article by Gaby Hinsliff in The Guardian describes our native land as a progressive vision. The lady flatters us handsomely. I enjoyed her piece because it says nice things about us and because like many (most?) bloggers I tend to be highly critical of our country and its foibles, and it's nice to be reminded occasionally how lucky we are to live in this place, even if it takes a foreigner to remind us.
There are two ways to judge a society. One, by the ideal, by what it would be like if it were perfect. The other, by reality, by the kind of community fallible human beings are actually capable of creating. The latter means judging your society relative to others.
We bloggers often employ the former, the ideal, to judge Canada and therefore find it wanting. This is not a bad thing; holding your community to a high standard is healthy. And by the highest standard, Canadians certainly have a lot of work to do to improve every aspect of our culture. But judging realistically, we have one of the finest societies on the planet, by any measure—socially, politically and economically.
In her article, Ms. Hinsliff asks, "Who else is still surfing a wave of sunny progressive feeling when the U.S. and much of Europe are increasingly convulsed with rage against either poor migrants or privileged elites, or both?" Who indeed. She goes on to add, "Canada seems to be pulling off the elusive trick of remaining tolerant, relaxed and at ease with itself in challenging circumstances with more aplomb than most."
From my completely unbiased perspective, I can't help but agree with her. So today I will bask in the sunny feeling of being Canadian. Tomorrow I'll get back to being my usual critical self.