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Tossing Pebbles in the Stream

This blog is my place to sit and toss pebbles into the stream. The stream of Life relentlessly passing before us. We can affect it little. For the most part I just watch it passing and follow the flow. Occasionally, I need to comment on its passing, tossing a pebble at it to enjoy the ripple affect upon Life's surface.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Malala.: Honorary Canadian

"What the terrorists are doing is against Islam because Islam is a religion of peace. It tells us about equality, it tells us about brotherhood, it tells us about love and friendship and peace, that we should - we should be nice and kind to each other."     Malala

Malala Yousafzai

Announced in the Canadian government throne speech we learned that  the Harper Government will be asking Malala Yousafzai to accept the honour of being named an honorary Canadian.  I assume she will accept and doing so this remarkable young girl will be honoring Canada as Canada tries to honour her as a courageous advocate of the education of young people, particularly girls in her homeland of Pakistan..

I trust this is truly a goodwill gesture by the Conservative government and no merely a cynical exploitation of this remarkable young person. I try not to be cynical.  To their credit the Conservative government has funded aid to women and children as part of  Canada's foreign policy, unless of course they  are seeking eff birth  control or abortion services. Our government will not fund them even if they are legal and readily available in Canada..

The list of people who have been made honorary Canadians is short:  Raoul Wallenberg, Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama, Aug San Suu Kyi, the Aga Khan and now Malala Yousafzai. This young girl is in distinquished company.

I trust this honour will be accompanied with a grant of money, perhaps, to the fund Malala has set up. It would be appropriate if Canada agreed to fund her university education.

My grand daughter, Olivia, has caught the idealistic spirit to want to connect and help out as a teenager in a far off land. She is planning to go to Ghana next summer to learn of and share in some of the efforts of Feed the Children. For her birthday I offered to buy her the book, I Am Malala,  I hope to get a French version, Moi, Malala. Olivia is more comfortable reading in French. I am surprised that it is not yet available in Canada, after contacting French Bookstores in Toronto Ottawa and Montreal. It is a shock to learn it will cost about twice the amount of the English addition. I am now trying to get my niece in London, England to get it and have it shipped here, hopefully by Olivia's birthday.  This experience has made me aware of how difficult it is to have cultural services for those who want to speak and live in a minority culture. 

Here is an interview of Malala on the CBC program The Current, conducted by Anna Maria Tremonti .


At 8:10 a.m., Blogger possum said...

From My Sunday's Musings (to come out tomorrow:
Well, that was awkward. A Nobel Peace Prize nominee meets with a Nobel peace laureate and his family, and asks him to stop killing innocent people in her country with drones. President Obama invited Malala Yousafzai, a 16-year-old Pakistani advocate for girls' education, to meet with his family. And she promptly explained that what he is doing works against her agenda and fuels terrorism.
I am sure you all know who I mean. Malala is a victim of violence in Pakistan, having been attacked by religious fanatics opposed to her work. But Obama may not have expected her to speak up against other forms of violence in her country. Malala recounted: "I also expressed my concerns that drone attacks are fueling terrorism. Innocent victims are killed in these acts, and they lead to resentment among the Pakistani people. If we refocus efforts on education, it will make a big impact."

Can I become a Canadian, too?

At 9:44 a.m., Blogger Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

Malala is certainly fearless and not intimated by the powerful in challenging Obama. When I saw the picture, I would have like to know what Obama's daughter had to say. She is of the age when children are very idealistic. She too might oppose her father's policies. I see she was less forceful when she met the Queen. She even laughed at a joke Prince Philip made,-- something to the effect that English kids went to school because their parents don't want them around the house.

At 8:43 p.m., Blogger Ginnie said...

I wonder if she will accept the gesture...and, as you say, I hope it was made without political strings. It is amazing to see how a young person can make such a difference and I pray that she remains out of danger. (There are so many factions that do not want her type of peace.)

At 9:36 a.m., Blogger troutbirder said...

My spouse is read her story right now. I can't wait for my turn...;)

At 10:38 a.m., Blogger Owen Gray said...

The kind of burning passion she displays can change the world, Philip.

Incidentally, I, too, applaud Alice Munro. What a magnificent honour. We sometimes rightly claim that Saul Bellow was a Canadian.

But he left Montreal at fifteen and moved to Chicago. Luckily, Munro has stayed with us.


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