Mr. Speaker, this July 1, I will probably celebrate Canada Day and encourage all Canadians to do the same. However, this July 1, I will also celebrate Dominion Day.
The term “dominion” was originated by Sir Leonard Tilley who came up with it “as a way to encapsulate the aspirations of the Confederation generation”. It was derived from Psalm 72:8 and was meant to denote the breadth of the country from “sea to sea”.
Dominion Day was taken away from Canadians when late on a Friday afternoon, in a voice vote, 13 MPs enacted legislation doing away with Dominion Day, with no debate, no thought, no warning and no reflection. They attempted to expunge from our history a word which, as Senator Ann Bell said, “...has a connotation of a firm foundation and an assurance of growth. It takes us above and beyond rather small partisan political concepts of the country”.
I do not support the elimination of Canada Day but July 1 also needs to be known as Dominion Day once again. It is a mistake to try and preserve the future by destroying the past and the name Dominion Day should be restored.