On the day of the American election my Facebook account was flooded with reminders and invitations to election events. My coworkers made plans to cut out of work early that day to gather at house parties to watch the election coverage. Election parties? Really? I don’t know anyone who hit the party circuit for the Canadian election a couple weeks ago.
I do realize that I’m comparing apples and oranges here. Our own election was poorly timed and widely opposed by most Canadians. Our celebrities didn’t upload clever YouTube videos to encourage young voters. And while This Hour Has 22 Minutes is a great show, it doesn’t exactly pull the same numbers as Tina Fey as Sarah Palin on SNL . Oh, and then there’s Barack Obama. As in, we don’t have anyone like him. Not even close. It’s no wonder we’re fascinated with him. He’s young, attractive, a powerful speaker and he’s endorsed by celebrities. And then there’s his politics. We like his politics, don’t we? Sure we do! He’s the opposite of George Bush, right? Good enough.
Now, I don’t mean to be glib or to be a killjoy here. Most of my friends are still basking in the afterglow (re: hangovers) from Tuesday night’s revelry, and although I’ve heard a lot of gushing about the new president, I haven’t really heard much talk about what this might mean for Canada. Don’t get me wrong; I am personally very hopeful that President Obama may usher in a new era for the United States. And that’s can be a very good thing for Canada. We all know that what happens in American doesn’t stay in America. I just think it’s time to put away the Obama party hats in favour of critical thinking caps.