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The Daughters of the Vote 2019 program, taking place April 1st through 4th, is a campaign which invited young women, ages 18 to 23, from across the country to apply to be one of 338 delegates. Today, all delegates are attending a national event in Ottawa, where they take their respective MP’s seat in Parliament during what their website calls a historic sitting of the House of Commons.
As a young person interested in politics, I was looking forward to watching the event and eventually hear people that are around my age ask questions directly to our prime minister, perhaps even getting a few answers out of him.
I was hoping to be impressed by my peers. And in some ways, I was! In others, I was disappointed.
During the event, there was a number of political displays by the young women, across the political spectrum.
Jagmeet Singh was first to address the crowd, with a speech that focused on the low representation of women in positions of power. As Jagmeet Singh finished his address in which most of the 338 Daughters of the Vote (DOTV) attendees were on their feet, a few dozen stood to applaud Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer, however a number of women then walked out on Scheer before he even began speaking.
The remaining delegates stood to applaud Scheer’s speech, as it was met with general praise.
After Scheer came Trudeau, who gave a brief intro and gave some quick remarks before taking questions from the DOTV delegates. During his speech several dozen delegates turned their back on him protesting his expulsion of Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott from the Liberal caucus.
Trudeau gave his spiel, “We’ve seen in the news over the past number of weeks a number of people with questions about disagreements within in the Liberal party. And I need to note, and I need to tell you that this is part of what politics needs to be about,” stated Trudeau, clearly referring to his expulsion of two honourable women from his caucus.
“It’s not going to be easy, and it’s not going to be simple.”
Shortly after Trudeau started taking questions, one of the young women who walked out on Scheer called for a flight ban for “white nationalist groups” and for those with extremist views to be “prevented from meeting in online spaces”.
“Are white nationalist groups going to be put on terror watch-lists? Are they going to be prevented from meeting in online spaces? Or from travelling internationally? Are we actually going to have consequences for people like the leader of the Conservative Party for taking pictures with people like Faith Goldy?” somehow implying that Andrew Scheer had ties to white nationalism.
The question was followed by Trudeau’s world famous word salad, giving a bit of a non-answer that didn’t directly address the question, presenting no real solutions, leaving everyone barely-appeased. He also conveniently did not address the statements suggesting that Scheer was a racist.
As a shot of the seats was shown, yet another political display was taking place in the stands. About 30-40 women had their backs turned to Trudeau, just as Trudeau had figuratively turned his back to feminism by banishing Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott.
Among them, a delegate from southern Saskatchewan, who complained earlier about unkept promises from Trudeau on proportional representation. As Trudeau continued to speak, more women stood up and turned their backs to him.
It’s not just hardline conservatives that have had enough of Trudeau’s antics. One Mi’kmaw woman named Hannah Martin gave her speech, in which she grilled Trudeau for not respecting the inherent rights of the Mi’kmaw people.
“I’m here to condemn the actions of the Canadian government who continues to oppress our people, and to oppress our grandmothers who are on the river, living according to your traditional ways as Mi’kmaw people,” she stated.
“When I hear the leader, yourself, speaking about being a feminist. To me, you cannot be a feminist if you are raping the land. You cannot be a feminist if you are allowing corporations to rape the land. That is our mother.”
Trudeau gave a lengthy reply that checked off all of the boxes, ensuring that he sounded just coherent enough to get the monkey off of his back. The event ended with a few words from the Speaker of the House.
Throughout the event, one thing was clear. Young people, especially young women, are not happy with the state of things how they are. Across the political spectrum, and for a number of reasons, people do not champion the status quo.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.