There is an Ottawa high school – Notre Dame – which this year is not allowed to continue its tradition of Remembrance Day visits by veterans or offer displays of Canadian weaponry, uniforms, etc.
Because some students come from war-torn countries, for some of them their military is a source of fear, oppression, death, etc.
This is an error because Remembrance Day does not glorify war or violence, or oppression. The purpose is to honour citizens who fought to preserve freedom and end atrocity elsewhere.
Those students have left their troubled homeland, and now abide in Canada. In this country, soldiers in uniform are peacekeepers. They bring help in natural disasters home and abroad. Yes, they represent military might, but we are privileged to have no reason to fear them.
Remembrance Day is an opportunity to teach an important lesson in Canadian civics to new students. Here is a perfect teaching moment for them to learn Canadian history and customs.
Though, perhaps, the Ottawa School Board has a different lesson on Canadian history and customs in mind when they caved to a few dissenting voices. After all, hasn’t that become the Canadian way?