I just read Luisa D’Amato’s article (http://www.therecord.com/opinion/columns/article/908935–d-amato-fighting-for-a-casino-few-want). It’s no secret that I disagree with her position on this issue but I find it amazing that she includes the following line in this article and it is the primary argument of mine:
If a casino is coming anyway, maybe it should be in Kitchener or Waterloo instead, the thinking goes.
So my question to Luisa is: Why didn’t you provide an argument against the above statement in your article? The rest of your article criticizes Kitchener, Waterloo and Woolwich for their role and decision in this matter. But the fact still remains – THIS AREA OF ONTARIO IS GOING TO BE SERVICED BY OLG! There are just way too many people here to ignore it. Luisa, please write an article that argues against the above way of thinking. How can any of these cities/township not consider the casino if the alternative location is in the south end of Elora? Quit criticizing these elected officials for doing what they had to do and start providing them with a LOGICAL argument against the above-stated reasoning. Help the elected officials turn down the casino, using logic. I’ve yet to hear anyone argue logically against the above statement and obviously Luisa can’t either. I’ll keep waiting for your article honey! Provide your wisdom and experience to all of the ‘weak links’ out in Kitchener, Waterloo and Woolwich. We’re just so lucky to have you, Luisa, to point out weaknesses and provide the strength needed in this decision. Gag me.
Seems there’s a new trend for folks my age (50+). Now I’ve never been much of a follower and this new trend is no exception. To be trendy one has to be the holder of the highest number of prescribed medications. Really? Yes, it seems that there is a sense of pride amongst older folks when they can say that they’re taking more pills than their friends. It’s a real competition- and one that I don’t want to win. Does ‘keeping up with the Jones’ now mean popping more pills than our neighbours? Looks like it and it’s quite a problem.
But it seems that more and more people just want a pill to solve their problems – whether the problems are physical or mental. And it seems that British doctors are more than happy to help. They’re prescribing pills in record numbers but keep in mind that sometimes it’s only a placebo (http://rt.com/news/uk-doctors-prescribe-placebo-585/). And even the mental health industry is getting in on the trend. In a recent Maclean’s article (http://www2.macleans.ca/2010/07/29/is-anybody-normal-anymore/), mental health experts are trying to convince anyone that will listen that no one is ‘normal’ anymore and that a pill of some kind is required. Even children that have temper tantrums on a regular basis (and let’s be honest, ALL children have regular temper tantrums!) are no longer normal. That’s right – they have a mental disorder.
And new mental disorders are popping up all over the place. I happened to hear of a recent court proceeding, involving a twenty-something young man and he was being defended of his charges by way of ‘oppositional defiance disorder’. Are you shittin’ me? I’ve had oppositional defiance disorder my whole life and I seem to be getting along just fine and haven’t been in jail – yet. My in-laws might say otherwise but they don’t know what they’re talking about. In fact I’m sure there’s a mental disorder that would describe them. In fact, there’s probably a few disorders that would describe them. We’ll save that for another post.
Considering all of this, I think the regular use of marijuana doesn’t even come close to being as serious. And all of this mess is being created and justified by health professionals, looking after my best interest. Sounds to me like they’re looking after the best interest of the pharmaceutical companies instead. Instead of prescribing a pill (or two, or more!), tell them to go do some physical work or take a walk or change their attitude. We’ve got a motto in our house – either change your attitude or change your circumstances. Believe it or not, we do that without help from a pill. Sometimes it does take a couple of Diet Cokes though.
I was pleasantly shocked at the recent Woolwich Township council meeting, where a decision was made to roll out the welcome mat for a casino, pending numerous conditions and receiving a green light from OLG. In an earlier post, I had commented that I had looked forward to the ‘entertainment’ factor of these meetings as I am fascinated by some of the public speeches and presentations. I was definitely not disappointed, however, there was one speech that didn’t really entertain me – it insulted me. And the author and presenter of that speech was the Chair of the Region of Waterloo, Ken Seiling.
Mr. Seiling made it clear that he was speaking as a citizen of Woolwich Township, not as the Chair of Waterloo Region but I can’t imagine that the personal opinions that he provided on the Woolwich casino issue are much different than in his position of Regional Chair. Mr. Seiling stated that many of Woolwich residents had “commonly-held principles” and that these principles were “built in our DNA” and “a part of our roots”. His speech went on to convey that he didn’t think that a casino fit with those commonly-held beliefs and that “Woolwich should not be bought” by the casino proposal and Woolwich should not be a partner in this project. He concluded by advising the voting councilors that approving this casino would make this their legacy for the township.
So if I disagree with Mr. Seiling, is he saying that my ‘roots’, being different than his roots, are for sale? And can this be translated to say that my values are for sale? I felt somewhat insulted by this and wondered if others perceived his comments in a similar manner. Well, it didn’t take long before I got an answer to that as another resident, Richard Bradley, got up and said that he felt that there was a ‘prejudice’ evident in the comments made toward individuals who went to a casino or toward those folks that were in favour of the casino. He elaborated, in a humourous way, that he wasn’t a gambler, nor was he a theatre-goer, or even a hockey fan but he felt that all of these activities were entertaining to the people who participated and that the money expended on tickets for the theater or a hockey game didn’t produce any monetary rewards but did provide an ‘entertainment’ reward – much as some people receive when they put money into a slot machine or spend it on a gambling activity. It’s their entertainment.
I’m afraid that Mr. Seiling’s comments are sounding like someone who isn’t keeping up with the growth and changes of his own township. The ‘commonly-held principles to which he refers may be changing as new families with different ‘DNA’ and different ‘roots’ move into the township and the Region. To my knowledge, there is no ‘application process’ whereby someone wanting to move to the township has to demonstrate that they share Mr. Seiling’s ‘commonly-held principles’ and I’m thankful for that. Get with the program Mr. Seiling. Woolwich is more than Old Order Mennonites and more than religion and the principles that are associated with traditional religions. There might even be an atheist, an agnostic, an ex-convict, or someone who gambles and drinks, or maybe someone who masturbates and heaven forbid, someone who is a homosexual and has children going to the schools of Woolwich Township. However will we deal with that? Guess we need to make that wall around Woolwich a little taller and stronger to keep those people out that don’t have our ‘commonly-held principles’. Maybe the Region can use their portion of the casino money to take care of the improvements on that wall.