There are a lot of bad things I could say about Stephen Harper, and there are a lot of bad things that I have said about Stephen Harper. But there are still some things about him that I respect.
He has refused to reopen the debate on abortion, despite the fact that some of his MPs have been urging him to. In Canada, I can get an abortion completely funded by medicare, as long as I am a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada. Stephen Harper could’ve introduced legislation to change that, but he hasn’t, and won’t.
He has refused to reopen the debate on homosexuality and same-sex marriage, despite the fact that some of his MPs have been urging him to. In Canada, I can have sex with whoever the hell I want (as long as it is consensual), and marry whoever the hell I want. Stephen Harper could’ve introduced legislation to change that (a good chunk of his MPs would like him to), but he hasn’t, and won’t (I like to believe that it is because the rumours that his wife is secretly a lesbian are true, but I digress…).
And I don’t think any Conservative MPs want to mess around with contraception - our contraceptive rights are here to stay (or at least until some scientist proves that climate change, when mixed with contraception, turns people in zombies or something). American Congress is still debating that shit. What?
You can say a lot of bad things about Stephen Harper, but when I look at American politicians like Santorum, I feel better. Sure, Harper’s government isn’t the one that made these things legal (things were changed in 1969 with Trudeau, and in 2005 with Martin), but his also isn’t the one that stripped us of these rights, even though it very well could’ve. Sure, if any motions on these things had made it to the House of Commons, they probably would’ve been flat-out rejected by NDP/Liberal MPs (also the Bloc/Green MPs, if you think they count), but still. The fact that Harper won’t even humour such a thing is reassuring to me.
Sometimes I get really scared when I look at the direction our government is headed, but then I step back for a second.
Is Stephen Harper my first choice for Canadian prime minister? Hell no. But you know what? None of the federal leaders are right now. I’d rather at least have a stable leader than the turmoil the Liberals and NDP are facing right now (that said, I would fully support Jack Layton’s ghost for PM, if such a thing could happen).
Things here might be pretty shit sometimes, but as long as we don’t tolerate some of the political viewpoints of guys like Rick Santorum on a mainstream level (a guy like Santorum would never have made it as far politically as he has), even when our country’s Conservative party has a majority government until 2015, I feel okay about where Canada is headed.
I feel okay.