Mr. Speaker, last week I took my son to the Edmonton zoo. We saw seals, elephants, lions, tigers, and caribou. As we walked around the zoo, I explained to my son that the animals were wild so we needed barriers between ourselves and them to ensure that we do not get bitten or harmed, and that monkeys do not throw stuff at us.
In light of this discussion with my son, the installation of barriers on Edmonton city buses to protect the bus drivers is a sad reflection on our society. Last I checked, wild animals do not ride city buses. However, one would think they did, after reading the CBC article that stated, “Most often drivers were punched or spat on, although many were bitten, kicked, or had something thrown at them.”
Installing Plexiglas barriers is not the solution to this type of behaviour. Rather, we need to cultivate a high regard for human dignity. We can install the bus barriers if we must, but we would be far better off if individuals were accountable for their actions, parents instilled respect in their children, and leaders encouraged a culture that values human dignity.