| May 05, 2005

Feature article,May 5, 2005

Feature article May 5, 2005

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Luminarias and Festival of Trees cant be combined

I am writing this item in response to an article which appeared in the "Business over Breakfast" brochure of March 21,2005, and which I might add was written without prior discussion with me. The article read:

Congratulations to the Villages Beautiful Committee on a very successful Festival of Trees event in Sharbot Lake in December 2004. Organizers Rosemarie Bowick and her husband Bill continue to inspire the many volunteers with their tireless dedication.

The festival attracted more visitors than ever before, including lots of guests from out of town. Rosemarie reports that the event raised enough money to once again to plant beautiful flowers in many of our Central Frontenac communities. However, volunteers are still needed to provide TLC to the flower beds. Are you available? Your uncle? Your brother?

An idea: Would it be possible to combine the Festival of Trees with the Christmas Eve luminarias spearheaded by Dave and Katie Saban, owners of Sharbot Lake Country Inn? Together, the two events could become part of a wonderful Christmas-themed promotional package to entice even more visitors to

our area in December.

I certainly agree that congratulations are due to Rosemarie Bowick, Bill and the many volunteers who make the Festival of Trees an outstanding event.

I do not agree, however, that this event could be combined with the Christmas Eve Luminarias "to entice even more visitors to our area in December". Firstly, Dave and I started this annual event 5 years ago and it is our special way of saying "thank you to our clients who patronize us throughout the year; and secondly the dates would not coincide since we choose to have our lumimarias Christmas Eve, along with our complimentary wine and cheese. This evening has become a tradition and it will always be

just a thank you from Dave and I. We appreciate all of you as clients.

Thank you Dave and Cathy Saban


Re: Mazinaw Musings

When I first considered a response to Rowsome's article, "My Future" (April 7, 2005), I considered a number of possible reactions. I reacted to the blatant sexism of assigning women to the primary responsibility of childcare in the home, despite a growing shift in these trends in modern families.

I reacted to his assertion that women that choose to work outside of the home are somehow desperate to "get out" of their responsibilities, so to speak, or that having a family and a career is selfish.

I find odd the notion of "communal sandboxes", where, according to Rowsome, parents would gladly deposit their children at some sort of baby care factory while at work.

I find it difficult to understand how families should meet Rowsome's high standards given financial realities -- a mother should, according to Rowsome, stay at home to raise a family, yet parents should have enough money saved to support a child through their post-secondary education.

Rowsome even suggests that taxes are used to pay for those who "cannot or will not" support themselves. Certainly, taxpayer monies are used to support social programs -- those that "cannot" support themselves include children, the sick, and the elderly. I understand that Rowsome is a retired educator -- certainly he must recognize that the education system that he no doubt loved is entirely supported by the tax system it sounds as though he resents?

Though I am not a parent, I am a woman, a university graduate, and a daughter. My parents both worked outside of the home, and both of them tirelessly pursued their own personal agenda - to provide for my sister and I. My parents wanted us to have choices and opportunities. They made sacrifices to send my sister and I to university, and to support us as we began (or in my case, continue to begin) our independent lives.

I do remember going to a babysitter, and we were fortunate to have parents and great-grandparents who were very involved in our lives. I also remember my mom taking us to the beach after work. I don't remember feeling as though my parents "wanted" to be anywhere other than home. No child should feel as though they are nothing but an obligation, nor anything less than the very first priority of their parents.

Rowsome no doubt taught many women throughout his career, and may have daughters of his own. It should be the responsibility of parents and community leaders to empower men and women alike to make good choices, both professionally and personally. I have goals and aspirations, and I am certain that I will continue to have them even if I one day have a family. There is no right or wrong answer to the question of whether women should work outside of the home, and I don't mean to suggest that I have an absolute answer. It isn't my place to climb up on a soapbox to preach my version of right and wrong, nor is it Rowsome's. He has been provided a platform, as a contributor to this publication, from which he can assert his worldview. While valid, I would urge Rowsome to recognize that there are other options, and to refrain from sweeping generalizations that paint women who work outside of the home as uncaring or uncommitted parents.

Being a good parent is about unconditional love and support through childhood, and through the ridiculous trials of adulthood. Love isn't necessarily absent because a mother is during the day, nor is it more necessarily present because she is. Regardless of who a child finds at the end of their school day, a good parent is one who can be found when they are needed. That is the role that every good parent strives to fill for his or her child, and no career could ever get in the way of that.

Melanie Rosenblath

Why believe Liberal promises?

Paul Martin and the Liberals broke their promise to cancel the GST. They broke their Red Book promise about National Day Care (first promised in 1993). They broke their promise on a reasonably priced Gun Registry, which they said would make the country safer; the streets are no safer and the Gun Registry has cost the taxpayers $2-billion.

A year ago Paul Martin and the Liberals broke their promise to get to the bottom of the Sponsorship Scandal before calling an election. They shut down the Public Accounts Committee before key witnesses were heard, and before the Gomery Inquiry even got underway. Then Paul Martin called a snap election.

