One evening this past week I was at an historical society meeting and out of the blue someone asked, "should they remove Begbie?" I knew what she meant and answered, abruptly, No. Sometimes we find out what we think without thinking.
For those of you who missed it, Begbie is Matthew Bailey Begbie, original Chief Justice of British Columbia, and the reference to removal is a decision taken by the Law Society of BC a few days ago to remove the statue of Begbie that has been...
Let's indulge in some counterfactuality.
Recently I was doing some house-sitting in Kitsilano, which gave me a chance to visit some of that neighbourhood's historic sights, one of which is here
on the beach at the bottom of Trafalgar Street, looking across English Bay at the West End.
As you can see, there isn't much there. Now. But at one time the Canadian...
This past weekend was the centenary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge and I found myself getting irritated at the number of times I heard the old cliche that Canada was born at Vimy.
Much of the journalistic and academic commentary I read about the centennial made the point that this was not true, but nonetheless the generals and the politicians repeated it like a mantra. "Canada was born here," our prime minister said in his speech at the Vimy monument in France.
In their new book...