Happy Canada Day!

153 years ago today our great Northern Dominion began, binding together the colonies and territories of British North America.

Their unity was built on a shared belief in ordered liberty, safeguarded by the institutions of Parliamentary government within a constitutional Monarchy.  With Confederation, our founders also launched a bold experiment that sought unity in diversity, bringing together in one political community different cultures, languages and faiths.

The country that they united developed through the sacrifices of waves of newcomers, each drawn to Canada as a land of freedom and opportunity, a freedom that Canadians defended at great cost on foreign battlefields.  On this Dominion Day, let us be grateful for their sacrifices, and for the vision of our founders, foremost amongst them Sir John A Macdonald. 

As Albertans, let us celebrate the enormous contribution that we have made as champions of enterprise, helping to make Canada one of the most prosperous nations on Earth.  It is no accident that our province’s motto “fortis et liber,” comes from the national anthem’s call for a “true North strong and free.”

Let us also resolve to continue building a Canada that is freer, fairer, and more just.  We must keep continue on the path of reconciliation with Indigenous people whose ancestors first inhabited this land, ensuring that equality of opportunity is a reality for them, and for Canadians of all backgrounds. And we must repair inequities within the federation, so that all provinces are unleashed to flourish and prosper.

Today should be one of gratitude and celebration as we strive to fulfill the vision of the martyr of Confederation, Thomas D’Arcy McGee:

“I see in the not remote distance, one great nationality bound, like the shield of Achilles, by the blue rim of ocean – I see it quartered into many communities – each disposing of its internal affairs – but all bound together by free institutions, free intercourse, and free commerce; I see within the round of that shield, the peaks of the Western mountains and the crests of the Eastern waves…, I see a generation of industrious, contented, moral men, free in name and in fact – men capable of maintaining, in peace and in war, a Constitution worthy of such a country.”

*Editor's note: statement has been updated from a previous version.