Oh, Canada. In the wake of Donald Trump’s immigration ban, Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau sent a hopeful message. Posts across the Canadian PM’s Twitter and Facebook channels seem to welcome anyone affected by the ban. We really hope Justin Trudeau can back up these messages, because we’re big fans of what he’s done so far. Remember that gender-equal cabinet he appointed “because it’s 2015?” Or the time he became the first Canadian prime minister in history to march in the Toronto Pride Parade? Also, let’s just say it like it is: he’s a beautiful man, and the fact that he’s a feminist only makes him more beautiful.
So what did Justin Trudeau actually say?
On the official Justin Trudeau Facebook page, the PM wrote:
It seems like a pretty strong message, right? We all know why he posted these words and this image when he did. And we really, really want to believe that this is just the preface to some actual policy. But the posts don’t actually give us any new information. For example, how many new refugees is Canada willing to take in, and how will they get there?
Strong actions and reactions
Meanwhile, yesterday saw some pretty awesome responses to a terrible situation. Airbnb’s CEO invited travelers left stranded by the ban to contact him directly for free housing arrangements. Americans held demonstrations at airports across the country, and volunteer lawyers turned up to offer their help.
Apparently, on Saturdays, we protest now. The good news? It sort of worked. A court order issued last night will prevent those currently detained from being immediately deported. It’s not a permanent solution, but it’s something.
What’s next, Canada?
PBS reports, via a Trudeau spokeswoman, that the PM will discuss Canada’s refugee policy (and its successes) with Trump. But will Canada really step in to help out those affected by the immigration ban? We hope so – but it’s definitely complicated. Just look at Trudeau’s response to last weekend’s women’s marches.
Trudeau congratulates the men and women who came out “to support women’s rights,” but we all know that was only one piece of the puzzle.
Later on yesterday, he clarified that Canadian dual citizens with ties to banned countries will be allowed into America if they travel on their Canadian passports.
The Canadian PM is in an awkward position. On the one hand, 75% of Canada’s exports go to America, and the two countries share a border. On the other hand, Justin Trudeau has built his reputation on being progressive and ethical. It’s not an easy moment for diplomacy, but we really hope he makes the right call here.