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O Canada! Our home and native land! True patriot love in all thy sons command. With glowing hearts we see thee rise, The True North strong and free! From far and wide, O Canada, we stand on guard for thee. God keep our land glorious and free! O Canada, we stand on guard for thee. O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
These are the lyrics to the Canadian national anthem. Yet, to many Canadians, these words no longer ring true. Over the years, we have seen patriotism dwindle. Where are the "stalwart sons" and "gentle maidens" of Stanley Weir's 1908 poem, on which the national anthem was based?
Today, Weir's words seem strange and far removed from the typical Canadian mindset-especially the last verse: "Ruler supreme, who hearest humble prayer, hold our dominion within thy loving care; Help us to find, O God, in thee lasting, rich reward, As waiting for the Better Day, We ever stand on guard."
Canada is largely a secular nation. Why? How did this happen?
By taking an open and frank look at this vast country and the events that led to the shaping and molding of its current state, we can better recognize and understand the slippery slope that Canada has taken.
Even though most of Canada is frozen for almost 12 months of the year, there are many good things about this country. For example, surviving life-threatening winters creates a certain friendliness and willingness to help others in a time of need. In Weir's poem, he mentions "stalwart sons." Stalwart means, "one who is physically and morally strong." The word is related to the "hardy explorers of Northern Canada." It was physically demanding work to survive in the Canadian north. The original pioneers were, by necessity, hard workers and thankful for each day.
The vast Canadian north is largely uninhabitable, but filled with immense natural wealth. Here is a listing of the major points of that natural wealth: Its lakes, rivers and streams make up 9.2% of the world's fresh water. With its unconventional oil reserves, Canada is second in the world, amounting to 186 billion barrels. The gas reserves make it the third largest producer of natural gas and second largest exporter. Canada's lakes and rivers help make it the largest producer of hydropower in the world and the list of mineral wealth is endless. Its financial wealth is also great, with a GDP of $958.7 billion USD and a GDP per capita of $29,800 USD, making it the ninth largest economy in the world.
The government system that the British left Canada gives less freedom to the general populace in some ways, but more power to the government. An example is the Niagara Parks Commission, established in the late 1800s to ensure that the beauty of Niagara Falls would be kept and not exploited. This commission runs the park system along the entire length of the Niagara River, keeping it clean and well landscaped for the Falls' millions of annual visitors. In 1886, the first council of Vancouver created a 1,000-acre park on a peninsula near what would become its downtown core. This park is North America's third largest urban park and has an estimated 8 million visitors a year.
Besides the creation of public lands to preserve its natural beauty, Canada has also moved to secure a national health care system. Canadians do not have to worry about the cost of having a baby or losing their home in the event of a serious health crisis. The UN Development Index rated Canada as the best place to live in the world for ten years straight starting in 1992.
After the American Revolution, many Loyalists fled to Canada. This boosted the English settlement of the areas known today as Southern Ontario and the provinces of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. This had a lasting effect on Canada. The money and people were much welcomed, and their opinions helped shape Canada's outlook on the world. They were the roots of the general Canadian view-that Canada looked more to Europe for direction and less to America. This would later help Canada steer toward a more liberal society than its neighbor to the south.
Before the American Revolution, much of Canada was a colony of France. During the Seven Years War between Britain and France in Europe, war also broke out between the British and French colonies in North America. On September 13th, 1759, Quebec was taken by the British, as they defeated the French on the Plains of Abraham outside of Quebec City. France finally ceded its North American possessions to the British in the Treaty of Paris in 1763.
Afterwards, the French Canadians were allowed to stay in Canada and many attempts were made by the British to assimilate the Quebecers into British culture and institutions. However, the Quebecers wanted to keep their language, culture and laws-in essence, creating within Canada two opposing views on how to do everything. At every turn, it seemed that compromise had to be made to keep Canada together, which has weakened its ability to make decisions and hold fast to values that it once held dear.
As the Canadian colonies grew, they increasingly became aware of the need for responsible self-government and the need to counter the growing presence of the United States. Through many debates, conferences, reports and delegations, the British North American Act was presented to the British Parliament in 1867 and confederation was granted. The Dominion of Canada was formed on July 1, 1867.
