Raul Freitas

The Canada way



I’ve never heard of a country that so openly and willingly celebrates its cultural diversity like Canada. All the time that I lived there was marked by ethnicities and the wonders that came with them.

There are so many celebrations from so many different cultures that we could spend the whole summer travelling while always being close to home. It’s the norm, allowing people to celebrate what they left behind. Not only is it allowed, it’s encouraged and supported. You can’t beat that. Nothing pleases an immigrant more than a taste of the old country every once in a while. We must all remember how profoundly difficult it is to pick up and leave the only life you’ve ever known, and embark on a journey filled with unknowns. So it’s nice when the people that take you in are also interested in where you came from, and are willing to help you keep the memory alive. There’s nothing wrong with celebrating and living more than one culture simultaneously, it’s probably healthy. I grew up with people from many parts of the world and I know I’m better for it. I also appreciated the fact that there were reminders every so often of where I came from. Without such things, past cultures would surely be forgotten at a much quicker pace.

These reminders are also beneficial for other cultures; after all, we can only benefit from learning and possibly adopting tidbits from others. Divisive? No way. Those who may find these multicultural celebrations divisive are looking to divide for personal reasons. Whoever thinks in such a manner has an inner bitterness that has nothing to do with facts. No one is saying they are better than anyone else, they’re just enjoying where they come from and hoping everyone participating can do the same.

Davenport MP Julie Dzerowicz managed to get parliament to pass her proposal to have June be Portugal month, why not? These kinds of initiatives keep people busy promoting the culture, and I’m sure it won’t end with the Portuguese. There are many spaces in the calendar throughout the year to celebrate many cultures. Did she start a good thing? She’s working in the best interests of her riding, considering it’s the one with the largest concentration of Portuguese-speaking constituents. Good on her to push her agenda. It’s nothing groundbreaking, but it’s definitely a positive move. How many people can say that they’re rep actually did something positive for the community?

June 10th has been celebrated in Toronto for as long as anyone can remember and it has always been shared with the surrounding communities. What better way to show off your culture than with music and food! It’s what most people love to enjoy, and we all know that you absorb everything best when you’re having a blast learning about it. I believe anyone who raises concerns over these kinds of festivities has issues of their own and doesn’t reflect the feelings of the communities at large. Let’s party on, celebrate and have a good time.
Fiquem bem,

Raul Freitas/MS


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