He's not a very good victim
I have to comment on the piece called Unorthodox Arrest (NOW, June 7-13). It is just too much.
A guy pickets our church for five years, sends out thousands of hateful posts to the Internet, including unpublished material protected by copyright, is fined $75,000 for it, declares bankruptcy, makes bomb threats, follows people, gets convicted for it, flees to Canada, gets arrested up here and NOW portrays him as a victim?
Nobody in the Church of Scientology cares about Keith Henson. They wouldn't even know who he is if he hadn't made himself such a dangerous nuisance.
There are some other points to correct. The Church of Scientology is recognized as a church in Canada. We have religious recognition in all the provinces where we have organizations. In Toronto and other cities we also have religious property tax exemption.
In Germany, it is not fear that keeps Scientologists out of government jobs, but persecution and discrimination.
Director of Public Affairs
Church of Scientology of Toronto
A danger to the church
I'm writing with regard to the article on Keith Henson. As a parishioner of the Church of Scientology, I'm really glad to hear that he was arrested. This country cannot become a refuge for people who are running from the law. How safe would you feel if Canada became a hideout for people who make bomb threats against religions? I'm sure you wouldn't want them close to your church or friends!
I only hope he will be dealt with in his own country, as I am concerned that he will repeat his hostile activities against decent religious people.
Dolores Potter, Toronto
Free parking at credit union
as garish and tasteless as it is,it would have been preferable if Metro Credit Union's pollution were confined to the visual. Not content with just being tawdry, before moving to their new office at the corner of Bay and College they proudly told their members that "free parking" would be available right next door. Astonished that a so-called and, I hasten to add, self-proclaimed socially conscious organization would even think of encouraging pollution-mobiles to come into the centre of our already badly polluted city, I wrote to CEO Howard Bogach. His response was so utterly disingenuous that I felt compelled to write to Donald Altman, first vice-president of the credit union's board of directors. Talk about two peas in a pod!
In both instances, I stressed how our transit service was excellent in this area of the city and that it was irresponsible to encourage more private vehicles downtown. However, given their specious reasoning and 1950s car-company rationalizations, it came as no surprise to me that Dave Meslin got the response he did from Bogach. I cancelled my membership. I refuse to support an ostensibly community-centred organization that is so undeniably out of touch with our urban reality that it can only "drive" the talk.
We might as well deal with the chartered banks. Their usurious service charges are about the same, and at least they don't attempt to disguise their ethics of convenience.
William E. Brown, Toronto
TVO audience more than 7
re my big moment, ruined (now, May 17-23). Perhaps it's just as well that Nigel Lezama was so overwhelmed at the prospect of being "discovered" in the TVO studio audience that he was tongue-tied. After all, he might have tried to convince us that Puccini wrote Aida. Those in the television audience celebrating the Verdi centenary would have been quite surprised.
And speaking of that audience, I must point out that there were not merely "seven or eight" people tuning in, or even "11 TVO viewers."
In fact, TVO's prime-time viewership increased by 74 per cent over last season, and that includes doubling the audiences for our mysteries and dramas at 9 pm. The top numbers were 432,000 for Heartbeat and 519,000 for the Monday-night mystery. Our Ontario perspective program, Studio 2, at 8 pm, has an average nightly audience of 118,000, and some evenings it has even surpassed 200,000.
There are over 80,000 individuals across Ontario who support our educational, top-quality programs with their membership dollars, and our children's morning block is number one in the province. All in all, I would say that, in spite of what he wore, Lezama did indeed blow his big chance!
Ellen T. Cole
Director of Communications
Don't just talk to friends
I am moved to congratulate correspondent Sig Harvor (NOW, June 7-13) for his accurate, articulate description of the state of our City Hall.
Once again, I have to question: is anyone listening? We letter-writers tend to communicate mainly with the publications we read. And NOW readers generally don't buy right-wing papers. However, those are the very publishers and readers we ache to reach. My problem is age-old. How do we wake up the uninitiated? The National Post, the Sun and the Globe won't publish letters by "rabble-rousers" like us.
Any suggestions out there? (Violent confrontation is not an option.)
Ellen Balkan, Toronto
School not public property
The upfront item unlawful eviction (NOW, June 7-13) assumes incorrectly that TDSB property is public. It's not. It's privately owned. In addition, its use is controlled to some extent by the Ontario law relating to education -- The Education Act, I think.
If you folks want to be taken seriously, you have to get better at fact-checking.
Corot Reason, Toronto