Nellie McClung: a Canadian hero.

Women from all around the world.

Still in many countries today, the rights of women are held inferior and women are not considered of the same equality as men.  In Canada women do have the same legal rights as men, however it has not been very long since this equality was accomplished.  In fact, in only the 20th century, there was a time of injustice and inferiority for women in Canada until the right to vote was achieved federally in 1918.  The right to vote was arduously worked for by suffragists; one notable one, a woman by the name Nellie McClung.  In the beginning only a teacher and author, Nellie McClung later became a leader of women’s suffrage and a hero of Canada.

A famous picture of Nellie McClung.

“Raised in Manitoba” (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, p. 266) as a witty and charming orator with the qualities of a leader, McClung grew to be a respected and capable woman.  However, success in all the careers of teaching, writing and even home-life did not stop McClung’s ambition.  She found a new motivation and passion for women in Canada.  “She saw men drinking away their family’s pay, and she saw women abused, uneducated and isolated, without rights to their family property or even their children” (Yvonne, Jeffery, 2011, paragraph 3) and she wanted to do something about it.  The compassion, sympathy and will to help came out of her “activist nature, Christian faith and sense of duty” (Library and Archives Canada, 2010, paragraph 2).  Her goodwill and passion for the better of the people illuminated McClung as a leader and hero of Canadian women.

Not only was McClung a person of heroic virtues, she also made many accomplishments.  She was one of the “Famous Five”Alberta women who achieved in having women acknowledged as “persons” under the law (Munroe, 2013). McClung also aided in the achievement of “women’s property rights and the Dower Act” (Munroe, 2013, paragraph 6), and ultimately succeeded in giving Canadian women a right to vote.  Nellie McClung is also a Canadian hero due to not only acting for the better of women but for all people.  She also worked for factory safety legislation, old age pensions and public health nursing services.  All these things definitely prove Nellie McClung to be a hero in Canadian’s history.

Woman’s suffrage in Canada.

Here is more information on woman’s suffrage in Canada:


Cranny, M., Jarvis, G., Moles, G., Seney, B. (2009). Horizons: Canada’s emerging identity. 2nd Ed. Don Mills, Ontario: Pearson Education Canada

Historica-Dominion Institute (2013). A Part of our Heritage… Retrieved from

Library and Archives Canada (2010). Celebrating Women’s Achievements. Retrieved from

Munroe, S. (2013). Nellie McClung. [Web long message]. Retrieved from

The Canadian Encyclopedia. (2012). Women’s Suffrage. Retrieved from

Yvonne, J. (2011). Nellie McClung. [Web long message]. Retrieved from


My family’s immigration story

From 1989 to 1995, my father worked for Nestle as the marketing manager in South Korea.  As Nestle is and was an international company, he had many opportunities to travel to different countries including Switzerland, Hong Kong, Italy, Australia and France.  He was able to gain various experiences with the workers at the different Nestle bases.    My mother was at that time serving as a missionary in Russia in an emergency hospital.  Therefore she was also able to meet people from many different countries in her missionary team.


Through those experiences my parents both gained a cross-cultural mindset.  Back in South Korea, after the two met and married, they realized they had the same heart for serving and helping needy people in countries outside of Korea.  So with that purpose my dad quit his stable job and took my mom and older brother, whom was only a year old at that time, to Canberra, Australia in 1995.  There both my mother and father received missionary training at the YWAM base; a place filled with numerous people of different races and cultures, all training and learning together.  During those years my parents and brother visited several underdeveloped places like Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand, serving and helping the people in need.  Back in Australia while working in the training centre, I was born.

To develop a new ministry in teaching Christian worldview my parents decided to move to Canada, arriving on the first month of the year 2000.  They originally planned to stay for only two years.  During those years in Canada my father studied Christian Worldview at Trinity Western University while working there as a staff in aiding international students.  Through the job he was able to obtain opportunities in helping new immigrants to the area.

Meanwhile my mother volunteered in my brother’s school which allowed her to also help the new immigrant parents of my brother’s schoolmates to adjust to their new lives.  As she helped many new immigrants she learned what those particular people needed in settling in this country — literally and also emotionally.  Later she and my dad realized the country which they wanted to work and serve in was Canada; a country filled with new immigrants in need of assistance.  They felt the cross-cultural ministry was vital in Canada and therefore applied for permanent residence, deciding to stay.


Who Really Built the CPR (Canadian Pacific Railway)?

