What’s in a name?
This fall, a working committee put together by the United Counties of SDG will examine 99 different forest compartments throughout the area. Their job will be to identify areas that are ripe for recreational opportunities and to provide those sites with names.
It’s a brilliant idea. When you give something a name, you give it power. You make it memorable. If that wasn’t the case, “the ball park” would have just as much magic as “Yankee Stadium.”
I’m looking forward to seeing the names the committee comes up with. Also, if I may, I’d like to make a suggestion for one of those names. Bock Forest. Yes, I believe one of the forests should be named for Glen Sandfield resident – and former
Glengarry News reporter – Pete Bock. I say this because Mr. Bock has always been passionate about protecting and expanding forest coverage in Eastern Ontario. He’s made a number of presentations to both tiers of municipal council. Indeed, in my 14-plus years of working at this newspaper, I have not seen a more ardent woodland defender than Pete Bock.
I know Pete a little (obviously) and I know that he may be slightly embarrassed that I mention his name here. That’s because he’s always been a modest guy. But as Solomon said: “Let someone else praise you, and not your ow n mouth” and that is what I am doing here. Mr. Bock’s name should be immortalized on one of our forests. All that needs to be done now is to make it official.
For the books
The SD&G County Library is also looking for input from the public – it wants to update its mission statement.
It even has a survey up on surveymonkey.com, where library users can evaluate six different statements. They range from short and terse (“Connect. Create. Explore.”) to verbose (“To provide a welcoming, supportive and inspiring environment, where everyone can explore, learn and create.”) They all have their strengths, but to my mind, I think the best mission statement for any library is: “We will lend you books.” In any case, voting ends of Sept. 5 (you can also vote at any branch) and it will be interesting to see what the public decides.
PC on steroids
Earlier this month, the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario passed a resolution that urges school boards to strip the name of John A Macdonald from the province’s schools. The line of thinking is that Mr. Macdonald played a pivotal role in the displacement of First Nations people. Because of this, he does not deserve the honour of having an edifice named in his memory.
Ontario’s Premier Kathleen Wynne disagrees with the resolution and John Baird, who used to be Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister, called it “political correctness on steroids.” John A. Macdonald wasn’t a saint but he did play a pivotal role in the development of Canada. He’s our first ever prime minister, for crying out loud, and he was instrumental in building our railroad. Yes, he had his bad points, but who doesn’t? Heck, even the saints, for whom plenty of Catholic schools are named, had their bad days too.
Get a load of this sexist hogwash: “Woman was merely man's helpmate, a function which pertains to her alone. She is not the image of God but as far as man is concerned, he is by himself the image of God.” St. Augustine said that. Dozens of schools across Canada are named for him but teachers’ unions aren’t likely to clamour for that practice to end. I dunno, but that seems inconsistent to me. Doesn’t it kind of send the message that racism is bad but sexism is good? Let’s just hope all of this can get addressed before our tendollar bill requires a makeover too.