Nomination Speech, Smithers, BC
The following is the text of Rod Taylor’s nomination speech delivered to CHP members in the new federal riding of Skeena-Bulkley Valley on April 2nd, 2004
Good evening ladies and gentlemen, members of the board, members and guests of the CHP, fellow Canadians.
Some of you have worked within the Christian Heritage Party since its inception, some have joined our ranks more recently and some have come tonight as inquirers, seeking to understand your role in creating the kind of society you believe is possible, and to participate in protecting all that is best in Canada today.
Thank you all for caring enough about Canada to take time from your busy schedules to be with us here tonight.
I’d like to talk about the title of this message for a moment. We advertised the topic as “Canada’s Only Hope.” We could have entitled this message “A Foundation for the Nation” or “God Help Canada” or “A Time to Build” — because we do need to restore the foundation upon which this country was established; we do need God’s help to do that, and we do want to become a nation of builders— family builders, community builders and society builders.
We could have chosen a more alarming title, such as “Canada on the Brink” and that would also have been accurate because Canada is poised precariously on the edge of a great abyss, both social and economic — and we need to understand that if we are to help her recover her rightful place in history and among the nations of the world. We will be touching on the dangers and the opportunities that we, as Canadians, are facing today.
We chose, however, to focus tonight on Canada’s situation and our response to it through the field glasses of Hope. Hope is considered one of man’s greatest virtues. Hope springs eternal. Hope is informed by optimism, based on Truth, guided by Love and able to overcome disappointment.
Hope is not blind, but sees beyond the storm clouds. Hope is not empty but open, not narrow but focused, not naive but innocent.
Hope looks for light in the dark corners of the world and brings light with it wherever it goes. Hope breathes life into the dying and when faced with death considers it only a temporary setback.
I am not that Hope. Men come and go and pass from this life, leaving footprints and memories. Some leave a good legacy and are remembered as contributors to the well-being of society. Some leave a trail of evil and pain and are remembered for the destruction that followed in their wake.
I trust, however, that as we walk the good path together, following the trail blazed for us, that we will find ourselves — at the end of our journey here — in the company of good men and women who have passed this way before us, who loved the truth, who served their families, and who honoured, by word and deed, the same Creator who sustains us today.
I want to leave footprints of Hope on the dusty trail of History. I want to leave memories of a commitment we share together: to the great ideals and principles that are part of Canada’s foundation. I want to be a participant in Hope. I am not that Hope — but I want share with you in that Hope.
The Christian Heritage Party is not that Hope. As wonderful as our party is (and it is a wonderful party), as great as our leader is (and Ron Gray is a tremendous leader, a statesman among politicians, a man of integrity and purpose, without personal ambition but devoted to God and country), as sound as our principles are (and they are unshakeable, wise, comprehensive) — the CHP itself is not an eternal institution; but it is an institution founded on eternal principles. It is strengthened by the One who gives us all things richly to enjoy.
In the course of History, institutions come and go, nations rise and fall, leaders appear on life’s stage for a brief moment and then others follow them… but the principles that guide men and nations through history do not change. Sound moral principles endure and are not swept away by changes in governments, laws or technology.
No, the CHP is not the Hope, which is our topic — but the CHP has defined that Hope, and is prepared to lead the nation in restoring that Hope to all Canadians.
Our Hope as a nation and our Hope as a people is to return to the foundations upon which Canada was built… to dig down to the load-bearing structures.
Builders and engineers know that to build a structure of any size and any lasting significance, you must lay a deep and solid foundation. Building on the Rock has always been the right idea. Building on sand, without a firm foundation, has always been a recipe for disaster and disappointment.
Canada has deep foundations. In 1866, Sir Leonard Tilley suggested the name “The Dominion of Canada” after reading Psalm 72, where it says of God’s anointed One — that’s the meaning of Messiah — that “He shall have dominion from sea to sea.” The fathers of Confederation unanimously supported his suggestion, recognizing God’s great hand upon Canada.
