Most of the time I could care less about Politics. I find them boring, childish, manipulative and just ‘beneath me’ – I don’t say that from an ego perspective, I say that because politics just hasn’t seemed to evolve with the rest of us.
This recent election was proof positive of that, and further solidified my stance on politics. Fear mongering, election fraud, racism – just eww.
This time around however, I found myself – like many others, getting caught up in ‘something’. I realized after last night that it wasn’t the politics that had me engaged, it was the patriotism.
Politics is shallow, patriotism speaks to a much deeper sense and of powerful human values. To those of you who found yourselves entrenched in this year’s election and aren’t typically the political types – I hear you. What I want to talk about does not revolve around which candidate is best suited to lead, it is more about what Canadian Citizens have chosen to lead with. This election was steeped in something I have never seen in my 44 years of life, and especially the last 24 or so of them when I was entitled to vote, but didn’t care most of the time. I cared this time – alot. When I questioned myself on this, my first reaction was that I need Harper OUT. It was a gut reaction, based on my own fear, and disappointment in what our Country was turning into. It was also basic personal experience of being a Single Mom, small business owner in this province – not a demographic supported by the Harper Government whatsoever. And finally, I was fuelled by a deeper instinct – one that spoke to my passions around Connection, Community, and being united over a single cause. The rumbles to get Harper out of office were palatable. We all knew it was time – and then with that knowing, we all knew we had to work together.
When all’s said and done, this election didn’t provide the best results, a majority government going to any one party is not ideal in my limited understanding of politics. It is my understanding of community that dictates this belief. For a Community to be properly represented we need to have the power spread out among the leaders. I know I am not alone in this stand, but what is miraculous to me, is how a country stood together, worked together and voted together. We had a record breaking 68.49% of the eligible public voting – that’s the highest turnout since 1993
So, for the patriotic among us – those of us who feel relieved this morning – the following things are what I believe surfaced this election and what gave us ‘hope’ – not for the economy, or other social issues – it gave us hope on a much deeper level. It gave us a belief in humanity and community again.
Patriotism over Politics was shown as:
A United Cause
If you want something to change, you had better be willing to put the work into it. You must be able to roll up your sleeves, dig in and do the labour that is required. Not only did we identify a need to ‘CHANGE’ we all realized that it required work from each of us. The sense of apathy that had been prevalent in previous elections was nowhere to be seen. Collectively, we agreed that our values, our communities and our country was not being represented in the way that it should be. Then, collaboratively we decided to make sure that the desired change happened. When a turnout as large as the one that we had this election happens, you know there is a ‘hive’ mind at work. And not a controlling, dictating, fear mongering mind – a mind that is clear, focused and adamant. I was proud to be a part of THIS collective for this election. This spoke to the blood in my veins. Perhaps it is the Viking in me – but I think every person, from every nationality and culture understands the signs of repression and control and they equally understand that it will take fortitude and persistence to dethrone it. We did it. For that I am proud.
A true sense of Community
Community is a common word, but it has so much breadth and meaning. Community is where our safety lies. It is where we put our trust, our faith, and our hearts. Every person born wants to feel like they are a part of something bigger than just them. Our very nature calls out to be part of a collective, a place where we can call HOME. This place does not segregate, discriminate or alienate because of class, culture, race, colour or religious beliefs. Our Canada – the one we have known and loved was a country that was built on Community and Inclusion. This election that truth was remembered. For the majority of us – THIS became our driving force.
Truth and Purity in Leadership
Politically the Liberal Party won by a landslide – that wasn’t the best case scenario for many of us, BUT we also knew it was the lesser of a few evils. Sometimes this is an important stepping stone to change, and one that we need to take to get to the next level. With patriotism ringing strong, I feel that Justin Trudeau won this election by offering something unusual – and might I add YET to be proven beyond the campaign words of promise. He offered authenticity. Leadership is more than just experience, stats and political ‘know how’ – to me true leadership is a sense of humility and an understanding that as a leader, you are representing a mass – you are the figurehead, but you are actually the LEAST important aspect. A true leader knows that sacrifices will be made, and that to lift from above, and push from behind is the work required. Justin seemed to get this, and although it was apparent many times that it was a campaign ‘performance’ I did see and sense a very real TRUTH to the authenticity behind his words. This gives me hope – not in one man, but in this man’s ability to work on a team and in a team as a true leader would know how to do.
Good things come from bad
As a ‘positive person’ I will always try to find the lesson in the failure, the truth in the lies and the good from the bad. This election was a stunning example of what good can come from shitty situations. When things get bad enough, people stand up. Its when the tolerable becomes intolerable that we finally take action. It is when we hit rock bottom, ground floor and realize that there is no way out but UP and determination kicks in. This powerful tenacity of strong people constantly fascinates me. As a community, all you need is a handful of the strongest to pull along the weakest. It always comes to pass. It may take years, even decades, but it will always come to pass.
So, in closing. I’m not much for stats, polls, numbers etc. but I do know what I feel today and it is a very powerful sense of pride and accomplishment. Our results were not ideal, but our work paid off. We all voted for change and we got it. I realize that the work is just beginning and I am not in full on celebratory, pass out drunk mode – what I feel now is possibility. NOW, the Canada I want to live in, the Canada I didn’t even realize I believed in until recently, is possible again.
That’s hope. And in all of human history we have been governed emotionally by two things: Fear vs Hope. Election Campaigns are designed around it. I am proud, that as a Nation we rose above the FEAR and collaboratively opted for HOPE instead.
Politics can go f*#k itself for all I care – but when I see and experience Patriotism with such Purity I cannot help but stand up and be Proud. And for that Canada – Congratulations. We have lots of work ahead of us – but we have just proven beyond any doubt that we are up to the task.
Oh Canada – You kick ass!
I’d love to know what your experience of this recent election was! Please share with me in the comment section below. And remember: I don’t tolerate politics well – so let’s not get nasty – just share your feelings – everyone is allowed to feel what they feel.
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