Jump to content
Political Discussion Forums
Moonlight Graham

Green leader Elizabeth May only became Canadian citizen at age 24

Recommended Posts

I'm sure this isn't news to some of you, but...

I was startled to read in the newspaper today that Green Party leader Elizabeth May was born in 1954 in Connecticut, NY and that she first moved to Canada & settled in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia in 1972.

Therefore, May spent the first 18 years (possibly 17, not sure of exact dates) of her life as an American citizen living in the U.S. She only got her citizenship a few years later in 1978, at the age of 24 (or 23, agin not sure of exact dates).

This is just completely unacceptable to me for a leader of a (arguably) significant Canadian federal poltical party who is running to be Prime Minister of Canada. I'm currently quite undecided in this election of which of the major parties i want to vote for & the Greens were definately on my radar, but i can now cross one party off the list (oh, and the Bloc hehe).

What do u think? Is she unfit to be PM because of her specific immigration history?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What do u think? Is she unfit to be PM because of her specific immigration history?

No and not something we need worry about.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm sure this isn't news to some of you, but...

I was startled to read in the newspaper today that Green Party leader Elizabeth May was born in 1954 in Connecticut, NY and that she first moved to Canada & settled in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia in 1972.

Egads! She is a bloomin' Yankee. How did this happen, and why is it so goddamn funny? :lol:

Not to worry though...May can't even get a spot on televised debates, let alone free rent in Ottawa.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm torn.

On one hand, I think the US restriction on natural born citizens is too harsh. I see no rational reason why Arnold Schwarzenegger for instance should not be able to run for president.

On the other, we have to be sure that our leaders will not betray our interests in favor of what their previous country might want. An American born PM is a serious risk, no matter how you slice it. No one os going to make any accusations to this effect to Elizabeth May, but if Harper was the one who was in of similar heritage, he'd be crucified for it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm sure this isn't news to some of you, but...

I was startled to read in the newspaper today that Green Party leader Elizabeth May was born in 1954 in Connecticut, NY and that she first moved to Canada & settled in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia in 1972.

Therefore, May spent the first 18 years (possibly 17, not sure of exact dates) of her life as an American citizen living in the U.S. She only got her citizenship a few years later in 1978, at the age of 24 (or 23, agin not sure of exact dates).

This is just completely unacceptable to me for a leader of a (arguably) significant Canadian federal poltical party who is running to be Prime Minister of Canada. I'm currently quite undecided in this election of which of the major parties i want to vote for & the Greens were definately on my radar, but i can now cross one party off the list (oh, and the Bloc hehe).

What do u think? Is she unfit to be PM because of her specific immigration history?

I knew about her because when she became leader I went and check on her bio. I was wondering how she could run and be born a US citizen also. Its a wonder the media hasn't asked her the same question.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm sure this isn't news to some of you, but...

I was startled to read in the newspaper today that Green Party leader Elizabeth May was born in 1954 in Connecticut, NY and that she first moved to Canada & settled in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia in 1972.

Therefore, May spent the first 18 years (possibly 17, not sure of exact dates) of her life as an American citizen living in the U.S. She only got her citizenship a few years later in 1978, at the age of 24 (or 23, agin not sure of exact dates).

This is just completely unacceptable to me for a leader of a (arguably) significant Canadian federal poltical party who is running to be Prime Minister of Canada. I'm currently quite undecided in this election of which of the major parties i want to vote for & the Greens were definately on my radar, but i can now cross one party off the list (oh, and the Bloc hehe).

What do u think? Is she unfit to be PM because of her specific immigration history?

Absolutely not.

First, she chose to live in Canadda, and to become a Canadian citizen. So she was born elsewhere... So what? Unless one can provide any information that would lead people to believe she would choose another country's interest vefore Canada's, I view that detail insignificant......

Second, I am sure that some will point to the American Constitution. Fine, by the U.S.A. of 1787 is not the Canada of 2008. The young United States was small, poor, and the possibility of foreign powers trying to control it directly or indirectly was real. That risks is a lot less these days.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I knew about her because when she became leader I went and check on her bio. I was wondering how she could run and be born a US citizen also. Its a wonder the media hasn't asked her the same question.

