Lester B. Pearson Essay

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Lester B. Pearson Essay
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  • University/College:
    University of California

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 1261

  • Pages: 5

Lester B. Pearson

Canada, a nation that stretches from sea to sea with rich natural resources, economic stability, and persisting technological developments, a prosperous nation fabricated by great leaders, one of them being Lester B.Pearson. He was a Canadian professor, historian, civil servant, statesman, diplomat, and politician who won a Nobel Prize for Peace in 1957 for resolving the Suez Canal crisis.1 He served as the 14th Prime Minister of Canada, in which his liberal minority government “left Canadians with a legacy of peacekeeping, humanitarianism and a strong sense of international responsibility that lives on to this day.”2 His introduction of the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism had brought sweeping changes to the language policy in Canada, making it the bilingual country it is today. The red and white flag in which Canada is recognized by, was introduced by Pearson, that “represents all the citizens of Canada without distinction of race, language, belief or opinion.”3 He is the most influential Canadian of the 20th century because he pursued social welfare programs, promoted peace, and the unity of a diverse ethnic nation.

For five years in office, Pearson implemented programs long discussed, but never adopted. Among them included, but is not limited to Medical care, pensions, education, and a generalized “war on poverty”. The Medicare act expanded the policy of the Hospital Insurance and Diagnostic Services Act to universal health care. Under the terms of this act, all “insured persons” are entitled to receive “insured services” without copayment in which Ottawa would pay for 50% of provincial health costs.4 Prior to this point, doctors could charge what they wanted and bankruptcy to pay for health care was common.

Reference

The Nobel Foundation , Nobelprize. Last modified 2013. Accessed February 21, 2014. http:// www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1957/pearson-bio.html. 2

Leung , John. Lester B. Pearson, the Greatest Canadian. Gautlet, , sec. Opinions, November 11, 2004. http://www.thegauntlet.ca/story/lester-b-pearson-greatest-canadian (accessed February 22, 2014). 3

Government of Canada, National Flag of Canada. Last modified August 30, 2013.Accessed February 24, 2014. http://www.pch.gc.ca/eng/1363356053583/1363342021822. 4

Government of Canada, Canada Health Care System (Medicare). Last modified December 9, 2012. Accessed February 22, 2014. http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hcs-sss/medi-assur/index-eng.php.

Chong 3

Towards social welfare in Canada is not limited to Medicare, but he also introduced the Canadian Pension Plan and Student loans during his time as Prime Minister. The Canadian Pension Plan is a social insurance program that provides pensions and benefits when contributors retire, become disabled, or die. When it was first established, contribution rates were set at 1.8% of an employee’s gross income per year, with a maximum contribution limit.5 Pearson also introduced student loans which allow easily accessible loans for post-secondary students who demonstrates financial need; it is a quick way of obtaining money. Without this type of credit, there would be fewer resources available to students or their families. Access to education for individuals can potentially end their family roots of poverty as education enables a greater opportunity for higher salaries and career opportunities. Lester B. Pearson has ultimately helped to improve the lives of Canadians because he introduced Medicare, the Canadian Pension Plan, and Student loans which represent the high point of the Canadian welfare state that generations of social thinkers had dreamed about.

Lester B. Pearson has established Canada’s reputation as a nation dedicated in ensuring world peace as demonstrated through his work at the United Nations, dealing with the Suez Crisis. The Suez Crisis is considered to be “one of the most controversial and convulsive episodes of the 20th century.”7 It was a diplomatic and military confrontation in 1956 that shattered the unity of the Western alliance, divided the Commonwealth, undermined the United Nations and threatened to bring the Middle East in a large-scale war. Although Canada had no direct economic, military or political involvement, Lester B. Pearson became one of the most influential figure in resolving this issue. He proposed the world’s first ever large-scale peacekeeping force, realizing that “Peace is far more than ceasing to fire.”8 He managed to The Nobel Foundation

Persuade the world assembly through his decades of experience and vast web of connections to make this a reality. A year later in 1957, Pearson was awarded with the Nobel Peace Prize, making him the first Canadian recipient of this award. As a result of his role in creating the United Nations first modern peacekeeping force, he pointed the way to the future of the United Nations sponsored peacekeeping missions that would become the proud centerpiece of Canada’s military and diplomatic activities around the world.

From the creation of the national flag of Canada to establishing the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism, Lester B. Pearson has helped to unite people of ethnic diversity in Canada. Pearson introduced the new national flag of Canada, which is truly “a symbol of the nation’s unity, for it, beyond any doubt, represents all the citizens of Canada without distinction of race, language, belief or opinion,” stated by the Honorable Maurice Bourget, Speaker of the Senate.9 However, the change came at the cost of an ensuing controversy over on the flag design, not whether there should be a new flag.

Where some individuals such as John Diefenbaker demanded that the flag should honor the “founding races” with the Union Jack, Pearson insisted on a design symbolizing allegiance to Canada and devoid of colonial association.10 One of the most influential commissions in Canadian history was the Royal Commission on bilingualism and Biculturalism which brought great changes to the federal and provincial language policy. Lester B Pearson superseded it to “inquire into and report upon the existing state of bilingualism and biculturalism in Canada” in response to the growing unrest among French Canadians in Quebec.11 As a result, this commission has made Canada the bilingual nation it is today. Through heated debates over changing the Canadian flag and superficial chaos of the Royal Commission

In conclusion, Lester B. Pearson is the most is the most influential Canadian of the 20th century because he pursued social welfare programs, promoted peace, and the unity of a diverse ethnic nation. During his term a Prime Minister, his Liberal minority government implemented programs that was a generalized “war on poverty” through his introduction of the Canadian Pensions Plan, Medicare, and student loans. As the president of the United Nations General Assembly, his solution of establishing a peacekeeping force has ultimately resolved the Suez Canal Crisis, in which he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace as a result. Pearson has also made Canada the bilingual nation that it is today through the Royal Commission on bilingualism and Biculturalism, in response to disputes in amongst French Canadians in Quebec. The national flag of Canada in which Canadians live under “represents all the citizens of Canada without distinction of race, language, belief or opinion.”13 Lester B. Pearson has left Canadians with a legacy of peacekeeping, humanitarianism and a strong sense of international responsibility that lives on to this day.

