Mr. Speaker, it is certainly a pleasure to respond to this noble day called Commonwealth Day and the remarks that have been made in the House.
I have listened to what the minister and the member from the loyal opposition said. I take note of the fact that one of the messages trying to be transmitted throughout the Commonwealth at this point is talking to one another. That is certainly a good message, very idealistic and is an attempt to bring these countries that form the Commonwealth together so that they can have some common aim or purpose. I think we should have that.
However, as a nation and a participant in the Commonwealth, one of the responsibilities we have when we are talking to one another is to make sure we are not just talking about things that are politically correct and somewhat acceptable. There are times when we must talk about human rights and the actions taken by some of our fellow countries in the Commonwealth that are not appropriate as such, and if they are not appropriate we should clearly say that in the most positive critical to bring them to task to live up to the expectations that we have in Canada where human rights is certainly an item of top priority.
I would think, in speaking with regard to this more noble idea of countries in the Commonwealth talking to one another, that the same thing should apply in this assembly where we talk to one another in an open and fair manner, where we have the opportunity to speak on behalf of western Canadians, central Canadians and eastern Canadians equally and where it is heard. Sometimes we forget that in this major partisanship forum, as is the case today. Question period today was no exception.
Certainly the noble cause to talk to one another in the world is good. To keep peace and harmony in the world is good. However, let us remember the lesson right at home as well.