The first Food Day Canada will be celebrated on August 5.
But is it a day of celebration?
Some nationally recognized days are for celebrating. Others are for honouring or mourning. Christmas is celebrated. Easter is first mourned (the brutal execution of Christ) on Good Friday, then celebrated (His return from the dead) on Easter Sunday.
Remembrance Day is a day of honouring the brave and the fallen. New Year’s Day is for celebrating.
I thought Canada Day was a day for celebrating. However, the city of Calgary announced that there will be no fireworks on Canada Day. According to one Calgary councillor, Canada Day is for racists and white people. When did crazy impulses get to decide how to interpret history? Thankfully, there was pushback and there now will be fireworks in Calgary on Canada Day.
This brings me awkwardly to Food Day Canada. Celebration? A day of honouring? Mourning?
We already celebrate with food three times a day. If you look around at the size of Canadians, we might want to ease up on some of that celebrating.
Certainly there is a lot to celebrate in regards to human achievement in producing food. The changes in robotics, introduction of global positioning systems, GM seeds, and the ever bigger and better machines have improved the lives of farmers, their yields, and consequently our bountiful plates. Gene editing and widespread drone use is coming next.
It is also worth honouring the hard work that people put in to feed the nation. One hundred years ago, many farmers were still using mules and horses. What one farmer can produce today is nothing short of astounding.
But Canada Day can also be seen as a day of mourning for our enthusiasm and optimism is not what is was even five years ago. We are a country in decline. Blame the planners. The popular saying that the best government is less government rings true.
An Ontario pastor on a recent Sunday told the congregation that in these times, we need more than ever to trust in God. He concluded with the unintended punchline: “I was born in communist Poland. Right now in Canada, things are much worse.”
There’s the obvious news media interference, the re-socializing of children in public schools, irresponsible government spending, and Chinese Communist Party interference at all levels of government. When it comes to growing food, farmers are also being affected, mostly by the federal government’s targeted devotion to its religion of climate change.
The food is great but we’re told that if we keep producing food this way we’re planet killers. So, farmers are lectured on their bad behaviour and need more regulations in order to learn how to behave. That makes Food Day a time to mourn the attacks on cheap and reliable fossil fuels, animal agriculture and the ridiculous carbon tax. We can lament that the federal government is looking for “volunteers” to reduce nitrous oxide emissions, which for now means reducing fertilizer use, even though nitrous oxide will have little effect on temperature for 300 years.
How ironic that our government introduces what appears to be a day to celebrate, while introducing regulations that encourage us not to. All this to say, that it would be a better celebration if government would just get out of the way.
It is still much better for the psyche of this country to be optimistic and celebrate what we are thankful for. We can be thankful for the hard work that went into the abundance of today. We live and eat much better than the kings and queens of the Middle Ages. We can celebrate our own
resilience. We nourish our families and work to build a better world and we have the knowledge that no one can take away our philosophy of life or who we are.
Patrick Meagher is editor of Farmers Forum and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org