Volume 94, Issue 27

Wednesday, October 18, 2000


USC clubs in hot water

Bank governor opens vault of history

Big wheels not turning

Mount Trudeau falling in a landslide

Campus Briefs

Gore and Bush charge to elections

Corroded Disorder

Mount Trudeau falling in a landslide

By Mike Murphy
Gazette Staff

The federal government may have had a change of heart about renaming Canada's highest mountain, Mt. Logan, after the late former prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau.

"Concerns have been expressed by many Canadians that this would diminish the memory of Mr. Logan," said Nicole Racette, director of communications for Parks Canada. "We have listened to these concerns."

Speaking from the office of Canada's Heritage Ministry, Racette explained plans to rename the Yukon mountain have been put on hold as a result of overwhelming opposition to the idea.

Racette said the Ministry is ready to enter into consultations with the Yukon government and all other interested parties to come up with an alternative way of paying tribute to Trudeau. She added no timeline has been set.

John Reynolds, a Member of Parliament for the Canadian Conservative Reform Alliance, objected to the original decision to rename the mountain and had more criticism for plans to re-assess the decision.

"I think what they're doing now, for political purposes, is to delay the thing," he said, adding the Liberals want the issue to fade from public attention so it cannot hurt their chances in a possible fall election.

"Logan was a very famous Canadian," he said, adding he felt renaming the recently completed Trans-Canada Trail would be a more fitting way to commemorate Trudeau, since it can be enjoyed by all Canadians.

"The only people who are ever going to get to see Mt. Logan are elite climbers," he said.

Louise Harding, a Member of Parliament who represents the Yukon, said many of her constituents raised concerns about the proposed name change.

"I support a tribute but the tribute that was proposed and [Prime Minister Jean Chretien] approach to it has caused nothing but problems," she said.

Harding said members of First Nations, historians, the Yukon Chamber of Commerce and Mines and common Canadians who live near the mountain, have all expressed dissatisfaction with the federal government's plan.

Harding said the government's decision to reconsider the renaming of Mt. Logan took her by surprise. "I was surprised. I didn't expect that kind of response."

She added she expects the Liberals will abandon the idea of using Mt. Logan as a Trudeau tribute. "I think they're just going to drop it."

Liberal Member of Parliament for London-Fanshawe, Pat O'Brien, said he thinks discussing the issue would be a good idea.

"It wasn't by any means a final decision, though the prime minister did seem pretty committed to it," he said. "It would be a really wise thing to consult with the people of Canada."

O'Brien said there are many alternative ways to pay a fitting tribute to Canada's former prime minister. "There's all kinds of ways," he said. "Trudeau was a great outdoorsman. What about a park?"

Putting prominent Canadian figures on currency bills is another good way to honour them and would be a good way of paying tribute to Trudeau he said.

"I think it should be referred for further consultation," he said.

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