Destroying Canada’s world image.

Have you met Canada’s parliamentary Bobbsey Twins? They are representing Canada to the world. We can only hope that their tenure is brief and the world forgives us for the confusion they cause. They are Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird and Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Jason Kenney. They might come from different backgrounds but you would be forgiven if you got them confused.

Neither of the gentlemen has ever held a private sector job. They found their calling in the extremes of right-wing politics. Baird must have been bored with his early years, learning his trade working for less extreme members of the Ontario Conservatives. He became something of a legend of ideological overkill though when he served in Premier Mike Harris’ Cabinet. He is best known to former friends of Canada for his opposition to the Kyoto Accord, earning derision and insults for Canada in breaking its word to other countries who signed in good faith.

Jason Kenney, the junior member of this duo, grew up with extensive training in a narrowed vision of things. Educated in Catholic institutions in the West, he capped it with studying philosophy at a Jesuit university in San Francisco. His crowning achievement there in 1990 was to lead the fight against a women’s group at the school who wanted to distribute pro-choice literature. Back in Canada, he served various right-wing political and catholic organizations.

Kenney was first elected in 1997 as a Reform Party member and went through his party’s various iterations, becoming a Canadian Alliance member and then a United Alternative supporter of Stockwell Day.  He worked so hard for his parties that Stephen Harper made him his parliamentary secretary, responsible for multiculturalism, when the new Conservative Party of Canada defeated the Martin Liberals.

With the majority Harper government, the portfolios of these two political extremists are labelling Canada. Today, Jason Kenny tells us that he is going to stop women from Hong Kong from visiting Canada to have their baby here so that the child might later claim citizenship. This is on top of his new and draconian approach to refugees. He is making sure Canada is no longer a safe haven.

His twin, the External Affairs Minister, set the tone for his job back in 2003 when he fought the Chrétien government of the time trying to get Canada to join the American Bush administration in the Iraq War. He continues today to toady to the Americans while casually dismissing the concerns of other countries.

Canada used to have a reputation around the world for decency, fairness, openness, for peace keeping and for being an honest broker. Prime Minister Harper is letting these extremist Bobbsey Twins besmirch our image as a country to satisfy their narrow view of right and wrong. Are they representing our Canada?

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Copyright 2012 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

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