Open Letter to My Colleagus at CETA and AETA

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Published on: December 21, 2012

In September at our Annual Joint Convention in Winnipeg, I was flattered to be asked to host the Banquet evening as Master of Ceremonies.  I enjoyed the experience, and relished the chance to once again  poke a little fun at my American colleagues.  However, herein lies my reason to write this letter to you all.

During the evening, I made light-hearted comments about the War of 1812.  The 200th anniversary of this war between America and the British colonies of Canada has received a lot of attention in the Canadian press.  There is no doubt of the importance that this conflict had in shaping the future of the North American continent, as it played a very important role in establishing Canada as a nation.

Since that time I have read two books by Pierre Burton, a celebrated Canadian author who has written numerous historical accounts of Canadian events.  These books, collated into a single volume entitled “The War of 1812″ to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the War, were vintage Burton.  I thought I would devour the words eagerly, as I was proud that Canada was able to successfully defend itself from America in this conflict.  I expected my patriotic juices to flow freely.  However, Pierre Burton gave a passionate chronicle of the years of conflict which was by no means something to be happy about.

The War of 1812 was a vicious, bloody, and senseless event for people on both sides of the conflict.  There was no feeling of patriotism in my heart after finishing the book, and I was left with the realization that I had made a huge mistake in trying to make humor out of this travesty of history between our two countries.  So today I want to apologize to all of my friends and colleagues who attended the banquet in Winnipeg.  My attempt at humor was very inappropriate.  I should have instead been celebrating the very special relationship that our countries have as neighbors, and that I cherish as colleagues and friends.


Gary Morgan

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