Just As I Thought


September 11 brought about hand wringing and a familiar refrain from many liberals: why do they hate us?
Hard to answer sometimes, being entwined in oil and Mideast policy; but it’s gotten much easier lately: the Bush administration.
Even our former friends are now hating us more and more; and none more shocking than our neighbors in Canada, which we Americans, typically, think of as just another state. That attitude probably doesn’t help.

“In 1981 only 8 percent of Canadians had an unfavorable view of the United States. Now 45 percent have an unfavorable view,” said Michael Adams, a veteran pollster and philosophical proponent of the view that the two societies are diverging. “There has never been that kind of lopsided skew.”

Much of the antipathy here is focused on Bush. He will be met by demonstrations in Ottawa over issues ranging from U.S. involvement in Iraq to gay marriage, and the White House has declined an invitation to address Parliament, where Bush might be heckled.

… Canada’s federal government is moving to decriminalize use of marijuana. Gay marriage is legal in three provinces, and gay partners of Canadian servicemen get spousal benefits. Abortion is considered a private issue. Capital punishment is banned. Religion is largely absent from politics here.

I’m with Canada. It seems as if that nation is more like what America should be; that this county is moving backward at a frightening pace. It’s not just the nationalized health care and attitude toward personal freedom and tolerance; it’s also that every Canadian I have ever met is just, well, so much nicer than we Americans. Yeah, it’s a facile observation, but hey — stereotypes become stereotypes for a reason, right?
So, to all you Canadians out there: please accept my apologies for what a bastard neighbor we’ve become. Some of us are trying our best to change it, but if we are unsuccessful, we hope you’ll let us join you up north.

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