Donald Trump, Canada & the politics of fear

Trump, Canadians and the Politics of Fear

Some thoughts from a white, straight middle class Canadian male raised in a Christian world surrounded and influenced by hard working men and women that asked for little from any government.

Other than to be left alone to determine their own destiny, which year by year has been eroded. The same could be said about the average American. So, here I am I my mid-50’s with a life time of work behind me with my own fair share of success and failure, triumphs and tragedy. Such is the stuff life is made of.

I have decided to throw together my own two cents worth about the recent election of one Donald Trump as President of the United States of America. Like many Canadians, I watched with interest as the long campaign unfolded. Unlike many I know, I refused to get emotionally invested in it. I would not allow myself to feel outrage over the inequities and obvious flaws of both candidates. Truly, my only concern was what negative (or perhaps it will be positive, who really knows?) effect the change of leadership there would have on the Canadian and by extension the world’s economy. 

Not only the economic impact but diplomatic as well. The rhetoric and threatening statements made by the President Elect are truly concerning and potentially very disruptive to the status of world’s geo-political situation. Those things concern me, greatly.

Insofar as the social impact the new American government will have on Canadians, I really do not believe there will be any major shifts in how we view and treat one another because of the election of a bigoted, racially ignorant misogynistic sexist dinosaur. I cannot see our values, morals and national pride in being more tolerant and accepting of our differences suddenly shifting because of what has happened and may happen in the Unites States.

Some I know are fearful that the rights of women, people of colour or sexual preferences outside “the norm”, immigrants and religions other than Christian will be trampled on. That somehow their rights by law to expect and be given equal opportunity will plowed under as a result of this new regime. Another Kristallnacht? Brown shirts roaming the streets at night, assaulting non-whites on sight? Seeking out those that are not white Christians to destroy their homes, their businesses, their places of worship?

I don’t believe it will go that far but sadly I do believe there will be a backlash against a number of good people. Will it come to violence? Riots? Perhaps it will, people in both the USA and Canada have rioted for less. Hell, hockey “fans” trashed the city of Vancouver because a hockey team failed to win the Holy Grail aka Stanley Cup. The levels of debasement and stupidity that a herd of humans can stoop to never ceases to amaze me. As characters in a science fiction movie once conversed: “People are smart, they can understand that.” To which the other replied “No, a person is smart. People are dumb dangerous animals.” That, I believe sums up what intelligent, civilized people are capable of in a mob mentality.

My point, if there is one, is this. As Canadians, I do not believe that the moral fabric of who we are, what we believe in and how we treat one another will change much if at all. To get emotionally distraught over what may or may not happen to the same segment of everyday life in the United States seems to me to be a huge waste of energy. We cannot change policy or public morals in that country, any more than they could to us.

I truly hope that all the doomsayers and prophets of social upheaval are wrong. I would much rather see Americans exercise their right to voice their displeasure or happiness in the newly elected President in a peaceful manner. One that is guaranteed to them as citizens of a democracy, not a fascist state, not a communist dictatorship or extreme left wing socialist regime. Last time I heard, there are rights guaranteed the citizens of the United States under their Constitution. Not even Trump can change that simply by yelling real loud and appealing to an angry dissatisfied populous.

May peace be upon all citizens of the United States and may my friends in Canada try to remain calm in the face of the storm that may be coming. It is not our storm but it would not be pretty to watch.

Author: Jamie Stewart

Currently and quite possibly permanently living in the beautiful Comox Valley, Vancouver Island BC. I had spent many years living in Halifax but decided to opt for a milder climate a few years ago and wrangled a move here. I'm 54 years old and have been living with a spinal cord injury for almost 19 years now. As a result of that injury I am paraplegic, a definition I am not always comfortable with. I don't like being defined by what physical limitations I may have but I also don't get bent out of shape about it. Changing public perception of physical disabilities is a long process, one I have embraced and participated in through several volunteer programs over the years. I am an avid sailor (without a boat) and as retirement looms (yes I have continued working full time since recovering from the initial injury), I am pondering how to fill my time in a meaningful way. Traveling more, see the sights of this great country is high on my list. Increasing my involvement in volunteer programs that benefit the physically disabled and just simply trying to enjoy what life has to offer are my goals.