Moving ahead to the end of World War II, as America embarked on the Cold War, arming itself and protecting the world from the menace of communism, Canada took a different path. With America footing most of the bill for defense in North America and with Canadians presuming that the United States would always be there to defend their country, Canada had ample room in its budget to pursue a socialist agenda. This presumption has resulted in a common feeling among Canadians that the war on terror is an American problem and that Canada will never be attacked. The truth is much different. With little spending on protection and prevention, every government report states "when"-not "if"-an attack will happen.
Canadians have been living on the benefits of God's blessing to the descendants of Abraham and the hard work and dedication of past generations, forgetting the Source of their prosperity.
As compromise became more and more a part of the average Canadian's thinking, it became harder to remain morally strong to resist the cultural revolution that began after World War II. A turning point of this revolution occurred in 1967, when Mr. Pierre Trudeau, then the justice minister, stated, "The government has no business in the bedrooms of this nation." He made this declaration while introducing a bill to decriminalize homosexuality.
This statement has become such a part of Canadian society that it is nearly biblical in importance. Growing from this has been a general acceptance of homosexuality in Canadian society; many now believe it is not a matter of choice, but is decided by genetics. Toronto has the largest Gay Pride parade in North America and is considered a homosexual tourist destination. On July 12, 2002, the Ontario Superior Court ruled that banning same-sex marriage is unconstitutional and is a violation of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. This quickly led to the courts allowing same-sex marriage the following year. Canada unfortunately leads the way in North America on moral decay.
Under the heading "transnational issues," The World Factbook (published by the CIA) states that Canada is an "illicit producer of cannabis for the domestic drug market and export to US." Apparently, many Canadians are not too concerned with this issue, considering the headlines and the "talk radio" discussions about decriminalization of the drug. At present, the American government looks sorely at any attempt by Canada to legalize the drug, and Canadians do not seem to think any effect will come of it.
The Canadian Senate made recommendation to legalize marijuana, stating that it is no more harmful than alcohol and tobacco and does not lead to stronger drugs. Not only is this a conclusion by the highest house of government, but it is also the general belief among the majority of marijuana proponents. This is no surprise when federal studies show that 30% of 15- to 17-year-olds and 47% of 18- to 19-year-olds used marijuana in the past year. Other statistics that seem to be missed are: The amount of THC (the substance in marijuana that creates the "high") per marijuana cigarette has increased from less than 1% in the 1960s to today's level of nearly 25%, and the smoke is 50% to 70% more cancer-causing than tobacco cigarettes. Again, in a country that aims to be liberal just to be different and cannot stand firm on any issue, it is no wonder that Canada is steamrolling past all the stops signs on this issue!
After the recent election in the U.S., news articles circulated stating that many disgruntled Americans would move north to Canada. Many Americans look to Canada as an example to follow, an example of a kinder, gentler and more progressive society. Soon after an Ontario judge ruled in favor of gay marriage, the mayor of San Francisco started allowing gay marriage.
Also consider that prostitution is legal in Canada. In almost every Canadian city, there are escort services that will provide "entertainment" for those inclined. It is already legal in some areas of Nevada, and both Reno and San Francisco are pushing to legalize the "trade."
Americans look to Canada and see a foreign policy largely based on diplomacy and wish that America could take the same approach. They feel that the funds allocated for defense spending would be better directed toward improvement of various social programs. Many Americans see Canada's moral and social landscape as "greener pastures." However, if only they would look a little deeper, perhaps they would see the effects of Canada's direction and seek to change their own direction before it is too late.
The approach in Canada seems to be that if a problem cannot be solved, it should simply be legalized so that it can be "controlled." For example, in Vancouver, the problem of heroine addiction is addressed by providing addicts with facilities in which they can "safely" abuse the drug. No longer does Canada stand on any moral ground when seeking solutions to its problems. Concepts of "right vs. wrong" are abandoned in favor of whatever is the current popular sentiment.
The path that both the U.S. and Canada are following is an example of man doing things his way instead of God's way. As it was in the time of the Judges, everyone is doing what is right in his own eyes (Jdg. 21:25). Soon, the 6,000 years that God has allotted for man to rule his own way will come to an end, and Christ will return and establish God's kingdom on earth. Mankind will then learn to do what is right in the eyes of God. Just imagine what a blessed country such as Canada will be like when it is under the proper rulership of God's kingdom. Canada's ability to find a middle ground and come to a solution will be found without compromising with any of God's laws. For the first time, Stanley Weir's poem will ring with truth and clarity!