Notwithstanding the fact that I am a lifelong Liberal Party of Canada voter, a great admirer of the late Pierre Elliott Trudeau and supporter of current Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the latter’s recent statement regarding the passing of Fidel Castro was just plain wrong. I fear the long relationship between the Trudeau family and Castro, who was an honorary pallbearer for Trudeau pere, may have clouded the Prime Minister’s opinion of the Cuban dictator.
Perhaps more importantly, the Prime Minister, when issuing the Castro statement, was presented with an opportunity to carve out his own niche rather than being seen as merely following in his father’s footsteps. A statement about a death is rarely the place to make rash pronouncements, but by wording the statement differently, alluding diplomatically to Castro’s failed policies and hinting at his tyrannical methods, Justin Trudeau could have made strides to shed his father’s shadow.
The reaction from the world’s leaders was fast and sweeping; no one it seems was terribly impressed with Prime Minister Trudeau’s lack of condemnation of the Castro dictatorship. The fact that there was not a hint that Castro was anything but a great leader, not even couched in diplomatic-babble, left Trudeau open to the criticism.
This is not a deal breaker when it comes to my continued support of the Liberal Party, nor my general admiration of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Political parties are made up of people, and they have yet to come up with one of those that is perfect. The expression ‘double down’ when referring to a person who not only refuses to back away from a position, but adds to its strength is much overused these days. Rather than double down I hope Trudeau fils will consider backing away from his Castro statement.
Mr Prime Minister, put your hands up and back away from your Castro statement.