The foundations upon which our nation was established are also revealed in the Preamble to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, an integral part of our Constitution. The Preamble states that “Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of law.” That’s a small sentence, but it is the necessary precursor for the kind of society to which we aspire.
If God is supreme, then policies that violate Him and His standards violate the very principles upon which Canada came into being. If policies, practices and judgments violate the equal application of law to all Canadians, those policies, those practices and those judgments violate the principles by which we Canadians — and our forefathers — chose to be governed.
We have an institution in Canada we call the Supreme Court. To be Supreme means to be over all others. It must be understood, however, that over the Supreme Court is a Supreme Being Whom we call God. His judgments are always right. He created the earth and placed us in it. He gives us everything we need for life and godliness. He’s given us a history of the past so that we can understand our heritage. He’s given us a road map for the future so we can understand where we’re going. His map tells us where the treasure is, and what hazards to avoid. He provides for all our needs along the way.
If we follow His directions, our tank will never be empty, and we won’t find ourselves going the wrong way down a one-way street.
Our national anthem, in the fourth stanza, addresses a “Ruler Supreme”, Who never makes mistakes.
Mere human beings, however, are prone to all kinds of mistakes. There was a time when the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that a woman was not a person. The Supreme Court was flat-out dead wrong, and we all know that today.
In 1929, the Privy Council at Westminster ruled that the Supreme Court of Canada was wrong, and it formally recognized the personhood of women. But God, our Ruler Supreme has always recognized the personhood of women. He declares that there is no distinction in His kingdom between men and women. All have equally disappointed Him except One. All have equal access to His justice and mercy through that same One.
There was a time when the Supreme Court of Canada also refused to recognize the personhood of native Canadians. Those justices were absolutely wrong in their judgment. Today, most Canadians recognize that we share a common heritage, regardless of our genealogy or our place of birth. Our Ruler Supreme declares that He has made all nations from One Blood. We all got off the boat together, and we all share common ancestors.
He has formed each one of us. He has put His Divine nature in each one of us. He declares that a time will come when men and women from every tribe and nation on earth will join together in joyful gratitude. That is a picture we need to hold onto by Hope and by Faith.
Today, Canadians live under the shadow of a Supreme Court torn loose from its moorings, shifted from its foundation and groping for significance while openly rejecting the only true Source of significance and purpose. The Supreme Court and many lower Courts have rejected the only Source of wisdom, the only Source of true justice, and the only Hope for mankind.
They have set out to rewrite Canada’s Constitution to suit their own fallible and changing view of man.
Today the Supreme Court of Canada refuses to recognize the personhood and the humanity of the pre-born child. The Supreme Court of Canada has chosen to ignore the medical facts surrounding pregnancy, presuming to declare a pre-born child a “non-person” — exactly the way the Supreme Court denied personhood to women, 75 years ago.
Even small children understand that a baby is a person; but our ‘lofty’ and ‘enlightened’ justices of the Court have chosen to ignore facts, in order to further their own philosophy.
Today, across our land, justices of the courts have presumed to impose their views about marriage and sexual orientation on a population that does not share those views — a population to which they will never have to answer in an election, and to whom they have no accountability.
Although they are unelected, and although they are mere mortals, subject as we all are to whims and bias, their views are elevated to the status of divine edicts — even when they violate the very constitution they are sworn to uphold.
The courts, however, do not bear sole responsibility for the tragic shift in our culture, which has resulted in the deaths of two and a half million Canadian infants since 1969.
Often the forces that move cultures are themselves ill-defined, but oppressingly effective. Neglect of responsibility, and failure to act in crisis, are the passive offences of those who value power over integrity.
Our Parliament is elected to serve Canadians, to uphold the values of Canadians and to defend our Constitution. The deaths of over 100,000 Canadian children every year should have had the undivided attention of those elected to serve us. No national project, interest or accomplishment can shine in its full radiance while those — elected to protect and defend us — allow this carnage to continue.
