Thursday, May 04, 2006

I AM CANADIAN

My last post got me thinking about something that has been quietly simmering for awhile now. I've been growing in my Canadian pride these last months. For years now, I've honestly been at a loss to describe any compelling reason to be proud of my country. Liberal governance has led to a host of non-democratic changes in our society's fabric. Our courts have abrogated the responsibility of deciding national policy, taking it from the hands of our elected representatives. I, for one, am not well-disposed to taking orders from a dictator, even a black-robed one who creates 'law' to use as his billy-club. Anyway, though the changes are many and often subtle, I am noticing small ways that I am again feeling proud to be Canadian.

I don't want to rub it in (well, maybe a little), but I'm wondering if those on the left can still say they're proud to be Canadian - as much as they used to be, I mean. I'm curious, because I remember a time in recent memory when those on the left would question the dedication those of us on the right have towards Canada, simply because we have a different vision for our country. To me, it's always been a senseless question - if we didn't care about our country, why would be bother to try to change its course?

4 Comments:

Anonymous Mike said...

There are way too many things that need to be changed in Canada before I could ever sense any pride in being Canadian. Scrapping all public funding for the CBC, and seeing a LOT less taxes come off my pay cheques might help...

In any case, I'll always feel more pride in being ALBERTAN than being Canadian.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 12:26:00 PM  
Blogger Cyrano said...

Mike - I agree that the ability to participate in shaping your own country is a prerequisite to pride in it. I also agree with the goals you mention, but I don't think pride comes directly from them. I think pride would come from the hard work going in to achieving those goals, whether it's work on some campaign, or even just the work of convincing enough people of the sensibility of them. That's a big part of Albertan pride - working hard for a goal, and seeing it achieved. I also think that our country needs to welcome regional pride as a prerequisite to national pride - I don't think it's possible to truly be proud of your country and not proud of your region.

As an aside, I suspect that those people who seek change in our country primarily through the shortcuts of judicial activism and the like must not understand true pride, which can only come from a job done well and fairly all the way through. To the extent that I've seen our country head down the wrong paths as a result of backroom dealing and judicial activism, is the extent to which I've lost my pride in Canada in the past.

Thanks for dropping by.

Saturday, May 27, 2006 3:43:00 PM  
Blogger Balbulican said...

Well, I can't speak for "the left", because there is no such thing. But I'm as proud of being Canadian now as I was under a liberal government, and for that matter, under the Mulroney government.

Unlike many of Conservatives, my love for my country isn't contingent on what team is temporarily in the driver's seat. I may like and enjoy chatting with the bloggers whose websites featured upside down Canadian flags until their party won: but I don't think much of their newly discovered "patriotism". And I won't until I see some evidence that their appreciation for my country goes deeper that cheering when their guys are temporarily running the show.

I've lived and worked in several provinces and two territories. I've also worked outside the country, and the joy and pride I experience when I get home has absolutely nothing to do with political parties. When you come to understand that, I may start to believe in your "pride" in Canada.

Monday, May 29, 2006 3:22:00 PM  
Blogger Cyrano said...

Thanks for the thoughts, Balbulican. I can certainly appreciate the sentiment - how much genuine pride does a person have if they can't cheer for the home team even when it's got crappy management (well, in my opinion, anyway)?

I don't think my love of my country and my pride in my country are necessarily the same thing. I've always loved being Canadian - in fact, it's my love of country that makes it all the more painful when I have serious grievances with the government. I won't speak for those who put the upside-down Canadian flags (I don't really know the rationale behind that one).

The lack of pride I've had in Canada has nothing to do directly with its people, or its history, etc. I'm not even certain that the (relative) return of it is necessarily related to the election of the CPC (I'm no hard-core CPC-er, for one thing). I remember hearing Paul Martin's words before he took over the LPC about reaching out to the West, and the various other much-appreciated sentiments that he promised. When he went out of his way to demonize the West in place of improving relations, and people (primarily out east) still gave him a minority government - this put a knife through my heart. This has less to do with 'the left', I guess, than it does with a certain duplicitous ex-PM. It's only because of my love for Canada and participating in it in a vital way that I even cared at all.

Don't get me wrong - the West isn't all of Canada, and I have great respect for Easterners who love their own region. It's when love of one's region pits one against another that I see the Canada I love being rent apart - Paul Martin and the Liberal cabal before him did more to tear apart the Canada I love than anyone else I can remember. To the extent that Canadians saw it as more important to re-elect their beloved-Liberals (responsible for some big messes), than to show confidence in other political entities in the next-to-last election, is the extent to which I began seriously losing hope in Canada's future. Paul Martin's unprecedented TV appearance claiming that we don't need/want an election (and the many parrots who went along with that line, right through the non-confidence votes that were ignored), showed me that something big was changing in how politics was being done in our country. One party was declaring itself above the rules of the game. At that moment I feared for the end of the Canada I love.

Again, thanks for dropping by.

Monday, May 29, 2006 8:31:00 PM  

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