Hundreds leave tributes to Jack Layton on

Jack Layton, Maher Arara and Monia Mazigh attend Rideau Institute dinner, 2008

Jack Layton, Maher Arar and Monia Mazigh attend a Rideau Institute dinner, 2008

Dear supporter,

Jack Layton was a friend of the peace movement — just look at the more than 300 moving tributes left by supporters for him. Here are a few:

Nancy Beach:

Dear Jack,

Thank you for sharing the strength of peace, which is greater than war, for now and forever. Amen

Dr. Robert C Dickson:

I met Jack a few times – principled, humanitarian, magnanimous, a truly great Canadian. With a handful of men like him, we could change the world. Condolences to family, friends, and colleagues for he will be dearly missed.


Michael Belanger:

Canada needs more politicians like Jack. His crusade for social justice and democracy in Ottawa will be profoundly missed. It is a sad time for Canadians. RIP Jack.

Please add your own comments.

Earlier this week, I contributed this letter-to-the-editor to several newspapers, including the Globe and Mail. I wanted to share it with you, too.

Many political strategists will judge Jack Layton’s achievements by the number of seats he won for his party over the years, but behind those electoral victories was a leader who remained steadfastly committed to his principles.

I met Mr. Layton shortly after his arrival in Ottawa as leader of the NDP, and watched him over the years as he became a good friend of the peace movement. He spoke up for diplomatic efforts and dialogue with insurgents to end the war in Afghanistan, years before it became a fashionable position.

At the time, he was derided by his critics, and even had his patriotism questioned. But, today, his vision is shared widely in capitals around the world as the only workable solution in that strife-torn region.

There are many other stories such as this where Mr. Layton endured shameful attacks from his political opponents while he stood by his principles. I’m certain he will be remembered as second only to Tommy Douglas himself, one of Canada’s greatest Canadians.

Steven Staples, Rideau Institute, Ottawa

Tags: Afghanistan, Jack Layton, Misc...