It’s an usual story but it shines a light on what may be ahead of us.
A 45 year old African-American professional who earns a six figure annual salary, was educated at two of the nation’s best schools is talking about what six months ago would have been the unthinkable: moving next door to Canada,
“If things continue the way they are going I may look to Canada as a place in which to live and continue to raise my children,” said the man who until now had never voiced such thoughts.
He blames Donald Trump, America’s new Commander-in-Chief for what he sees as a threatening atmosphere over North Korea and Iran, an anti-immigrant sentiment, and uncertainty about where the land of opportunity is heading.
“I am thinking of Canada as “plan B.” Chances are I wouldn’t do it but I see it as a possible avenue to pursue,” was the way he put it.
He isn’t alone. A published report in the Detroit-Windsor area indicated a spike in interest by Americans in Canadian real estate. That interest is unlikely to turn into a flood but the fact that it exists is a sure sign of pessimism about the future.
In the first 100 days of his presidency, Trump managed to alienate millions of women of all colors, white, black, Hispanic and Asian who cherish
the freedom to decide the size of their families. He did that by taking a hard stance against family planning and withdrawing financial support to the nation’s largest family planning organization, Planned Parenthood of America, which does excellent work in poor and middle class communities. The women’s march the day after Trump took the oath of office in January in Washington was a clear and strong indication that the president’s alliance with the religious far right wouldn’t intimidate women and their families into passive acceptance of his wrong-headed policies. Stay tune.
The Administration’s anti-immigrant posture pits it against sanctuary cities like New York, Austin in Texas and San Francisco in California. Just as important, its desire to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. is focusing attention not on the immigrants who are helping to build America but on the few who have committed criminal offences. Little wonder that his executive orders on immigrations have earned the rebuke of federal courts on constitutional grounds. The atmosphere of intolerance stands in stark contrast to the attitude of President Barack Obama who while deporting large numbers of criminals extended a helping hand to the young people from foreign lands, the Caribbean included, who were brought to our country by their parents and who view the U.S. as their homeland.
Then there are the Republican threats to Obamacare, which is providing Americans with their best chance of receiving universal health care, something our Canadian next door neighbors and people in the Caribbean have been enjoying for decades. His attempt to repeal the historic measure ended in failure when he couldn’t muster enough votes in the House of Representatives to get it through the chamber. But the President and his Republican allies on Capitol Hill are determined to try again, an unworthy move that would deny healthcare insurance to tens of millions of poor Americans who urgently need to see a doctor or go to a hospital or clinic.
This is part of a campaign to undo the legacy of America’s first Black president whom he has falsely accused of everything from creating the terrorist group ISIS; tapping his 2016 presidential campaign and allowing China to engage in currency manipulation while supposedly doing nothing to resuscitate the U.S. economy after the economic onslaught of the Great Recession. Never mind that Obama’s policy returned the economy to
sustained growth. Trump also blamed Obama for the presence of the murderous MS-13 youth gang in the U.S., especially in California but has ignored the fact the gang’s history dates back to the 1980s when the civil war was raging in El Salvador. In 2005, MS-13 had 50,000 members in more than 30 states, the strength U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions cited last month.
At the same time, Trump has taken over-size credit for job gains in the first quarter of the year, claiming, quite unjustifiably, that “in just three months, we have created 90,000 new construction jobs, 49,000 new manufacturing jobs and 27,000new mining.” In all, he contended “we have 600,000 new jobs.”
The reality is quite different. The U.S. economy added more than 500,000 jobs between January and March, but almost half of them were estimated before Trump took the oath of office. In March the first full month of his presidency the economy added a mere 93,000 jobs.
Most of his boasts about his achievements are either misleading or outright inaccurate, a clear indication that far from making America “great again,” Trump may be well-on his way to making things worst.