How do you normally spend Christmas? How are you planning to spend Christmas this year?
Your answer to this year’s Christmas largely depends on where in Canada you live and what your provincial government allows you to do. Yes, you heard that correctly. Our governments decide for us what we’re allowed to do for Christmas.
We all eagerly await some word that the rules may lighten up but, as of right now . . . If you live in Ontario, the government has told you that your Christmas plans are: if you are in a red zone or on lockdown, you only get to see members of your household, with allowance made for people living alone to visit one other household.
If you live in Manitoba, the government has told you that your Christmas plans are: “Subject to subsections (2) and (3), a person who resides in a private residence must not permit a person who does not normally reside in that residence to enter or remain in the residence.” (PDF) This order does end a few days before Christmas, so if the COVID numbers go down, people may be allowed to go Christmas shopping (currently forbidden), and have the rules relaxed . . . maybe!
In British Columbia, the government has told you that your Christmas plans are: “No social gatherings of any size at your residence with anyone other than your household or core bubble.” Other provinces are equally involved in our day to day lives.
Government telling us how we will spend Christmas is part of our “new normal” in the new Canada. Our Prime Minister assured us that it will not be a normal Christmas. But it all depends on whether we are good little boys and girls leading up to Christmas. Our Prime Minister and Premiers will decide if we’ve behaved well enough because, rather than the Hand of God controlling the pandemic, our adherence to governmental rules controls it . . . even though isolation, social distancing and masks have not proven to be effective controls for this pandemic.
So, what do you think of the new controls our government has? For many, the lonely cry goes out through the hopeless act of suicide. If I lose a year in my life to COVID precautions while looking longingly at the pictures of the family that I’m not allowed to see, was it worth it? If I die of other health problems without ever seeing my family again, was it worth it?
If I’m haunted by: the pictures of my loved ones that I wasn’t allowed to say goodbye to; or left to imagine my loved one lying, forsaken, on their deathbed with no family to encourage them with last words, no opportunity to make peace or to express final words of love and blessing; is having survived COVID worth the price?
Did I add extra days to my life by observing isolation or were any final days in the Hands of my Lord? Did I merely have the last days of my life made miserable by a government with a God complex?
These questions are important as we face churches that governments have closed, or with only five people allowed to attend worship, or with only 30% of the pews allowed to be filled.
In BC, an Archbishop questioned why churches had to be closed while bars were left open. Are people worshipping God more dangerous to the public than (partially) inebriated people fawning over each other?
Hebrews 10:25 tells us, “Let us not give up meeting together.” Yet, many Churches have been forced by government decree to quit meeting together for a time . . . and nobody can say when those restrictions will be lifted. Freedom of religion is part of our heritage . . . our Christian heritage. It is enshrined in our Constitution that our freedoms are foundational and granted by God.
The questions faced by our government are not easy questions. How would CHP Canada have handled this pandemic? Where is the fine line between government dictatorship and government irresponsibility?
CHP Canada’s approach would have been different in that, we would have recognized the distinction between personal sovereignty and government responsibility; the government is not responsible for my body, I am. The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, among other things, spells out my right to be anywhere in Canada, to peacefully assemble, to associate with whom I choose and to work to support myself and my family. All of which are currently being usurped by our various levels of government. CHP Canada would have recognized that government control ends where personal sovereignty begins; citizens have a right to earn a living, to meet with others, to protest, etc.
People are social creatures. Our governments seem to have forgotten that. They are interfering with our families! They are creating obstacles for the interactions with our friends! They are taking away key aspects of our socializing skills! They are taking away our right to worship together! Reducing the ways in which we connect with our fellow humans has caused deep trauma to many Canadians, particularly the elderly and the very young.
It’s time to acknowledge that there is more to life than simply breathing. “It is not good that man should be alone.”
CHP Canada would roll back the laws that are socially isolating us and infringing upon our rights, and replace them with compassionate care for the sick and the elderly, while allowing them to be ministered to by their family members during illness and end of life. The healthy do not need to be isolated, which damages both their physical and mental health; rather, they need to be about the business of living.
For common sense solutions, join CHP Canada today!
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Other Commentary by Vicki Gunn:
- A Painless Way Out?
- Pro-Lifers Need NOT Apply
- Lest We Forget the Price of Peace
- Is Systemic Discrimination a Problem in Canada?
- Laws Are for the Little People
- 2020: What a Year It Is!
- By Fair Means or Foul, You Lose!
- Shall We Surrender??
- The Earth, 5G, and Me
- Huawei, Ericsson, or My Rotary Phone?
- Public Enemy #1