Popcorn Please! Canada’s Front Row Seat to President Trump.

It’s  like watching a slow motion car crash. I’m talking about what’s happened- continues to happen- in the United States.

We have a ringside seat here in Canada. The longest shared peaceful border in the world. One of the most harmonious relationships of geographic neighbours in history. (Forget that little tussle in the War of 1812 during which we burnt the White House.)

Prime Minister Trudeau- père not fils- put our proximity to the US best- “Living next to you is in some ways like sleeping with an elephant. No matter how friendly and even-tempered is the beast, if I can call it that, one is affected by every twitch and grunt.”

We will not be unaffected by Trumpian policies, whatever they turn out to be. Tear up NAFTA? Approve the Keystone Pipeline? Make NATO pay?  Build a protectionist trade wall? Canada will not escape from the Trumpian presidency unscathed.

Even as I worry about family members who live in the US, even as I mull over how the Trumpian dystophian vision of America with its industrial graveyards and Mumbai-ish slums bears no relationship to what I have experienced visiting the US, I confess to a touch of smugness. Even schadenfreude.

Here we sit with our inclusive diversity and universal health care and gender equal federal cabinet (“Why? Because it’s 2016” Trudeau fils not père). Here we sit with our gas and oil and lumber that the US will need if they go on an infrastructure binge regardless of Buy America.

If the United States is an extrovert on the world stage, Canada is an introvert. Former President Obama thought “The world needs more Canada.” Trump apparently believes the opposite.

So we, like countries and people around the world, wait to see what will happen next. Will there be civil war between the deplorables and non? (I haven’t decided which is which yet)

Will Trumpian enemies find their feet, band together, and force a GOP Congress to take action against a President who violated the Constitution on Day One. (Yes, I know his “When the President does it, it isn’t a crime” defence. Nixon tried that to no good effect.)

Will the intelligence agencies find out that the Trump business is in bed with the Russians as Don Jr aka Patrick Bateman in waiting has admitted in the past?

Canada has a ringside seat to the whole show. It’s like watching your perfect, prettier, older sister date someone so unlikely that you alternate between worrying for her sanity and safety to secretly hugging her bad judgement to yourself as some kind of talisman vindicating your own worth. It’s petty. It’s human. And hey, the whole world is watching and feeling the same way this morning after decades of American propaganda as the biggest and best.

Take solace from fact that there are only:

1460 days,
209 weeks, or
47 months until January 20, 2021,


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