Strong, Proud and Free
Like many Canadians, I was shocked and saddened at the acts of terrorism resulting in the loss of life on Canadian soil. It concerns me to hear of Canadian citizens leaving or attempting to leave Canada with the intentions of engaging in acts of terrorism. It concerns me more that Canadians are actively being recruited by terrorists to join their cause. I listened with excitement to Prime Minister Stephen Harper announce the Federal Government's new anti-terrorist laws.
The much need new anti-terrorism bill gives CSIS more anti-terror powers, including power to thwart a suspected extremist's travel plans. Those who are trying to leave Canada with intentions of engaging in acts of terrorism can be detained. These individuals can be denied entry reentry amd they can be have their Canadian citizenship revoked. CSIS will now have greater authority to take down any Canadian-based website promoting jihadist terrorism and I suspect any other type of terrorism. This ability in itself, should help lower the recruitment of Canadians by overseas terrorists. PM Stephen Harper admitted that some of the online activities of terrorists will be hard to detect but the new legislation will help keep Canadians safer. He stressed that the new laws would ensure Canadian rights and freedoms. He said the Canadian government will move ahead and modified as new terrorist threats evolve. There will be judicial warrants required for certain procedures. The solutions are not perfect but they will be able to intercept more people heading out of Canada with the intentions of engaging in acts of terrorism. There will be a greater sharing of information between governmental departments especially immigration and law-enforcement. It's important to note that these measures are designed to go after terrorists and potential terrorists, not just regular Canadian citizens so these are people that have been identified as posing a threat or a potential threat and they are going to nip it in the bud before they have a chance
I agree with the new anti-terrorism laws that will essentially close loop holes that some terrorists were utilizing. These measures will prevent terrorists from using Canada as a haven for protecting their violent ideals. These new laws are very much needed and welcomed!
Like many Canadians we enjoy spending time in the sunny south so we bought a vacation home in Florida where we spend a little over three months of the year broke into two main blocks of time, one month in the spring and two in the fall. This past fall we were there for four weeks, home for three then back for five. Let me tell you, that five weeks grated on my nerves to no ends. One of our neighbours there apparently doesn't know how to use Google so is quite insistent on pestering us with "Does Canada have [item du jour]?" And, his questioning is nothing more than ignorance at best. He was quite surprised to find out that Canada does indeed have paved streets! Trust me, my natural Canadian politeness was tested to the nth degree. I did play with his ignorance a little just because I could. However, the neighbour was benign in comparison to the rest of the general mood we encountered down south.
Despite nearing the holiday season, there was a downright somber atmosphere. The police brutality and race relations protests were clearly having an impact. The more I heard about them and the closer they got, my desire to return home became stronger. Then there were the tragic deaths in Ottawa and just general increasing violence. Clearly we live in trying times!
For this Canadian, there is no place like home sweet home...Canada!