To The Editor,

I was recently talking to a woman who had pretty well spent all her life in the country and something she said sort of stuck with me. She said that she had never met a farmer that liked trees. What if we’ve been farming here in Canada for what 200 years maybe 400 years and back then you had to clear the land out of necessity – for a house, barn, crops, etc. So, I guess the trees were in the way back then. Do we still think this way?  The difference now is we know more about the importance of trees, but it feels as if the deck is still stacked against them. It’s hard to fight a notion that is 400 years old. I still hope people who deal with the Earth would give clear-cutting a second thought, considering all we’ve learned and where we’re headed. I really think we need all the help we can get but my words are likely falling on deaf ears. Trees really can help heal the world, our world. Maybe we could start working with the planet rather than against it–saving trees, really putting a stop to pollution and really taking a hard look at the present.

Oil and gas are starting to really take off with more drilling, farmers are over-producing, fishermen and forestry are over-harvesting, developers are over developing the land and with lumber costs getting higher again mainly due to house building on the rise.

Let’s talk about the housing crisis. For several years now, Chinese investors have been in love with Vancouver. What’s not to like–snow-capped mountains, the ocean, the forests and all of Canada’s natural resources including 20 per cent of the world’s fresh water.

In 2014, one trillion dollars U.S. left China to be invested elsewhere and we were it, government-funded speculators buying every property they could and seven years later we have a housing shortage, but we also have one out of five properties in our country are now owned by foreign investors. You know how many millions of homes are sitting empty, houses, condominiums, apartments. Their goal was to drive up real estate prices and crippling the young people and everyone else from ever being able to own a home in their own country, and it worked.

I heard our prime minister speak of looking into the speculator problem; it was just after our $610-million useless election, but he won’t do anything because he’s seven years too late and he doesn’t want to anger China– same as his stand with Russia and Ukraine. He said we sent Ukraine some money but what they want is weapons and we have them but he doesn’t want to anger the Russians so he’s sitting on the fence again. I was hoping this guy was gonna grow up some day but I believe it’s impossible for him to see anything, he’s lived in a bubble most of his life and reality seems to elude him, I think he’s just another millionaire who doesn’t know how to care and never will.

As for this pandemic, I believe we’ll be stuck with this for quite awhile.

It seems a shame that honest, hard-working people are dying as collateral damage to other people’s beliefs;, it’s just not right. One person’s freedom means one person’s death. And people are in pain, waiting for surgeries and other treatments which are being delayed because our health care system is overloaded.

I don’t know where we’re headed, I don’t believe it’s a good place at a time of Pandemic and Climate Change. We’re just too stupid to change who we are and who we have become.

Andy Perreault, Vankleek Hill