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Isn’t it interesting that two federal cabinet ministers tell us that people don’t want to change the name of Stanley Park to a native name representing the village that existed at Lumberman’s Arch until they were heaved out!. They pontificate that Vancouverites don’t want to make the change proposed. Well, my mail runs quite to the contrary with support for the new name proposed running at about 3-1. Why not hold a referendum at the next municipal election! That’s 18 months away which would give time for debate. I for one would remove all names of the chinless English Governors-general we’ve had and replace them with Indian ones. One of the charms of New Zealand is the frequency of Maori names. We should do the same with Indian names.

Somehow this brings me to the Queen. Lovely lady I’m sure and a model of patience and hard work. But she, too, is a vestige of colonial times and we should pension her off. The fact that things like I just said get the monarchists so upset proves my point – these are, for the most part, English people who have never been able to adjust to Canadian football, hockey or baseball. The same lot that ran St George’s School when I was there where masters or prefects would cane any boys caught tossing a baseball. The sports permitted were Rugby and Cricket – both of which games I loved but not Canadian.

Symbols mean a lot. I daresay that French Canadians do not think that the British Royal Family represents them. The monarchy for whatever good it does, is scarcely a symbol of Canadian unity.

We’ve come a long way since I was a boy when everyone stood up for God Save The King no matter where it was played – even from your radio in your living room. All movies and sporting events ended with “God Save the King”.

“The Maple Leaf Forever” was our more popular anthem and it spoke of how the British kicked the shit out of the French. “Oh Canada” talked about “At Britain’s side what e’er betide unflinchingly we stand …” (The Suez crisis in 1956 put paid to that notion,)

Don’t get me wrong. I’m an Anglophone who’s visited Britain nearly 100 times. Wendy and I were in London this past January, will be there again in September and on my birthday, New Year’s Eve, will be there again.

I just find it hard to understand how we can bristle at what we see as lack dedication of new Canadians to our way of life when the English don’t have to and never have.

God Save the Queen and save us from having any more Kings and Queens after she leaves us.

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