Dear Steven Reed President Canada Soccer, Peter Montopoli General Secretary Canada Soccer, Pat Santini Canada Soccer Legal Counsel, "Canada Soccer Board of Directors", Ken Maclean Chair Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame, Bobby Lenarduzzi President Vancouver Whitecaps,
Some time in 2005 while I was working at York University I received an email from a person in Cardiff my age. As I read the communication I learned that I had played with him on the Under 11 Grangetown Boys team back in 1974 and 75. Grangetown was and still is a gritty tough area of Cardiff. He stated among other things that he was absolutely gob smacked at what I had been able to achieve - a kinda back handed compliment. Little did he know I too kinda agreed with him. Not being that talented and all.
Only now as my weight continues to spiral down can I connect properly the dots. An unrelenting determination to succeed at the passion in my life in order that it could in fact remain with me for a lifetime. And then my father's cementing in his son to be honest and truthful no matter the consequences. There have been many times throughout the decades and past two years in particular when I have questioned my father's seemingly naive counsel. Yet as tough as it has been at times I agreed and have abided with his ethos with the added incremental recognition that sometimes keeping things under the blanket with no comment or saving someones personal dignity is better for the greater good.
When persons for example imprudently ask me if I still use. My answer - until social mores and de-stigmatization of the issue catch up with humanity - will remain the same. It is a private matter. Whether the answer is last night, one year or five years ago. It is a private matter. I refuse to lie on the issue. And at the same time I refuse to be subjected to further stigmatization and oppression from unscrupulous inquires. A fisherman knows a fisherman and so to see so many anxious of their reality they feel the need to LIE when in fact it should just simply remain a private matter, is agonizing.
In the fight for social justice and recognition that persons with substance disabilities are in fact entitled to human rights and human rights protection, the lifetime pursuit of Truthfulness drummed into me by my father now finally has the meaning and purpose as promised by Victor Frankl in Mans Search for Meaning. And it will remain the arrow in the quiver. The stone in the sling shot. Through the pure awesome of the universe.
As in falling from the sky Mike Young and Kelly Kidwell from California guaranteeing whether I'm here or not that Truth will be transmitted for the greater good. Former players from two decades ago caring more about my well being and pursuit of Truth than the governing body of football in Canada. Former national teammates. Converted enemies. Old high school friends from Cardiff. Former school teachers. Good hard working Canadian citizens. I'm even "smitten" by the recent decisions of Liberal Ministers Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpotts. Finally. Hopefulness instead of Hopelessness.
Unfortunately the non-commitment to integrity, truthfulness, human decency, moral support from the leadership of Canada Soccer along with the awkward deceit of Bobby Lenarduzzi who wrote a contrived letter to the Right Honorable Prime Minister Justin Trudeau more in support of York University than his former deteriorating teammate are lasting moments not to be proud.
Your gate keeping of the Truth to the Canada Soccer Board of Directors is reprehensible as is so much else you have participated in to thwart social justice/resolution being rightfully delivered to an alumnus who, like so many others, gave much to the national footballing cause. And it is on that note of indecency that we now upload the following link outlining why I have requested the annulment of my Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame status something I would have preferred to have avoided.
I no longer require a decision in that regard from the governing body of football in Canada. I will pursue outside intervention to dignify the request in a dignified manner.
Paul J James