Kennedy’s recent letter in the Cape Breton Post, ("Election campaign cause for frustration," published on page C1, Sept. 24) injected a common sense response to those photos of Justin Trudeau. Thankfully, most Canadians are doing the same.
Society is continually evolving, shaped and conditioned by the norms of what we call acceptable social elements of our popular culture. I seriously wonder about judging peoples’ actions within today’s social norms, based on the social norms that existed in the past. If Justin Trudeau’s appearance with a brown or black face 15-20 years ago makes him a racist according to our present social norms, how should we view Michael Jackson today?
What I find far more disturbing is a hateful far-right mind-set, rooted in ignorance, intolerance and discrimination, directed at immigrants and different cultures. Yet, this sickness is openly acceptable and front and centre in this campaign.
Leadership, or the lack of, is the real issue. I usually look at the leaders through the left side of Johari’s Window, to get a comparison without the political innuendos. The upper pane represents the open-self, which includes information about ourselves that we are willing to share with others. The lower pane represents the hidden-self, which includes information about ourselves that we are not willing to share with others. Good, bad or ugly, Justin Trudeau’s panes have been wide open; but, Andrew Scheer is an entirely different story. Here is a party leader hoping to form the government and become Prime Minister, yet we know so little about him. Why have the blinds been down in his open-self pane since he became party leader? What’s in his hidden-self pane that neither he nor his party want us to know? It’s beginning to look like a case of the devil we know versus the devil we don’t.
I arrived in Glace Bay on May 24, 1949, at age five, aboard my father’s schooner, to begin a life with mom’s sister’s family. It was my mom’s dying wish. I remember dad telling me it was the first time he didn’t have to clear customs in North Sydney because Newfoundland was now part of Canada. I recall the anger and hurt caused by a petition initiated by some people on our street to keep Newfoundlanders out. I can also recall the first African Canadian family to reside on our street. The husband was a white collar professional and they had a little girl. Shortly after their arrival another petition emerged, because their skin was black. Again it was scuttled by the residents of our street. Unfortunately, the damage was done and the family moved.
That far-right mindset has again raised its ugly head and I wonder how deeply that darkness runs in the hidden-self pane of individual candidates; especially within a far-right party with a hidden-self leader and a Jurassic view of global warming. I have serious concerns about concentrating federal power in Alberta, the Canadian version of Texas, which already has the most far-right provincial government and premier in this country.