Say what you will about John G. Diefenbaker now, he coined a passage that has become sacred to many devoted Canadians.
I clued in a couple of years ago that things at the federal level were not about to change anytime soon despite the incessant assaults on our science, our media, our people.And incessant they are-hardly a week goes by before media is reporting yet another Harper attack on something.
And I couldn’t stand it then, as I can’t stand it now. There is a continual erosion of the rights and freedoms we built this country on and it’s not coming from an outside source,it’s coming from our own governments.
Despite not agreeing with the complacency, I do sadly understand it- so many Canadians are still so darn polite-eh-and we don’t like rocking the boat!
But does that mean I have to buy into it? No way, no how, not happening.
My parents used to tell me polite people never talk about politics, religion or how much someone makes.
Well, I know I’ve broken all of those rules- sorry Mom and Dad!
I don’t give a crap how much you make as a friend, but I do care how much bureaucrats make in government.
I do care about how much they expense and I do care about where and how the money is spent. Why? Because I see far too many struggling while far too many in government are living high on the hog. And in a modern country like Canada,that is rich in many ways, that’s not acceptable.
What religion you practice, who you love, who you marry, where you were born, what colour is your skin…is inconsequential to me. I care if you believe in truth,honour and freedom, I care if you worry and help others, if you are a good person inside.
I believe in a hand up, not a hand out. I believe in helping your neighbor and anyone else who needs it more than you do.
I believe that Canada comes first, as do Canadians. Educate us, employ us, support us, and embrace those of us who dream of all we are able to achieve… as Canadians! We are an incredible melting pot of those whose families have been here forever, and immigrants who came to find a better life, and helped build this country.What makes Canada great is our diversity, our resilence, our inherent strengths.
Vote because your vote IS IMPORTANT… in fact one vote is so incredibly important it can win or lose an election and determine if a riding/city/province/our country moves one step back or two steps forward… yes your one vote can do all that.
Don’t complain to me about anything, if you don’t vote. I truly believe that not voting is one of the biggest problems this country has. People in other countries will die for the right to vote and here, we toss it away as a bothersome task, too disconnected from how politics impacts our personal lives. In Canada, it’s usually about half the population that decides the future of the country. Friends in foreign lands laugh when I tell them that, they can’t understand why so many people don’t vote.
And all the while those who don’t care are sitting having tea at 2pm, the government is likely lumping in regular average folks who really care about this country enough to attend a protest or two, or learn how to protest, in with the truly sick criminals intent on harm.
…and if me, the mom of 4, who bakes, wipes snot,pulls teeth and tries to make whatever change I can by writing about issues that impact my family, my friends and my readers… well I guess if that puts me in that group or any other, so be it, but I’m as average a Canadian as it gets:
Tonight, I have two special items for you, at least special to me because of where they came from, and why.
They both concern Canada. Our country - for some like myself, a birthright, for others a choice to find a better life. There was a time, not that long ago, that I outright admit I took our liberties and freedoms here in this great, amazing land for granted. And why not? This is Canada, after all, where as Pierre Burton once said, you know you are one when you can make love in a canoe…without tipping. Beavers chomping, moose munching and kids playing hockey on frozen ponds… the clichés abound when it comes to Canadians and our country.
I love them all, I really do. But to me, what really makes us Canadian is our endless strength and our convictions.
Right now, both are being tested, and sadly, by our own government – a government who many say, and I agree, is selling our country out, putting it at grave risk and forgetting the wonderful people who made this country what it is.
Our arts are being killed, our scientists muzzled and silenced, our environment mismanaged or sold to foreign interests, our personal rights and freedoms are being eroded every day.
Our government seems to have forgotten what country this is, and I think I have become a nationalist(eek) - someone who advocates political independence for our country.
We aren’t politically independent in Canada, nor are we in B.C.
When you have corporate friends who have great influence over political leaders, when you have foreign governments who are paying for educational supplements here, actively lobbying and shaping policy and impacting government affairs,when you have a prime minister who openly tells his country he will overrule due process to make something wrong, right…. I am telling you we do not have political independence.
The wonderful thing is, there are thousands of others just like me, and we are finding each other, and talking and informing everyone we can.
One person at a time if need be,and you know something special is happening when a reader,( whom I also consider a new friend), stops on her road trip across Canada to send you a photo, from the Gordie Howe campground in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan because she knows exactly what I will think of it. ( doesn’t get more Canadian than driving across the country in a camper..)
Here is her email from today:
I just thought I would send these not so great photos to you… the one with Harper quoted re: Dief! What a total joke for Harper to even be quoted for one thing and to call himself a Tory! I grew up thinking the Conservatives knew what they were about due to Diefenbaker but those days are long past and only a few good old boys are trying to call Harper into line…
Anyway…how one man can change a nation so quickly…for the worse!
Keep writing…my husband and I are doing our first trip in a small camper across Canada …and reminiscing about Canada along the way…and hope to be in Ottawa for July 1st and I will be wearing my anti Enbridge T-shirt with my save our salmon hoodie! “
Well, the photos were all great, and here is one photo that I think speaks volumes!!The irony is clear and I am sure old Dief would be turning in his grave if he saw this.
Clearly Harper didn’t learn a hell of a lot from Diefenbaker, now did he? That’s all I am going to say about that.
( I will be featuring more photos from Barb and her hubby’s trip across Canada, since I asked her to continue to send photos to me of things that really stood out for her along the way,things she felt were really Canadian)
The second special item for you comes from Priscilla Judd, whom I met while covering the No Prison for Lumby story. Her heart is true, and spirit strong… and talent…immense.
“Life is very much better in Lumby without the fight over a prison but this Federal Government (supported by BC Liberals) is tearing apart our country – fast. I’ve been busy working lately and writing songs. Anyway, my husband made a video to help me share one of them.I’m sending you my song URL in hopes that first: you like it and second, I’m hoping you will share it.
It’s easy to sing… I have performed it at two protests and it seems to unite people. I hope it goes around in your head and you can remember it if you feel like giving up – I know I do – times are bleak… So let me know how the song works for you – many thanks
I opened the link, listened to the song and smiled.
Yes, it really struck me, the beauty, the truth of that song, and if I had my way this would be our new anthem because it speak to all we hold strong , true and free in Canada. Yes Priscilla, this works for me just fine!!
Listen. Reflect. Enjoy. Will you stand beside me, and stand up for British Columbia, for Canada when they need us most? To remain, the true north, strong and FREE.
“O Canada we’ve all agreed to
stand for the true north strong and free
with glowing hearts from sea to sea
we stand on guard for thee
O Canada on Native land
we wash the oil from tar and sand
from pipe to power this darkest hour
from sea to shining sea
But who stands watch for the earth below?
stands for the ice and the melting snow?
who for the land to call our home?
Oh Canada I don’t know
O Canada with fossil soil
we frack the gas and mine the coal
for carbon power this darkest hour
from sea to shining sea
but Who looks out for the prairie sky?
stands for the air so none of us die?
who for wind and the birds that fly?
where the planet goes there go I
O Canada from forest green
we ship the logs and cut the trees
and there for the river that meets the sea
with mud and logging debris
O Canada O Canada
who stands watch from sea to sea?
who for a lost democracy?
who for the true north strong and free?
if not you then let it be me”
Now go and out enjoy the day with your family, your friends, neighbours and community. Celebrate the good, celebrate this incredible country and just enjoy life.
There is time to fight the good fight when it’s all done. :)