In my student times at the Sorbonne, a few friends and I went to Amsterdam for Christmas 1962. On Christmas eve we landed in a large restaurant that had been recommended to us. The first thing the waiter asked was the country we were from. My friends were French and I was Canadian. He quickly brought miniature French and Canadian flags and stood them on our table. (Canadian flag was then the “Canadian Red Ensign”). A bit later an elderly couple came, introduced themselves as the owners of the restaurant and asked whether they could join us for the festive dinner. We said yes and they made the occasion much more memorable than we could dream it to be. They were affable and we talked about many things but they kept non return to the kindness and the generosity of the Canadian soldiers who had liberated Holland. They said themselves and their children were highly undernourished and in bad shape and the wonderful Canadians did so much for them. There was no bill for us to pay, because they said, some years back Canadians had “indebted” them so much to Canada. I felt proud like a cock riding the fence at daybreak.
In the Vietnam War era young American travelers would sew the Canadian flag and the “Canada” label on their backpacks, jeans, shirts and sweaters. This to evade the unpleasant treatment then widely accorded Americans and to enjoy the welcome the World reserved for Canadians.
I have more stories, but the case for Canadian Pride is well known. It remains however, to lament the demeanor of those bent on laundering Canada from Canadians. Those labouring to turn the nation into a herd of meek people, to make us ashamed of who we are. For one, I am ashamed of being saddled with such “leaders”...
I have written about politicians dishonestly ranting out apologies and raiding the public purse ostensibly to “buy” us some respect, badly needed after these politicians having “confessed” to our ancestors having interned and/or otherwise mistreated some other peoples’ ancestors.
Our “leaders”, the compassionate bunch they are, have finally felt themselves the pain bequeathed to current Italian-Canadians by their ancestors and feel the need to help them revenge the “injustice” and alleviate the “pain” they suffer because of cruel Canada “interning” their ancestors.
One would think that those angelic politicians are madly seeking to “salvage” Canada, and bring her, if not to the class of pure nations, like ... like ... well... like Paradise? ... Ok, never mind “like” whom we are, let’s be modest about that. Bad is that pragmatic as they are, the politicians, aimIng to “raise” Canada merely to the class of the “Remorsed, Repented and Meek-ed Out” nations. “They” would be fulfilled if they make Canada look like the sad man and woman standing holding a pitchfork in “American Gothic”, the famous Grant Wood painting.
The first Rt. Hon. to apologize to Italian-Canadians was Brian Lyin’ Mulroney. In 1990, Brian addressed the “National Congress of Italian Canadians” as follows: “On behalf of the government and the people of Canada, I offer a full and unqualified apology ...” he pompously said.
Nowadays, three decades later, Justin Trudeau copycats Mulroney to re- apologize to the previously apologized 600 people who were briefly discomforted in 1940. He apologizes, he claims, on behalf of the 38 million Canadians, now alive, in 2021 ...
But there is more to it. The WW2 “Axis Alliance” was Germany, Italy and Japan. “Enemy aliens” of all the axis nations were interned in Canada, and in other countries outside the “Axis”. Why then the rainstorm of apologies to Japanese and Italian “enemy- aliens” but a deafening silence for the similarly interned German “enemy-aliens”?
Why the discrimination? Could it be that the politicians deem the Italians and Japanese as being likely to bite the bait and vote en block for politicians trading decency for votes?
What about the enemy-aliens Canada interned during the WW1, including the Ukrainians? Why these fake-fairminded “leaders” would not apologize for “Canadian atrocities” done then?
What can we do to calm down these over-exited “weak kneed, bleeding hearts” (Justin’s daddy’s line) to make them cease and desist misrepresenting the 38 Million of us by telling the world we are SOBs? Well, I have a suggestion: Have blacksmiths forge medieval chastity belts, lock them over the mouths of apologizing politician and throw the keys away. Fair and possibly effective.