She is a Canadian citizen too. There is no law against it. Besides, we have had at least one recent PM born in another country - John Turner. Say what you want about his tenure, but his performance was surely not related to where he was bron.

We could also add to the list most of the early PMs, including Macdonald, but as Canada was then a British colony, that's not quite the same.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
She is a Canadian citizen too. There is no law against it. Besides, we have had at least one recent PM born in another country - John Turner. Say what you want about his tenure, but his performance was surely not related to where he was bron.

We could also add to the list most of the early PMs, including Macdonald, but as Canada was then a British colony, that's not quite the same.

Why was there such a huge stink made about Michelle Jean's dual-citizenship when she became GG, but i haven't heard of this about May until now? I suppose its the fact that May isn't realistic candidate to become PM...yet. I'm sure if the Greens won a significant # of seats in Ottawa the issue would become a firestorm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Why was there such a huge stink made about Michelle Jean's dual-citizenship when she became GG, but i haven't heard of this about May until now? I suppose its the fact that May isn't realistic candidate to become PM...yet. I'm sure if the Greens won a significant # of seats in Ottawa the issue would become a firestorm.

Ask those who made it an issue then. I for one wasn't overly concerned about the fact th GG also held her husband's citizenship.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm sure this isn't news to some of you, but...

I was startled to read in the newspaper today that Green Party leader Elizabeth May was born in 1954 in Connecticut, NY and that she first moved to Canada & settled in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia in 1972.

Therefore, May spent the first 18 years (possibly 17, not sure of exact dates) of her life as an American citizen living in the U.S. She only got her citizenship a few years later in 1978, at the age of 24 (or 23, agin not sure of exact dates).

This is just completely unacceptable to me for a leader of a (arguably) significant Canadian federal poltical party who is running to be Prime Minister of Canada. I'm currently quite undecided in this election of which of the major parties i want to vote for & the Greens were definately on my radar, but i can now cross one party off the list (oh, and the Bloc hehe).

What do u think? Is she unfit to be PM because of her specific immigration history?

He-hey, that means I can run for President... errr, Prime Minister too !!!

:D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
No and not something we need worry about.

You don't see a possible conflict of interest here? Somebody born & raised in another country controlling ours? I wouldn't care if she moved to Canada when she was 2 or 3 years old, but 18? I can't believe how many people have said they don't mind.

What if she was born in a country other than the U.S.? Like Saudi Arabia? China?

Boggles my mind you people.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
....What if she was born in a country other than the U.S.? Like Saudi Arabia? China?

That would be much better.....she'd be Prime Minister by now! Have her call Obama's people and he can fix her up with the right documents. :lol:

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You don't see a possible conflict of interest here? Somebody born & raised in another country controlling ours? I wouldn't care if she moved to Canada when she was 2 or 3 years old, but 18? I can't believe how many people have said they don't mind.

What if she was born in a country other than the U.S.? Like Saudi Arabia? China?

Boggles my mind you people.

We have a federal party dedicated to breaking up the country. In the absence of any actual indication that May favours the US over Canada this is a non-issue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You don't see a possible conflict of interest here? Somebody born & raised in another country controlling ours? I wouldn't care if she moved to Canada when she was 2 or 3 years old, but 18? I can't believe how many people have said they don't mind.

What if she was born in a country other than the U.S.? Like Saudi Arabia? China?

Boggles my mind you people.

I see a conflict! I think some folks are not seeing the whole picture.

It has nothing to do with May being a "nice" person. It has everything to do with having a common heritage!

How can someone who grew to adulthood in a different country have a "gut" feel for being a Canadian?

Only those who believe that Canada HAS NO culture might think that this is a non-factor.

