I wasn’t born in Canada, but i’ve always considered myself a proud Canadian. This country has been my home for more than 23 years, and I experienced many of my “firsts” here. My first job, first relationship, first car and first property – all of them were in Canada. But lately, the Canadian government has led me to question my love for this country.
Recently the Canadian government passed Bill C-24 which makes me a second class Canadian citizen. Under this new law, the Canadian government can exile me back to England (where I’m from), even though I haven’t lived there in over two decades. The government disguises this bill as one that is designed to protect Canadians, but it doesn’t protect Canadians such as myself. It isolates me, and thousands of other Canadians who have been raised in Canada, and don’t know a different life.
This bill is also hypocritical, and against who we are as Canadians (regardless of what the government says I’m Canadian)– let me explain why. In recent years, I volunteered for the UN Women. Through my volunteer work, I was a part of a team that fought for women’s rights all around the world and demanded change. Under this new Canadian bill, which can easily be used to deport non-terrorists, if I reported a human rights violation by the government and was convicted for a “terrorism offence”, the Canadian government could deport me.
As Canadians, we have always been known as a country of love and acceptance. We fight for what we believe me and do our best to make the world a better place. Bill C-24 acts as a muzzle that makes Canadians such as myself reluctant to help people on the international front. Meanwhile, the Canadian government continues to get involved in international affairs on a daily basis. With it has a military presence in foreign countries and foreign aid, the Canadian government continues to freely do as it pleases on the international front, and I have to second guess my actions? I pay my taxes – which in turn fund these government initiatives, so I am unclear as to why the government sees me as the enemy.
I may not have been born in Canada, but I love this country – probably more than many naturally born Canadians. I grew up here, and this is my home. I want to see this country prosper and I want to be a part of the reason this country is great. But Canada, your two-tier citizenship is disappointing.