Maclean’s columnist Paul Wells is right that there are significant political motivations to the Canada Day celebrations on Parliament Hill. But that doesn’t mean the event should be scrapped.
There’s no question that the government of the day uses July 1 to promote its own version of Canadian values. And the combination of political speeches and carefully selected Canadian music can sometimes be a little too strategic and a little less fun than it should be. But celebrating Canada Day on Parliament Hill has become a tradition for people who live in Ottawa and an attraction that brings people here from all over the country. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Bringing Canadians together, dressed in red and white and waving maple leafs in a display of national pride, doesn’t do any harm. And no matter what the motivations, some people actually enjoy it.
No one is forced to celebrate Canada Day on Parliament Hill. If Paul Wells and anyone who agrees with him want to be somewhere else, there’s nothing stopping them. But for the rest of us, let the show go on.