In a perfect world, the passing of a twisted 1960s icon who came to embody the very image of the flower child gone horribly, terribly wrong, would have gone unnoticed. In a perfect world, the passing of those small town heroes like Providence Bay’s Glen McDougall, individuals whose lives well lived have enriched those of so many of their fellow community members, would be heralded from the rooftops and mourned across the land.
But alas, we live in a society so obsessed with a near-religious fervour for celebrity culture, one that deems fitting the celebration of the death of those monsters who live among us—monsters whose barbarous actions have reverberated in the public mind for more than half a century—that it is the swastika emblazoned visage that greets us from the front pages of the national and international media.
Mr. McDougall deserves to be remembered for the light and laughter he helped to bring to the world not only through his many years of entertaining country music lovers across the North, but also in how he helped to celebrate the accomplishment of his fellow country music performers through his work with the Northern Ontario Country Music Association.
So much more deserving of our attention and focus are those men and women who give selflessly of themselves to better the world around them and who bring light to the darkness of our days.
Any one of us could likely fill the pages of this entire newspaper with the names and images of those in our Island communities who have passed on in recent memory who would be more deserving of our attention than a monster whose claim to fame was to have induced impressionable drug addled children to commit murder and mayhem on innocent folks who had done them no ill.
As we head into this Christmas season, a time filled with the spirit of giving and good will toward our fellow travellers in this oh-so-imperfect world, let us push the names of monsters from our minds and dwell on those whose light has shone brightly as they travelled along with us through life, for they have left the world a brighter, happier, better place in their passage in having shared the light of their lives with us.
Statistical analysis has shown us that the notoriety of monsters only begets more monsters, it seems the more we dwell on the evil that erupts among us, the more minds are suborned by their poison and seek to emulate their horrific notoriety.
So let us instead hold the Glen McDougalls, the Hardy Peltiers and the Jean McCauleys in our hearts and minds. Let us celebrate their lives well lived and the joy, love and music they brought into our lives, and let us consign the names and visages of the monsters among us to the dustbins of oblivion.