Rather than face this national tragedy and shame, our politicians — with a few notable exceptions — have kept quiet, hoping to avoid conflict.
The government of Canada, in an impulsive if not obsessive manner, has promoted the practice of abortion both at home and abroad, defrauding and deceiving the vulnerable — while claiming to be the protector of their rights!
Meanwhile, we — the people of Canada — in election after election have allowed those without a commitment to the most basic human right, the right to life, to continue to occupy the seats of power.
We have believed the government when it has told us — falsely — that that “Canadians want this” or that “the Constitution demands that.”
In recent federal elections, people have been under the illusion that common sense and secular pragmatism would be an adequate defence from zany and brutal attacks on family values in Canada. This has proven to be a disappointing strategy, as populists — who have taken great pains to appear neutral on matters of sexual conduct, the sanctity of human life and other family-related issues — have utterly failed Canadians.
In the push and pull of politics, there is no moral vacuum and no neutral ground! Pre-born children still perish by the thousands, and tens of thousands, and hundreds of thousands.
The concept of sacred marriage between a man and a woman seemed a secure concept only five years ago, when it was successfully defended in the House — with even the Liberals voting to defend it against all comers. How quickly they have abandoned those ideals, replacing them with compassionate-sounding phrases like ‘tolerance’ and ‘equality’.
We have become like a nation of lemmings, driven by forces we do not understand, ignoring the dangers we dare not contemplate, leaving behind familiar and time-honoured family values and hurling ourselves into an unknown sea.
The people of Canada come from a variety of ethnic and religious backgrounds, but the vast majority understand and embrace the concept that we are fashioned by a loving God, that He has plans for us, and that He cares how we live and how we treat one another.
For individuals, His instructions for life boil down to two all-encompassing lifestyle choices: The first is simply to recognize Him and love Him and the second is to love our neighbours the same way we love ourselves.
This is not a mingling of church and state, which we reject in a pluralistic society. This is the application of universal moral values in the context of public life.
All Canadians desire a real commitment to moral values from those who represent them in Ottawa. Some people talk about avoiding moral issues — but almost every issue is a moral issue.
How politicians spend your tax dollars is a moral issue. (And by the way, did you know that the sponsorship scandal is only one of the many immoral ways your money is being spent? Your tax dollars will also be used to pay a significant amount of the campaign expenses for Liberal, Conservative, NDP and Bloc Quebecois candidates across the country. That’s right! It doesn’t matter what party you belong to — Parliament agreed last year to continue to pick your pocket to help pay for their election campaigns.)
These are moral issues — and Canadians rightly are outraged that their hard-earned tax dollars are being siphoned off to Ottawa to pay for things we don’t want or need!
If it’s reasonable for voters to hold their elected representatives accountable in financial matters, why not in matters of life and death? Those who consider abortion and same-sex marriage to be matters of ‘rights’ rather than a distortion of the natural desire to live, to marry, to have children and to enjoy family life in a loving home — those people want us to abandon the discussion and accept what they call “a new reality”.
We believe, however, that there can be no lasting joy, prosperity or blessing in a land that has turned its back on the Creator. His plans for us are good. The values the CHP represents are those that have sustained tribes and nations since the beginning — the Creator’s values. They are honourable. If we follow them as a nation we can hope to find prosperity, peace and prosperity.
Those who proclaim that they worship the Creator — and especially those who adhere to the teachings of the Bible — have this promise from God:
“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sin, and heal their land.”
How many of you know in your heart of hearts that our land needs to be healed?
Our nation is suffering, our economy is in tatters, and many of our great institutions are on life support. Many of Canada’s children are neglected, abused — and very badly confused.
It has been said that we are engaged in a culture war — a war that rages across the television screens, through the courtrooms, the schoolrooms, the newsrooms and the boardrooms of this nation. It is a war that rages in the thoughts and words of parents, teachers, lawmakers and lobbyists. It is a war fought with slogans and images, with subtlety and conviction, with hidden bias and open slander.
