I am Canadian and I am elated the United States has finally finished their never-ending election by re-electing Barrack Obama for a second term; I can only imagine how Americans are feeling. Actually, I want to comment on what they are feeling as it seems pretty simple; 50% are elated and 50% want to launch a real-life re-enactment of the civil war. We get many Canadian television stations but most Canadians also get their majority of TV stations from the U.S. and without pointing too many fingers (can’t do that anyways) at U.S. smear campaigns as our polticians seem to be catching on up here too, but what is happening to our democracy????
Politics is one of those hot-button issues that one should keep private but as usual, I can’t keep this to myself. and with full disclosure, I ran for a seat in the Saskatchewan Legislature in the 1986 Provincial election in Regina and I ran for the Conservative Party! I lost (thank goodness) and although some good things happened, most of the process was truly pathetic. Obviously, people are passionate about their politics but where things get weird is how seriously some of the political machinery take an election. Clearly, public policy and elected representation is serious but it seems the further we go in civilization, the less civil we are getting.
I have written here in the past about the childish behaviour of our Canadian Members of Parliament, especially in the House of Commons, where the correct behaviour of statesman has long since disappeared in favour of partisan crap! True, the system isn’t completely devoid of principles but it seems to me that our elected officials keep lowering the bar when it is in great need of raising!
It seems like when Barrack Obama becane the first black President in 2008, the United States was showing signs of improving its partisan behaviour as the symbolism alone was an incredible sign of change. Alas, it was like a Saskatchewan Roughrider Grey Cup win; rare and after the hangover, nothing had changed. Common sense should dictate that we all want our team to win and if we lose we feel bad but must accept the result and if we have any class, actually congratulate the winners. Mitt Romney lost and gave a predictable speech congratulatng the winner and asking his party to cooperate with the successful democrats. It all looked good on the outside, but guaranteed, Republicans across America and around the world were wondering if there was anywhere they could move where the President was not Obama! Quite similar to the New Democrats in Saskacthewan after Brad`Wall got elected but ironically, completely backwards as Wall’s party is conservative. Losing sucks but it is the ultimatre “It Is What It Is”! But you can just feel it south of the border; opponents of Obama will do everythng they can to make life difficult and point to their political principles as the culprit.
Look, we must stand for what we believe and ironically, Romney may have lost because of his lack of conviction and a constant swaying back and forth wanting to please everyone but accepting a winner duely elected is simply part of democracy, if not the most critical element of it. When people can’t compromise, nothing changes and indeed change must take place. I read an anonomous quote recently that said, “Change is inevitable but growth is optional”. We will never advance as a society unless we put aside our differences in the wake of a win/loss and pull together for the greater good.
As a motivational speaker, I am privy to a podium to state my beliefs every day I work and I have strong convictions but I am very clear that just because I believe it doesn’t mean I am right! I respect other people’s point of view and only ask they respect mine. That sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it? So why are hundreds, if not thousands,
dying in places like Syria whose conflict is seated in a fight for democracy? Democracy must respect the status quo and move on but a country who claims to be the home of freedom and democracy seems a bit hyprocritical these days!
I have more American friends than I can count and as a country, I love working there but right now, they remind me of how one can feel about a challenging child; I love you but you need a metaphorical slap in the head!
Barrack Obama is the President now and if Americans want to truly pursue what made their country so great, time to put aside petty differences and start rebuilding a nation that is truly in danger of falling apart. C’mon America, you can do better, right?