31 March 2007

58 years of Confederation

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it has been almost six decades since Canada decided to join with the people of Newfoundland and Labrador in a bold experiment.

Negotiations were long and difficult but ultimately the feisty Canadians realised it was better to give in to what The Fates had long since ordained.

The dream of Newfoundland visionaries - their own manifest destiny that one day Canada would come out of the self-imposed isolation and be embraced by Newfoundlanders and Labradorians with welcoming familial arms - was at last realized.

Sure there are those in Newfoundland and Labrador who can only imagine Newfoundland as a puny, subsidiarist enclave, but there are others who dream bigger dreams, who think bolder thoughts.

Today, there will be those who wear black armbands, who pop Secret Nation into the VCR and watch the bootleg edition of what they still insist is a documentary.

Well it is sort of.

Its author lives in Ottawa these days doing something other than meeting with federal ministers and officials like he gets paid to do. His boss has just about put him out of a job, it would seem.

I digress.

But there are others, numbering now in the millions across Canada, who will have a tot of rum or down a cold Black Horse and smile.

Grin a marvelous grin as we consider how much a great nation has become even greater.

And it all started, one a chilly March night 58 years ago.



Lloyd said...

The clock will soon be striking midnight. May I respectfully remind you , Ed, there are still some of us pre-confederation Newfoundlanders remaining for whom this April Fool's anniversary is a day not only of embarrassment but of shame, of sadness and of profound regret. The abortion of a child is rationalized as being for the best while avoiding the question, best for whom? Similarly, the dreams of many Newfoundlanders were aborted in the wee hours of that infamous April Fool's Day 58 years ago. Believe, as is your right, Ed, that this was all for the best, but it is not becoming to belittle the contrary view of so many your fellow countrymen, young and old who weep , and with good reason, as they ponder those saddest of all words, "It might have been".

Edward G. Hollett said...

Best for whom?

Best for the generations of young Newfoundlanders and Labradorians who came of age after 1949.

What might have been? Indeed what might have been. Surely not the romantic nonsense that gets passed around among the nationalists in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The only sad thoughts to be pondered are for all those people who have and who continue to wallow in their delusions rather than take the full advantage of the opportunities in front of them within Canada.

let us hope that we can soon turn the minds of young Newfoundlanders and Labradorians to the work of making this place what it can be rather than endlessly catterwailing for a world that never was.