But I tell you that the culture war in which we are engaged — this battle for the minds of our young people, this battle to determine what kind of Canada our grandchildren will inherit — is much more than a mere war of words. It’s more than a clash of philosophies. It’s more than a dispute over lifestyles, environmental issues and social structures.
The war we find ourselves in is a real war, in which real people are dying every day. Thousands of them. You will not see their faces on the evening news, but more than 2,000 Canadians die in Canada every week from induced abortions. AIDS claims hundreds more. Drug use, that wretched destroyer of minds, is rampant in our land. Suicide, now a national plague, is a natural outcome of purposelessness.
The Creator does have a purpose for each one of us. You may not yet know what good things he has prepared for you — but He does.
Men of the Skeena and Bulkley Valley! It’s time for us to rise up and assume our responsibilities! It’s time for us to speak up, to defend our wives and our little ones — from violence in our streets, from pollution in our environment, from lies and perversions in our institutions — in the media, in the schools, in the courts. Our young people, as they are growing up, need to know our history, they need to know the foundations of knowledge and wisdom, they need to understand the principles by which righteous men and women interact in the worlds of business, politics, sports, and the arts…
The great masters in literature, art and music all understood the nature of the created universe in which we live. They understood mankind’s unique responsibility within that creation… that we have a responsibility — as husbands, fathers, and grandfathers — to impart to our children a sense of wonder for God’s creation, a sense of participation in the community of Man and a sense of commitment to the well-being of our nation.
Women of the Skeena and Bulkley Valleys! Your contribution to the health and well-being of our nation is of inestimable value! As the more delicate, sensitive and compassionate side of the human family, you hold much of the future of this nation in your hands! Your ability to nurture and prepare the next generation gives them the inner strength to attempt great things — and to accomplish them. Your caring spirits brighten our homes and our communities. Your graceful touch gives a unique and sustaining beauty in our schools, our businesses, our hospitals and the institutions of government. I ask you to hold firm to the convictions you have in your hearts and help your children and your neighbours to believe in a loving and compassionate society that we cannot yet see.
If we already could see that society around us, functioning as God intended, we would not have to hope for it. We would not have to work for it. We would not have to pray for it. But now, we must hope and work and pray for it so that we can leave our children in a world better suited to their creative potential.
Don’t let others tell you that you are being too idealistic! We face, every day, realities with which we are uncomfortable. Let us never become comfortable with those things that are destroying our young people. Let us never become resigned to a dwindling and dismal future. Let’s commit ourselves to the pursuit of a culture of life, a culture of caring, a culture of devotion to the greater good of society.
You women hold the key to making Canada a tender nation with a concealed strength.
Young people! You are stepping into a world far different from the one that faced me as a teenager. The assumptions upon which you and your peers base your daily decisions are much different from those guiding the students of the past century. All of us wish to focus on the future, to find there the fulfillment of our dreams and the satisfaction of helping others to realize theirs.
There is a saying that those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it. The tragedies, the heartaches and the cruelties of the twentieth century — the rise of despots, the mass executions of dispossessed peoples, the subjugation of great nations, the unleashing of horrific destruction — all these are very likely in today’s world; all these are possible for any nation that forgets its past.
We must all learn from the past, so we can create a future of Hope.
Young people, your dreams are far too precious to abandon; your lives are far too precious to waste. You and your neighbours will shape the Canada of this century. Decide now to be ones who will fashion it after the pattern of the One who made you. Ask Him for the wisdom to do that. If you do, God has a promise for you: He says: “You will be called repairers of the breach, restorers of paths to dwell in.”
A breach is like a break in a wall or a foundation. The foundations need to be repaired before we can succeed in rebuilding our nation. The paths upon which we travel have become tangled, overgrown and rutted, blocked with debris; and so many of our fellow-citizens wander, lost and lonely — not knowing how to find a place of usefulness in society.
You can be the ones to repair the foundations. You can be the ones to clear the paths and help you fellow Canadians discover their purpose.
