The Hero of Liberal Victory but why?

JustinOmar OzbekL On October 12, 2015, Canada held its 42nd general elections, also known as the Canadian Federal Election, 2015. The election was attended by 5 running parties with a record 68% turnout. The parties were the Conservative Party of Canada (Stephen Harper), Liberal Party of Canada (Justin Trudeau), New Democratic Party of Canada (Tom Mulcair), Green Party (Elizabeth May) and Bloc Québécois (Gilles Duceppe). 338 seats were declared with 170 required for majority, each seat representing a riding. The Liberal Party gained 184 seats, which allowed them to defeat the ruling Conservative Party who finished with 99 seats. New Democratic Party finished with 44 seats, followed by Bloc Québécois with 10 and Green Party with 1.
With Justin Trudeau winning the elections, the 9-year Conservative reign was brought to an end. Justin Trudeau’s popularity came from Canada’s Arctic (Yukon, N.W. Territories and Nunavut), which is inhabited by the isolated Inuit community of Canada, Southern British Columbia, Northwestern Ontario, Newfoundland, Maritimes, and several ridings in Southern Ontario and Southern Quebec. It has been reported that the Liberal Party also won various Indigenous Peoples’ reservations, to the point that some ballot stations ran out of polls because of the high voting turn out caused by the Trudeau popularity. The Conservatives won from the Eastern Rockies all the way until Southeastern Manitoba (completely made up of the Canadian prairies), most of Southern Ontario and most of the populated ridings in Quebec. The NDP won the less populated northern ridings of Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and B.C. Bloc Québécois won Manicouagan and a few ridings in Southern Quebec. Green party was only able to win 1 riding, which was Saanich-Gulf Islands in B.C.
A little background of Justin Trudeau. Justin Trudeau is the son of the 15th Prime Minister of Canada, Pierre Trudeau. He has a background of teaching and political activism. He has first served as the representative of Papineau, Quebec in the Canadian House of Commons. Later on, he served as the Liberal Party’s Youth and Multiculturalism critic, as well as the Youth and Citizenship and Immigration critic. With his experience in the party, as well as his last name, Trudeau won the 2013 Liberal Party Leadership Elections.
However, he has taken some ironic and dangerous positions that violated the Canadian Charter of Rights, which was enacted by the efforts of his father. He has supported Harper’s Anti-Terrorism act (Bill C-51) as well as Harper’s Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act (Bill S-7). He also attacked Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS), which Harper described as “Hate Crime”. Trudeau jabbed at BDS on Twitter by saying: “The BDS movement, like Israeli Apartheid Week, has no place on Canadian campuses. As a @McGillU alum, I’m disappointed. #EnoughIsEnough”. As the leader of a center-left political party with a huge Muslim vote, Trudeau has backed some gross and sure-to-backfire Islamophobic legislations and proposals.
But despite his support for such discriminatory and hateful ideas, Trudeau is still popular among Canadian Muslims. The Liberal Party of Canada currently has 18 MPs with Muslim background. Throughout the election season, Imams, Mosques, Congregations and major Muslim figures have called Muslims to participate in the Canadian elections, indirectly suggesting Trudeau. An organization called “Canadian Muslim Vote” has been spearheading this from the get go. Fliers after fliers have been distributed among various congregations in the Greater Toronto Area. Liberal Party’s election booths have been set up in front of major Mosques. Justin Trudeau is a star among the Canadian Muslims. But why? Why would Muslims vote for a guy that backed Bills targeting them? As a Canadian Muslim and a social activist who has been residing in Canada since 2003, I can assure you that the reason is very simple and is just as embarrassing.
Trudeau has a Muslim vote because Trudeau visits Mosques, attends Iftars and gives speeches in major Muslim venues/conferences, such as RIS (the so called “Reviving the Islamic Spirit”). The unfortunate reality is this. This is all Trudeau had to do, to seduce the Canadian Muslims and magnet their vote. Trudeau won because the Canadian public is not a bigoted one. Not because the tiny Muslim vote made a difference. 3 million Muslims of UK couldn’t defeat David Cameron and his large xenophobic base. But Canadian Muslims were ready to credit their ballot for the “change” that they were a part of. The type of “change” they were so eager to be a part of, that they have forgotten all about Trudeau’s support for Harper’s racism. The tragedy got to a point where a lot of his Muslim voters were trying to come up with excuses for his irresponsible and hypocritical actions. To summarize: Trudeau won the Muslim vote because a lot of Canadian Muslims, like many Muslims in the west, have an inferiority complex. They will vote, cheer and shield anyone that smiles at them. All a populist politician needs to do, is to attend Islamic events, smooth talk and Voila! Add a few more ridings to your list.
What stopped the Muslims from thinking critically? How can they claim to have acted against Harper’s xenophobia, when they went ahead and voted for the guy who has backed many of Harper’s proposals? Were they not following the news? What is it that got Muslims so confused? The answer to the last question, has already been mentioned above. Imams/Scholars. The reason behind this juvenile contradiction within the Muslim community stems from lack of honest leadership. That is why they turn to these populist, disingenuous politicians for help. Muslims do not have leaders that are there to help them. To educate them. To organize them. To teach them about the importance of building power outside of the parliament. To follow the method of Rasulullah [s.a.w.]. Muslims have the type of leaders who will give khutbahs about the length of beard or the importance of salaat, at times like Gaza bombings or Masjid Al Aqsa intrusions. Muslims have apolitical leaders who will either turn into mouthpieces during election seasons or to condemn and apologize for any violent act committed by a Muslim.
When the best of us, the most educated of us are so unwilling to assume actual leadership, is it surprising for Muslims to behave as a step ladder for men like Trudeau? How would I, or anyone, put the blame on Trudeau’s, or even Harper’s voters when they’re stuck with weak, passive and out of touch “leaders”?

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