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Letter: Canada Day has turned into jingoistic affair
To the editor:
With yet another flag-waving Canada Day behind us, celebrating Canada’s 147th birthday replete with a veritable love-in of self-congratulatory fervour, one cannot escape the uncomfortable notion that it is a slippery slope from patriotism to jingoism.
Approaching Canada’s 150th birthday three years from now, in 2017, let’s resolve to re-name “Canada Day” to “Confederation Day” to keep reminding ourselves of the country’s historical roots.
Ask about Canada’s history. Canada’s contrived official policy of legislated multiculturalism has, in reality, become a politically and socially engineered substitute national identity and a sad manifestation of the growing ignorance, particularly among young Canadians, that has developed with respect to our awareness of Canada’s traditional national and historical heritage.
Thus, many things have been named and re-named “Canada,” be it Canada Day or Canada Place or Canada Line, lest we might forget who we are, where we are and what we are.
Other countries do not engage in the jingoism of referring to their national days as “America Day” or “France Day” or “Germany Day” or “Holland Day.” They are secure about who and what and where they are.
National days celebrate self-made historical achievement. The French people gave birth to their nation on July 14, 1789, and celebrate it as Bastille Day. Americans gave birth to their nation on July 4, 1776, and celebrate it as Independence Day.
Unlike the revolutionary beginnings of France and America, Canada began its devolutionary journey to self-government on July 1, 1867 as the federal Dominion of Canada with the confederation of the three colonies of British North America into the Canadian provinces of Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. So let’s mark Canada’s birthday as Confederation Day.
Now 147 years later, Confederation—the “coming together” of all of Canada—continues to be a challenge requiring renewed effort and commitment from all of us all year round.