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Tommy Douglas Essay

620 words - 3 pages

Tommy Douglas was a remarkable Canadian whose contributions have helped to shape our nation. During his forty two years in politics, Tommy Douglas proved himself to be an outstanding Canadian leader. He is largely responsible for our central banking, old age pensions, unemployment insurance, and our universal medicare. Though he never became Prime Minister, he is highly regarded by the general public. Tommy Douglas was one of the greatest Canadians that ever lived.
Tommy Douglas is known as a prolific politician but considering his contributions that is a huge understatement. He can be seen as a role-model for all generations to come. When Tommy Douglas was asked why he stayed with the NDP (National Democratic Party) when he could have been more successful with a more powerful party he replied “I have watched politicians for the last forty years drop their principles in order to get power only to find that those who paid and controlled the party which they joined prevented them from all the things they really believe in”. To the end of his days Tommy Douglas was true to himself, to what he stood for, and to the people he represented. Tommy’s insistence on staying true to his belief system knowing that it would be less popular is a credit to the man’s integrity and honesty.
In Canada, Medicare is implemented nationwide and is one of Canada’s attributes that is known and respected around the world. Medicare began in 1944 when Tommy Douglas and his social-democratic majority government gave old pensioners free medical, dental and hospital services. It also gave free treatment for anyone suffering from diseases such as tuberculosis. Shortly after in 1947 Tommy Douglas and his party established public universal hospital insurance for a yearly fee of five dollars. Afterwards, several other provinces followed along and began providing publicly funded hospital care for their citizens. Seeing the success of...

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