Needless to say, I have yet to feel like celebrating, but oddly, even ignoring recent personal events, I don’t think this would have been a Canada Day I felt like celebrating. In many ways, it feels like a good portion of my country has been co-opted by those who distrust what little science they understand, revel in conspiracy, and, in general, have decided to place themselves as more important than their neighbours, all while claiming they’re attempting to do this for the country.
It feels to me as if our flag has been co-opted. I see a pick-up truck drive by me now with a large Canadian flag affixed to the rear window, and my first reaction is not one of camaraderie, but rather to think, “oh look, selfish prick.”
And that’s not fair. It’s not fair to them, it’s not fair to me, and it’s not fair to our country. But whether it’s fair or not, the feeling exists, and I expect I’m not the only one. But I think we can take it back. We can take it back by bringing it to corporate events, like Stampede, that have no political overtones or undertones—where it’s just used in celebration, and by making sure to bring it to events that are fully inclusive and not filled with vitriol toward others, even if those others are politicians.
On that front, I read much talk about Prime Minister Trudeau being one of the most divisive prime ministers Canada’s ever seen, but none who claim so ever seem to be able to provide factual examples of what, exactly, he’s done that’s been so divisive, aside from not being a conservative politician, that is. Some attempt to claim the health mandates passed down are divisive, but aside from those relating to international travel and federal employment they’ve been provincial mandates—certainly the most visible of those, something that could lead to division, masking, hasn’t been a federal requirement of the general public at all.
Some claim that by requiring proof of vaccination for certain parts of federal employment, he’s setting up a two-tier citizenship. But I’m a citizen who’s not employed by the federal government at all. My vaccination status is completely irrelevant, so no, there’s no second tier of citizen being made. They then go on to claim that it’s a charter infringement. It isn’t. No more than firefighters being required to have their tetanus shots up to date to be employed with the fire department.
Some attempt to argue the health benefits and risks of the vaccines, but that argument requires expert knowledge of the subject and when it is pointed out that the vast majority of experts have noted both the safety and efficacy of the vaccines in general you come to the crux. They don’t trust them. They’ve found their own sources on social media, a CDC letter which has a single line they misinterpret as a key to a grand conspiracy of health organizations, a piece of bad science that a newspaper picked up on and didn’t adequately explain the issues with, or worse, that an extremist rag that exists only to drive people to remain on its site by motivating anger and fear so that they can profit from advertising views, willingly misrepresents as the “real” science that all the “woke” people don’t want you to see. Put all of this together, and I don’t know if Canada day is something I really feel like celebrating right now.
All of this ties into one of our feature articles this week, so after you’ve finished getting to know Anne-Marie Collins in our most recent student interview, check out Alek Golijanin’s article about the cross-roads of health and religion. And of course, on top of this all is the recent decision in the US regarding abortion rights. The Fly on the Wall has his take on this this week, and looks at how the idea of changes in precedent might relate to an AU education.
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