A picture no longer represents a thousand words. And so it is with our Canadian Maple Leaf, even when it lies softly nestled in the green zone of our new $20 polymer based bill.
It represents 35 million people going about their every day lives, making change in the world. The new bill, however, has short changed our identity. In this article in the Globe and Mail we find out our new bills depict a Norwegian Maple not native to Canada or her glorious forests.
A symbol counts for a lot in our society. Look around and you’ll see more pictograms. Graphic symbols capture an entire instruction manual for instant knowledge on what to do. Push? Pull? Flush? Stop?
Symbols leap over barriers of language and drag entire cultures into public, world wide consciousness. We look for the assuring symbol when we shop, or verify directions.
Symbols mean speed of understanding – whether moving about in our daily lives or speeding on the information highway.
They are the shorthand to a larger, fuller story.
And so it is with our beloved Maple Leaf – the centrepoint of our flag and one of the strongest points of identification for our nation at home and afar.
Others have eagles, lions, crowns, stars, crescent moons – soaring high and proudly announcing who they are.
I. Am. Canadian. And, I have a leaf fluttering in the wind. Let’s get it right.. Let’s NOT stylize it… It’s not that complex to begin with, and it appears to be as fragile as the Canadian identity it symbolizes.
Say it isn’t so, on the mistake on Canadian dough, eh?
I’ve come to love our blue $5 bills and orange 50s and last time I saw a wad of 100s I think they were an earthy brown, or were they a glorious flag like red?
I’ve endured the taunts of “funny money” when I tried to use our coloured paper bills to buy stuff we used to covet in the US.
We plug our meters with “Loonies” and shop proudly with our ‘Twonies”, now please, let’s get our hockey flag waving, O Canada song inspiring botanical symbol right. let’s do it before we enact the decision to banish our penny soon and while we still have some ‘cents’.
Proud to be Canadian and grateful for the freedom of the press, whether it’s our money or our expression.