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Trudeau purchased some doughnuts recently at a local doughnut shop in Winnipeg. You’d think that wouldn’t make the news with all the more prescient issues at hand but it seems the pettier the better in our clickbait world. Critics wasted no time chastizing the prime minister for his decision to buy doughnuts on taxpayer dollars.
I want to be clear that I don’t like Justin Trudeau. I didn’t vote for him the first time around. I didn’t like that he ran on his father’s legacy. I don’t like his pious cadence. I don’t like his inability to answer basic questions. He is at worst corrupt and at best, a plug.
One thing I do like, however, is consistency. I want people to hold one another to the same standards as they would anybody else. The political polarization that is often discussed in regards to the United States has undeniably seeped into our home and native land as well. People get in their camps, left or right, and they stay there. Wilful blindness, logic twisting and “whataboutisms” plague the public discourse and there is no better platform to sling mud than Twitter.
It has become increasingly clear that in today’s political climate you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t. The Liberals are having a cabinet retreat in Winnipeg and Trudeau stepped out to grab some doughnuts and no doubt a much-needed photoshoot. He and the shop in question, Oh Doughnuts posted about the transaction and lo and behold people on the internet got upset about it.
I don’t wish to advertise for bitter Twitter users in this article but if you happen to be a fan of faux outrage, the hashtag is #doughnutgate. In this thread, you’ll find people whining away, primarily about the cost of the doughnuts which came in at a whopping $47 a dozen. That is what we are squabbling about, the difference of thirty some odd dollars it would have cost if he’d bought the doughnuts at Tim Hortons.
Tim Hortons, the famously Brazilian-owned coffee and doughnut chain was surely open and operating just as close by many complained, so why didn’t he go there and save his compatriots the pocket money? Because he’s an elitist, that’s why. It could also be that Tim Horton’s employees in Winnipeg are currently on strike or the franchisee refusing to raise their wages. It could be because the Prime Minister wanted to photo-op of him shopping locally.
I don’t understand why or how, any Canadian could criticize a politician for shopping locally, I can’t even play devil’s advocate momentarily on that one.
Sure the guy likes to spend our money, there are plenty of vacation receipts to prove that, but it’s important to separate the wheat from the chaff.
One Twitter critic complained about the fact that Trudeau was out shopping himself, claiming he could have got one of his assistants to run the errand. The tweet also opened with “Elitist Trudeau.” It’s hard wrap your head around some of this stuff. How can a politician be elitist for not sending his assistant to run an errand but instead opting for a chance to connect with his fellow citizen? It’s absurd.
Again, I’m no fan of Trudeau or of politicians in general for that matter but my disdain for hypocrisy far outweighs any political leanings. I wonder how positively effective social media could be as a forum for communication if the majority of users weren’t operating through an us vs. them scope. The truth of the matter is that we all have more things in common than we do things uncommon.
The next time a politician, or anybody for that matter that you don’t like is doing something just ask yourself, “how would I feel if it was my politician or my friend in this exact scenario?” I’d be willing to bet it would change your perception of it a great deal.
I think we’d all be a step closer to harmony if we seek truth and fairness over a momentary ‘victory.’