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OPINION: On Vimy Ridge Anniversary, We Owe Our Veterans More Than Words

WINNIPEG, MB – On the commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge, Canadians join to honour the incredible bravery and sacrifice of those who served our country in that nation-defining battle.

We also think of those who served since then. As we do so, our leaders will say all the right words, they will strike the right tone, and we will feel an understandable sense of pride.

But words are not enough.

At this moment, countless Canadian Veterans are struggling without the support they were promised from our leaders. Federal governments of all political stripes have let down those who bravely put themselves on the line for all Canadians.

The sacred duty we owe to Veterans has been broken far too many times. All the words in the world mean nothing if we don’t keep our promise to those who served and sacrificed for our nation.

Today is not a day to dwell in criticism. We should be proud of what Canada achieved at Vimy Ridge, and we must honour those brave Canadians who achieved it.

But once today passes, we must not live in the false comfort that a day of commemoration absolves our nation from righting the wrongs that have been done to our Veterans.

Tomorrow the stories will pass from the headlines, but quiet struggles will go on. If Canada truly wants to commemorate the legacy of those who served our country, we will have to restore trust that service to country will be rewarded with support, respect, and the keeping of a sacred oath.

Spencer Fernando, MyToba News

Spencer Fernando is a columnist and reporter for MyToba News. You can read more of Spencer’s writing at his website SpencerFernando.com
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