Students need a group to speak for them

Dear Editor:

As some may be aware, kids are important to me. I have four aged 10-13.

Raising a child to me is an ongoing everyday another lesson kind of process.

You have to give them everything you can in the short few years you have until they become young adults and cross the threshold that all teenagers do of knowing everything. 

This is not simply an open window however. It starts out as more of a open plain, them standing in the middle. As you raise your child, you start with the foundation of empathy, then build walls of knowledge, independence, foresight, and strength and a roof of critical thought. There is a door of trust and windows of open mindedness and humility.

The schedule for the construction of this structure allows for roughly 18 years. There are no timeouts or extensions.

We have to make use of all the time allotted to us. We all get 24 hours in a day, but nobody gets a do over for even a second of it.

This is how I think, with that stated, I wanted to share this comment on a social media thread regarding education in B.C.

We need a BC students federation

Teachers have a union that represents their interests, the BCTF. They are given all kinds of accommodation and their recommendations/demands become ministry policy.

The students need an association.to represent them. A large and respected, voice to advocate what is best for students.

And this body should have a seat at the bargaining table and/or their own contract — one that preserves their needs and wants such as extra curriculars. clubs, sports, performance, arts, music.

What guarantee do they have of the quality and character of their education will remain? What say do they even have in it?

This is not a factory, the mission here is well-rounded critically thinking adult people.

Labour relations and the labour movement takes a back seat to the quality of the educational experience.

When the BCTF goes to the bargaining table, they are looking for the best contract for their members and they use the children’s educational experience as a bargaining chip.

Remember when school clubs, sports, and performances truly changed and have never been the same. It was during the long drawn-out strike several years back. Teachers stopped doing extra-curricular activity as a negotiating tactic and these types of things have never been the same.

Now since the pandemic, more has been taken away. Do you know when it will be back? I don’t.

Teachers say they aren’t contractually obligated to do extra-curricular supervision. They do it because they’re good people. OK, why not put it in the contract? For the kids.

Three or four hours per week per teacher.

How about the change for the kids. Imagine.

A BC Students Federation needs to be there to put the children first.

Jeff Frank, Kelowna

Disappointed in Conservatives' carbon tax

Dear Editor:

I and, I believe many Canadians were deeply disappointed to hear that Erin O’Toole thought it necessary that the Conservative Party develop a carbon tax of their own. 

Such as it is, the O’Toole

carbon tax would see the Government of Canada set up an individual carbon tax account for every Canadian while directing how the funds in our individual carbon tax accounts can be spent, presumably on government-identified green initiatives. 

O’Toole must recognize that a tax by any other name is still a tax.

While the Conservative carbon tax is certainly newsworthy given that O’Toole, during his leadership campaign signed a contract and promised to do no such thing, the details are equally disturbing.

For example, the O’Toole tax supports electric vehicle mandates.  Notwithstanding individual positions with respect to electric vehicles, should the Government of Canada be picking technological winners and losers within a market economy? 

Is it in the public interest for the government to use tax dollars to heavily subsidize the costs of purchasing electric vehicles, pricey boutique vehicles for the economically better off at the expense of those who cannot afford them? 

Worse still, electric vehicles may be exporting environmental and child-labour issues to developing countries where essential minerals such as cobalt are mined.

The O’Toole tax also supports low-carbon fuel standards; basically, just another form of carbon tax wherein manufacturers are mandated to produce goods and services using more expensive forms of energy than may otherwise be available. 

Who does O’Toole think that manufacturers will pass on these additional costs to? 

Furthermore, the scheme allows manufacturers to purchase offset credits, thereby creating the potential for fraud, graft and corruption.

The Conservative plan also supports the idea of clean buildings. It may go without saying that energy efficiency is a good idea, however experience shows us that government programs of this nature perform badly in the market. Will program costs far exceed any benefits in reduced energy use in both commercial and/or residential buildings.

These are only a few of several related areas of concern that O’Toole needs to explain to his supporters and Canadians at large. Notwithstanding, I can understand that in a highly politicized Canada where the hype the issue of global climate crisis while pounding the airwaves daily attempting to link every possible climate event, whether true or not, to climate crisis it may be hard for O’Toole to do nothing.

I believe the greatest danger we face right now is simply that the Conservative Party seems motivated to come up with a carbon strategy of their own. We need to oppose this approach and oppose it firmly. We do not need to come up with a lite version of the Trudeau carbon tax.

Bill Shumborski, Kelowna

That children are now with god a repulsive idea

Dear Editor:

With regards to the letter of June 18 written by Dallas Elliott (After Kamloops tragedy, trust God), there appeared to be a lack of clear thinking.

His message obviously emanates from an 80-year association with the disgraceful and reprehensible Roman Catholic Church. To say that those who suffer, especially 215 victimized children from the Kamloops residential school, now reside with his god (all is good), and then to thank those same children for sacrificing themselves, without any attribution, nor guilt, towards his church, is undeniably repulsive.

He attempts to register his deep, committed faith and secure the legitimacy of the corrupt, offensive organization, through which he falsely seeks his own absolution, by stating that there are now 215 more saints in heaven. What a disgusting attempt to mitigate blame!

If he engaged in even a little critical thinking, he would admit that there is no evidence for a god and heaven and his adherence to religion has caused enormous damage to his approach to this matter.

But, there is evidence of many abused and neglected children, abandoned and buried nameless and without due process and respect.

If the BS meter were applied to his letter, it would have gone off the scale. Yes, indeed, along with membership in the Roman Catholic church, one must embrace a heightened level of shame!

Lynn Bryngelson, Kelowna

Honest people return credit card, driver’s licence

Dear Editor:

I just wanted to thank whoever found my credit card at Superstore on Wednesday. I dropped my cards on the floor near one of the meat coolers and one must have dropped right into the cooler, because I was fairly sure there were no other cards on the floor.

Because of your honesty, my shopping trip went practically as well as normal, as I left my groceries at the self checkout, went to customer service, retrieved my card and went back and paid for my groceries.  

I’m a very happy shopper. Thanks again.

Darlene Warner, Kelowna

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Dear Editor:

Thank you whomever you are. You see, on Monday I hiked up Knox Mountain early in the morning to beat the heat and left my backpack at home in which I usually carried my wallet and phone. Instead I put my driver’s licence and phone in my pocket.

I believe at some point when I pulled the phone out to change tunes the driver’s licence made its escape and I noticed it missing when I returned home.

Tuesday morning, early up Knox again this time checking the bushes along the path for that mischievous plastic card but to no avail.

So I booked a 2 p.m. appointment with ICBC to replace the card but thanks to an anonymous angel before I could head down for a new mug shot, my card had been quietly left at my door step. Appointment cancelled.

Whoever you are thanks for caring and going out of your way to deliver the card. I’m still smiling and I hope so are you.

Norm Letnick, Kelowna

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Email: letters@ok.bc.ca