Over the last two years, I’ve been asked countless times about what pushed me from being an NDP riding president at 17, to a more moderate individual.

That shift was mostly caused by the discomfort I felt when listening to my peers pretend that dictators were heroes so long as they purported to adhere to “progressive” or Marxist values.

My transition was, of course, not instantaneous.

During my time with the Richmond Hill NDP, I was surrounded by many very hard working individuals who consistently articulated a clear distinction between dictators and governments that were committed to social responsibility.

It was the kind of key distinction that once placed the NDP as the moral conscience of parliament.

As I stepped out further into the world and began my university studies, I encountered a subculture of empty yet aggrieved student activists who were allied with elitist and fame-driven intellectuals. The distinction I had believed in started to fade away.

I started to hear admiration for left-wing dictators in open conversation. I heard that admiration more and more frequently as the semesters rolled by.

In my university experience, it felt like I experienced peak lunacy when Justin Trudeau stated his admiration for China, claiming that “their basic dictatorship is allowing them to actually turn their economy around on a dime and say ‘we need to go green  fastest … we need to start investing in solar.’”

As an individual who emigrated from a tyrannical government in Iran, that comment was deeply disturbing to me.

Although Iran isn’t a left-wing dictatorship, its government integrates socialist policies while simultaneously targeting ethnic and religious minorities in the same way left-wing dictatorships have in the past.

This revelation taught me that dictators can occupy any political extreme; ultimately it is the restrictions on freedom combined with the loss of lives that truly reveals the tyrannical nature of a government.

Since Justin Trudeau’s comments in 2013, it seems that the Overton window has only expanded further to include hypocritical support for left-wing dictators, even from the most mainstream in Canadian politics.

For example, Thomas Walkom, a National Affairs Columnist for the Toronto Star recently published an article in which he argued that the Trudeau government was opposing the rule of Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro while keeping in line with right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro in order to win brownie points with the Trump government.

Walkom notes “that the election last summer that returned Maduro to power was flawed. But arguably so was the election last year of Brazil’s new right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro. In that contest, Bolsonaro’s most formidable opponent, left-leaning Luis Inacio Lula da Silva, was barred from running.”

Interestingly, the article forgot to mention that Luis Inacio Lula da Silva was barred from running by the supreme court due to a corruption conviction.

Anything to score a point against Trump? Trudeau?

The actions taken by Justin Trudeau would appear logical to anyone who actually supports democracies as well as effective action on the international stage.

While Walkom notes that the Trudeau government does not dispute the legitimacy of every dictatorship on earth (such as the UAE or the Saudi state), as a sign of other incentives, I would argue that the only government that might actually change would be Venezuela given that their people have been so poorly managed that they have been forced to eat decaying meat and zoo animals.

I suppose a little bit of vote rigging and dictatorship never hurt anyone, as long as it is for a progressive cause.

Or wait, sorry. It appears that it certainly did for the 85 to 137 million people who lost their lives under the leadership of left-wing dictators such as Mao Zedong and Joseph Stalin who openly killed their own people in the search for utopia.

Even now, Canada is facing the reality of its citizens being imprisoned, one placed on death row, due to the Chinese dictatorship’s willingness to do what it takes to reach its intended end goal, the subjugation of Canada.

While all of this happens, I harken back to our Prime Minister’s previously stated admiration for China, as well as the Trudeau family’s recorded and historical love for tyrants.     

While our Prime Minister may not yet understand it, autocracies are inefficient at almost everything.

As broken down by Mark Milke in his Maclean’s piece The Trudeau family’s love of tyrants:

Anyone, including the prime minister, who thinks China has an effective or enlightened policy on the environment is unaware or blithely ignoring just how corrupt, ineffective and inefficient autocracies are. Those who place their confidence or faith in Beijing are betting all their chips on the sole regulation-from-above “horse.”

At some point—sooner than I think most would expect—the left will have to sever its gangrenous foot by ending its love affair with socialist dictators.

If they don’t, they risk becoming what they glorify.

What do you think about the left’s love affair with dictators?

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