Friday, December 6, 2013

R.I.P. Nelson Mandela, and a reflection on how Canadian politicians should follow in his footsteps

Nelson Mandela's death is an enormous tragedy for the world--he was an incredible leader who made remarkable sacrifices not just for his country, but for all of humanity. His courage, strength, and compassion provide much-needed hope and inspiration in a world where cold political manipulation is all too common. He was a true activist who lived by his words, and he will be missed by many around the world.
Now if only more Canadian politicians could follow in Nelson Mandela's footsteps...
Canadian democracy is in a crisis. The Senate scandal and Rob Ford's outrageous antics reveal how greed and selfishness have taken precedence over real leadership and service to the community. We call ourselves a society based on equality, yet it is painfully clear that this value is not enforced. While many Canadian politicians are squandering money and doing as they please, we are failing our most vulnerable citizens. Immigrants are increasingly falling through the cracks right here in Canada. Khadijeh's story is a case in point--Khadijeh has been in Canada for almost 20 years, and STILL hasn't been granted Canadian status!
Other immigrants have had to face unreasonable hurdles while trying to come to Canada as well. Adel Benhmuda had to start a petition to convince Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to drop its request for a $6,800 fee, which was related to the costs of deporting the Benhmudas back to Libya! The deportation resulted in Adel Benhmuda being tortured! These are not "little mistakes" by CIC--these are clear cases of CIC taking advantage of vulnerable citizens!
It's time for a change in leadership here in Canada. We must pay tribute to Nelson Mandela and his values by practicing what he advocated. We need politicians who are genuinely interested in working for the greater good of society, not just enriching themselves. A tall order, yes, but in a country that prides itself as a democracy, we must demand better. Anything less will lead to more cynicism, and a society that looks more like an oligarchy.

No comments:

Post a Comment