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Today’s letters: The looming lockdown and whether Ottawa needs it

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Abdurahman Ibrahim, Ottawa

With no lockdown, shoppers would stream in 

Are our mayor, some health officials and some councillors ready and willing to play pandemic roulette over the looming Ontario lockdown?

Think about the possibilities. If Ottawa were open, and Quebec and the rest of Ontario in lockdown, it would create a possible economic mini-boom for Ottawa but, at the same time, a possible health catastrophe for the city. Starting Saturday, shoppers would be coming to Ottawa from West Quebec, Montreal, Kingston, Belleville and possibly as far away as Toronto to snap up Boxing Week bargains; all of these locations are within a one-to-four-hour drive from here. Thousands and thousands of shoppers would come, many from high-risk regions.

The reaction in Ottawa was pure politics, with no intelligent thought to potential health consequences. This pandemic affects every global citizen. It is infecting and killing thousands every day.

And Ottawa officials are willing to risk ruining what Ottawa has achieved.

Bill Reid, Ottawa

‘Quebec argument’ is just an excuse

The rationale for the planned lockdown is based on the number of cases in the whole of Ontario and completely ignores the fact that Ottawa has very few cases currently. If the Toronto/Hamilton area had the same per capita number of cases as Ottawa, there would be no such action.

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The argument that the lockdown in Ottawa is to save us from Quebec seems like something thought up afterwards to justify a ridiculous position. The part of Quebec near Ottawa has very few cases and people coming from Gatineau do not present any great risk. If the doctors advising Premier Doug Ford want to continue claiming to be scientists, they should base their advice on data, not some half-thought-out theory that the people from Gatineau will cause a surge in Ottawa with no facts to suggest this.

I appreciate that the situation in Toronto is serious, something needs to be done, and this is something – but it is beyond stupid. Toronto is not a synonym for Ontario and businesses in Ottawa should not be made to suffer just to make someone in a Toronto hospital administration feel better.

Ron Trisnan, Ottawa

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