True North, Strong and Free


There has been an attack on the very heart of our democracy today. A gunman has killed, a gunman has engaged in a firefight in the Hall of Honour, and chaos reigned supreme for a large part of the day in our nation’s capital. It is difficult to process what has happened, and having just watched our Prime Minister address our country standing between two of our flags, I am simply struck by the symbolism of the event.

The first shooting was against a symbolic honour guard at our National War Memorial who was quite literally “Standing on Guard for Thee” with an unloaded rifle, keeping faith with our war fallen. What I love about this is that the first responder was a civilian that was just going by, a woman who just rushed to help her fellow citizen. That is what Canada is about.

And then when the shooter moved into the Centre Block, he was confronted and ultimately killed by Mr. Vickers, our Sergeant-at-Arms who to my knowledge is the first person to take up arms in defence of the House in a Commonwealth nation since it has been seen as a largely symbolic role. If that is not the case, please let me know. That heroism is Canada.

This attack was designed to scare us and drive us apart. It has not and will not. We are united in our resolve not to change what is good and right in us. Remembrance Day is coming soon and our national observance will occur on the very spot where the first shooting occurred, his all too real blood mixed with the symbolic blood of all of the others that have served and died for us.

But we remain the True North, Strong, and Free.

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