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Image: Canadian Press/Justin Tang

Thanksgiving Turkeys

Six Things to be Thankful for this Election Season

After listening to the leadership debate last week, I am determined to find the top six reasons to be thankful for Canadian politics and the election cycle that we are currently enjoying (sic).

I am hoping you may want to comment, yell, cheer, talk back to me–there is a place to do that on our blog, for we value your contribution.

I am going to do this left to right, by which I mean the order of the leaders in the photo above, not the electoral left to right.

  1. Elizabeth May

Can we really claim gratitude for there being a single woman engaged in the leadership race? One out of six is not the goal. The goal is enough strength and recognition that we get to stop counting. The goal is that we are certain of equal respect, without question.

We may, however, be thankful that climate change issues have grown in strength where a party exists to give the climate crisis voice. We may be thankful that hundreds of thousands of people gathered across Canada for the climate strike and have made it a critical issue in this campaign.

  1. Justin Trudeau

We can complain about lots of things, but let’s give thanks for the willingness to open new paths. It is challenging to allow dialogue and still show a united front. Justin walked that path, in his caucus, and stumbled along the way, but we can acknowledge that none before would even take the risk. We should continue to expect fractures when the ground changes under our feet.

  1. Andrew Sheer

My social thoughts go left, way left by some standards. So I do not share much in common with Mr. Sheer. But let’s be thankful for a leader who strongly acknowledges a position of conscience and an equal commitment not to try and impose it on the nation.

Sheer has said, “I am personally pro-life but I’ve also made the commitment that as leader of this party, it is my responsibility to ensure that we do not reopen this debate: that we focus on issues that unite our party and unite Canadians, and that’s exactly what I’ll do and why I’ll vote against measures that attempt to reopen this debate.”

This is an astoundingly strong statement of political conscience and we should be thankful that the dialogue is open and direct.

  1. Maxime Bernier

What a diverse world, that this extreme voice should be able to stand at a podium and debate with someone as far left as Jagmeet Singh. It is a strong democracy that welcomes his voice to the stage. While giving him credit, for having achieved the position overnight, we should acknowledge that his voice clearly resonates with a real portion of the political spectrum. We should appreciate that there is a segment of the population that needs dialogue and needs to be heard, if we wish to avoid the extremism we see south of our border.

  1. Yves Francois Blanchet

What a kick! I am always thankful that the strength of our democracy allows for a party committed to the breakup of the nation, as it exists. I take comfort that, although there seems a possible resurgence, it is based on soft selling the separation issue.

  1. Jagmeet Singh

The NDP may well form the balance of power after next week. This would be an amazing reality for a party whose fortunes seem to be in free fall. We could do worse. Our history is full of social program development that comes when the NDP are in a position of influence. We should be proud that we have such a social voice.


Discourse can get messy, and parliamentarians continue to talk over top of one another. I would prefer the rhetoric be toned down and that we could have conversation instead of commercials and attack ads, but there remains value in the commitment and positions of those who seek to lead.

I am excited for the results, next week and also for the feedback I might get from you. Thanks for reading and please hit me with your best shot.


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