And that, sadly, is part of why this country has some deep problems.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that Canada has a culture and I see no problem with this. There is no reason that a person can;t come here and grow to love this country just as much or even more than a natural born Canadian (which seems to be the case a great deal of the time. They know more about the country than many who are from here and they understand and love it more). Canada is a nation of immigrants. I have no problem with her place of birth.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My view of this is it doesn't really matter. With that being said, I think it IS something people should know about and we can let Canadians decide how they feel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I see a conflict! I think some folks are not seeing the whole picture.

It has nothing to do with May being a "nice" person. It has everything to do with having a common heritage!

How can someone who grew to adulthood in a different country have a "gut" feel for being a Canadian?

Only those who believe that Canada HAS NO culture might think that this is a non-factor.

And that, sadly, is part of why this country has some deep problems.

What is this "gut" feel for being a Canadian that you are referring to? Someone who grew to adulthood in Newfoundland will have a different "gut" feel for being a Canadian than someone who grew up in BC (or Montreal or rural Ontario or Calgary or the NWT or etc.).

Canada has a culture, but that culture does not require that you be born within our borders in order to participate in and contribute to that culture. I happen to believe that Canadians are smart enough to look at a politician and see if he or she represents their views and vote accordingly. There is no need to protect Canadians from someone just because they were not born here.

This is not a non-factor, but it is close enough that it really does not matter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What is this "gut" feel for being a Canadian that you are referring to? Someone who grew to adulthood in Newfoundland will have a different "gut" feel for being a Canadian than someone who grew up in BC (or Montreal or rural Ontario or Calgary or the NWT or etc.).

Canada has a culture, but that culture does not require that you be born within our borders in order to participate in and contribute to that culture. I happen to believe that Canadians are smart enough to look at a politician and see if he or she represents their views and vote accordingly. There is no need to protect Canadians from someone just because they were not born here.

This is not a non-factor, but it is close enough that it really does not matter.

Sorry, I missed your point. I was daydreaming about watching all the flags waved for OTHER countries on my main street, during the China Olympics.

I wasn't sawing "zzzz's", I was sawing "hyphens"!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sorry, I missed your point. I was daydreaming about watching all the flags waved for OTHER countries on my main street, during the China Olympics.

I wasn't sawing "zzzz's", I was sawing "hyphens"!

LOL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sorry, I missed your point. I was daydreaming about watching all the flags waved for OTHER countries on my main street, during the China Olympics.

I wasn't sawing "zzzz's", I was sawing "hyphens"!

Don't worry about it. Since your original crisis was also a product of your imagination it is not surprising that you responded by telling us about your day dreams.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Don't worry about it. Since your original crisis was also a product of your imagination it is not surprising that you responded by telling us about your day dreams.

Sorry to disappoint you but those flags and those hyphens are and were not daydreams.

Perhaps you live on a different street but please don't ask me to not believe what I've seen for years with my own eyes and heard with my own ears.

It's amazing how such observations as mine are quickly dismissed as merely anecdotal. All such observations... thousands and thousands of them!

To be fair, it's almost impossible to scientifically gather such stats. Most people don't want to admit publicly that they place Canada 2nd in their hearts. It can cause problems if you're too obvious.

I still remember being almost badgered by a federal employee in the early 80's trying to get me to cite something other than Canadian for my ethnicity. She asked about my parents, my grandparents and so on. Finally I told her "My ancestors came over from Ireland and Scotland on the good ship Hector, which landed in Pictou, Nova Scotia in the 1690's. How long does my family have to be here to be called Canadian?

She didn't hear my last question. She had already triumphantly cried "Ah ha! Irish and Scottish!", scribbled it down and moved on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sorry to disappoint you but those flags and those hyphens are and were not daydreams.

Perhaps you live on a different street but please don't ask me to not believe what I've seen for years with my own eyes and heard with my own ears.

It's amazing how such observations as mine are quickly dismissed as merely anecdotal. All such observations... thousands and thousands of them!

My aren't we quick to think the worst of others on this site.

I did not dismiss your observations. I said your original crisis was a product of your imagination. Referring to your belief that because someone is born somewhere else this would present such a conflict of interest that they could not possibly serve Canada. You have not given a real reason to support why someone's place of birth should disqualify them.

