The DisOrder of Canada fiasco, etc - Alcyonenews

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Posted March 8, 2024

The DisOrder of Canada fiasco, etc

Recently the Governor General of Canada (GG) dished us the annual crop of Order of Canada medals to some ten dozen Canadian “heroes”, who went past the expected to do the impossible.  So did the Lieutenant Governors (LGs), who branch-planted the GG Honour Emporium to Provinces.

The professed purpose of “Order-izing” (“Ordain” would not do) Canadians is no different from that of the Monarch who knights and “Dame-nizes” people, like Vera Lynn and Shirley Bassey; and “Sir-ializes” the likes of Winston Churchill and Paul McCartney.  We were left to make do with the Chamber of Commerce awards, the school valedictorian, and the Fall Fair ribbons.  But our heroism outran these and the GG created the Order of Canada and its Provincial offshots.

The other reason for awards is profit.  Dangling medals in front of our eyes makes us salivate and do heroic things to earn one.  The young emulate the heroism of the previously Order-ized, thus making the system roll in the wind like tumbleweed, spreading wide the seeds of Heroism.

Both objectives are worth pursuing.  We owe thanks to those who do things for us and we owe role models to the young.  But we need move gingerly lest we we breach Inclusivity and produce suspicions of dreaded Exlusivity.

The punch of an Order is in the citation.  This must be succinct and the elation it results in must be enviable.  It must also permeate the cultures of our multiculturialism, lest it  “hurt” someone.  With these in mind, I habitually peruse the lists of laureates blown our way.   Of course the deeds the GG honours are a weathervane of the course our “leaders” take us on.  I have been doing that for a long time and I am perplexed by the trends I detect, many being for the worse.  Sad to say, reading Order-ization lists reminds me of an attestation super-Judge Beverley McLachlin relates in her book “truth be told” (Title De- Capitalization original):

“In my first year on the Supreme Court of BC, an elderly judge took the trouble to offer me a few tips on how to succeed. One of them related to judgment writing. ‘Fudge it up’ my mentor advised. ‘The Court of Appeal wouldn’t  be able to overturn you because they wouldn’t be able figure out what you said.’ ”

I will now sample the GG’s rationale for admitting Heroes to the order:

*       “For her contributions to the advancement and recognition of rug hooking as an art form”

*         For his enduring dedication and leadership in the Ukrainian Canadian community and beyond.

*         For his groundbreaking contributions to the field of construction engineering and management.

*         For his commitment to the documentation, preservation and celebration of Black Canadian history, particularly the Underground Railroad in                     southwestern Ontario.

*         For her commitment to the documentation, preservation and celebration of Black Canadian history, particularly the Underground Railroad in                   southwestern Ontario.

*        For his long-time ecological stewardship, notably of the Oshawa Second Marsh, and for his contributions to ornithology as a citizen scientist.

*        For advancing Canada’s automotive and technology industries on an international scale as a leading policy expert in national trade and industry            competition.”

Need I say more?

Another fundamental “fudging” of these lists is the omission of the professional calling of the “heroes”.  I have found half a dozen “Lawyers” on lists but no Physician, Astronomer, or Engineer.  I guess the GG sees our bikes, homes, trains, bridges, seaways, aeroplanes, computers, the Canadarm, the Zipper, being second class to birdwatching, if per chance “ornithology as a citizen scientist” means that.

Faced with such “fudged” deeds rewarded for “excellence”, I sought guidance from the GG Office as to where I can find a list of Order-ized heroes c/w with the honoured field of endeavour and a succinct description of the outstanding deeds that earned each the honour.  Well, to communicate with the GG one must use a “form”, like it or not.  But the worse was yet to come, as at the bottom of that form the GG informs:

“Due to the volume of correspondence we receive, we cannot guarantee that every email will receive a response. We appreciate your understanding.”

Pity, the GG did not master what it would take to order her office to publish those of the citizen’s emails the GG wouldn’t answer!  I understood!  The honourable thing for me to do is to bring this to you.

As I exit I will reiterate my appreciation for the people who run soup kitchens and food banks.  They ameliorate the pain, they labour to mend the social fabric torn by inept or sinister politicians and this is immensely good.  But we should proclaim that we have Real Orders of Canada awaiting to be claimed by people who will lead us to eradicate the need for soup kitchens, tent cities, and food banks.  I suggest we make those be our Heroes, our Role Models to morph Canada into the Role Model for the nations of the World.
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