Ian Bremmer, the President of the Eurasia Group posted this on social media …
… with the headline: Two Americas.
He’s quite right, I think, but I also think that many of the caricatures, with only the slightest of modifications, fit Canada, too. I am reminded that just this week, for example, another Gay Pride celebration was disrupted by one of the groups that wants to exclude some other groups because, they say, “EPS [Edmonton Police Service], RCMP and military will not march in the parade until the community feels that they have taken the necessary steps for all community members to feel safe with their presence.” It is nothing more than a blatant display of one progressive band asserting its power over another … in this case “people of colour” kicking the LBGTQetc, etc community which is neither strong nor united in most respects.
In America we have seen successive ‘traditionalist’ movements, first the Tea Party and now the Trump Party, driven by fear, rise up and expel the progressives from the White House; in Ontario, just last week we saw something similar. Doug Ford mobilized a diverse band of conservatives with a loud, albeit unclear, populist message ~ actually more of an image than a message, per se. Doug Ford in NOT a Donald Trump type of leader but he played the same hymn in the same church and got the same result.
I know that amongst my own circle of friends and acquaintances I can find at least four or five of the figures in each of Ian Bremmer’s two “parades” I have some friends and family members who are visible minorities and others who are gay and some who, like me, are adamantly pro-choice, and I have some family members and friends who are against even Canadian style gun control, are vehemently opposed to the notion of equality of outcomes (as am I, by the way) and some are very pro-life. Most of them actually get along with one another because they are all civil and understand that listening to and even considering an opposing point of view in not harmful to one’s mental health, and they also grasp the fact that friendship and love can easily cope with political and even religious disagreements. But many people are less willing to consider the feeling and views of others. I have met a few too many people who are absolutely convinced that their ‘special‘ circumstance in life must override all other considerations … it is too easy to extend that view to politics.
Liberal democracy is under attack in America, Britain and, yes, in Canada, too, by illiberal progressives like Justin Trudeau and, equally, by the likes of Donald Trump … they are two sids of the same coin. Sensible Canadian moderates need to solidify their control of the Conservative Party of Canada, for those who believe in fiscal prudence, a principled foreign policy backed by a string military and free(er) trade, and they need to regain control of the Liberal Party of Canada for those who believe that big, big spending, activist governments are best for Canada.