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I was vacationing when the CBC broadcasted the state funeral for NDP Jack Layton on Saturday. I did remember to DVR the broadcast and was happy that I did. I saw most of the service last night although it was cut off as it went beyond the original programming. I have to applaud the careful planning that went into the service. This was a quintessentially Canadian event and it reflected the best of Canadian society. I thought that the service was a magnificent celebration of Jack's life and reflected his personal values of inclusion, compassion, tolerance, respect and diversity.

As a Canadian now working and living in America, I was proud to see Canadians of all political persuasions come together to honor a good and decent man. His final letter to Canadians has been the subject of much discussion and I hope that it will continue to inspire young Canadians to continue the legacy of Jack's life by working toward a more just, equitable, compassionate and tolerant world.

I will leave you with the final phrase from Jack Layton's final letter to Canadians.

"My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we'll change the world."

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Comment Preferences

  •  As An American Who Almost Made it to Be a (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lorinda Pike, Frank In WA, Bob Duck

    Canadian NDP voter moving up from WA to BC, before family circumstances trapped us here, my sympathies to Canadians on the death of a good man.

    The paragraph before his final sentence is one that should inspire Americans of all stripes who are not dedicated to tearing apart our system:

    And finally, to all Canadians: Canada is a great country, one of the hopes of the world. We can be a better one – a country of greater equality, justice, and opportunity. We can build a prosperous economy and a society that shares its benefits more fairly. We can look after our seniors. We can offer better futures for our children. We can do our part to save the world’s environment. We can restore our good name in the world. We can do all of these things because we finally have a party system at the national level where there are real choices; where your vote matters; where working for change can actually bring about change. In the months and years to come, New Democrats will put a compelling new alternative to you. My colleagues in our party are an impressive, committed team. Give them a careful hearing; consider the alternatives; and consider that we can be a better, fairer, more equal country by working together. Don’t let them tell you it can’t be done.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Tue Aug 30, 2011 at 11:03:27 AM PDT

    •  Gooserock - I do despair at times (0+ / 0-)

      when I think how great America can be but continues to be driven by fear, greed and intolerance. I read all the amazing posts here every day and know that we have the imagination, talent, work ethic and vision to create a more perfect union.

      I said to my wife the other day that a lot of us go to church but we keep missing the verse that "we shall be our brother's (and sister's) keeper". I think that we can learn a thing or two from Canadians.

  •  Could you post a link to the letter? (0+ / 0-)

    People shouldn't fear their government. They should fear the corporations that own their government.

    by tdub901 on Tue Aug 30, 2011 at 12:34:10 PM PDT

  •  I was privileged enough to be in Toronto... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Frank In WA, dotsright, Bob Duck

    ... on Saturday and was able to go to City Hall and see his casket lying in repose, and sign the book of condolences.

    Let me tell you, seeing City Hall covered in sidewalk chalk messages - and I do mean covered, not an open space in sight - was absolutely inspiring. Even in the time I waited in line to see Jack and pay my respects, the rest of the court filled up with more chalk. The messages were beautiful, touching, and powerful. It's hard to choose a favourite, but if I had to, this would be the one:

    "Yesterday, I lost a hero.
    Today, I learned about love, hope, and optimism.
    Tomorrow, I'll finish what Jack started."

    And so we shall.

    Being partisan and being right are not mutually exclusive.

    by DynamicUno on Tue Aug 30, 2011 at 12:52:55 PM PDT

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