Armchair Mayor

By: Mel Rothenburger

Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). He continued to write columns for The Daily News until it ceased publication Jan. 11, 2014, and did regular commentary for CBC Radio.

Anti-racism posters seemed like a good idea at the time

March 29, 2018 - 5:00am Updated: March 29, 2018 - 4:36pm

PARENTS ARE UNDERSTANDABLY SENSITIVE about what their kids are being taught in school, and they don’t like surprises.

Thus, when it came to light that schools in the Gold Trail School District — which includes Cache Creek, Ashcroft, Clinton and other communities — were displaying anti-racism posters about “white privilege,” they pushed back.

Thoughts and prayers don’t deserve the bad rap

March 24, 2018 - 9:15am

Thoughts and prayers have been getting a bad rap lately.

Commentators are trashing them as over-used, empty and meaningless.

They’re referring to the sympathies offered by politicians when a large number of people die in a natural disaster, act of terrorism or mass shooting, the ones that are sent out to the families of the victims over social media or in official statements.

One of my fellow columnists recently compared them to pixie dust.

But what about when a single life is lost and doesn’t make the news? What about thoughts and prayers then?

Canada’s new gun laws nothing more than fine tuning

March 21, 2018 - 5:15am Updated: March 21, 2018 - 10:42am

KAMLOOPS — Can you hear it — the exasperation from gun owners at Tuesday’s unveiling of new federal firearms legislation?

The new rules will do nothing to increase public safety, while targeting law-abiding gun owners, says Canada’s National Firearms Association. It’s a first step to bringing back the long-gun registry, they say.

Hit bad drivers in wallet, make training mandatory

March 8, 2018 - 5:00am

The B.C. government’s latest public-input exercise is underway and this time it’s about auto insurance.

The overall objective is logical: make bad drivers pay more for insurance, while good drivers pay less.

Nothing gets people’s attention and modifies behavior like hitting them in the pocket book if they don’t follow the rules. Together with a fine of a couple of thousand dollars for distracted driving, tougher insurance guidelines should make a big difference.

And, we’re being asked for our opinions.

It’s hard to be friends with Trump’s America

March 7, 2018 - 6:10am

KAMLOOPS — It takes years to build a good friendship, and a very short time to destroy one.

Friendship takes trust, loyalty, dependability and honesty. Without those things, friendships quickly wither and die.

Canada has spent 200 years being America’s best friend. Donald Trump is ruining it in one term of office.

Canadians fought side by side with Americans in two World Wars and in the Korean conflict, the Gulf War and Afghanistan.

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