Canada Day should be about family fun in Lakeside Park

Protesters pick the wrong day

July 1 in Nelson is an irresistible slice of Canadiana.

The Canada Day celebration in Nelson is more than a month away, but a press release that arrived at the Star office Thursday morning has started us thinking about our nation’s birthday.

July 1 in Nelson is an irresistible slice of Canadiana. It’s a time when our community comes together in celebration. Folks of all ages head down to Lakeside Park for a day-long party that’s an iconic piece of small town Canadian life.

The email we received Thursday didn’t conjure up those cockle warming scenes of community celebration.

There’s a group in Nelson that has been publicly rallying against Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the federal Conservatives for a few months. They have gathered in front of City Hall to decry all the issues they have with the current government.

The latest press release is letting media know that the group is joining others across Canada in “National Stop Harper Day.”

“Instead of celebrating Canada Day 2012, Nelsonites take to the streets in an old-time funeral procession for our beloved democracy, from City Hall to the iconic Nelson bridge,” states the press release prepared by the local leader of this group who calls himself Garrett D. Hippy.

We completely respect the right of Garrett and his supporters to shout from the highest mountain their distaste for the way Prime Minister Harper is running the country. It’s part of what makes this country great. Peaceful protest is something all Canadians should feel comfortable taking part in.

But on Canada Day?

A funeral procession and bullhorns rambling through the streets on a day of community celebration is not going to accomplish much. Other than preaching to the converted, choosing this day to protest will not win over any new recruits.

Our guess is even those with anti-Tory tendencies would rather soak in a positive celebration. Angst is not on the menu on July 1.


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