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Plus, Trudeau's Tofino trip, why it's time for a NDP-Green party alliance and anti-vaxxer blowback in reader mail
The House of Commons has a right to expel any member for wrongdoing, even alleged wrongdoing.
The House could vote to expel Kevin Vuong. I would expect that an opposition MP would propose the resolution, which would put the Liberals in a corner to decide whether to vote in favour or against him.
Only a handful of MPs have ever been expelled by the House since 1867, including Louis Riel twice. MPs could also point to Section 2 of the MPs Code as a reason to expel Vuong.
But Vuong could challenge an expulsion as a violation of his right to run for a seat in the House. Everyone has a right to sit as an MP unless they are convicted of an indictable or hybrid offense and sentenced to prison for two years or more, or convicted of an illegal or corrupt practice under the Canada Elections Act.
Duff Conacher – Democracy Watch
The Prime Minister using the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation for vacation completely undermines the solemnity of the day (NOW Online, October 1).
The government’s atrocious treatment of Canada’s Indigenous peoples is what the day is supposed to commemorate. The fact that federal employees are the only ones benefiting from a day off is compounding the national shame.
What is becoming clear to me is why Indigenous communities mistrust the government. I can think of 5,296 reasons and counting.
Nadine Armstrong – Toronto
Why shouldn’t any extremely busy person, even the Prime Minister, be allowed a few moments respite with their spouse and family on a beach regardless of what day it is? Have we Canadians descended to petty Trump-style sniping? What his party does with the First Nations’ issues in the next four years is more important to me and First Nations peoples.
Dan Jones – From NOWTORONTO.COM
The federal election and pandemic variants have knocked our shocked attention from Indigenous issues brought to the fore by the discovery of unmarked graves of residential school students. Here is a modest proposal that could keep Indigenous matters in the minds and hearts of our future leaders: move commemorations of Indigenous history from June to October.
With Orange Shirt Day (Every Child Matters) and National Day for Truth and Reconciliation coming at the end of September, National Indigenous History Month would naturally follow.
Gordon Wetmore – Deux-Montagnes, Quebec
Regarding what one commentator aptly described as the “costliest cabinet shuffle in Canadian history” (NOW Online, September 22). I would like readers to consider the next logical step – an NDP and Green Party alliance.
I live in Vancouver-Granville, and the token number of votes our Green party candidate received deprived us all of a truly progressive and committed environmentalist, the NDP’s Anjali Appadurai, as our MP. We will only see climate issues addressed seriously if more environmentally conscious MPs are elected.
For this to happen, a Green-NDP Party must be formed to counter the cynicism generated by our current major parties. A number of my friends voted “strategically” in order to prevent a Conservative victory. Wouldn’t it be refreshing to see Canadians vote “strategically” for a Green-NDP party in numbers that would see the resulting popular vote generate a true opportunity for concrete progress on so many long-ignored issues?
Kevin O’Neill – Vancouver
Re Time For Cops To Crack Down On Anti-Vaxxers Before It Gets Dangerous (NOW Online, September 30).
I have been attending the Toronto Freedom rally/protest/march since April 2020. I am not a member of any of the groups mentioned in this article. Nor have I ever met anyone from the groups you say are there.
For 18 months, I have been at the weekly Toronto rally with thousands of other ordinary people with no masks, no social distancing, lots of hugs, and (big surprise!) no virus! I am an ex-vaxxer. I am not vaccine hesitate, I am vaccine informed. If there is a risk (heart issues, etc.) there must always be a choice.
I have children and grandchildren. I value my rights and freedoms because once these are gone they will never come back. I am shocked (and very sad) at how few people are critical thinkers. The big question is why the mainstream media and government are giving Canadians the relentless and bullying message that only vaccines will save us.
At 72, I take responsibility for my personal health and for maintaining a strong immune system through my lifestyle choices. Intelligence isn’t knowing everything. It’s the ability to challenge everything you know.
S. Hill-Jackson – From NOWTORONTO.COM
It cannot escape anyone’s notice of the stark difference between the police response to peaceful people literally sitting down at the G20 and the response to anti-vaxxers obstructing health care workers and ambulances as they try to go about their daily and stressful jobs.
Whatever you believe, there is no justification for blocking healthcare workers from saving lives. Hill-Jackson has a right to their beliefs, but no right to interfere with others’ health care, or my right and the rights of other Canadians to not have to interact with those relying on a “strong immune system”. Stay home, cultivate like-minded friends in your own space, do not invade mine.
Louise Koepfler – From NOWTORONTO.COM
Yes, this is a loaded statement, but why should patients (like those suffering from cancer or needing an organ transplant) who were scheduled for medical interventions be told to wait in order to treat anti-vaxxers who defied medical advice and then contracted COVID and ended up in ICU? Why should those anti-vaxxers be given priority over those who followed medical advice? Most of the patients-in-waiting will have their conditions worsen. Some may not survive the delay. Isn’t it time to rethink the triage system that politicians have instituted? Shouldn’t anti-vaxxers be informed that they certainly have the legitimate right to deny vaccinations, but with it comes the possibility of delayed medical services?
Dennis Choptiany – Markham
Tell us what you think. Email your letters to letters[at]nowtoronto.com.