For example, results of the Ipsos Reid survey show 75 per cent of Canadians asked believe the prime minister, or the Governor General, is head of state.It's a telling statistic, and I have to wonder how a misperception of our PM being the head of state may have influenced public acceptance of the legitimacy of the coalition.
All of which brings me to the point of my post. The Conservatives have been busy in recent weeks denouncing the coalition as "illegitimate" and "undemocratic". Harper himself has said:
"The opposition does not have the democratic right (to replace the Conservative government)...without your say, without your consent and without your vote"This is of course a falsehood in our constitutional monarchy. So by repeating a lie, is Harper creating ignorance, or simply feeding off it?
In either case, I think a strong case can be made for mandatory civics classes in our elementary and secondary schools. As citizens of a democratic nation, we owe it to ourselves and to future generations to take our obligations as electors seriously. As Marc Chalifoux (president of the Dominion Institute) said:
"Canadians certainly were interested by what was going on in Ottawa, but lacked in many cases the basic knowledge to form informed opinions"