I take pride that many Canadians choose to wear red poppies at this time of the year. From what I can see across Canada, the number of people who choose to wear a red poppy as a sign of respect and remembrance for those who sacrificed their lives has not diminished over the years.
This tradition culminates on November 11th, on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, with ceremonies involving the laying of wreathes, two minutes of silence, and the playing of the Last Post. We take a bit of time to pause, and reflect on our lives, and consider and pay our respects to the many who gave their lives so that we can live in a country free from tyranny, and where we can partake in the many freedoms that we take for granted.
To me, that will always be the meaning of the red poppy and Remembrance Day – a day to remember and pay tribute to those gave with their lives so that we can live in peace and prosperity.
IT’S NOT ABOUT WAR AND IT’S NOT ABOUT CELEBRATING WAR OR MILITARY CONQUESTS!
As a child of holocaust survivors, I have never taken for granted the fact that I have been allowed to be part of this world, only because of the sacrifice of many Canadian, British, American and other soldiers.
Everyone who is civilized strives for peace. But unfortunately, sometimes war is necessary to stop the killing and establish peace.
If there was no war, and Germany was not defeated, would Hitler have stopped killing the millions of Jews, Roma and homosexuals? Just ask the Kurds who live under the threat of annihilation by ISIS. I am sure they want peace, and unfortunately they that the only way they have peace is to fight for it.
As evidenced by the recent murders of Corporal Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent, regrettably war has been brought to the shores of Canada. In order to have peace, you first have to achieve it. Peace is the absence of violence, hatred and discrimination toward any group. When these conditions exist, in most cases the only way to achieve peace is through armed conflict. You have to fight for it.
Our veterans fought for peace, and unfortunately many lost their lives in these struggles and quests for peace. So there you have it. Veterans, and specifically these veterans, were fighters for peace first and foremost.
As such, on this day we pay tribute and give respect to those veterans who fought so that we could live in peace.
Finally, Terry Kelly, a Canadian wrote a song called “A Pittance of Time” which sums it all up. The following is a video which he put together. I hope that you enjoy it.