“When they go low, we go high” – Michelle Obama
Let me begin by saying that I am a Canadian. My Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, is a self-proclaimed feminist, his parliament is made up of a diverse group of highly educated people, he bases his decisions on scientific principles, and I am proud to say that I voted for him in the 2015 election. My Prime Minister speaks for my values, and I trust him to uphold those values.
Yet I have never considered myself to be an overly patriotic person. I love Canada and I think it is an absolutely beautiful country with beautiful people. As Canadians we are an incredibly privileged bunch with a wealth of opportunity available to us. We welcome all kinds of people with open arms and our national identity reflects that. But you will never hear me say that we are better than another country. You will never see me waving a Canadian flag chanting “We’re #1”. As close of a kinship I feel with Canadian values, I am a child of the world. As much as our borders separate us, we – every single human on this earth – are in this together.
I have seen Americans accost foreigners for giving opinions about their country (albeit only when there is a disagreement). Although for so many reasons – one being that the USA has the largest economy – what happens there impacts every life directly.
I care about people who are both in and outside of my backyard. All people are my brothers and sisters – regardless of nationality, race, sexual orientation, or any other divide you can think of. I care about those who, for whatever reason, haven’t been gifted with a leader with an incredibly sensible head on his shoulders. Which brings me to…
When I heard Trump was elected as President I felt as though I was kicked in the stomach. I had a terrible sleep that night and when I awoke I had an ugly-cry in the shower. I walked around on November 9 in a daze – which, I will admit, was also partially fueled by the Jameson I had at lunch with my coworkers. I am not going to get into all the reasons I disagree with Trump in this post (or we would be here forever). Rather, I am going to state what Trump being voted in as the 45th President of the United States has given me.
It has given me motivation.
When the initial shock had worn off about Trump becoming president, I felt rage. Then, within the hour, my brain started peddling through all the ways I could act in response. Not with violence, but with positive action. For example, I have always had a deep passion for environmental science. I have written articles on the subject such as this one and this one, and although I don’t necessarily agree with every single stance they take, I have been a member of Greenpeace since 2010 – they keep me informed.
Donald Trump has stated that he believes Climate Change is a hoax orchestrated by the Chinese. He plans to back out of the Paris deal. He has actually muttered the words “clean coal”. The United States’ portion of the environment doesn’t live in a bubble over their country. It affects everyone.
Nothing lights a fire under my ass than when something I care deeply about is threatened. So, in response, I am going to donate to organizations fighting the Green fight, I am going to volunteer my time to helping these organizations, and I am going to keep writing about the subject in hopes I reach as many people as possible.
But Global Warming is only one issue. We have a humanitarian crisis on our hands. We have a long hard fight ahead of us. And every single time I see hate, I will spew love. Because I truly believe that even in the dark times, love will persevere.
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