I am adding my voice to others who have responded to an unsettling article from our MP, Mr. Hillyer.
In his column (Dec. 7), our MP made the following pronouncement: "The official name of Canada is the Dominion of Canada - a name carefully chosen by our founders for its double meaning. In addition to signifying our connection to Britain, our mother country, dominion also means Godly Kingdom - connecting our country to our Father in heaven."
What nonsense. While I support the MP's need to embrace his religion, his job is to represent all of us in the governance of Canada. Not as a missionary.
To begin, the official name of Canada is, wait for it . . . Canada. The use of "dominion" was simply a British convention that prefaced the names of their colonies. At the time of Confederation our actual founders (as opposed to pretend ones) named the country as follows: Section 4 of the 1867 BNA Act states that "Unless it is otherwise expressed or implied, the name Canada shall be taken to mean Canada as constituted under this Act." No one says Canada like the Fathers of Confederation. While we continued to be referred to as being under the dominion of the British, the word was not actually a part of our name, just a prefix to indicate who ruled us. To close the matter, in The Canada Act of 1982 (note it is not The "Dominion" of Canada Act), there is no reference at all to the word dominion.
With regard to the definition of the word dominion, it most assuredly does not mean "Godly Kingdom." The etymology of the word long predates Christianity (old Latin roots), and means "under the control of," plain and simple.
Finally, the name Canada is simply not of religious derivation. It is anglicized from the Huron-Iroquois word "Kanata," which means village, or community. As it happens (and in spite of our many imperfections), no finer community exists in the world. Canada has a constitution that embraces all manner of people and religions in a fashion for which we are globally respected. Canada is our name, and it turns out, one that suits us well.
It is not the MP's job to convert this country into a "Godly Kingdom" of his own imagining. This is Canada and we are a community of Canadians. You don't have to take my word for it, just read the constitution.