Today I am proud to be Canadian. More proud than usual, that is.
The Canadian electorate has resoundingly chosen a new government led by the Liberal party but more pointedly by a vigorous, young, positive and somewhat idealistic leader in Justin Trudeau.
This government will, no doubt, make mistakes along the way and it will take a lot of time and effort and trial and error to get all those jobs done to bring Canada back to who we fundamentally believe we are deep in our hearts.
I am excited to see many capable men and women elected to parliament and particularly pleased to turn the reins over to the generation that will have to deal with the policy decisions made in the next four years. It seemed like my Liberal vote was giving control over to my kids and that felt very good.
In addition, we have basically overthrown the sitting government in a peaceful, orderly way. Do you know how significant that is? I have worked in Bosnia and Kenya and Uganda where voters feel this is impossible. The despair I have seen from young, frustrated citizens is indeed sad. In so many countries in the world, where a democratic process is ostensibly in place, the electorate still feels powerless. Governments are corrupt and cling to power with money and threats and manipulation. As our Canadian election campaign began it appeared that the the Conservatives had much more funding available to them to promote their candidates. But money did not make the difference. The groundswell of ABC – Anything But Conservative – and social media posts to encourage people to vote for change proved more powerful than money and scare tactics. World, take note. It can be done.
I am not so naive to believe there will not be snags and scandals and missteps by this government but I am eager to give them a chance. One of my friends posted a list of things that this government will need to do to keep all their promises and it ended with “walk on water”. At least we are starting out with a leader who appears to be honestly transparent, inclusive and progressive. You have four plus years, Justin. We have given you a chance to make us even prouder than we feel today.