LETTERS: Friend or shelter

Penticton Western News Letters to the Editor for the July 11, 2014 issue.

I have been residing at the Marlyn Estates mobile home park for almost 21 years.  During this time I have had several dogs in my life.  As many of you know me here in Summerland, my elderly dog Angel passed away almost three years ago.  Since her passing I have been blessed with a new dog which I have had for two years.

His name is Bow, he is my constant companion, my guardian, the one that I share all my fear, sadness, laughs and smiles with.  Soon I will be losing this as I  have been given an ultimatum from the new park manager.  If I keep my dog I must leave my home of 21 years or get rid of my best friend.  Looking for ideas to help me keep my home and my best friend.

Lorraine Harris



Reduced workload/salary key to solution

It’s ironic that at graduation time the brain power that taught students how to think and to solve problems find themselves in this unfortunate, unwanted strike dilemma.

However, is the solution to the teachers strike self evident, simple and very honourable?

Based on B.C. legislature reporter Mr. Tom Fletcher‘s recent column, the average teacher’s salary  working nine hours a day for 189 days is around $72,000.00 a year or $42.32 per hour plus benefits plus three months prime-time vacation.

Now the solution. Teachers take a 50 per cent cut in salary bringing the wage to $21.16 then add a cost of living clause like the seniors get.

The salary cut would go towards smaller classroom sizes, hiring special needs people, doubling the number of teachers thus putting more people to work resulting in shorter working hours, less income tax, less stress/sick time off, and medication. Everyone gains, the teacher, the taxpayer and especially the student,

A salary of $21.16 plus benefits and three months vacation to pursue other endeavors is wonderful.

Working society seems to be increasingly headed to the minimum wage of $10.25 per hour, 50 per cent less than the $21.16 teacher salary. And the senior? Maybe $7 per hour or 1/3 the teachers salary but in both cases most have to pay for their dental, medical premiums, massages, sick time or bereavement, etc. No benefits.

The solution is there but like the dodo bird probably won’t fly.

Joe Schwarz



A reference of empowerment

While celebrating Canada Day, I was inspired to request consideration to abolish the outdated term of Old Age Pension designated to identify a contribution made to a large sector of our nation.

Personally, I find the reference degrading and disempowering, given the contribution this particular group has made, and continues to make to improve our way of life.

We are the game changers in our communities, provinces and Canada. We are the systems busters who challenge the status quo, identify and force the removal of outdated patterns and references that limit our value and conscious development.

Perhaps a more appropriate term for the supplemental benefit issued to the generation of boomers who are still very active in the working sector and in volunteer positions would be seniors supplemental pension.

Of equal importance is our wonderful 75-plus generation who should be respectfully and appropriately referred to as elders, being honoured for their wisdom and contribution, and compensated by a reference to an elders supplemental pension ensuring their specific care needs and well being are available in their end times.

Each voice contributes to the impact of the message. Isn’t it time to be acknowledged with the respect we deserve?

Kathrine Lucier



A great big thank you

First of all to the response team who came quickly and acted efficiently, when my wife had her aneurism, and to the doctors and nurses in ICU. They were so kind and considerate, they fielded calls, made Joan comfortable, and even brought in cots so my daughter and I could stay in the room when Joan was in a coma. The care and kindness they showed was far beyond the norm, so thank you to them.

They even let our band in and let them play music and even wanted us to leave the door open so they could hear. When the whole Lybarger clan sang Joan back home there was never a complaint from anyone. I couldn’t believe how kind and helpful they could be.

Also I would like to thank you all those who came to sit and visit with me, bringing food, flowers and cards. So, people can be kind and loving and there are a lot of them out there.

Thank you from the bottom of my broken heart.

Dan Lybarger



Thanks for shedding light

Thanks Steve Kidd for bringing to light expenses for mayor/city council. Must be nice to be able to afford to stay at Pan Pacific at $1,601 each at the taxpayers expense. My tax to the city is due July 31, oh, amended tax notice.

Mayor Litke’s comment, “I don’t know what happened,” does not inspire confidence and makes me wonder, why not?

I would have thought it was his job but then an amended tax notice tells a story all of its own, doesn’t it.

Maybe November will tell a different story and persons with common sense will stand up to replace Helena Konanz and Mayor Litke who seem to think that it’s OK to abuse our hard-earned tax dollars.

Mary Korsmo



Fatality lurking

The vehicular speed demons are demanding a live sacrifice on Vancouver Avenue. Acceptance for this role is voluntary. There are no specific qualifications. The volunteer can be of any age or gender or species for that matter.

The volunteer may choose to be on foot, bicycle, disability scooter, skateboard, motorcycle or in any four-wheeled vehicle including a stroller.

Last moments during this life could include the grill view of  a white company truck, a gleaming yellow sports car or an accelerating two-wheel conveyance possibly accompanied by the scream of braking tires, the choics are limitless.

The KVR crossing at the junction of Vancouver Avenue and Vancouver Place offers an ideal point of departure.

Here maximum acceleration is reached by vehicles gearing to gain the hill or by down slope tail-gating free-wheelers whipping by.

Expect lethal impact from a selection of three directions, Vancouver Avenue NE or SW bound or exiting Vancouver Place. A wide angle mirror has been conveniently placed to make the choice easier for southbound pedestrians.

Please contact and register with the proper authorities prior to this endeavour to avoid misidentification of remains and to ensure a proper fitting body bag is available.

Ron Marsh



Paton family says thanks

The last time I saw my father he wasn’t well. It was 2011, and he was rolling around in his golf cart making sure everything was perfect for the car show. My girlfriend and I were stopping in to say hi to him on our way to Alberta.

My next visit to the Okanagan was for his funeral service at the S.S. Sicamous. With me was my wife and our newborn child (he had never met).

My life was shattered. Thoughts raced. He never met his granddaughter, what will come of his vision, the Peach City Beach Cruise?

Now I return to the Okanagan, to see this amazing memorial on the lake shore.

A car bench.

A simple memorial. This made my heart soar, his granddaughter was all over it.

I must thank the city of Penticton, and its citizens for this beautiful reminder. So from the entire Paton family, thank you Penticton.

Ken Paton Jr



Time twists comments

I just had the opportunity to read Mr. Watt’s support of Boonstock and the lengths he went to endorse what had been accomplished so far. My bet is he awoke to find ICM has pulled out and wished he had an unsend button on his email.

Kelly David



Prejudice lingers

It’s sad that after all these years, decades, and centuries of humans living among each other that we largely have not overcome the fact of racism or prejudice.

Whether it is letter writers like Ernie Slump who seem to express disrespect, if not outright prejudice, towards certain ethnic groups or those anonymous graffiti criminals who dispense hatred towards Jewish people, there is still far too much inexcusable language being expressed to or about people who are different.

My heritage is English and I am aware of my people’s history and their treatment of others.  I’ve learned a great deal about the world wars and the racism that infected the world at those times.

If a person knows about their peoples’ history, as I do, then the shame that is part of knowing the negative parts of one’s heritage and its history is so strong that it makes one very cautious around others who are of different ethnicity.

Thankfully, for many years I’ve been open to meeting and have been welcomed by others of differing ethnic groups.

I was welcomed into a church in which I was a minority and I came to think of the people there as family, all the more extraordinary because many of them originally were from China or other places in Asia.

It’s time to end racism and prejudice of all types.

Patrick Longworth

Okanagan Falls