It began with a vision to connect the whole country together, from east to west.  1881 was the beginning of the Canadian Pacific Railway with a goal to “unite Canada and Canadians from coast to coast” (Canadian Pacific, 2012, paragraph 2).  There was a plan, but who would build it?  Prime Minister MacDonald has been commended as a phenomenal prime minister for ordering the construction of such an immense project, which would later revolutionize transportation in the 19th century (Canadian Encyclopedia, 2012, paragraph 1).  Also there was William Van Horne, the man who was in charge.  However in truth, not one or two or even five people built the railway, but thousands.

The country-wide railway was required to accomplish after it became “the main promise that brought British Columbia into Confederation” (BC Archives, 2012, paragraph 1).  Not only so, but Sir John A. Macdonald “knew that a transcontinental railway was essential to the survival of Canada” (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, page 197).  So he founded the CPR Syndicate to invest and run the railway.  As the prime minister of Canada, Macdonald’s contribution did not stop there.  Building a railway over such a vast and risky land was extremely expensive but Macdonald had strong hope for it to succeed and therefore supplied government funds to the CPR.  Thus he was an important figure in the railway, however only #3 in significance.

Previously mentioned, Macdonald gathered a group of investors.  In two years he found James J. Hill, George Stephen, president of the Bank of Montreal, and Hudson’s Bay Company’s Donald Smith (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, page 197).  The three men created the CPR Syndicate–now a business.  Although they set up the business and invested enormous amounts of money, the CPR Syndicate should not be greatly credited for in the building of the railway–in this rating, placed as #4.  Firstly because they did not have any physical contribution in the building of the railway.  Adding to the fact they changed the original planned route of the railway in desire for “total control of the project and the land the railway would cross” (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, page 199); which went through difficult and unknown mountain ranges in British Columbia.  This increased the difficulty of the construction within the time limit of ten years.  However they shall receive some commendation for hiring William Van Horne as the general manager, whom will be discussed next.

William Van Horne, an ambitious and forceful man “brought a high level of drive and efficiency into[the] construction” (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, page 197).  He  quickened the pace and was brilliant in the work.  And despite the money shortages and problematic moutains, Van Horne completed the CPR five years ahead of schedule, on November 1885 (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, page 201).  He managed the ‘impossible’; however is only #2 on this list.  For although Van Horne organized and lead the operation, the people who really built the railway were the workers. “Thousands of men were needed to build the railway…[and over] 35 000 workers were employed” (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, page 201).  These people, many from China, worked with extreme dedication and determination, even under the terrible living and working conditions.  Risking their lives several workers worked with dynamite to blast through mountain, and a numerous amount of those men ended up either severely injured or killed.  Those workers were the true builders of the railway, and therefore are acknowledged as #1 in this ranking. To know more about the whole process of the Canadian Pacific Railway, here is video: References: BC Archives (2012). Canadian Pacific Railway. Retrieved from Canadian Encyclopedia (2012). Building The Canadian Pacific Railway. Retrieved from Canadian Pacific (2012). Our History. Retrieved from Cranny, M. Jarvis, G. Moles, G. & Seney, B. (2009). Horizons: Canada’s emerging identity. 2nd Ed. Don Mills, Ontario: Pearson Education Canada

What was the Bison Hunt to the Metis?

According to Wijewardena, “Bison are colossal creatures that travel in herds” (2012, paragraph 1).  But to the Métis, they were much more.  For the Métis–people of both European and First Nation descent–“the bison was a virtual supermarket, providing all the necessities of life” (Canada Hall, 2010, paragraph 8).

Taking place in every spring and fall, the bison hunt was “the biggest event of the year” (Garneau, 1813, paragraph 2) in the Métis community.  Bison not only provided meat and hides, but every part of the bison was used; such as the bone which was used for marrow.  The hides made into buffalo robes and the meat made into pemmican brought in income as it was sold to the North West Company (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009).

“Besides being an important food-gathering activity, the hunt was a social occasion that brought together families who saw each other only a few times a year” (Canada Hall, 2010, paragraph 5).  Also due to the fact a hunt was only possible in large groups, the bison hunt lead the Métis to become a closely knitted society.  Every person was required to contribute.  Even the women and children held a significant role: They cleaned the hides, dried the meat and prepared pemmican (Young & Préfontaine, 2003).  This “fostered a strong sense of community [and] pride” (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009, page 142).

