Today I walked right up to the Canadian parliament building and touched it. I was not shot nor arrested. Guard dogs did not come out to rip me to shreds. Black suited government agents did not rush out and throw me to the ground. In fact, there's a rather nice park around parliament. You can stroll right on in. I think I saw one police officer out front.
As an American I find this both delightful and sad. Delighted that a western nation can still have a government which does not wall itself off from its citizens. Sad that the US government works from a premise of paranoia. I wondered when it was that the US started valuing safety over being close to those they govern. Reagan has been suggested, both from his Red Scare tactics and getting shot at point-blank range. Though I was told a similar incident happened in Canada's history with different consequences. A would-be assassin broke into the house then PM Jean Chrétien. His wife beat the crap out of him.