Canada Post released two stamps honouring the daring exploits of two legendary Canadian heroes – Laura Secord and Charles de Salaberry. Secord and de Salaberry’s pivotal actions helped to secure this country’s distinct identity when its future was threatened in a conflict with the Americans. Secord braved a 30-kilometre walk through the Canadian wilderness to warn a British outpost of an impending American attack. As commander of a group of fighters in Lower Canada, de Salaberry’s strategy and resourcefulness enabled his outnumbered Canadian force to repel an American invasion aimed at capturing Montreal. Continue reading →
Politics aside, the story is significant to us today because it points out that this nation, a mere 100 years ago, was capable of institutionalized discrimination. It is part of our collective past, just as much as the battle against American invaders in 1812, the internment of Japanese-Canadians during the Second World War, the liberation of Holland, and the internment of Ukrainian and German immigrants in the First World War. Canada is a great country, and in remembering our great moments, we should not forget our human failures. It seems that history does repeat itself. In 1937, the MS St. Louis, a German ocean liner carrying 937 German-Jewish refugees, was turned away in Cuba, the United States, and Canada.
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