Fort Mac …

The whole country is, I hope, horrified by the plight of and trying to find ways to help the good people of Fort McMurray, Alberta. The fire which has, for the most part, destroyed their small city is huge …

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… tens of thousands of people have been evacuated …

Alta Wildfire Evacuation 20160503 TOPIX

… as their homes, some not even finished, yet, and businesses and livelihoods are destroyed …

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… and the fire rages on, threatening other Northern Alberta communities, too:

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We have real, heartbreaking stories from the community itself, and pleas from informed Canadians, too.

(Of course we have the expected from the lunatic fringe … some of it deeply offensive, most of it, especially from some politicians, just stupid.)

A friend on Army.ca has, however, summed it up well, and added a bit of a useful political twist or challenge, too:

But that is not the real problem. A large forest fire like that will eventually be brought under control or die off on its own. The real problem is how do you re-organize the life of 70,000+ people … Mississauga” [was mentioned] “but that was an “evacuate-then-move-back-home” phenomena. Fort Mac is more akin to a refugee problem ( Trudeau Jr. wanted to show you can deal with 50,000 refugees in a month: Here is his big chance to shine) that will take years to re-build and efface the effect on the community.

This is a time for real political leadership, not posturing, and our prime minister is Q41032_2500kbps_852x480_679934019605not 1297782883077_ORIGINALfailing, nor is Rona Ambrose and the many Conservative members from Alberta. But this is a time for leaders to inspire all Canadians to do more to help one another and to show that government can be a help, too. The prime minister will be pilloried by the usual suspects no matter what he does, and both he and Ms Ambrose will be accused of “playing politics” with a tragedy. I don’t think he (or she) is doing that; I think Ms Ambrose’ speech in the House of Commons was “real”and I believe the prime minister very human gesture of crossing the floor to, symbolically, console her was equally “real” and “honest.”

There is much more to be done, as my colleague on Army.ca says, and it is an opportunity eSWPLb3sfor Prime Minister Trudeau, especially, to show leadership and, for his own partisan political purposes, to show generosity to the West, and it is also a time for Conservatives, MPs and working politicians and those in the commentariat and chattering classes, too, to applaud what he does well and to refrain from issuing a “report card” until sometime after the dust has settled. Mostly it is a time for all Canadians to get behind the people of Northern Alberta.

 

4 thoughts on “Fort Mac …”

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