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Lester B. Pearson Essay

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail
Lester B. Pearson Essay
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  • University/College:
    University of Arkansas System

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 1082

  • Pages: 4

Lester B. Pearson

Over the years, there have been many Great Canadians. Whether they have had numerous amazing accomplishments, or only one very grave one, they are defined as a huge role in the country. Many Great Canadians have changed Canada in a good way, or have done things for the citizens. Lester B. Pearson’s efforts and accomplishments as Prime Minister helped improve Canada. He helped create Canada’s reputation as peacekeepers. When he felt Canadians needed it, he brought Universal Health Care into Canada. Lester B. Pearson also decided to get American car dealerships in Canada. “Canadians are the world’s best-known peacekeepers.”1 When a country is in need of support, Canada is there to save them. Canada has had a leading role when it comes to lending a helping hand. Not always, has Canada been the country to count on. Lester B. Pearson helped create Canada’s reputation as peacekeepers. “Canada has contributed soldiers, and sometimes civilians to every major United Nation’s peacekeeping operation.”2 Canada is very dedicated when it comes to helping other countries.

Everyday citizens are willing to help out with a country in need. Canadians are not known for being peacekeepers because their government has told them to go support a country, they do it because they want too. They respect and help others who need it by volunteering their time and providing support. Sometimes without even leaving the country. Programs have been created not just by the government, but everyday citizens, where people can donate food, clothing, or money to other countries who need it most. “Lester B. Pearson was given the Nobel Peace Prize for his part in the UN’s dramatic sending of a peacekeeping force to the Middle East at the time of the Suez Crisis.”3 Even though Canada had no connections or fears for their country because of the Suez Crisis, they knew that many people and countries would have been badly effected by it. Canada wanted to stop a war from breaking out.

Lester B. Pearson had a huge role during this time, working at a fast pass to try to stop it as well as supporting the countries in need. In the end, Canada’s hard work and devotion payed off. Lester B. Pearson as well as Canadian’s, strongly supported peacekeeping, which helped create and improve Canada’s reputation. There are many things Canada has that other countries do not, which makes Canada unique. One thing Canada has is Universal Health Care. Some countries do not think they need it, or they just prefer the way things are already. Lester B. Pearson brought Health Care into Canada when he felt Canadians needed it. “Until the 1950s, Canadians got medical treatment with cold cash, private insurance, or charity.”4 Some countries still have to pay for their Health Care and other medical care. Some things regarding health can be very expensive. Before Universal Health Care in Canada, some citizens would not be able to afford medical care.

Introducing Health Care in Canada helped many people out who needed it, as well as saved some people from anything seriously terrible they were not able to afford it fixed. “Lester B. Pearson’s government negotiated federal-provincial agreements and saw the legislation pass, leading to Canada-wide Medicare in 1966.”5 Lester B. Pearson worked hard to try to get Universal Health Care in Canada. He did it to help the citizens and create a better Canada as well. Being healthy is always a good thing for everyone. Some people did not approve of the idea at first, but it benefitted many citizens. When thinking about ways to help the citizens of Canada live better, healthier lives, Universal Health Care was a great way to make sure Canadians were all right and had support where they need it most. Every country wants a strong, stable economy. More new products being built expands businesses and creates new jobs, which means more money for the country and citizens. Prosperity is the goal. To obtain that goal, countries and leaders have to think of new ways to reach it.

When Canada wanted to create a better economy, Lester B. Pearson decided to get American Car dealerships into Canada, creating the Automotive Agreement (Auto Pact). “The agreement helped secure the foundations for Canadian manufacturing and industry.”6 Creating a strong foundation for the economy of Canada improved many things. It protected the country if anything bad were to happen and made it easier to repair the country back to normal. A countries look, or reputation also depends on its economy. When a country has prosperity, people from other countries will want to visit, earning more money from foreigners as well. “The Auto Pact helped strengthen the relationship between Canada and the US.”7 At the time, Canada and the US were not very close because of Cold War tensions between the two.

The Auto Pact helped settled those tensions and made Canada and the US a lot closer, which strengthened their countries as well. Canada could now rely on the US, and the US could do them same with them. Lester B. Pearson’s action in creating the Auto Pact helped to build prosperity in Canada, which created a stronger, more wealthy economy. Lester B. Pearson’s efforts and accomplishments as Prime Minister helped improve Canada. Pearson had helped create Canada’s reputation as peacekeepers. He brought Health Care to Canada. Lester B. Pearson also got American car dealerships to come to Canada. There have been many Great Canadians over the years, but Lester B. Pearson has proven to be one of the best.

Bibliography
CBoC. “End of an Era? International Challenges to the Auto Pact.” The Conference board of Canada. http://www.conferenceboard.ca/e-library/abstract.aspx?did=150 (accessed January 16, 2013).

Crane, David. “Canada-US Automotive Product Agreement.” eLibrary. http://elibrary.bigchalk.com/ (accessed January 16, 2013).

Junior Canadian Encyclopedia. “United Nations.” eLibrary. http://elibrary.bigchalk.com/ (accessed January 12, 2013).

The Historian-Dominion Institute. “Health Care.” 101 Things Canadians Should Know About Canada. http://www.101things.ca/topten.php?item=9 (accessed January 15, 2013).

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