To the Editor:
We were returning from Halifax last night and came upon the Pictou County welcome sign on Mt. Thom. “Forward Together,” it said. The irony was brutal!
Someone in the car suggested a big, “NOT!”, should be added. Or maybe a total change to, “Staying right where we are, together.”
It makes you appreciate the considerable skills Sir John A. MacDonald must have had to convince Upper (ON) and Lower Canada (QC) and the Maritimes to join into one country. It’s hard to imagine how he did it. And it all worked out OK in the end, quite well, actually.
But, how many times did some Maritimer back in 1866, say, “No way to that idea buddy, those Upper Canadians will run the whole show.”
Or Joey Smallwood’s skills to convince Newfoundland to join Canada in 1949.
Smallwood, pointing out to Newfoundlanders, “We have few paved roads, very few good hospitals or schools, people are living in outports in poverty, without roads or even electricity.” You would think it would have been an easy sell for Smallwood. Not!
It still took two votes to finally get just a 52 per cent Yes result – just enough though, a majority. And you know I don’t think Newfoundlanders came out badly with the deal or regret it today. And as to “mainlanders” running their show and telling them what to do, ask Stephen Harper if he got the Newfoundland (Danny Williams) message, that they didn’t agree with him, at all!
The bottom line is, I guess, people just naturally fear change, it’s an unknown.
Yes or No to amalgamation, life goes on, we will all survive fine, I am sure. Taxes will go up, politicians will talk the talk and either way, we will still be broke, but you can’t help but wonder, what would have actually happened if the vote had gone YES.