Since bison were such dangerous creatures and travelled in large herds, hunting them was not simple.  Order and organization were crucial in a bison hunt.  Therefore there was an elected captain whom had absolute authority during the hunt (Cranny, Jarvis, Moles & Seney, 2009).  If any were to slack off or act without permission, the person would be punished.  With the amount of practice and discipline in preparation for the bison hunts, the Métis’ military organization improved greatly (Young & Préfontaine, 2003) and respect and authority were highly prioritized.

Because of the bonding between the women and children while making pemmican, the family relations were more matriarchal (Canada Hall, 2010, paragraph 9).  This was another significant way bison shaped the society and culture of the Métis.  And because of the great influence, by only reading the format and regulations of the bison hunt there are many things one can learn about the Métis.


Canada Hall (2010). Metis Bison Hunters Retrieved from

Cranny, M., Jarvis, G., Moles, G. Seney, B. (2009). Horizons: Canada’s emerging identity. 2nd Ed. Don Mills, Ontario: Pearson Education Canada

Young, P. & Préfontaine, D. (2003). Bison Hunting. Retrieved from

Wijewardena, H. (2012). Bison to the Métis. [Web log message]. Retrieved from

What are Victorian Values and Why are they Important?

Have you ever heard of “Victorian Values”?   And do you know what they are?  In Socials class we learned what Victorian Values are and why they are important.  To start off, I’ll explain to you.

Victorian Values were influenced from Queen Victoria (1837 – 1901), during the Victorian Era, and reined in the British Empire.    The Christian Church, morals, hard work and personal success were much prioritized.  Victorian Values also include duty, seriousness, modesty and proper behaviour.  Victorians also cared greatly about social class and status and believed British people were above everyone else.  Adding to that, women were pressed to stay at home.

Here is a short and simple video made by students trying to show an example of how Victorian Values affected people’s lives:

I am a person of deep morals and values.  Some of mine are similar to Victorian Values, such as hard work and personal success.  I also agree seriousness and modesty should always be kept in a person’s conscience, thought not necessary to stress all of the time.  My greatest priority is Christianity and I believe morals are essential for this world.  I don’t exactly understand what duty is and proper behaviour can be defined very differently by many people, but I think they aren’t important.

It may seem like I am similar to a Victorian, but there are significant differences between my values and Victorian Values.  First of all, I strongly disagree in the class system and absolutely despise it.  I cannot stand the ignorance of people who believe they are more valuable and precious than their fellow human beings, like the Victorians.  I deeply believe every human being was created in equal love and value by God, which is supposed to be a strong moral for Christians.  I also try my hardest to not be proud, as the Victorians were, but instead have humility and live to serve others.  I hope you can now see the difference between a Victorian and me.

In the British Empire, Victorian Values were definitely prioritized and had enormous influence on the people’s lives.  But it did not disappear with the Victorian Era.  I think Victorian Values are still alive.  For example, even in Canada where we stress “equality” there is still a class system, although it is not as strong.  In many parts of the world, family background is thought of as very important.  There are also laws and regulations that put limits and definitions on proper behaviour and duty; for example it is a Canadian citizen’s duty to vote.  In schools as well, teachers ask their students what success means to them and how they wish to obtain it.   Victorians also put much effort into decorating their churches, which we can still see.  I imagine there are many more examples of the Victorian influence which still remain in today’s society.

Just in case you are not sure of what a class system exactly is and looks like, here is a simple presentation that may help you:


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How far have women really achieved to true “equality” with men?

Sexism is a very large and sensitive topic.  It is also crucial to be discussed for it is a huge prejudice that has poisoned this world and society for a very long time.  I believe people, men AND women, are completely equal in value and should be treated with equal respect.  However, that was not the case in the 19th Century and even in this 21st Century, is not the case in many parts of the world.

Before 200 years, women had almost no rights.  Even Canada was not as free or fair for women like it is now.  In the 1800’s, women could not be independent because they had to rely on the men in their family for wealth and status.  Today in 2012 women can support themselves and be independent, for now their property and reputation depend on their own efforts, not their husband’s or fathers’.  Women have fought for this privilege and responsibility as well as many other rights, including the rights to vote and divorce.  Not only rights, but dignity and self-esteem were gained for women as the ideas and laws of the countries they were living in developed.

This is an official opinion on equality between women and men by the Canadian International Development Agency:

But this is still not the situation in many parts of the world.  Unbelievable as it is, even in this 21st Century there are numerous countries where women are legally treated as inferior to men.  Sadly many men, and maybe even women, stubbornly believe that women were created to serve men and are not as valuable.  In the worst situations, women are treated like how they used to be treated in the 19th Century in North America; forced to live with basically no guaranteed rights.

