EDITORIAL – Is it time for a new face and voice on B.C.’s pandemic response?

Dr. Bonnie Henry. (Image: Govt of BC)

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

DARE I SAY IT? Dare I utter the words?

Is it time for Dr. Bonnie Henry to turn over the reins of B.C.’s pandemic response to someone else?

Yes, the Bonnie Henry with the fan clubs and folk songs, whose funky shoes and statement necklaces and “Be calm, be kind, be safe” advice have become such a part of pandemic-era lore.

But she’s losing control of the anti-COVID-19 battle.

Remember, early this year when, as if speaking patiently to a child, she told us masks were of no value? We forgave her because other experts were making the same mistake.

Since then, though, she continues not to trust us with specifics on where cases are occurring, except for identifying certain bars and long-term care homes.

She refuses, too, to approve use of the federal contact-tracing app.


Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at

About Mel Rothenburger (9052 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

6 Comments on EDITORIAL – Is it time for a new face and voice on B.C.’s pandemic response?

  1. Sue Whitehead // November 26, 2020 at 10:24 AM // Reply

    If you are going to talk about public health matters, you really should do your homework. Rapid covid tests detect antibodies, they are to be used on people with symptoms only and within the first 7 days. Even then, there are problems with both false positives and false negatives. In care homes, workers are monitored for symptoms every day they come to work. Rapid tests do not improve on that.
    We are extremely lucky in BC to have a Medical Officer of Health with as much experience as Dr Henry. What on earth do her shoes and necklaces have to do with that? Would you be discussing what a male MHO chose to wear?
    We still have the best numbers of any jurisdiction in N. America with similar populations.
    I was tempted to say something unkind about who really should be replaced, but I will take Dr. Henry’s lead

  2. Majid Faridi // November 25, 2020 at 9:45 PM // Reply

    I agree and support Dr Henry management of pandemic , people who are obeying the are in fault and should be blamed.

  3. Bill Hadgkiss // November 25, 2020 at 10:40 AM // Reply

    In many cases, violations of the latest rule can be very expensive, yet the silliness of the mask or no mask, and many other instances are often in a conflict with common sense, hence the confusion. The mask works in both directions to reduce, not stop, the spread to and from the wearer. There could at least be a location we may check to see what is current vs what has changed or is cancelled, without having to read repeated BC Gov’t. 20 minute reads.

  4. Darryl Spencer // November 25, 2020 at 8:20 AM // Reply

    I strongly disagree with this article. Bonnie Henry is doing all she can. The problem is the people that abuse common sense rules. There is enough guidance. The schools is not her fault and they will close again.

  5. Lyle Trowski // November 25, 2020 at 8:02 AM // Reply

    When the troops don’t follow the leader, get rid of the leader you say. Wow Mel, All Dr. Henry has been preaching is for us to be adult about our decisions in regards to isolating and bubble size. Why is it that when a few bad apples start to spoil the barrel, we try to use more force to save the apples and end up with cider? More people are following her calm demeanor rules than not or our numbers would be higher. Do what you have to do to stay safe and remain calm .

  6. Perhaps her incoherence is contributing to the persistent throng of COVID-19 doubters and deniers which should be cause for concern, with ramifications into the credibility (or lack thereof) towards government and science in the long run.

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