TORONTO - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, I agree that a Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian. But you must explain to us what being a Canadian means.
This open letter is not about Liberals, Conservatives, any other political organization or the age of Omar Khadr. This letter is about Canada and Canadians.
I thought that becoming Canadian was not an agreement between lawyers, and it is not a piece of paper called a ’Citizenship Certificate’ that makes us Canadian. I have always believed that our passport is not just an insurance policy to use when in trouble abroad.
I agree that the law must be respected no matter what, but that is only one of the principles upon which Canada has been built on.
Being Canadian means to accept all those principles; to enjoy our rights but also respect the duties. Mr. Khadr presence in Afghanistan and the actions he and his family were responsible for had nothing to do with Canada and Canadians.
His family, as reported in a Canadian Press story and published by Toronto Star on April 24, 2015, in 1996, “after briefly returning to Canada, the family moves to Jalalabad in Taliban-controlled eastern Afghanistan, where they live in Osama bin Laden’s compound.” Later, “the Khadr brothers begin attending weapons training camps affiliated with the Taliban and bin Laden. The family makes annual trips to Canada to raise money and collect supplies.”
Once arrested by the Americans, after killing and wounding American soldiers, magically the policy insurance that is the Canadian passport pops up: I am Canadian, what is my government doing to help a young Canadian tortured in an American prison, Guantanamo?
Mr. Prime Minister, this is not by any means a justification of what happened in Guantanamo, the age of Khadr and his responsibility in killing the American soldier. This is about Canada, about being Canadian. Yes, Canadians are not perfect and some break the law and don’t respect some important principles; but they live here and consider Canada their home. We should put an end to the abuse of our Citizenship by people that use our Country and institutions only as a base to pursue and protect their own interests around the World.
Prime minister, you say that you had to do it because this is about the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. To bad that we have only Charter of Rights and not the Charter of Duties to be Canadian.
Thomas Jefferson, someone who had some experience when talking about rights, said that “a strict observance of the written laws, is doubtless ONE of the high duties of a good citizen, but it is not the HIGHEST. The laws of necessity, of self-preservation, of saving our Country when in danger, are of higher obligation. To lose our country by a scrupulous adherence to written law would be to lose the law itself.”
And a Canadian prime minister did just that, to defend our Country when it was threatened by some terrorists in Quebec.
Lately, the Canadian governments believed that the threat was coming from terrorists abroad and decided to send our troops to fight against them.
It was the decision of Mr. Khdar and his family to be on the other side and fight against the soldiers, Canadian soldiers, that were dying to defend the principles that he, thanks to you, has now abused to collect $10.5 million.
Probably the law won, definitely the justice, and Canada, have been defeated.