Although Canada and other 1st world countries have developed a lot in terms of equality in gender, there are still biases in favour of men.  For example, in a situation where a man and a woman of equal ability and level do the exact same job, the man receives a higher wage.  Another is the concept of a “dowry”, when the bride’s family must give gifts and money to the groom’s family in a marriage, still exists even in some 1st world countries.  It is not exactly a bias, but disrespect towards the woman.  Most countries in Asia continue on the tradition of dowries because it is a tradition.  However a dowry can frankly be explained as measuring the value of the bride in forms of money and gifts.  The people may not realize the negative meaning it carries and not take it as seriously, but it is an example of the deep-seated biases humans have had since centuries ago.


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Politics: Hard topic. The Past: Fun Topic. North America: Canadian Topic. The Political Past of North America: This Topic.

So in Socials class, we have finally moved on to another, new unit!  Hurrah!  We’re studying about the past of North America; how it started off, developed, what was different then, compared to now, etc.  This is my first post for this unit, and the topic I chose is comparing North Amercia to the 1800s and now.

To make it simple, I will take one major point of to focus on: the political view.  So how was North America politically different in the 19th Century?  First of all, if we’re talking about BEFORE the War of 1812, then most of North America, including what is now the U.S., was controlled by the British.  But AFTER the War of 1812, there were some significant changes made.  United States became its own country and created their own democratic government, which was a huge deal.

North America, one could tell, was much different just by looking at the map from that time.  First of all Alaska was Russian territory, and the Spanish had land in the States; mostly where California is today.  There were almost no provinces in Canada; only the North-Western Territory, Newfoundland, P.E.I., Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Rupert’s Land, and Upper and Lower Canada.  Also the labelled “area of settlement” was only on the east side of the continent, which was incorrect.  To put it simple North America’s land was really divided during the 1800’s.

You can visually see the segregated land if you click here:

Canada at that time was divided into Upper Canada and Lower Canada, and was still under British control.  The settlers there were mostly colonists or other skilled workers from other European countries.  Although it was supposedly claimed to have a completely new and free life with much potential, many people were disappointed to find that there was still a kind of class system like the ones in Europe.  Because of the American Revolution, Britain tightened its ties with its colonies in North America, also with the similar laws.

In Upper Canada, where mostly British people lived, there was a “Family Compact”, compared to the “Upper Class” in Britain, had most of the good land, wealth and power that came with it.  In Lower Canada, there was a Château Clique, which could remind you of the aristocrats France used to have.  Those wealthy people made it very difficult for other colonists who had no good land left to buy and work on.  It was unfair for others, similar to the old society in Britain.  At that time there were also not as many guaranteed rights and freedom for the average civilian.  It contrasts to Canada today, where it is known to be a “free country”.

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Global warming is REAL…and it’s happening.

Global warming is real and its happening.

So first of all, what is global warming?  Global warming is the increase of the Earth’s climate; aka climate change.  The temperature is increasing and it is starting to,  or already is, seriously affecting the whole environment of the earth.  Why is this happening one would ask.  The largest cause is the “greenhouse effect”.  It is when greenhouse gases trap the heat from the sun in the atmosphere and can only leave slowly, therefore increasing the temperature of the globe inside of it.

Canada is already being touched by the climate change.  If in 2012, Canada is beginning to change…how different would it be later?  Let me make a prediction.

In 2050 Canada might…

  • Have a much warmer climate
  • Have lost even more forests because the hotter it is, the more defencless forests become to dangers such as pine beetles and forest fires
  • Not have as much snow and ice in the north
  • Have a much larger population for it will be one of the cooler countries
  • Have more people moving to the north
  • Have gained profitable industries with hunting and fishing up north

In 2100 Canada might…

  • Be one of the most populated countries in the world
  • Have lost people in the Interior Plains due to the frequent natural disasters
  • Have become smaller landwise due to the risin water levels of the ocean surround them; then people cannot live on the edges anymore
  • Have lost people in the south due to the increasing heat
  • Have most of the population living in the Northern Territories
  • Be running out of fresh water
  • Not be the only country to have lost and continues to lose many people due to sicknesses caused by heat changes
  • Have lost many of its plants and crops
  • Have lost most of its trees — lost its main export
  • Have lost its industry in agriculture
  • Have lost many of the northern animals who lived in the cold climate

  • Have even lost its hunting/fishing industry due to animals going extinct
  • Be going through an economic depression

Wow.  Canada will have gone through a lot…well that is if global warming and climate change only continues to get worse.  Since there are many possibilities with the effects from global warming, I’ll sum it up into the major changes I believe may happen.

