government's response to anti-Americanism--"those things happen"
by Arthur Weinreb, Associate Editor,
October 11, 2004
the Speech from the Throne that was delivered by the Governor-General last
Tuesday, emphasis was put on the need for Canada to improve relations with the
United States. Under the heading of "A Role of Pride and Influence in the
World", an obvious blast from the past, the government stated that Canada's
role in the world must include "a deepening cooperation with the United States
on mutual assistance in the event of major natural or human-caused emergencies"
(that's one way to describe Islamic terrorist flying planes into buildings).
The government further went on to state:
new context requires us to manage wisely our relationship with the United
States, to know our friends better, and to strengthen our economic and security
relations. Our relationship must be built on shared values, on mutual respect,
and on a strong and independent voice for Canada."
respect? It's hard to believe that when it comes from a government that
couldn't care less when one of its backbenchers, Carolyn Parrish, goes on one
of her anti-American tirades. Recently she continued to perfect her role as the
government's designated America-basher when she referred to the United States as a "coalition of
idiots" before a small group of protesters and, of course, the media. This
followed upon her pre-Iraq war comments when she said, "Damn Americans--I hate
second outburst of anti-American oral diarrhea was not unexpected. After her
"bastards" statement last year, she went on television and laughed about her
comments. Parrish giggled as she told the audience how upset her mother was
that she had used the word "bastards", drawing applause from the youngish U.S.-hating
audience. And with a grin on her face, she said that she couldn't promise that
she wouldn't do it again. And, of
course she did.
was significant about the latest incident was the reaction of the Prime
Minister. Paul Martin "asked" her to apologize, something that Parrish refused
to do. Despite her refusal to withdraw or otherwise temper her remarks, Martin
refused to take any form of disciplinary action against her. The PM's inability
to act makes all the references in the Throne Speech about needing better relations
with the U.S. and having "mutual respect" was nothing more than hypocritical
matter was raised in Question Period the day after the Speech from the Throne.
Conservative Party member Jason Kenney asked how Canadian/American relations
can be fixed when the PM allows Parrish "to continue to sit in his caucus and
become the de facto Liberal spokesman on U.S. relations.
of Foreign Affairs, Pierre Pettigrew, who is destined to go down in history as
the worst Foreign Affairs Minister since Bill Graham, at first avoided
answering about Parrish. After a follow-up question, Pettigrew rationalized
Parrish's continual American bashing by saying "those things happen". He turned
it around by saying that "some congressmen say outrageous things about Canada".
And in true Liberal fashion, the Minister blamed the opposition for not being
critical of U.S members of Congress who make anti-Canadian remarks. The reality
is that while the Canadian government cannot control what members of the U.S.
Congress say or do, they can control what they say and do. This "they did it so
we can do it attitude" is childish and it's no wonder that Canada continues to
lose respect in the world with people like Pettigrew as the country's
the Prime Minister did not agree with Parrish's remarks he should have
disciplined her. The fact that Parrish is known for her rabid anti-Americanism
leads to the inevitable inference that by leaving her in caucus, Martin is
tacitly agreeing with what she says. And all this talk about improving relations and "mutual respect" is just
is clearly aware of the importance of the ethnic vote in elections. By throwing
Parrish out of the caucus, he risks alienating the voters of Parrish's
riding--the large number of Muslim voters who reelected her with a strong
majority after her "bastards" statement and who obviously agree with their MP's
view of the United States as the cause of all that's wrong in the world.
wish to improve relations with the United States and increase mutual respect
while tacitly standing behind Carolyn Parrish is further evidence that he is an
extremely weak leader, who occasionally talks a good game but lacks the
intestinal fortitude to make tough or unpopular decisions. It is not
insignificant that he earned the designation of "Prime Minister Dithers", early
on in his tenure.
can continue to play down his government's anti-Americanism by trying to blame
the opposition Conservative Party and sending out his Minister of Foreign
Affairs to say "those things happen". Much like the threat of terrorism and the
sad state of Canada's military, it is just more proof that the Martin Liberals
govern with their collective heads in the sand.
Arthur Weinreb is an author, columnist and Associate Editor of Canada Free Press. His work has appeared on Newsmax.com, Men's News Daily, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com, Glenn Beck and The Rant. Arthur can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org