The wife said it. I told her that I wanted to write something positive about federal new democratic leader Jagmeet Singh. I happened to have a newspaper page open in front of me when I asked and she pointed to a picture of Singh on the page and said: “He has the kindest face.”
She is right. Despite the kind face, Sikhs have a tradition of being warriors and as a follower of the Tenth Guru of Sikhism, Jagmeet carries the symbolic knives (Kirpan) which are one of what the Sikhs call ‘The Five Ks.’ The Kirpan shows he is always prepared to fight battles for the oppressed and downtrodden.
But there is a certain incongruity in wearing a bespoke suit from the Harry Rosen tailors and a smile and trying to look like a hardened warrior. And nobody seems to be taking Jagmeet seriously. When you fight an election earlier this year and come out of it with an increase of just one seat in the House of Commons, you have to wonder what is wrong.
From a political point of view, I am not inclined to blame Jagmeet. The guy is really trying. What he lacks is a strategic plan. He needs a cohesive party behind him. And, I think, he knows that the socialism of the party’s past is a dead issue.
This is the obvious time for the new democrats to prove that they have something to offer Canadians. They would probably be wise to re-open the Leap Manifesto to being revised and invite the support of the green party and left-wing liberals in the task. We probably have at least two years before anyone starts thinking of having an election. That time could be put to good use.
But as for Jagmeet’s position, I really do not think he is a leader. Sorry, guy. You are a married man with a little one on the way. Nobody thinks about leadership as they are changing a diaper.
I think Jagmeet made a mistake to encourage the Sikh diaspora in Canada to support him for the leadership of the NDP. He needed to build support among all Canadians and we are not seeing that happen.
Copyright 2021 © Peter Lowry
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