The 3 largest effects climate change will have on the environment:

  1. Most of the biodiversity will be lost by 2100, therefore most of the natural resources will be scarce (fresh water, trees, clean air, fossil fuels, etc.).
  2. The Canadian Arctic and tundra and sea ice will have shrunk which affects all the wildlife living on the tundra and the algae under the sea ice which is the foundation of the ocean food chain.
  3. There will be so many more natural disasters (floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, avalanches, droughts, etc.).

The 3 largest effects climate change will have on the lifestyles of people:

  1. Canada will be one of the most desired and populated countries, with most of the population living up north
  2. Many more people will be either killed, infected or endangered with the infection of the numerous diseases caused by climate change.  Not only due to the heat waves, but insects carrying diseases migrate to Canada as the climate becomes warmer.
  3. Many people will be in poverty; also starving and thirsty for fresh water.


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Canada vs. South Korea

        In Socials class these past few days we have been studying the five themes of geography and applying them to Canada.  This post is not only going to be about Canada, but also another country of my choice.  I choose South Korea.  Why?  Well because as a Canadian raised South Korean I’m unfamiliar with my own background so it makes this assignment much more interesting for me.  I also have a reliable source; my parents.

   First of all the five themes of geography:

Starting from location South Korea is much different from Canada.  Canada is in the western part of the world in North America, while Korea is on the eastern part in Asia.  The difference in location would lead to differences in the environment which would cause differences in the way the way people live.

Canada is obviously a huge country with tons of land and plants, labeling it as the country with the most beautiful nature in the world; at least in my opinion.  And since the main industry for export is trees, we don’t have many factories, allowing the air to stay clean and the skies to shine bright blue.  Unlike South Korea which is a very small country and has many factories so the air is much more polluted.  But it is more urban and modern than Canada.

Since it is more urban than Canada, the movement in South Korea is also much faster.  Whether it be the people, the vehicles, the ideas, technology, etc., it all moves and spreads very fast.  Especially the internet and technology is one of the fastest in the world!  Not to mention South Korea has one of the best public transit systems in the world.  Canada on the other hand seems to be on the slow side and the public transit isn’t very developed.  I know from experience.

This is a person’s experience with public transportation in Korea:

Like mentioned above, the landscape and environment of Canada and Korea is different and the people are different, so obviously the way the two interact are different.  Canada has many parks, farms and the streets are covered with trees.  Korea does not have many trees lying around like Canada. But there are countrysides where the crops and animals are grown very naturally with sincerity by the elders (most farmers are elders or farmers from long generation families).  North America uses more unnatural things, such as chemicals, on their plants and animals than Korea does.  Another difference between the human/environment interaction is that Canadians are well known to recycle and sort out their papers, from cans, from garbage, especially because there’s a developed system where people get money back for recycling.  In South Korea there isn’t much of a recycling system like that so almost nobody, I believe, recycles; everything is thrown into the garbage can.

All these differences in the five themes of geography between Canada and South Korea are distinct.  Therefore the mindsets and values of the people are different as well.  Canadians prioritize free time and are very relaxed, while South Koreans are always looking out for new trends.  But one country is not better than the other, for both have their pros and cons.  The overall condition and whole united environment of the world is what I think much more important.

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“History = His Story”

The word history, if you think about it, can be looked at as “His story”.  I believe history did come from”His story”.  People who believe in that theory mostly say it started from the story of Jesus Christ, therefore it was “His story”. That actually makes sense.

There is ‘herstory’ now though which is written from a women’s point of view.  That makes me realize that most, or even all, of the world’s history is written in males’ point of views.  Coming up with herstory doesn’t seem that necessary, but it is important to see from all perspectives.  The word history I think can remain but that does not mean women should write their stories too.

People are more open-minded nowadays and there are many ways to get your side of the story heard.  You can start by telling people who can tell more people; that’s how rumours spread.  Or write to the newspaper, government officials, etc.   There also media sources, for example the news and interviews, that give people a chance to talk.

All those opportunities show that some people have an open ear.  I’m one of those people who believe all people involved, in whatever the subject, should be heard for more accuracy and understanding of the story.  Then our history would be much more detailed and honest.


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