A Brief Word from Calgary to Ottawa

Everyone in Calgary, every Canadian, and every media-connected citizen of the world knows what happened in Ottawa on October 22. The violence, the death of a man who proudly served his country, the heroism that brought the incident to an end—all of these things are known. Other questions remain, and answers will probably never emerge with any certainty.

I have no special knowledge of the events, no insights to offer, and no explanation for the worst impulses of humanity that lead to these incidents. Like most Canadians, I can only watch from distance and wonder about the "why" of it all, while knowing that ultimately the reasons for such random acts of violence matter less than the way we as a nation respond to them.

Some details from that day should and shall be repeated by Canadians for generations. Others should be allowed to fade from memory rather than become objects of macabre fascination and political speculation.

Let us forever remember Corporal Nathan Cirillo, the dedicated member of the Canadian Armed Forces who lost his life after defending his country. Let us forever remember Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers, who ended the incident without any further loss of innocent lives. Let us remember that an attack on our Parliament did nothing to interrupt our democracy or dissuade our people from its desire for peace and equality for all.

Calgary might not be a geographic neighbor to Ottawa, but incidents like these are a reminder that we are all neighbors, friends, and family. Let us remember the ideals that make Canada, and its citizens, a beacon for others the world over.

< Return to Blog