For most of our lifetimes, America has been seen as that shining light upon the hill, sending a signal for all the world to see of what could be achieved through a dedicated pursuit of freedom and equality.
But America can still serve as a beacon to us in Canada and abroad, warning of the dangers that can be wrought when blind partisanship obscures the difference between even right and wrong.
As two senior members of the Democratic Party announced this week they were stepping down amidst allegations of sexual misconduct, their colleagues across the aisle decided upon a very different tack: An accused child molester is preparing to enter the halls of the U.S. Senate with the full backing of the Republican Party and its president, whose conduct has brought its own host of accusers. The Party of Lincoln has sat silently by and watched its transformation into the Party of Predators, Perverts and Pedophiles.
On far too many serious issues, the United States has already past the point of no return. Estimates indicate there are currently more than 300 million guns on the streets of America, making it virtually impossible to ever rid the country of the gun violence that leaves more than 33,000 Americans dead every year. For us in Canada, there remains hope for sanity to prevail.
The world has watched in stunned amazement as an American president inflamed the racial tensions his country has long grappled with, not only urging on Nazis marching through the streets of American cities, but casually overturning decades of U.S. policy to bring even more chaos and bloodshed to the Middle East.
Even the truth has become a casualty of the growing divide in American politics. As evidence continues to mount that the American president and his campaign has more ties to Russia than the cast of Dr. Zhivago, there are those in Congress intent on turning their investigative powers onto the investigators themselves – ratcheting up fears of bias in the FBI, a once-sacred American institution.
Let the mistakes of our southern neighbours serve as a reminder of the need to not let our political divisions tear us from what binds us together as Canadians.