LETTER: Canada lacks real progress

A letter to the editor by Esther Darlington

To the editor,

I have never been made more aware of my country as I have since I’ve aged.

I am aware of its lack of progress, compared to the progress of other countries; particularly the Nordic countries of Finland, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. Their progress seems a light year away from Canada’s.

In the area of natural resources, such as mining and forestry, Canada seems fettered to the practices of the 19th century. We are still sending whole logs to Japan, for example. We are still clear-cutting vast tracts of our forests. Our open-pit mines, with their ponds of highly toxic waste, are left to the management of the mining corporations. Forest licences are given to the largest corporations, similar to the vast areas of land given to the Hudson Bay Company more than three hundred years ago. The development of secondary industries in the forest industry has been minimal.

Canada doesn’t harvest its forests; Canada mines its forests. So-called “selective logging” has also been fragmented, and the monitoring by government has been minimal.

In the area of social welfare, Canada must be the most backward of the G8 countries. Both in pensions and in the care of the elderly, resources are stretched to the limit, both in personnel and in funding. In the care of children, likewise, lack of government funding has ever been the excuse for some of the more notorious episodes of suicide, neglect, and sexual abuse.

Canada does not produce enough medical doctors, enough nurses, enough social workers, enough trained personnel dealing with the care of children.

Too often lip service serves as the antidote. The little girl from Sweden who shows an angry face to the world at the United Nations provokes condemnation on social media, reflecting, no doubt, the old adage “Children should be seen and not heard.”

These are just some of the conclusions of an old Canadian woman who has tried to keep herself informed. She won’t be forgiven for not being aware of mitigating factors that might reflect a brighter picture. But I am fully aware of, and I am grateful for, the freedom to express what I think.

Esther Darlington

Ashcroft

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Q&A: Interior Health CEO answers questions on COVID-19 response

Susan Brown, president and CEO of Interior Health, answers questions regarding COVID-19

BC Wildfire Service changes training of new firefighter recruits due to COVID-19

‘The BC Wildfire Service will continue to hire staff, including firefighters’

CRD Chair Margo Wagner advises Cariboo to avoid self-isolating in recreational properties

This will help avoid potentially overtaxing local healthcare services

B.C. couple celebrates 61st anniversary through seniors’ home window

Frank and Rena Phillips marked occasion at Nanaimo Seniors Village this week while social distancing

Doctors trained abroad want to join front lines of COVID-19 fight in Canada

B.C. is looking to allow internationally trained doctors to work under the supervision of attending physicians

Fake test kits and other COVID online scams play on public anxiety: fraud centre

Vancouver has seen a spike in commercial property crimes, with offices and stores empty because of COVID-19

Canada’s 75% wage subsidy is coming, but not for several weeks: finance minister

Subsidy will cost Canada $71 billion, but push down cost of emergency benefit, Morneau said

Feds amplify stay-home message as cost of financial aid to Canadians mounts

Liberals have unveiled around $200B in direct financial aid and tax deferrals

‘We will get through this’: B.C. sees new COVID-19 death, but 57% have recovered

A total of 1,066 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

World COVID-19 update: Six million U.S. jobless claims; Russia sends medical aid to U.S.

Comprehensive update with COVID-19 news from around the world

A look at some of the B.C. inventors creating life-saving tools in fight against COVID-19

Groups across B.C. are working together to create what they hope will help people affected by the pandemic

Association launches French-language games, online tools for families learning at home

Games, culture and vocabulary included in new virtual resources

Most Read