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Posted: October 5, 2021

Bad optics Trudeau strikes again

e-KNOW Editorial

By Ian Cobb

Politics is all about optics.

If you act and sound like a fool – voters will notice (usually).

And politics is supposed to be about leadership.

If you fold like an over-wintered lawn chair in the face of public demand, voters will notice (usually).

With that in mind, I wish to proffer a take: Canada’s newly re-elected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks like a fool who tripped over a lawn chair lying in plain sight.

Ever the earnest drama teacher digging into The Glass Menagerie whenever a camera is pointed at him, Trudeau was caught flat-footed, head down and butt-clenched silent Sept. 30 by a young Global News reporter on a beach at Tofino.

Why was the usually microphone-friendly Trudeau walking briskly and stiffly away from this reporter?

He was being asked why he wasn’t in Kamloops with Tk’emlúps te Secwe̓pemc on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, being a leader at a time when Canada’s First Nations people, and indeed the rest of the nation, suffers and grieves over the continuing tale of Canada’s greatest shame – the Residential School program of assimilation and attempted genocide.

Did he appear before the most solemn of gatherings in Kamloops to offer comforting words and to show the leadership required to inspire Canadians to continue learning the truth of First Nations peoples’ lives and pasts?

Nope. One assumes knackered from a disappointing election, despite winning it, Mr. Prime Minister rips off a cursory ‘night before’ National Day for Truth and Reconciliation ceremony and bundles the fam together for a flight to the beautiful west coast of Vancouver Island for some vacation time.

Optics: The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation – the FIRST ONE – should not be about ‘holiday time.’ It should be treated in the same vein as Remembrance Day – solemn and respectful and adhered to year-after-year in order to ensure newer generations understand.

It should be a day about reflection and consideration of the past and the future – not walks along the beach 4,640 km from home.

Just consider the message you presented, Mr. Prime Minister. Contemplate what you would be saying if you were the Official Opposition. You’d be earnestly writhing with disgust at the leader across the floor.

Yet here we are. Right after you pee away more than $600 million on the most useless election in decades, during the fourth wave of a pandemic, your sharp leadership senses take a leave of absence and you blithely insult Canada’s already deeply insulted, disturbed and distressed First Nations peoples AND most of the rest of the nation.

Optics son; optics.

What I saw was a sagged lawn chair appearing to be callous and tired of dealing ‘with things.’

Yes, you apologized. You always apologize.

It’s not enough this time Skippy.

Aga Khan, SNC-Lavalin, blackface, WE, a brain-dead, selfish election during a pandemic… not one of those disgraces stacks up to this massive error of judgement and lack of leadership.

In one gesture you showcased how Canada’s First Nations people deal with systemic racism.

Optics: Arrogant, elitist lip service Ottawa on full display. Nothing changes, apparently.

– Ian Cobb is owner-editor of e-KNOW

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