Perhaps of all the made up holidays in the year, none save Remembrance Day, should hold a more important place than that of Canada Day.
It is very easy to look at the world with jaundiced glasses these days.
Is climate change real, or fabricated?
Are oil pipelines good? Or, merely a last gasp by an energy sector that is increasingly becoming obsolete?
Should we be focused on dealing with plastics waste? Or, do we leave worrying about the future of our world to a better day?
Amid the myriad of questions we seem to have a country that is divided on just about every issue, or at least the vocal element on social media would make us think that.
Maybe on issues such as pipelines versus the environment, and climate change there is not easily found middle ground, but having divergent views on such things should not mean losing confidence in our country.
Yet, that seems to be just what is happening.
The squeaky wheels of western separation are once again being heard in Canada.
The idea of some to tear Canada asunder is not a new thing.
Quebec went as far as to hold a referendum on whether to leave confederation back in 1980, and again in 1995.
Out here in the west we have seen a number of political parties form with separation at least part of their policy is one guise or another, the Confederation of Regions Party, Reform Party, Western Block Party and Western Canada Independence Party among them.
Wisely support has been limited and the party’s success, at least in terms of pushing ahead with the idea of separation has been limited.
But there are those talking separation again.
Thankfully through the years Canada has been shown to be made of sterner stuff, as they say, and the country spanning ocean-to-ocean envisioned over a century ago has endured.
Actually, endured is the wrong word. Canada has prospered. We have been a country that while having stumbled at times, and made mistakes at times, has evolved to be one of the best places in the world to live.
That is why we attract immigrants from around the world, people choosing Canada as a home that offers them a better future.
It is what brought all here at one point, even the First Nations who arrived on this continent seeking a better home at some distant point in the past.
And today we have the country wave after wave of immigrants hoped for, working together to overcome differences, to fix our mistakes, and to emerge with a country we should all be proud of.
So Monday, as we enjoy a day off to mark this country’s birthday, perhaps we need to do a bit more than celebrate this year. Maybe we need to pause to reflect on how great Canada is and to ready ourselves to work diligently to maintain a strong, welcoming country looking to a continued great future.