Wednesday, July 29, 2015
Donald Sutherland's Angry Message to Stephen Harper
He is one of Canada's best known citizens. A famous Hollywood actor, and a proud Canadian.
But now like more than a million other Canadians who live abroad, he's been told he no longer has the right to vote.
And Donald Sutherland is not amused.
We live in Canada all the time we can. Our family house is here. Professionally, I still have to think twice when I say “out” or “house.” I have to restrain myself from saying “eh?”. In 1978, that’s nearly 40 years ago, the Canadian government made me an Officer of the Order of Canada. The Governor-General gave me the Governor-General’s Award a while back. I am on your Walk of Fame in Toronto. My sense of humour is Canadian. But I can’t vote.
And who can blame him eh? When it is, as the Globe's Mark MacKinnon points out, so outrageously unfair.
Section Three of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms reads: “Every citizen of Canada has the right to vote in an election of members of the House of Commons.” It follows that those of us without a right to vote feel a little less like citizens now.
Most expats are also interested in, and affected by, government policies. Many pay Canadian taxes: collectively, about $6-billion in each year, while using few of the government services they’re helping to pay for.
But then we know why the Cons are doing it. To try to suppress the vote, without which they cannot win. By fiddling or diddling with the Elections Act they may have disenfranchised as many as four million voters.
Now they're disenfranchising another million...
So all those Canadians who are OK with that, are going to have to live with the consequences.
And they should remember that Canadians who live and work abroad are some of our finest citizens, as well as our real representatives and our real diplomats. They have a unique perspective, and as Sutherland points out, they get to see Canada as others see us.
Did you read the editorial in Le Monde? A full page saying essentially that Canada isn’t Canada any more. That the beautiful, peace-pursuing dream that was Canada, the Canada you once knew and were so proud of, is no longer “Canada.” The article goes on to detail just who we’ve become and it isn’t pretty. It’s very sad.
And this new “Canada,” this Canadian government that has taken the true Canada’s place, has furiously promoted a law that denies its citizens around the world the right to vote. Why? Is it because they’re afraid we’ll vote to return to a government that will once again represent the values that the rest of the world looked up to us for? Maybe.
And can see better than many who live here how low we have fallen. Or what a little big country we have become after ten years of Stephen Harper's depraved rogue regime...
You know, by the age of twenty I had seen more of the world than Stephen Harper had seen before he became Prime Minister. Much much more.
And wherever I went, whenever I heard an eh? my heart would leap with joy. For I am always glad to meet my fellow hosers abroad. I consider them part of the great Canadian family. Something little Harper could never understand.
So I can only hope that Donald Sutherland, even though he can't vote, will employ his formidable talent to help us defeat the Cons.
Or help give voice to our anger at what they have done to Canada.
As he does in this scene from the movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers....
Because let's face it eh? The Cons are the Body Snatchers.
The alien monsters who stole a country...
And are now trying to steal an election.
And we will not be safe, or truly Canadian, or great again.
Until the day we destroy them...
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