Wednesday’s letters: Canada must do more for Ukraine

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My father came to Canada from Western Ukraine in 1937 as a 16-year-old, by himself, having been sent a ticket by his father. He survived the Holodomor, Stalin’s starvation solution in 1932-33. There was no ticket for my grandmother who ultimately had a baby in 1941 and was shot in 1943 as soldiers came into the village and killed those who were running. She is buried in a mass grave in the small village of Uhly. My husband and I visited Ukraine in 2013 and found the baby who is my father’s half-sister. She survived because her mother fell on her.

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Almost 70 years later, there are horrible atrocities going on and our prime minister is “helping” by flying off to Europe to meet with heads of state. I can’t believe that the Canadian government cannot do more other than spouting rhetoric and making photo-ops for federal politicians.

It is Ed Stelmach and Thomas Lucazyk, two former Alberta politicians, who were able to charter a Dreamliner from LOT Airlines, fill it with necessary goods for Ukraine and then on its return, bring back some Ukrainian refugees. Good on them. Shame on the Canadian government.

Patty Cleall, Edmonton

Ring Houses the next lost buildings?

A new book just hitting the market is called 305 Lost Buildings of Canada by Raymond Biesinger and Alex Bozikovic. It was featured in your paper March 12, 2022. The book provides hundreds of examples of our nation’s demolished buildings. No surprise, heaps of Edmonton’s architectural casualties are in the book. The four Ring Houses on the U of A campus may be in the next edition. These houses are to be moved off campus this spring. They may be rebuilt in another location but by taking them off campus, they lose their historic value.

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Yes, it seems like we like to tear down here in Edmonton. However, as the first university in Alberta, the four Ring Houses are a tangible representation of our cultural heritage and should be retained on campus for everyone to enjoy in the future.

Bonnie M. Austen, Edmonton

Kicking climate change down the road

On April 8, Malcolm Mayes shows Trudeau passing on deficits to future generations. I wonder whether the profuse irony of his drawing of him has occurred to him and your readers; kicking the can down the road is precisely what we have been doing for decades with our insufficient pace of transitioning away from burning fossil fuels. While deficits are a serious issue, the costs of not addressing climate change fast enough will make today’s deficits look small, and even exceed those for COVID. Environmental economists have repeatedly said that delaying climate action will cost us much more in the long run than reducing emissions faster now.

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The recent IPCC Report has clearly stated “The science is clear. Any further delay in concerted global action will miss a brief and rapidly closing window to secure a liveable future.” We must not kick the can down the road; let’s leave a livable planet for future generations.

Victor Dorian, Edmonton

No need to fence off-leash park

Another classic case of “paving paradise to put up a parking lot;” in this case, putting up a chain-link fence around the Bearspaw off-leash area in southwest Edmonton. Maggie and I have been going to this area once or twice a week for 10 years. It’s a lovely expanse of green grass perched on the edge of the Blackmud Ravine.

Over the years we have both made new friends. The walkers that I have met there, for the most part, are very responsible about controlling their pets’ behaviors and picking up their waste. Now, the City of Edmonton wants to fence the area. This is a colossal waste of municipal taxpayers’ money. It will block views of the ravine for the homeowners living directly across the street and over time, it will become very unsightly with the accumulation of garbage. The users have been asked for input and hopefully the city will listen.

Janet Schmude, Edmonton

letters welcome

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