Dear Santa Claus

My name is Peter and I am 5 and half (deca) years old.

For the longest time now, Santa, you have been most kind to me. In particular I would like to thank you (belatedly) for receiving my two front teeth so many moons ago.

Anyways, I have been thinking and researching how you get around the world in one night delivering gifts to all those kids. There are many theories (howstuffworks, physics) related to this as well as some controversy (military jet escorts). However, independent of the real or theoretical explanations for your means of transportation, it is clear to me that the means to get you around the world to all those homes consumes an inordinate amount of energy – those reindeer undoubtedly need to eat a lot of hay and the result is…

…methane which is 84 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than CO2!

In these sensitive to energy consumption and carbon footprint times, Santa, it might be appropriate for you to consider leveraging your gifts such that a single gift can impact positively the lives of many children and as a result reduce your overall environmental footprint for the Holiday season.

Kind of like what Maimonides stated: “Give a person a fish, you feed them for a day; teach a person to fish, you feed them for a lifetime”.

Imagine Santa the effect if you could find a set of gifts that could inspire our kids to surpass themselves for the benefit not only of themselves but also for those around them.

For me, in the Canadian context, such gifts can be found in those named to the Order of Canada or to any one of the provincial orders of merit (BC, Alta, Sask, Man, Ont, Que, NB, NS, PEI, Nfld, Territories).

Amongst such a membership, you can find: Rick Hansen (BC); Yvon Dumont, Raymond Poirier, Verna Kirkness (Manitoba); Phil Fontaine, Chantal Hebert, Annette Verschuren, John de Chastelain, Chris Hadfield (Ontario); Denise Verreault, Alwyn Morris, Jean-Marie de Koninck (Quebec); Herménégilde Chiasson, James D. Irving (New Brunswick); Joan Glode, Joseph Shannon (Nova Scotia); Marion Loretta Reid (PEI).

Dear Santa, I am sure that while checking for “who is naughty or nice” you found all of these people more often than not quite high on the “nice” list.

As a result, what I want for Christmas is to ask you to persuade our Prime Minister to inspire our kids by setting a new Senate tradition and limiting nominations to our Senate to members of the Order of Canada or of provincial orders of merit. A good way for him to illustrate such a new precedent is to boldly name the 17 members of the Order of Canada mentioned above to fill the current vacancies in the Senate (17 as of December 15th) and to challenge all future Prime Ministers to do the same.

Such a gift could not only inspire all Canadian kids to strive to surpass themselves, but potentially the whole Canadian population – about a 35 million to 1 gift leverage factor! (and maybe we might get an effective and efficient Senate too!).

Imagine, Santa, if you can find similar models of inspiration for the world population, you would be looking at reducing your visits to (assumed world population of 7.2 billion and that Santa visits all) some 205 visits (7200×106 / 35×106) as opposed to (7.2 billion / average 4 people per family) 1.8 billion visits currently.

WOW! Talk about reducing your carbon footprint!

In any case, thank you Santa for your time and please send all my best to Mrs Claus!

Happy Holidays to ALL!

Peter Radziszewski

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