Monday, July 1, 2013

" In A Big Country ... "

And in a big country, dreams stay with you,
Like a lover's voice, fires the mountainside..
Stay alive..
So take that look out of here, it doesn't fit you.
Because it's happened doesn't mean you've been discarded ...

Cry out for everything you ever might have wanted.
I thought that pain and truth were things that really mattered
But you can't stay here with every single hope you had shattered ...
I'm not expecting to grow flowers in the desert,
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime..

~ Big Country ~ In A Big Country ~

O Canada ... the true north, strong and free.  Today the nation we live in is celebrating Canada Day.  The anniversary of July 1, 1867, enactment of the British North America Act, which united three colonies into a single country called Canada within the British Empire.  Most communities host organized celebrations such as parades, carnivals, festivals, BBQ, fireworks and free musical concerts.  Add the maple leaf on our flag as the national symbol of Canada, summer and national pride are a heady mix.

Each Canadian will respond differently as to what this day means to them and why they are celebrating.  Yet perhaps the most important feature is our diversity.  The various outlooks and beliefs that make this country.

Most Canadians come from somewhere else, or their parents or grandparents did.  Just go back a few generations to see that Canadians are from all over the world.  Truly a nation of immigrants which defines us.

And we may have a solid foundation, but our backgrounds, our  values, our language and our faiths mix together to make us a very complex group.  And this is what binds us together, the very acceptance of this cornucopia of cultures, prospectives and attitudes.

So we may not have the same ancestors and we may not have a president, but we are more than a beer ad.  We are Canadian because our country allows us to be whoever we want to be.  We have freedom to express our individuality, whether that means wearing a turban in the RCMP or on the soccer field.  

Interestingly, some find it frustrating ... the lack of definitive identity in their eyes.  But being hard to define IS what defines us.  A nation that embraces differences of opinion regarding every aspect of how we choose to live because Canadians understand that diversity means celebration and not repression.  This is the nation that allows us to be good with who we are.  This is the nation that celebrates today.

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