The Canadian Museum of Civilization is being rebranded.
Now it’s going to be the Canadian Museum of Our Own Backyard. Er, the Canadian Museum of History.
That old mandate: “To increase, throughout Canada and internationally, interest in, knowledge and understanding of and appreciation for human cultural achievements and human behaviour…”?
That’s over. It’s time to turn our gaze… inward.
The feds are going to spend $25 million to teach us Canadian history, no doubt because we weren’t listening the first time in Grade 8.
Instead of that civilization malarkey, we’ll gather all our national clichés in one convenient location: The Last Spike, Maurice Richard’s hockey sweater (le pew!), and the gag reel from This Hour Has 22 Minutes. OK, so I made that last one up. But talk about historical significance.
According to the usually informed but anonymous sources, the museum will focus on the Royal Family and the Canadian military.
Tell me this is not all part of the Harper government’s ongoing effort to put the 21st century back in the bottle and rewrite Canadian history. We’ll know what’s really going on if Museum 2.0 has a Preston Manning wing.
The new museum will use the current Museum of Civilization building, a world-class architectural homage to human civilization. Well, it will have to do. It was either that, or move it to Winnipeg, where it could take over the newly built Museum of Human Rights. After all, human rights aren’t really our business, either. Let the EU or the UN or some other foreign outfit worry about that stuff.
This here’s Canada. The Canada of Sir John A. Macdonald, Sir Robert Borden, R.B. Bennett, John Diefenbaker, Brian Mulroney and, of course, Stephen Harper. Did I leave anyone out?
Don’t get me wrong. I agree with James Moore, Minister in Charge of Turning Back the Clock, that the world needs more Canada. But we already gave the world Jim Carrey and Neil Young. What more do they want? I know. Celine Dion! We’ll give them Celine Dion!
We’ll be able to give all these great ideas to the museum, as staff is now travelling across the country, all expenses paid, to find out what we think.
Off the top of my head, I can think of a few more suggestions: The Charter of Rights. (Too civilized? Too Liberal.) The Canadian flag? (See previous item.) The Story of Medicare? The National Wheat Board? The National Film Board? The CBC? (Hmm. There’s a pattern emerging here.)
Gee, James, maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all.