through the well-respected and efficient Catholic charity known as Chalice, and my own life and family are blessed beyond measure!  

I have often repeated those wise words to anyone who would listen. We needn’t worry too much about how to reach the many, but just heed Fr. Ho Lung’s advice to “help one.”

Jennifer Khan,

Vaughan, Ont.

Free will

Re: Letter to the editor (Nov. 22):

When people are denying the existence of God based on many of the evil things which happen, they are ignoring the factor of free will. They are saying that God shouldn’t let these bad things happen. 

Many times these calamities are the result of man using his free will. For instance someone becomes intoxicated or under the use of drugs and drives and kills a small child or kills a number of family members. 

What they are suggesting is that God should interfere with the consequences of man’s free will. We can’t have it both ways. Adam and Eve were created in the Garden of Eden and were given free will. They messed up, as we are told, and the world as we know it now is the result of man continuing to use his free will against God’s laws ever since.  

I, for one, am glad I was born with free will. I cannot imagine being born a robot! 

But don’t deny the existence of God when we have to deal with the consequences of our own actions.

E.M. Godin,

Kanata, Ont.

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