Veterans’ advocate dismayed at upended Canadian flags

To the Expositor:

Knowing the respect aboriginal people have for their elders, warriors and all veterans, on January 22, 2015, when driving past Hwy 17 and 6 and seeing First Nations people demonstrating in the severe cold to gain support for a much needed enquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women (MMAW), I pressed the horn several times in support.

Some time later, in reading the Mid North Monitor of January 29, 2015, and seeing those same demonstrators holding a Canadian Flag upside down and marked with MMAW, brought on anger and sadness at the lack of forethought by demonstrating in this way and showing disrespect for our flag.

Although many things are wrong with the Harper government, especially when it comes to treatment of the poor, disadvantaged, veterans and First Nations people, the Canadian flag represents all things good about this proud nation, from pride in ones country of birth, or country of resettlement for others, to sporting activities, but most of all, the sacrifices made by our warriors and veterans of old, to maintain our borders in 1812, through two World Wars, Korea, and other conflicts, to Afghanistan and the present day war on terrorism.

Many foolish things are done without fully considering the feelings of hurt or disrespect to others. First Nations has much public support to have an enquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women. However, when one sees our flag disfigured and disrespected, people tend to loose sight or the reason you are demonstrating and anger replaces support.

Guided by the seven teachings of the grandfathers, all warriors of old, respect and forgiveness are the two teachings required here, simply put, ‘please do not disfigure the flag of our nation,’ instead hold it proud and high, just as you would your band flag or eagle staff, after all, you were all here first and the rest of us came later to help make Canada into what it is today. Next time please just think before you act.

With respect and support of your cause, but condemnation of the act with our flag.

Colin Pick, veteran