Now Paul Martin wants to avoid a timely election about the voters verdict on the Sponsorship Scandal, so hes promising an election 30 days after the final Gomery Report, due November 15. That takes us to next Christmas and an election in the Canadian winter (and eight months of electioneering and Liberal spin-doctoring).

Why would anyone believe this latest Paul Martin promise either?

- Val Crandall

Re Ardoch Algonquins

I want to commend the Frontenac News for your continuing coverage of the Algonquin Land Claim. Your coverage is fair and comprehensive.

I would like to explain more fully several issues that were referred to in your article of last week. The Ardoch Algonquin First Nation (AAFNA) is the original. AAFNA retains the original logo (osprey with shield and feathers), original bank accounts, original membership registry, the original newsletter Point of Contact and the original governance structure. We have an active membership of over 500 Algonquins. With that being said, I will let the readers judge for themselves who is the original Ardoch Algonquin First Nation.

The Ardoch Algonquin First Nation does not just represent the village of Ardoch. We chose that name because of its history of successful resistance to government excesses and abuse. Ardoch is where the government of Ontario was defeated in 1980 in their attempt to exploit Algonquin resources, and represents an awakening of Algonquin self-respect. AAFNA is inclusive of families who find their historical and ancestral roots in the Mississippi, Rideau, Madawaska and Tay watersheds.

I also believe your readers would like to know that last spring we discussed representation of AAFNA in the current Land Claim with Mr. Robert Potts. Our Family Heads Council suggested that we would seek a competent negotiator from among our membership. Further to this we would hold a membership referendum to confirm by consensus the appointment of this negotiator. We even suggested that if the choice did not receive 100% approval in a mail out ballot, we would seek an alternative nomination that would have this level of support. This is the way that consensual government works. We have found in the past that elections divide people. No matter which way you look at it, elections become popularity contests and political in-fights. Small communities need every one of their leaders to work together, sharing ideas and resources. We felt we had suggested a fair alternative in determining who our negotiations representative would be. Mr. Potts reviewed our proposal with the Pikwakanagan Band Council and the Algonquin Nation Tribal Council. The answer was no.

It is my hope that your readers will continue to find interest in the Algonquin Community.

- Robert Lovelace, AAFNA member

Looking for uncle

I am trying to contact my uncle, Bill MacDonald, who recently moved to Bob's Lake from Scotland where he bought a cabin and whom I have lost touch with. I have tried to reach him to tell him his sister in law has died and I have information on a new relation of his deceased wife. I do not have his Canadian address and he may have died, because he was not in best of health, but I believe he is still alive and kicking. If anyone has any information, please email me at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Mike Twaddle, Scotland

Re: Crisis in Agriculture (April 21, 2005)

I have followed the Canadian and international agricultural landscape for a number of years. Just about every developed nation has advocacy groups claiming that its agricultural section is in crisis.

On a global scenario, we are in an over-capacity mode. The vast majority of western nations produce more food that they can consume. Technology and economies of scale have led to less area producing higher yields. To realize this, take a look around this area and notice all the land that used to hold crops and grazing animals, and is now (1) residential, (2) recreational or (3) gone back to forest/bush; this despite the fact that Canada has more than quadrupled its population since this land was originally cleared. Obviously, we do not need as much farmland or as many farmers as we had a hundred years ago.

There are a couple of areas where our excellence in over-capacity has worked to our advantage. In both beef and pork, we Canadians produce far more than we consume. Of course, we export this surplus - primarily to the US - to profit from it. The downside is that now our internal prices are tied with our export prices, and our producers are directly linked to overall sales. In these areas, Canada has reached consolidation that many other industries have attained over the last century. And like other industries, can suffer/benefit from exchange rates, global/regional calamities and market changes.

There are other areas where the industry has not advanced.

Canada, like most western nations, has introduced policies and measures to keep the agricultural enterprise vibrant. In most cases, this has prevented the consolidation and optimization of the major components of the industry; it promoted the small farm operation. In Canada, sectors such as dairy and poultry, the sustenance of small operations has been promoted mostly through supply-managed regulations.

For example, in the dairy industry, we actively promote small dairy farms through dairy quotas. The last time that I checked, a milk quota was about $25,000. This makes farm expansion a bit prohibitive. The milk quota also ensures that farmers receive more for their milk in a global market, and consequently Canadians pay more for their dairy products.

In countries such as Australia and New Zealand, where most supply management policies and farm subsidies have been reduced or eliminated, the agricultural industry is flourishing. What is not present in these countries are small farms. A dairy farm with 100 head in these countries would be deemed a hobby farm.

Their agriculture system has advanced along with all the other key manufacturing and service sectors. Over the last 100 plus years, all our major production based industries have consolidated- lumber, auto production, and electronics, to name but a few. Most of the farming and (not surprisingly) fishing communities did not. This has cost us Canadians dearly both in our pocket books and for those people who are still stuck in an inefficient industry.

- Frank Molnar

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