I then said that you responded to my questions by telling us about your day dreams. Which, if you read your post, is exactly what you did. Don't blame me for what you wrote. I did not say that you never saw flags from other countries. I said that I was not surprised that your response to my questions was "I was daydreaming".

Maybe if you did not judge others so quickly you could see that nothing we have seen from May so far indicates that she is a secret US agent out to sabotage Canada.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It has nothing to do with May being a "nice" person. It has everything to do with having a common heritage!

How can someone who grew to adulthood in a different country have a "gut" feel for being a Canadian?

Oohhh... I see where the root of this worry lies: xenophobia. Anyone who wasn't born here can't be a real Canadian, right? Or, there has to be a prescribed amount of childhood spent in the country before being officially allowed to be Canadian. Narrowing down the notions of nationality and identity to merely birthplace or law is such a myopic way to look at a complex situation; there are numerous possible circumstances in May's case alone that could make her "more Canadian" than is being aluded to here. And besides, who cares? She swore her allegiance to the Queen when she became a citizen, she would swear allegiance to the Queen should she be elected to parliament, and she would swear allegiance to the Queen should she be appointed to the Privy Council to act as Prime Minister. In other words, regardless of where she was born, she would be, in the hypothetical situation of her becoming PM, bound to follow our laws and customs. If she starts to push the executive to adopt policies detrimental to Canada, she loses the confidence of the House; if she starts to act in an illegal manner, she's dismissed from office; and, if she speaks only Hindustani and tells Canadians they're a bunch of lumberjack heathens destined for Hell, I doubt the Green Party would get many votes anyway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Oohhh... I see where the root of this worry lies: xenophobia. Anyone who wasn't born here can't be a real Canadian, right? Or, there has to be a prescribed amount of childhood spent in the country before being officially allowed to be Canadian. Narrowing down the notions of nationality and identity to merely birthplace or law is such a myopic way to look at a complex situation; there are numerous possible circumstances in May's case alone that could make her "more Canadian" than is being aluded to here.

Its not about xenophobia, its about conflict of interest. I think the fact that she is American, a close neighbour, might be skewing opinions. What if she were born in Italy and became PM, and then Mussolini Jr was born & for whatever reason World War III started & Canada went to war with Italy? Do you not see a possible conflict of interest there? The fact that she has (i assume) dual-citizenship with her former country? The fact that she almost certainly has family living there? Old friends living there? Do you not think that this would influence her decisions? Do you think she would make the same decisions if she did not spend the first 18 years of her life in that country?

She swore her allegiance to the Queen when she became a citizen, she would swear allegiance to the Queen should she be elected to parliament, and she would swear allegiance to the Queen should she be appointed to the Privy Council to act as Prime Minister.

She also swore allegiance to the flag of the United States of America for 18 years, and unless i'm mistaken she probably still has her U.S. citizenship. Conflict of interest.

Just because somebody is a Canadian citizen, it doesn't necessarily mean they are 100% loyal to Canada and Canada alone. I don't care if what i'm about to say isn't "politcally correct", but you can't tell me that, for example, somebody who lived in another country for 40 years but has become a Canadian citizen 3 years ago is as loyal to Canada as someone who has been born and raised in Canada and lived here for 40 years. All people & cases are different, but you get my point.

Just my opinion, but i guess if she had a significant chance of becoming PM, word of her foreign roots would be more well-known & Canadians would decide with their ballots if she was worthy to be PM or not. I'm sure it would raise a major stink like it did with Michelle Jean.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Its not about xenophobia, its about conflict of interest.

That's not what was originally said; the point of concern that was raised was about May not having lived in Canada long enough to qualify as Canadian enough to be the Prime Minister (which is all completely hypothetical, obviously). Your statement, on the other hand, doesn't necessarily relate to the topic of May's past; it all depends on what interest it is that's being conflicted by another. If the conflict is that great, well, why then is she PM? I would hope that Canadians would vote for her party based on her party's policies, not on the origin of its leader.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...