The Canadian Creed makes a statement of power – the power to be a free people in the midst of a world that is often filled with turmoil and inequality. By this statement we witness to the world that all citizens have the inalienable right to pursue goals that lead to personal fulfillment. We also support the belief that within this circle of freedom there is a need to subject personal desires for the benefit of the greater society in which we live. This concept gives meaning to our lives and guarantees a balance between societal and individual needs. Throughout history, mankind has struggled to establish systems of government that will maintain this balance, usually in the form of an agreement between leaders and followers, i.e. a social contract based on mutual respect and shared goals. Such contracts must be living documents that change as the needs of society changes.
The Creed proposes that it is time to lay claim to our inheritance as a great nation in the 21st century. It provides a framework for asserting this claim. Throughout it, we assert that: our society is based on the rule of law; that our citizens are free agents as spelled out by the law and as demonstrated through tolerance and acceptance of all; that our aim is to foster a peaceful world; and that we are prepared to maintain vigilance in enhancing and maintaining basic rights and freedoms, both at home and in the global society.
While the Creed clarifies to the world what we as Canadians stand for, it also helps to recognize that our own society is constantly evolving. The challenges of change as our population grows requires constant attention to questions raised by minority groups and special interest groups, forces that would destroy our unity and value systems that guide our youth as we move towards maturity. The creed is designed to provide guidance for dealing with these ongoing concerns.
With citizenship comes responsibility – the responsibility to dream, to care to invest in working together to build a better Canada for both today and for future generations.
The Honourable Albert Ludwig & Robert E. Kulhawy