Wednesday, August 24, 2011

RIP Jack Layton

As many of you readers are aware of I do like to talk about things that occur in Canada from time to time.  Since I do have dear friends in the Great White North and TransGriot readers who live above the 49th parallel, it's only fair that I delve into subjects that affect them.

If you were keeping up with my coverage of the Canadian elections earlier this year, you heard me mention NDP leader Jack Layton's name more than a few times

Layton has helmed the New Democratic Party since 2003, and under his leadership the NDP steadily built support to 37 seats in Parliament. 

In this recent 2011 election they rode a wave of historic support, especially in his native Quebec to garner 103 seats and become the Official Opposition party in the next parliament for the first time in their 50 year party and Canadian history when it cranks up for business later this fall.

In the 2011 election campaign he did so while recovering from a broken hip and battling prostrate cancer.  But unfortunately since that election Layton's condition worsened and he passed away on Monday at age 61.  

New Democratic Party interim leader Nycole Turmel echoed the feelings of many shocked and stunned New Democrats when she wrote this message that was posted on the party website.:  
Like Nycole, Renee and many Canadians I liked Jack Layton the more I saw, read about and heard him speak.  I would have loved to see him get the opportunity to lead Canada as its prime minister.

He won't be around to shepherd his party as the Official Opposition, but before he passed away he wrote this letter to his fellow Canadians.   

Layton closed his letter to Canadians with these words.

My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world.

I'll try my best to remember that.  

Rest in peace, Jack.   Your family, your party, your  country and all who treasure human rights and a fair and just society in Canada and around the world are going to miss you.

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