You'll excuse the late post. As is my daily habit, I arranged the items of my after-work agenda in descending order of importance. Thus, as I've shined my shoes, ironed my briefs, re-sewn a button onto a blazer and spent a few minutes watching dust motes twirling in the air of my basement office, I can now turn my attention to our "election" (which, only five days old, seems to have been going on for ages).
I was amused to see Liberal MP Sukh Dhaliwal suffer a salvo of outrage for writing to an American judge in support of a fellow Canadian who was sentenced to jail for drug trafficking by a U.S. court. Ranjit Singh Cheema, who faces five years in jail, was apparently involved in a world-wide heroin ring. Dhaliwal argues that the letter was written at the behest of the man's parents, who wanted an influential voice to communicate their son's commitment to rehabilitation.
Frankly, this banal gesture of support is perfectly innocuous; in fact, it does not go nearly far enough. Dhaliwal merely did the minimum that could be expected from an MP, whose job it is, after all, to work and advocate on behalf of his constituents.
No. Dhaliwal's effort was sloppy, dilatory, and stunningly archaic. He is clearly working on the old assumption that drug trafficking is an odious crime, something that needs to be apologised for and rehabilitated from. What painfully quaint, inside-the-box thinking.
Can he be so ill-informed as to be utterly unaware that Stephen Harper has rehabilitated the crime--that drug trafficking is now a perfectly legitimate pursuit, one that commands prestige and confers the right to legislate for the people, one that forms the very fiscal bedrock of infrastructure development?
Mr. Dhaliwal should have brushed aside with contempt any request to bow and scrape in front of a U.S. judge. He should have, instead, penned a demand to the Prime Minister's Office that Ranjit Singh Cheema be placed under the protection of the Canadian Forces (with, ideally, a mechanised battalion put at his personal disposal), be given a seat in Parliament and be gifted with millions of no-strings-attached "development funds" from the Canadian treasury to do with as he and his family pleases.
That's the Afghan way, and, if it is good enough for Afghan drug lords, it should be good enough for our own.