A hot topic these days, and for good reason.
So many letter writers have explained how this land is made up ofimmigrants.Maybe we should turn to our history books and point out to people whytoday's Canadian is not willing to accept the new kind of immigrant anylonger.Back in 1900 when there was a rush from all areas of Europe to come toCanada, people had to get off a ship and stand in a long line in Halifax andbe documented. Some would even get down on their hands and knees and kissthe ground. They made a pledge to uphold the laws and support their newcountry in good and bad times. They made learning English a primary rule intheir new Canadian households and some even changed their names to blend inwith their new home.They had waved good bye to their birth place to give their children anew life and did everything in their power to help their children assimilateinto one culture. Nothing was handed to them. No free lunches, no welfare,no labour laws to protect them. All they had were the skills, craftsmanshipand desire they had brought with them to trade for a future of prosperity.Most of their children came of age when World War II broke out. Canadiansfought along side men whose parents had come straight over from Germany,Italy, France, Japan, Czechoslovakia, Russia, Sweden, and so many otherplaces. None of these first generation Canadians ever gave any thought aboutwhat country their parents had come from.They were Canadians fighting Hitler, Mussolini and the Emperor ofJapan. They were defending the Freedom as one people. When we liberatedFrance, no one in those villages was looking for the Ukrainian-Canadian orthe German-Canadian or the Irish-Canadian. The people of France saw onlyCanadians. And we carried one flag that represented our country.Not one of those immigrant sons would have thought about picking up anothercountry's flag and waving it to represent who they were. It would have beena disgrace to their parents who had sacrificed so much to be here. Theseimmigrants truly knew what it meant to be a Canadian. They stirred themelting pot into one red, white and blue bowl.And here we are in 2006 with a new kind of immigrant who wants the samerights and privileges. Only they want to achieve it by playing with adifferent set of rules, one that includes a Canadian passport and aguarantee of being faithful to their mother country. I'm sorry, that's notwhat being a Canadian is all about.Canadians have been very open hearted and open minded regarding immigrants,whether they were fleeing poverty, dictatorship, persecution, or whateverelse makes a person adopt a foreign country.And I suppose when we say adopt, we think of those aforementioned immigrantswho truly did ADOPT our country, and our flag and our morals and ourcustoms. And left their wars, hatred, and divisions behind. I believe that the immigrants who landed in Canada in the early 1900sdeserve better than that for the toil, hard work and sacrifice in raisingfuture generations to create a land that has become a beacon for thoselegally searching for a better life. I think they would be appalled thatthey are being used as an example by those waving foreign country flags,fighting foreign battles on our soil, making Canadians change to suit theirreligions and cultures, and wanting to change our countries fabric byclaiming discrimination when we do not give in to their demands.