OPINION BY ALEX TAYLOR
When Canadian Liberal MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes first told her story in a series of tweets last week, the Prime Minister’s already troubled week went from bad to worse.
Already embroiled in the SNC-Lavalin scandal, the Prime Minister’s office now had to put out the fire of a new public relations nightmare – yet another cabinet minister announcing that they have had enough when it comes to working with Justin Trudeau.
To the PMO’s credit, they have acknowledged that the conversation between Caesar-Chavannes and the prime minister was “emotional”, though they deny that there was any “hostility” in the chat.
In most cases, the Casear-Chavannes/Trudeau encounter would garner an eyeroll, nothing more. Trudeau being so angry he “shot her a look, and stormed off” is hardly the sort of thing that demands the nation’s attention. It’s not even the most outrageous thing Justin Trudeau has done in parliament, that would have to be the alleged “elbow heard round the world” that made Tom Mulcair practically apoplectic.
A Trudeau apologist would argue that this is just like the SNC-Lavalin allegations, that this is all some ridiculous witch hunt meant to slander their golden boy in an election year. That it’s not “a big deal.” That “he deserves the benefit of the doubt.”
He doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt.
He’s Justin Trudeau.
Trudeau is learning a lesson many have learned, one so commonly taught it has it’s own proverb.
If you’re going to talk the talk, you better walk the walk.
That’s why Justin Trudeau’s conduct is so appalling. That’s why this matters.
Trudeau has paraded himself on the world stage as nothing short of the second coming. His words and actions have invited the microscope he now finds himself under, daring us all to take a closer look. He was the feminist prime minister after all. Just ask him, he’ll tell you all about it.
He was the man who would call Trump a bully. The boss who always had the open door. The man who boldly declared sunny days were ahead for all nine provinces (yes, nine–he forgot Alberta).
Trudeau loved to paint the picture we all know so well. He wanted to be the drama class lead who became class president. He boxes, he jogs with his shirt off, and all with a smile that says he’s the most approachable man to ever live at 24 Sussex.
In reality, Trudeau’s no different than every other bully. If you’ll give him you’re support then buckle up, you’re along for the ride, and sunny days are indeed ahead. Stand in his way, and you’ll find yourself looking for a new party if you want to run in October.
He’s still the class president, but it’s no longer because of a handsome flick-of-the-hair. It’s because his daddy was principal.
Separate the actions from the man, and the outcry would be minimal. Looks of anger? Storming off? Ordering a subordinate to drop something? Wrong or right, these are all things that you’ll see in most levels of management, from Fortune 500 companies to your local Tim Hortons.
But most of those managers aren’t telling the world that they’re a generation’s new hope.
When you take into account the global image that Justin Trudeau has allowed to grow, it magnifies his transgressions.
Is that fair? Maybe not. But he’s got no one to blame but himself.
He has never stopped anyone from portraying him as the white knight.
Now? He’s the rich boy on spring break whose maxed out all his credit cards.
He’s not some prom-king leader. He’s a phony.
People who are obsessing over the legality and obstruction of the SNC-Lavalin affair are missing the point.
Mounties are not going to march into Trudeau’s office in the middle of the night and arrest him for obstruction of justice. Or “pressing”, as Wilson-Raybould has so eloquently put it. They couldn’t, and more importantly – they shouldn’t. This isn’t Bolivia. That’s not how we do things.
The damage will come on election day, when Canadians have the chance to show the golden boy that leadership is more than just talking the talk.
Sunny days indeed.