When everyone started caring

Before I get to the meat here: the next episode is probably coming next week, and I've set a deadline for calling the Description 62 comment line. Please call 206-376-1528 before the end of December 8 with your comments about what Canada or Canadian citizenship means to you, and it'll likely get in the episode. I'd really love to hear from you.

And for the last few days, Canadians have been thinking A LOT about what Canada and citizenship means to them. Some extremely complex and I think damn interesting stuff has been happening in Canadian politics that, believe it or not, has started to make the machinations of the last U.S. Presidential campaign (hell, even Bush-Gore 2000!) look a little pale in comparison. By the time that deadline for your phone call passes (and you will have called by then, RIGHT?), it's possible, though not definite, that we'll have a new Prime Minister under a coalition government. Like that presidential campaign, it has been every bit as depressing as it's been wildly fun. And it's all been packed into a week. Man, I love this country!

I'm not going to even try to explain all this stuff to you as I try to explain other Canadian stuff - and believe me, part of what makes this so awesome is how Canadian it is, and what makes the debate about it so sad is how many people don't get that. Fortunately, another blogger has explained it for novices (and we all sort of are) in as complete a fashion as I could ever imagine. Her name is Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, and she has a blog called Yarn Harlot, which is most often about knitting and her life. (She was referred to me by my friend Katherine Matthews, who runs in similar circles as Stephanie, and I thank her.) If you have several minutes, please go to this post of hers and stick with it, because this stuff is very very key to what Canada is about. If you've ever thought there isn't much difference between the U.S. and Canada, and I haven't done much to convince you otherwise, Stephanie will.

I can only add this: through this trial, the ruling Conservative party has become only more American in their attitude and language, and what tears it for me is that their American-ness now defines assumptions they have made about the Canadian democratic system. Seriously. I can hear it, I can smell it. And to me, it is absolutely intolerable. So we will see what happens.

No comments: