Letters to the Editor

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A reminder of a simpler time

So as I sat in my living room on Saturday morning I heard a fire truck horn and immediately thought the worst: something had happened to a neighbour.

When I went to the window I realized it was a parade of county vehicles spreading Christmas cheer. Buses lit up with Christmas lights, a grader with a Christmas tree hanging precariously off the back, and Santa waving from a bus with the Grinch alongside.

As I waved back like a giddy three-year-old, I began to tear up. Why did this simple act make me cry? Why did I stand there before turning back towards Brian (so he couldn’t see the tears running down my face)? I don’t know but it hit me!

So many things in our world have changed. People we loved have passed and won’t get the opportunity to spend another Christmas with us or their families; people are hurting emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually and COVID has stolen a precious Christmas which for some may be their last.

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The parade represented a simpler time. A time when I hurried about to buy the perfect Santa gift for my own little three- and five-year-old boys; a time where the entire family would gather around a crowded table to sing Johnny Apple Seed and exchange list gifts; a time when the boys would wait for daddy to set up the video camera before they raced down the hall towards the Christmas tree; a time when life was innocent or at least unaffected by tragedy.

What we wouldn’t all do to change the current situation; to perhaps turn back the hands of time. So, I guess it was an honest response to a simple gesture from people who will never know the joy their simple wave, the parade brought to my internal child. It hits me in the feels for sure as we grapple with what Christmas will look like this year given the restrictions and our desire to be apart of the solution.

— Brenda Lee Smith, Sherwood Park

Charter freedoms excuse panders to base

Re: “COVID-19 Restrictions do not suspend our Charter rights,” Opinion piece in The News’ Dec. 15 edition

I am in complete agreement with Eric Adams’ article of Dec 15. We have written to Premier Kenney to request that he not use “violation of constitutional freedoms” as a reason for not imposing more stringent regulations. That reason caters to a specific voter support base and just gives credence to those who protest restrictions, the most ridiculous being the protest against wearing masks.
The first role of government is to protect the most vulnerable in society, and thus give everyone the opportunity to flourish. Politicians who make health-care funding decisions or question the advice of health-care experts, or citizens who feel their freedoms are violated by something as trivial as wearing a mask, need to spend one eight-hour shift wearing proper PPE on a hospital ward, changing that PPE frequently as required, and two hours of that shift drenched in sweat under a layer of Gore-Tex, lead shield, goggles, mask and two hats just to move a COVID-positive patient from their ward to X-ray and back to the ward.
— Derk Van Eerden, Edmonton

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