The Greatest Canadian

Who is The Greatest Canadian?

  • Dr. Frederick Banting

    Votes: 2 5.4%
  • Alexander Graham Bell

    Votes: 2 5.4%
  • Don Cherry

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Tommy Douglas

    Votes: 2 5.4%
  • Terry Fox

    Votes: 15 40.5%
  • Wayne Gretzky

    Votes: 5 13.5%
  • Sir John A. MacDonald

    Votes: 4 10.8%
  • Lester Pearson

    Votes: 1 2.7%
  • David Suzuki

    Votes: 1 2.7%
  • Pierre Elliott Trudeau

    Votes: 5 13.5%

  • Total voters
    37

Keeper

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So you've all seen the ads on the CBC, and the first, two-hour premier aired this evening. They listed the top-50 nominees (vote-getters) in order and then ended with the top-10 in alphabetical order.

Over the next few weeks, they'll do hour-long bios on each of the top-10's during which you can vote for any of the 10. Similarily, I'm curious as who TTP would vote as The Greatest Canadian.

Below, I will list the top-10 with a short bio and photo. Please refrain from posting until they are all listed. Then feel free to vote & discuss.

Alphabetically . . .

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DR FREDERICK BANTING 1891-1941

With Dr. Charles Best, he succeeded in isolating and purifying insulin, the hormone secreted by the pancreas which regulates the level of sugar in the blood. Their discovery, for which they were awarded the 1923 Nobel Prize, led to the treatment of diabetes.
 

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ALEXANDER GRAHAM BELL 1847-1922

His interest in teaching the deaf led indirectly to his invention of the telephone, an event that transformed the way the world communicates. A tireless inventor with a philanthropic bent, Bell funded the Aerial Experiment Association in Nova Scotia.
 

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TOMMY DOUGLAS 1904-1986

A childhood bone disease impressed on him the need to make medical help a right, not a privilege. As leader of North America's first socialist government, he introduced groundbreaking social reforms leading to the creation of Medicare and a national pension plan.
 

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TERRY FOX 1958-1981

After losing a leg to cancer, he set out on his 1980 Cross-Canada Marathon of Hope, raising millions for research and inspiring millions to follow suit every year. He gave the disease a human face and when he died at 23, all Canada was united in its admiration and sorrow.
 

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WAYNE GRETZKY 1961-

Number 99, an all-time points champion had skill, savvy and class that lifted hockey to new heights. In the 1980s, ‘The Great One' dominated Canada's national game and became a national ambassador for a sport -- and a nation.
 

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SIR JOHN A. MACDONALD 1815-1891

A brilliant politician, he steered the ship of Confederation deftly into port, coaxing the two solitudes of Québec and Ontario to co-operate in supporting the vessel. A man who loved books, babies and booze, often ruthless, often compassionate; he was Canada's fallible, friendly giant.
 

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LESTER PEARSON 1897-1972

Canada's foremost diplomat, he won the 1957 Nobel Prize for Peace. In giving Canadians a new flag, the statesman and distinguished public servant also gave them many reasons both national and international, to wave it proudly.
 

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DAVID SUZUKI 1936-

His work on the fruit fly led the respected geneticist to worry about nature's vulnerability. As host of The Nature of Things, he continues to alert us to those worries. From toxic lakes to rain forests, he has shown Canadians and the world an environment in crisis. Now, his foundation is trying to help halt the damage.
 

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PIERRE ELLIOTT TRUDEAU 1919-2000

He gave Canadians their Constitution, Charter of Rights, official bilingualism and a new word: Trudeaumania. With his razor-sharp intellect and haughty charisma, he towered over our political and cultural landscape, earning passionate adulation among admirers and deep contempt among opponents.
 

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OK, that rounds out the ten. Go at it. I'll leave the poll open indefinitely.

This CBC project is extremely interesting. I look forward to seeing how it pans out on TTP as well. They're all excellent nominees, but who'll win?
 

Dial 9-1-1

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I think that's 10, Keeper. All worthy candidates, but the Don Cherry one is a joke. Cherry has never represented all Canadians and his bigotry for everything non-Canadian (i.e. European) isn't very Canadian at all. Maybe top 10 Klansmen.

My top 3
Graham-Bell
Fox
Pearson
 

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I suppose it should be noted how the nominees were chosen.

CBC has been running their website all summer long where you were able to nominate your Greatest Canadian. That is, you weren't given a list to choose from -- you had to type one in yourself. Granted they have an extensive list of possible nominees, but Cherry wasn't even listed on it (you'll notice the bios I posted are from this list -- hence nothing for Cherry). Therefore, you can conclude that there were many, many people who were thinking of him all on their own. Perhaps not thinking very hard, but I guess it's the effort that counts.

It's so difficult to choose, but my order is:

1. Terry Fox
2. Lester B. Pearson
3. David Suzuki
4. Tommy Douglas
5. Pierre Elliot Trudeau
6. Sir John A. MacDonald
7. Wayne Gretzky
8. Alexander Graham Bell
9. Dr Frederick Banting
10. Don Cherry
 

simon

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Cherry is an unfortunate inclusion on this list

one who is overlooked (although its not fair to say since he was eligible) is Major-General Sir Isaac Brock.

all he did was make sure the American invasion of Canada did not go according to their plan. an interesting feature on him was shown a few months ago on the "Canadian History" show aired on the Knowledge network. a pretty neat story. he would have taken my vote


based on who is on the list i'd hafta go with Tommy Douglas, no question. every time i got kicked in the head playing soccer (thank you Izzat) id walk right into the emergency room and have my ear sewn back on without any questions asked. it may not be a perfect health system but it is not that bad
 

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Simon, but what do you make of this?
Pierre Berton discussed Brock briefly during the show, which aired on Oct. 17, stating that Brock did not belong on a list of great Canadians because he was "British to the core" and couldn't wait to leave Canada.
It's difficult to see someone as The Greatest Canadian when he doesn't even see himself as Canadian. I mean, you wouldn't see Gilles Duceppe being eligible would you?
 

simon

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i cannot agree with you an that. at the time, the militray was completely under Bristish control, yes, but so were the subjects living in Canada...all "British". and until 1982 we lived under British law to which you could argue we were of the same status as the folks in 1812.

having said that its fair to say that what Brock did for Canada at the time was worthy of him being considered a Canadian hero. i will admit it is a somewhat muddy argument, but nonetheless, what he did for Canada is quite remarkable.

secondly, Quebec is a part of Canada and Gilles Ducepe could be on the list. i have no biases towards Quebecers and feel its the mionority of them who give the people living there the "bad rap"
 

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I suppose, for me, it's not the techical aspect of whether they are or are not Canadian, but where their heart is.

Regardless, I certainly respect Brock's contribution and successes.
 

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Keeper said:
I suppose, for me, it's not the techical aspect of whether they are or are not Canadian, but where their heart is.
then i think you have helped make my point :). regardless, it would have been nice to see him in the top 10.
 

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