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Letter to the editor: Kick Russia out of Women’s World Curling Championship

Elected leaders have an opportunity to do more than change their Facebook background to a flag of Ukraine.
Ukraine protest drummers
The UHNBC Traditional Drummers and they're friends and families pose for a group shot in front of Prince George city hall during Sunday's protest of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

While I write this letter, I am sure many of you are at the event taking place to celebrate the amazing accomplishments of a local sport sensation that through her accomplishments has presented Prince George in a positive light at the world's largest sporting event. Also at this time Russia has brought war to Europe and is currently slaughtering innocent men, women and children in Ukraine because they have chosen to be a free democratic nation.

I note these two events as Prince George will host the 2022 BKT Tires & Ok Tire World Women’s Curling Championship March 19-27 and The Regional District of Fraser-Fort George is an official partner of this event which currently has a Russian team set to compete. This event will present Prince George to the world on the largest women's curling stage there is and it is incumbent upon our elected community leaders and as official partners of this event to make it clear that a team from Russia is not welcome in Prince George. Further, they should commit to doing anything possible to stop this event from taking place in a public facility with public money sponsorship from taking place if Curling Canada and the World Curling Federation does not take immediate action and ban Team Russia from competing at the 2022 World Women’s Curling Championship.

Elected leaders have an opportunity to do more than change their Facebook background to a flag of Ukraine. They may be tempted to put forth the non-argument that the Russian curling team is innocent and should not be punished, however, war is horrific and impacts the innocent the most and not doing the right thing will not change that. The Russian team either supports Putin and should not be allowed to compete or does not support Putin and should be happy they will be prevented from being used in Putin propaganda. The "sport contributes to peace by unifying people" approach has been tried ad nauseam and is not effective.

No thoughts and prayers without action, no righteous indignation without action. Please end up on the right side of history on this so I can buy my tickets and cheer on Team Canada.

Phil Beaulieu

Prince George