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Letters: week of Jan. 9

Atheists are in denial Sir: I am responding to the Dec. 19 letter from Paul Pinel, “This atheist is curious about but not afraid of the hereafter. “ The atheist dost protest too much, methinks. The first atheist I heard speak was Charles Templeton.
Letters to the editor

Atheists are in denial

Sir: I am responding to the Dec. 19 letter from Paul Pinel, “This atheist is curious about but not afraid of the hereafter. “

The atheist dost protest too much, methinks.

The first atheist I heard speak was Charles Templeton. He used to preach with Billy Graham until, as he tells it, he saw a photo in Life magazine of a grieving mother in Africa, cradling her dead baby.

Templeton was so compassionate that he could not countenance a God who allows such suffering. Mr. Pinel shared similar sentiments. It’s an altruistic sounding argument.

But then you find out that Templeton had met a woman he preferred over his wife. He forgot to mention that. Suddenly, the altruism is exposed as the virtue-signalling smokescreen it actually is.

Because the real reason for rejecting Christ is always personal, deeply personal. And it’s bound in some combination of lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, or vain pride of life.

Templeton also had his intellectual pride working against him. As do atheists Bob Barnes and Bob Ripley. Mr. Barnes’ intellectual pride is his motivation for reading the Bible regularly, as any atheist would, because he’s “too smart to buy that stuff.”

Bob Ripley said it was naive of him to think others would stop believing as he had, once they read his story. Naive? Hardly. Grandiose? Definitely.

An atheist chooses virtue signalling not only because of their prideful nature but because they’re in denial. They can’t handle the truth about themselves. And of course they can’t because we need God to help us do that. And to know God you must humble yourself before Him. An atheist is not about to do that

Consider that no one has suffered more than Christ Jesus. The Sinless One chose to pay for our sin by His suffering and death on the cross.

Christ is with us in our suffering. He never forsakes us. Yet, the atheist proudly forsakes Christ.

Jill Andrews



All “things” considered

Sir: Before Christmas, while en route to an appointment in Petrolia for Mom, I did a "thing."

We were yakking and missed the road. I backed into a farmer’s gravel lane, cut it too tight, hit some soft soil, and slid backwards into a really deep ditch. Many people passed us.

But a very nice lady who lived down the way stopped, made sure we were OK, and phoned for a tow truck.

We didn’t exchange names, but hugged and wished each other a "Merry Christmas."

Two trucks came to get us out and I was amazed — not a scratch on my 300 kilometre-young car.

To that nice lady, a very big Thank You. Wish you all the best. Let us all try to take care of each other.

Margaret Banovsky Holmes



Christmas light were ‘Bah Humbug’

Sir: I took a trip out to see the lights of Sarnia before Christmas. Too bad they were all concentrated on Front Street.

There were the odd lights visible on side streets, and some residents expended multi-energy to celebrate Christmas. But can you imagine paying $2 for bus fare, plus food for the Inn of the Good Shepherd, to see lights on maybe every fourth house.

I’m a previous house owner on Brimwood Crescent, where highway cruisers would blow past continually filled with tourists from out of town. And we weren’t the only neighborhood that took pride in our lights.

Where were the decorations on our main street, Christina? And on Lakeshore?

For those of you that took pride —Hurrah!  But c’mon Sarnia, let’s get back on the bus!

Rich Paterson



Do big stores benefit from charitable donations?

Sir: Every major store chain seems to solicit charitable donations these days while we're checking out at the cashier.

These large businesses with locations all across the province and country must take in millions of dollars. My question is: When they finally make the donation to the charity, do they get a Charitable Donation Income Tax Receipt?

I certainly hope that's not the case. It's my hope they are just being good corporate citizens.

Does anyone know the answer to this question?

Brian MacDonald



Approving 19-storey tower on Water Street a bad decision

Sir: Every now and then you hear about an office building someplace having a negative effect on the people who work there. They’re called “sick buildings.”

I believe we’ve got one of those right here in River City — it’s called City Hall.

Before the last election, a city management team and council devoted a lot of time and money to suppress our recently re-elected mayor.

They will be remembered for generations as the team that gave us the new and improved $13-million Centennial Park. I keep wondering what caused them to make those decisions?

Now, the city has new management, and I helped vote for Mike Bradley and the new council. He and one other councillor seem to be healthy, but the rest of the group is showing signs of major malfunction. I blame the City Hall building. The works department needs to check its climate control for bacteria and rip out a few walls to inspect for mould.

What else would cause this council we elected to cave on 135 Water St., allowing a developer to stomp on nine different planning bylaw restrictions.

That’s right — nine! Restrictions like the building’s height, setbacks, parking and lot size.

Our new council, acting like a bunch of small-town hicks, let a developer push them into rubber-stamping a 19-storey condo tower that will grow like a bad weed on a property half the size it should be to accommodate it.

The developer said the project will create 70 jobs during two years of construction. Hopefully they won’t be 70 out-of-town workers, like the Lambton College project or the long-delayed Great Lakes Secondary School.

The developer says the tower won’t be economically viable unless it’s built as planned.

The answer is to build it someplace else.

It’s gotta be the building!

Ed Williamson



To be fair, employers should reward their non-smoking staff

Sir: I have a friend whose name is Joan. She is pretty quick to spot interesting situations.

The other day she related to me a practice that some employers are using for employers that is all about fairness and productivity.

I was an employer most of my life, and it really drove me nuts to see some of my employees take smoke breaks outside the usual morning and afternoon breaks, while the non-smokers still worked diligently at their assigned tasks.

It resulted in a sense of unfairness, to my mind.

Not many workers work overtime for nothing, yet those that took smoke breaks still got the same regular pay cheques.

Well, Joan told me some smart and fair employers are giving their non-smokers (who aren’t wasting time) an extra week holiday per year, in appreciation for their dedication and productivity. I see this as a great policy.

Think about it, employers. It could work well for you.

John Parker


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