Letters To The Editor | May 3-9, 2018

The missing link in Trans Mountain pipeline controversy plus, why Grassy Narrows's mercury poisoning injustice can't be ignored anymore



Yonge tragedy’s over-the-top emotionalism

Paul Salvatori’s article on the recent tragic rampage on Yonge Street (NOW, April 26-May 2) was symbolic of the media’s over-the-top irrational emotionalism. 

As someone who grew up in Willowdale, I feel personally affected by this tragedy. But let’s not sensationalize what happened. This was just a nasty and vicious crime committed by a disturbed individual. Because a van was involved, the Canadian and international media assumed it was an act of international terrorism. 

“Terrorism” is one of the most misused words in the English language. Any act of violence is an act of terror, whether you’re caught in a holdup at the local 7-11 or a shootout at a nightclub in the Entertainment District.

Let’s keep things in perspective. When you look at what happens constantly south of the border or in Europe and other parts of the world, Canadians need not despair. This is still a peaceable kingdom.

Andrew van Velzen, Toronto

Yonge horror part of foreseeable future

Toronto has joined the ranks of world-class capitals like London, Paris, Berlin, Karachi and Cairo. The horror on Yonge is no different than someone walking into a restaurant or shopping mall and opening automatic fire. We might as well accept it as a way of life for the foreseeable future.

Rudolf Manook, Toronto

Missing link in Trans Mountain crisis

Pamela Palmater has conveniently left out of her article on the Trans Mountain pipeline crisis (NOW Online, April 26) the fact that many First Nations whose territory the pipeline passes through have negotiated deals with Kinder Morgan and in fact support the pipeline. Selective amnesia, perhaps?

Ian Clarkson, From nowtoronto.com

Grassy Narrows can’t be ignored any more

Re Grassy Narrows Needs Justice by Deb O’Rourke (NOW April 26-May 2). Thanks for the supportive and maddening article. 

It’s long past time the Liberal government showed the Indigenous people the $85 million it promised last year to clean up the deadly mercury the former Reed Paper recklessly and illegally dumped in the English-Wabigoon River system, poisoning the Grassy Narrows and Whitedog reserves. 

Successive Ontario governments knew about Reed’s criminal neglect but did nothing except give Reed a slap on the wrist. For decades, the Ontario government covered up or minimized Minamata disease, the disabling and grotesque neuromuscular disorder caused by mercury, which has already disabled and killed children and adults. 

Don Weitz, Toronto

Not so funny part of Fun Home review

Having recently attended a performance of Fun Home in Toronto, and completely loving every minute of it, I was interested in Glenn Sumi’s thoughtful and detailed review (NOW, April 26-May 2). I wondered, though, why Sumi made a point of referring to every single actor in the show with the exception of Sabryn Rock, who played Joan, a key supporting role. I thought it was very disrespectful to specifically exclude only her from his review. 

Paulette Mazenc, Toronto

In peace talks, more questions on Korea 

On recent developments in Korea, certain questions come to mind: Why does it fall on the Americans to negotiate a peace deal? Why can’t the two Koreas be allowed to negotiate that amongst themselves? Notice all mainstream media stories only focus on denuclearization, not the permanent removal of all foreign soldiers from the Korean Peninsula? If there is a role for other nations in the process, where is the UN? Isn’t Ban Ki-moon Korean after all?

Demetrius Kappos, Toronto

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