Monday, May 15, 2006

Noblesse Oblige

Governor General Michaelle Jean has mastered the unwritten rule that the Canadian viceroy, far from being above petty politics at home, may also scold foreign governments and privileged persons when going abroad:

Governor General Michaëlle Jean's tour of Haiti continued on Monday as she me with the country's business elite in Port-au-Prince, where she scolded them for egotism, and urged them not to be selfish.

Selfishness, she declared, has to come to an end in Haiti. Her eyes welled with emotion when she talked about her return to the country where she was born.

Later, meeting with reporters, she was forceful about the plight of her homeland's children.

"You have children here in Haiti who are slaves. You have children who will never have a chance to go to school. You have children who will die of hunger. So when I am here, I see them," Jean said.

But on this trip Jean is a VIP and has spent most of her time, so far, meeting with the rich, the powerful and the privileged of Haiti. She bridled when asked why she's had so little contact with the country's poorest residents.

"You want me to go to Belair? I know Belair. I know Cité Soleil. I am from this country, I was born here."

But she avoided the question of why she hasn't visited those quarters.

One could hardly imagine the Queen being this rude to her hosts. Or any of our previous Governors General, for that matter, even the party hacks among them. She's brought all the worst parts of the CBC mentality to Rideau Hall--the insufferable moral superiority, the intellectual arrogance, and an all-round lack of social grace--and taken nothing from Rideau Hall's best traditions.

Heads of government can talk tough on government visits, but heads of state do not publicly slag their hosts on state visits. It just is not done.

Source: CBC

1 comment:

Fergy said...

Uhmm. I'm cool with what you say about her. But I'm sure as S*** would not venture into those areas, even with a contingent of mounties.