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Letters to the Editor

This week's letters

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Go figure

Whistler, under the VANOC banner is bending over backwards to supply a first class venue for the super athletes of the world in 2010.

Yet, when it comes to the Paralympics Whistler is contemplating giving away key elements, like the arena, to Squamish or Pemberton – go figure.

Richard Edgar

Whistler

We are all culpable

As we bemoan the acts of terrorism and tragic events in London, I believe we need to ask ourselves what is each one of us doing to reduce or eliminate the terrorism that occurs on the Sea to Sky highway and the lax penalties, if any, that are meted out to those guilty of assault with a deadly weapon, their vehicle. It appears that a person found guilty of dangerous driving or causing bodily harm or even killing a person with their vehicle gets a mere slap on the wrist, compared to the punishment meted out to a person found guilty of inflicting wounds to the same effect but with a gun. The police are soon informed and respond with alacrity if a person is seen brandishing a firearm, a knife or a sword. Why are they not similarly notified when a person is seen driving in a manner that is likely to endanger the lives, health or wellbeing of others? Please report them: the life you save may be your own or that of someone you love or would wish to love.

On July 2nd, at about 4 p.m. a few people were witness to one of the stupidest acts of driving that I have observed in over 30 years driving the Sea to Sky Highway. Just north of Brandywine, where the northbound traffic has the option of two lanes and the southbound traffic is reduced to one lane, a northbound vehicle was driven in the southbound lane to pass at least 4 vehicles that were moving northbound at or above the speed limit. The driver of this errant vehicle did not have a view of southbound traffic and a lot of people were lucky that a southbound vehicle was a short distance away and was not hit.

Let us take a moment and imagine the likely carnage from a head-on collision at that time. The errant vehicle traveling at approximately 120 km/h and one or two vehicles southbound at say 80 km/h. Speed at impact, 200 km/h. At least two other, possibly four or more, northbound vehicles would also be involved. Several lives would have been lost, even more consigned to a life of pain, discomfort, lack of mobility, lost pleasures, jobs, time at Whistler, and an avoidable drain on our beleaguered health system.

Yes, these thoughts crossed my mind as I drove north in the curb lane and decided that from that time on I must remember to be in the curb lane on that stretch of highway.

The economy of Whistler would also be affected by a major accident on the highway with negative publicity in the local, national and international media and that label, "Killer Highway," would be applied again.

Roads are not the culprits; we are. Yes, each of us, when we either drive so as to endanger the wellbeing of others or allow others to do so unchallenged.

To those who risk ruining our lives I say, "Is your hurry so great that you will risk an accident that will make you late?" To the rest I plead, let us get these drivers off the road.

Keith Fernandes

Whistler

What’s left?

Re: Viewed through 2020 (Pique letters July 7).

I for one totally agree with Toby Salin of Whistler. Whistler has and is losing its uniqueness, its kind of quaint appearance. Soon it will become just like a strip mall or a shopping centre in the city. Then you might as well change its name to "The Same" cause it will be the same as any place you go. Then who will want to come and visit? No snow, no summer and no quaint unique groovy stores.

Hmm, but wait there is an $8 million library here, let’s go check it out... Hey where is the museum? Didn't it use to be right next door to the library? Yeah it did. But not after the library’s built. Gee, no history either. Let’s get out of here.

S. French

Pemberton

It takes a community

A great big hug and thanks to all the kids, parents and community members whose time and donations funded my children's summer camps. Especially thanks to Deanna White, and Julie Kelly, your kindness touches our hearts. Also, thanks to the Wolf brothers, Eric Ridington and Shawn Hughes for their search and rescue efforts. During this sad time for our family we sure are glad we belong to this community.

Brian, Lyndsay, Mackenzie Ness

Whistler

Trying to keep in touch

On behalf of the Whistler Arts Council, I wish to convey our sincere appreciation to everyone who has been so patient during our current dislocation as our building is being moved to make room for construction of the new library, and to request your continued co-operation as we remain (temporarily) without telephone or e-mail contact with you.

While we are delighted with the RMOW’s selection of the new site for our building (behind the Post Office, just off MarketPlace), the move has come at a rather inconvenient time, with the Whistler Children’s Art Festival set for this weekend. We have experienced difficulties in staying in close contact with the fantastic artists, performers, volunteers and community who work so hard to make this festival an ongoing success for Whistler.

The RMOW staff is working hard to get us back on-line as quickly as possible. In the meantime, for those of you attempting to contact us, please do so by leaving a message on our answering machine at 604-938-9221, or by e-mail at info@whistlerartscouncil.com. Our staff is making every effort to return messages as soon as possible. A full schedule of workshops and entertainment at this year’s Whistler Children’s Art Festival is available at www.whistlerartscouncil.com and will be distributed throughout Whistler this Thursday, July 21st.

And, by the way, the Whistler Children’s Arts Festival could really use some volunteer help! Your support would be greatly appreciated!

Anne Popma,

Board Chair, Whistler Arts Council

Surprising conclusion

I was a bit surprised by the wrap-up to the article entitled "Pemberton

drug busts up" in the July 14 edition of Pique Newsmagazine. After speaking about drug busts and marijuana grow-ops, Filipenko concludes by stating that Staff Sgt. "McPhail sees drugs and substance abuse as the primary issue in the community and he sees working as a community towards a closer relationship with the First Nations as essential to developing strategies on the social issues that challenge both communities."

Immediately, with no explanation, Filipenko links the First Nations community with Pemberton's drug problems. There is no other mention of the First Nation community in this "drug" article, it just is dropped in at the end. At best this is lazy reporting, for if this community is to blame for the majority of these problems, an article of this kind should provide relevant statistics to back up such a claim. Otherwise such an unexplained leap is perpetuating ignorance and reinforcing negative stereotypes of First Nation people. This conclusion also suggests that theirs is a community to be dealt with by the community at large, which presumably is the white community as suggested by the term "both communities".

I think that the Pique is a respectable paper and was thus shocked by what I thought was a slippage in the usual level of journalistic integrity.

Julia Summers

Via e-mail

Enough already

I’ve had it! It has been way too long. The construction on the Crystal has gone on far too long! It is killing business and it is driving our hard working fellow Whistler retail employees to the brink of insanity. Never mind compensation, how about retribution.

Day in and day out with the same slow paced backward schedule that puts the project beyond behind schedule. And what does the municipality have to say about it? Hmmm, more crap about a living allowance for over priced parking ticketers and the façade that we truly need an abundance of their self-indulgent royal presence.

Whistler needs a good healthy summer. Finish off the obnoxiously overpriced per square foot renovation of the Crystal. Do it during non-retail working hours!

And never mind CUPE this CUPE that, it makes me ashamed to call myself a local when our own ambassadors of Whistler cry out for a living allowance when, most workers in Whistler realize the dream of being here takes sacrifices and hard work.

Let us pull together to make the summer of 05 a session which puts aside aching construction issues and champions our municipal workers with the credit they so truly deserve.

Devan Williams

Whistler