Canadian Values

I was reading in the paper the other day an article about “Canadian Values”. Specifically, the Fraser Institute was suggesting that new immigrants to Canada should should swear an oath to uplod Canadian Values when they apply for Canadian citizenship.

I suppose it’s not too surprising that the Fraser Institute should come up with such an idea. However, it wasn’t that long ago that I was thinking along similar lines. During the recent federal election I realized that certain ridings were going to be carried by immigrant votes (at least, I think there were such ridings). I found that I was asking myself what this would mean in terms of maintaining the Canada that I grew up in. For example, it’s possible that certain social issues such as supporting gay rights could be swept away by a more conservative immigrant population.

The first thing I had to concede was that Canada’s social make-up is constantly going to be changing, and that this change is important both economically and socially. Secondly, I had to be more realistic about what I think exists as “My Canada”. Perhaps many of the social values that I think are changing really are not. Maybe Canada has always been more anti-something as opposed to what I’ve assumed was more pro-something.

I would be interested in hearing from different people on what they think about this. Do you think our social values are changing significantly because of immigration? Are these changes good? Are they bad? Does it matter at all, as long as we keep inheriting great restaurants?

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