I don’t pay as much attention to Canadian politics as much as I do to our neighbors down the street. Maybe because American politics affect my business as 100% of my income is directly correlated with the American corporate economy (that’s what I tell people). But really, they are just so much more dramatic, with almost a Hollywood movie style scripture to it. There seems to always be a protagonist in fight for the mighty good versus the bad guy who threatens the peace of the innocent. Whether it’s because a minority race and sex were up for vote or because there was always a war to win and people to rally, US politics had an easy, simple story to follow. I guess that’s what captures the minds of the American masses.
This past year though, one Canadian politician managed to make me listen to what he had to say with his charm and charisma (that’s what I tell people), but mainly because his goodness and care for Canadians showed through his words and his actions. He genuinely cared for his country and it’s a shame that cancer had to take him at such a pinnacle stage of his life and for all the Canadians that he would have positively affected in the years to come. I guess with this story, there was a good guy and a bad guy too.
While his actions are no longer with us, his words we can still learn from. This was from an excerpt from Layton’s last letter to Canadians:
~And finally, to all Canadians: Canada is a great country, one of the hopes of the world. We can be a better one – a country of greater equality, justice and opportunity. We can build a prosperous economy and a society that shares its benefits more fairly. We can look after our seniors. We can offer better futures for our children. We can do our part to save the worlds environment. We can restore our good name in the world….
..Consider the alternatives; and consider that we can be a better, fairer, more equal country by working together. Don’t let them tell you it can’t be done. My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world.
– Jack Layton 1950-2011