Letters to the Editor

Council was wrong to challenge religious freedoms

To the Editor,

Re: Decision made to protect vulnerable social groups, May 22.

Make no mistake about it. The disgraceful decision by a group of bigoted and ignorant Nanaimo city councillors to ban a Christian event from the Vancouver Island Conference Centre should alarm all Canadians who value their freedom under our charter.

Never mind that the Christian-themed leadership conference had world-class speakers. The conference was about leadership training and does not explicitly address controversial subjects like homosexuality.

You really have to wonder if these councillors would have been as quick to denounce a Jewish, Muslim, Sikh or Hindu group. Seems Christians make easy targets these days.

Officials in Nanaimo have since issued a statement affirming the rights of “men and women of all faiths” to rent government-owned venues. Disturbing decisions such as took place at Nanaimo city council are a violation of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms and  pose a direct challenge to religious freedom and freedom of conscience.

Gerald Hall
Nanoose Bay


To the Editor,

Re: Decision made to protect vulnerable social groups, May 22.

This embarrassing city decision, against a large section of taxpayers, has catapulted talk of a possible class-action lawsuit into the national spotlight. And it apparently will allege the city went against the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and discriminated against citizens’ freedom of religion, freedom of association and freedom of assembly.

Keep in mind these are allegations against a city’s politicians who have been elected to watch out, watch over and take care of all residents. And in the end it is costing residents more tax money to cover the city’s legal bills to figure out what to do about its ill-conceived judgment.

The honorable and decent decision for Nanaimo’s mayor, the majority of council and some senior staff is to resign immediately.

R.C. Stearman


To the Editor,

Re: Decision made to protect vulnerable social groups, May 22.

Move over Toronto , the City of Nanaimo is no longer a small city. We have a council that took central stage on Toronto TV and took the pressure off Rob Ford.

When you watch this program you will see the thorough process that the council of the City of Nanaimo goes through before voting on a motion. You get to see the motion being proposed, discussion by each member, the amount of research that is required, how they make sure they know all the facts about the motion, how they interact and support each other. You even get to see the city staff clearing points for them and then the vote.

After watching, you understand why we do not always get good value for our tax dollar. If you have not seen it, get your friends together so you can appreciate how our city council operates, then review it next November before you cast your ballot.

Terrance Wagstaff

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