Our own little refuge
all know that Johnson Taplin came to Stanstead in March of 1796, wife and children in tow. However, we don’t know much about the man before he came here with his family from Vermont.
Nor would we have learned anything about the family of Adbullah Kurdi if fate had not decided that he alone would survive his exile, his son Aylan becoming the most famous drowned three-year old of the last few years.
Both raise the same fundamental question: Why risk one’s life and family to leave somewhere for the unknown. Unless travelling a couple of hundred miles in the snow on old trails is not risky.
By the way, Vermont officially joined the United States five years before Taplin came here and the Syrian conflict has been going on for the same numbers of years.
If there is one part of the Globe that should understand the plight of the millions of refugees that are fleeing the MiddleEast, it’s the Eastern Townships. Loyalists were nothing less than political refugees, fleeing a country that they believed was not right for them, even if they had been born there.
Let’s forget for a moment that today is the day that HRH Queen Elizabeth becomes the monarch to have led our country the longest; President Harper’s™ government will celebrate the event in its usual style, issuing stamps and collectibles from the still Royal Canadian Mint. Soon, as we move to United States politics, our only connection to our past will be stamps and coins.
But President Harper™ is so obsessed by his so-called conservative base, nothing less than the Canadian equivalent of the Trump booster in the USA, that even the most basic decency seems to evade him. It’s no longer a political issue, it is a moral one. Canada is a land of immigrants. Mr Harper should take the time to go and visit Grosse Île or, as it was formally known, the Grosse Île and the Irish Memorial National Historic Site of Canada. The cemetery would made an excellent backdrop for his daily commercial on the virtue of his record.
The answer is not about bombing someone in Syria, it is bringing in as many of these refugees as we can accommodate right now. Starting with those who have relatives here. Daesh is the proverbial : “The house of a tyrant is a ruin.” Time and cutting off the money supply will reduce it to ruins. But then, one should look a bit deeper to see who profits from this war and who in the region has the financial knowledge and international network to let Daesh profit from the sale of petrol and archeological artifacts. That Canada accepted to be part of that charade boggles the mind. Who removed the Canadian Blue Berets from the Golan Heights? That was giving insight into Syria that we have completely lost. Well, we have lost everything and it will take years and a couple of billions to rebuild the competency that the Canadian Forces had acquired as the world leader in peace keeping. By the way, it was wise economically too, by acting as fair, never impartial as some say, in-betweens Canadian Business were also seen as fair. But then the conservatives are more interested in selling military trucks to Saudi Arabia than Quebec built ambulances… And on which side of the Daesh problem are the Saudis?
Afullday of musical and dance entertainment for all ages has been lined up to delight the thousands of spectators anticipated to come to the Brome fairgrounds for the 36th Townshippers’ Day, September 12, 2015.
The 2015 T-Day Organizing Committee, and hosts, the Town of Brome Lake, Brome Village and Townshippers’ Association, are pleased to announce the line-up which will appeal to a variety of genres and tastes.
Performances at the fairgrounds stage open with the Knowlton Harmony Band (9:30 am, 10:45 am), nearing its 20th anniversary with 28 talented musicians. Following up with traditional, rock n’ roll country rock and blues from Foster Grit (11 am). Then there’s the eclectic mix, including the Beatles' Swinging Sixties, from Pot Pourri Lite Choir (12 pm), a branch of the popular Pot Pourri Women's Choir. Déjà Two (1 pm), featuring Julia Rohan and France Lepitre, offers folk music with a uniquely Quebecois flavour, followed by country rock from homegrown Silverado (2 pm), with 28 years of performances under their belt. Local talent Squeegie (3pm) presents pop music old and new on guitar and mandolin, and lastly it’s Dave’s Cave (4 pm), a St Paul’s Anglican Church band. Over at the dance stage visitors can enjoy performances by Jim Naylor and the Rainbow Country Cloggers (11 am, 3 pm) and highland dancers from the Cameron School of Dance (2 pm). The Brome Lake and Sutton First Responders and Fire Department will host an accident simulation at the grandstand (1 pm) and throughout the day, in addition to more than 90 artisans and exhibitors, visitors can enjoy an antique and classic car show, and demonstrations of sheep shearing, rug hooking and chainsaw wood carving. T-Day 2015 will also feature activities for kids. Fun and games can be found at the mini-farm, and also a straw maze to solve and horse and wagon rides.
Hop on the shuttle and get a free pass to the Brome County Historical Society museum and Paul Holland Knowlton House, you might even win a prize - an overnight stay for two and one of three local inns - just for taking a ride. While at the museum, don’t miss performances by singer-songwriters Keith Whittall and Gail Klinck (12 pm), Laura and Lucy’s kids’ choir (1:30 pm), Celtic fiddle from Daniel Haché (2 pm), wrapping up the day are Double or Nothing (3 pm), country rock duo Kylie Côte and Mike Patrick. Support for this year’s Festival comes from partners: the Department of Canadian Heritage, CBC, the Sherbrooke Record, Cass funeral home/Coopérative funéraire de l'Estrie, Brome Fair/Brome County Agricultural Society, Global Excel Management, the Stanstead Journal, Star Café Knowlton, Deputy of Saint-François Guy Hardy, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton, the Municipality of Bolton-Ouest and Turkey Hill Sugarbush Ltd.
Don’t miss T-Day on Saturday, September 12, 2015, from 9 am – 5 pm at the Brome fairgrounds, 345 Stageboach Road, Brome Village. Admission is free. Donations are accepted for parking (a minimum of $2 is suggested).
For all things T-Day, visit www.TDay.ca In its 36th year, T-Day has grown to become one of the largest annual events for the English-speaking community of Quebec’s historical Eastern Townships. A bilingual and family friendly festival, T-Day celebrates the creativity and vibrancy of the regions English-speaking community through a cultural showcase of music and dance, artisans and exhibitors, food and activities for all ages to enjoy. Curious about hosting the next Townshippers’ Day in your town? Visit this year’s festival in Brome to experience it for yourself, then contact Townshippers' Association and we'll show you how you could make it happen.