The limit of tolerance?


Editor: In this day and age, when tolerance is the byword, it intrigues me how quickly tolerance ends when someone expresses an opinion or embraces an ideology contrary to our own.

Case in point: Dennis Makowetsky’s letter to the editor in The Chatham Voice, Oct. 7. Although it is true that Chatham-Kent–Leamington MPP Rick Nicholls did not abide by his party’s dictum about vaccinations, it does not follow that he did not represent at least some of the people of his riding by refusing to be vaccinated and by expressing concerns about the erosion of freedom in Canada.

One needs only to look at the sudden rise of the People’s Party of Canada or the many “No More Lockdown” signs around town to know there is much dissension about how we should deal with COVID-19.

Mr. Makowetsky references the “countless world health experts” as the voice of reason in the fight against COVID. However, he fails to acknowledge that the same experts have changed their opinions repeatedly and for good reason: no one has traversed this particular pandemic before.

But the fact that there have been variances of procedures (case in point, Public Health claiming it is not a problem to mix vaccines, only to have some countries not accept the mixed vaccines) stirs up questions and uncertainties in people’s minds. Perhaps Mr. Nicholls was giving voice to some of these concerns and could only do so by sacrificing his own political career, and in the eyes of some of his constituents, his reputation. A difference of opinion should not necessarily merit disqualification in the political arena, especially if we want to uphold freedom of opinion and speech, and hence choice, in our country.

Elizabeth Steinfield



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