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Standing up for what we believe in

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Jason Pankratz - Tillsonburg Legion

Again, these thoughts are my own and not that of our community Legion Branch 153.

This weekend we will celebrate the birth of our nation. We will come together as communities, provinces and as a country, July 1st, Canada Day. This day, as mentioned in previous articles, and though the years of this editorial, is a day to celebrate the freedoms we take for granted as well as the symbolic, formal and informal, identifiers of who we are as Canadians.

I was recently watching the film V for Vendetta (2005). The film challenges ‘the people’ to stand up for what they believe in. And as I watched I became more and more angry and aware of the times in which we live.

As you know, currently the United States is battling the political trauma of immigration. And not wanting to go into a history lesson; because it is obvious, this argument, human and societal right have been violated and are repeating clear evidence of the past. As a historian I have many arguments against these actions. But, arguments have to be more than emotional. They have to be fact based and seen pragmatically. This is where I see the fault in the ‘American’ administration. But that is my perception, interpretation, and knowledge of historic trends.

I have currently been studying the essence, practicality, and education of leadership. In these studies we have asked: what does leadership look like, that goes it mean, and how does leadership make a difference? Simply, and without a concrete result; as we all wish it had, I say: leadership is about guidance and a firm structure; to take us from one place to the next.

This can be seen during historical periods of conflict. The next question is: what is the cost? In wars of the past, we ask, how many lives were lost? Will our resources be depleted? Who will come out on top? I believe that these questions are inevitable and ultimate to any conflict, whether personal, political or ideological.

I implore you - please come out to the Canada Day ceremony at our town Cenotaph, in front of The Town Centre mall on Broadway, on Sunday July 1st. Your attendance recognizes your support of our service personnel, their families, those who have given their lives for Canada, and our commitment to our country.

I asked a co-worker earlier this week: how did our past generations deal with conflict? She replied by stating that 'they dealt with it as it came.' Hindsight is a blessing and curse. Our duty today is to hang onto what we believe and pass those values, morals, and goals to the next generations.

Yes, this editorial has been very political and emotionally driven. But, in this generation of apathy and misunderstanding, someone has to say it like it is. And apparently, at this time and place, I will take that mantle. Canada Day is a celebration. It is about Canadiana and history, but it is also about standing up for what we believe in as Canadians and humanists.

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