Before I close, I must mention Canada’s economy. Our economy in this region is crippled, with whole cities and towns reeling from unemployment and underemployment. What a blessing it is to have meaningful, productive work to do — and how discouraging to be without a job! As we commit ourselves to following the principles that underlie our great country, as we ask the Creator to heal our land, we must also ask Him to heal our economy. His vision and purpose for every one of us is to be busy with our hands and to enjoy fully the fruits of our labours. He wants every father to be able to provide for his family. He wants every single parent to be able to provide for his or her children. He desires harmony in our homes and the economic strength that accompany a shared commitment.
To this end, the Christian Heritage Party proposes a “Family-Friendly Tax Credit” of $1000 per month for every family where one parent chooses to stay home to care for their own children. This would help the economy in a variety of ways:
- First — and most important — it will allow children to have the very best care possible — from their own parent. This builds economic strength into the future through the healthy development of children and strengthening of our families.
- Second — if more parents are staying at home, this will free up significant employment opportunities for our young people, who desperately need work.
The good news is that there will be no cost to the taxpayer. The money saved on unemployment insurance and welfare will easily cover the tax credit to families.
Then we should also encourage Canadians to buy Canadian products — Canadian beef, Canadian-made clothing, tools and toys. This becomes very difficult because of price: we’re competing with slave labour in other parts of the world. But by buying Canadian, we not only support the Canadian economy — we also send a message to the sweatshops of the world that it’s NOT “alright” to oppress the poor for profit.
Canada needs a tougher foreign policy. Weak Canadian diplomacy with the United State has failed us in the softwood lumber dispute. Canadian waters have been over-fished by foreign fishing vessels. This slackness must end if we are to enjoy the resources God has blessed us with!
We talk about empty classrooms and the closure of schools. Let’s fill our classrooms, not close them! Canadians are killing off the next generation in the womb. Babies born today will need teachers tomorrow. The place that should be the safest on earth has become the most dangerous for the youngest and most vulnerable members of our society. In BC, at least one out of every four pregnancies is terminated… with all the pain, and the physical and emotional scarring that is a result. Is it any wonder that classrooms and whole schools are in danger of closing? The children we have lost are the generation that should now be buying Canadian goods, starting Canadian businesses, paying Canadian taxes and contributing to your Canadian pensions. Among them might have been the discoverer of a cure for cancer, or the inventor of a pollution-free source of energy! We must stop killing our future!
As a nation, we miss out on the blessing of our Creator when we go against His plans for us. His plans are for our good, to give us a future and Hope.
- Your vote for the CHP is a vote to protect a pre-born child from being murdered in the womb. Your vote for the CHP is a vote to protect the elderly from a health care system which is failing them and a social philosophy which is abandoning them and soon will turn on them.
- Your vote for the CHP is a vote to restore legislative authority to Parliament and to protect our Constitution from judicial activism, intent on changing the definition of marriage, lowering the age of consent and supplanting parental involvement in our children’s upbringing with state control.
- Your vote for the CHP is a challenge to decades of senseless ‘strategic’ voting and an answer to the despair felt by many voters who feel that their vote doesn’t count, and they are powerless to change the system.
- Your vote for the CHP is an endorsement of the age-old and time-honoured tradition of bringing sound, proven moral teachings into the public square — without apology or misgiving. It honours the impulse of godly men and women to rise to the occasion, to take their place in society, to stand in the gap for Truth, Justice with Compassion, and Freedom.
- Your vote for the CHP expresses your desire to lead this nation and this community by example. Your vote for the CHP rejects the lie that we can do nothing, that only lawyers are able to stand in the swirl of clashing philosophies and goals that we call politics.
- Your vote for the CHP unleashes new energies and new dynamics that will forever alter the Canadian landscape.
Thank you so much for caring. Do not be weary or lose heart. Hold on to Hope. Together we can change the world!
The Christian Heritage Party (CHP) is the only federal party with policies that support the right to life and the supremacy of God.