Canada’s political parties have come together and voiced their support for a crisis that is affecting millions. It’s refreshing. Too bad it’s so… foreign — literally.
You’ll recall last month, Canadians watched as elected officials came under fire when protests erupted across the country. There was finger pointing as respective levels of government tried to duck and cover and avoid blame.
During the Ottawa takeover, Prime Minister Trudeau was seemingly in hiding and not addressing Canadians. It wasn’t until President Joe Biden came calling and told Trudeau to get it together that Trudeau reappeared and took action to get the Canada-U.S. border reopened.
As Russia began its attack on Ukraine last week, Trudeau stepped up to the podium and addressed the world and vowed Canada’s support to the region. Thing is, it appears he’s clocked more podium time in just the past week sticking up for Ukraine as he did the entire month that “freedom” rallies happened in his own country.
I’m not saying the Ukraine attack that has displaced tens of thousands of people and led to countless deaths is comparable to people in hot tubs and bouncy castles on the streets of Ottawa. I understand these are completely different events, however, by definition, Trudeau declared the Canadian protests a national emergency because the security of the country was allegedly at risk, per the Emergencies Act criteria.
When Trudeau announced tens of millions of dollars in support, the leaders of the other federal parties chimed in and said how the country would be there to support Ukraine.
Does anybody else find it odd that when the crisis was in our own backyard there was such division and in-fighting? The party leaders couldn’t agree on anything. When it comes to helping another nation suddenly they’re willing to work together and show empathy and compassion.
Switching gears slightly, but on the subject of pledging support, I take issue when a government runs a campaign to match donations from the public. In this instance, the Government of Canada said it will match donations up to $10 million to the Canadian Red Cross for Ukraine efforts.
I’m not poo-pooing the idea of donating. Absolutely people should help in any way they can. But so much has been made about the rising costs of, well, everything as we come out of the pandemic and continue to battle supply chain issues, I don’t appreciate the government essentially saying, “Hey, if you step up, we will, too.”
Per the Government of Canada’s website: “Canada has offered a loan…of up to $500 million to the Government of Ukraine…” and “…a $120 million loan that was announced…” and “…a technical assistance grant of up to $6 million…” and “…an additional $35 million in development funding…” and “…$15 million in humanitarian funding in 2022 to support experienced partners on the ground…”
My point: Canada has plenty of money to throw around but the government wants more from us — the people who are taxed beyond belief.
It’s like when a store or restaurant asks if you want to donate to whatever campaign they’re running. Why doesn’t the multimillion-dollar corporation use its money for the donation and not rely on patrons to fund it? The company makes a huge donation and takes credit for being philanthropic on the back of its customers. (Are there tax credits for them, too? Just wondering.)