American-Canadian dual citizen and three-year Hope resident Anthony Pavick sees Donald Trump’s election as a dark moment for the United States and believes Canada should lead the way forward.
Born near Pittsburg, Pa., Pavick became Canadian five years ago. He wants to apologize to Canadians about what has happened south of the border.
“Because I think that the world expects more of the United States,” said Pavick. “The United States set itself up to be that shining beacon on the hill and the world expects the president of the United States to be the leader of the free world essentially, and I feel we have let down the world.”
When Pavick talks about the “shining beacon,” he is paraphrasing Ronald Reagan, who said America is “a shining city upon a hill whose beacon light guides freedom-loving people everywhere.”
To Pavick, America no longer serves the interest of minorities such as immigrants, LGBT people, racial minorities and the poor.
“If you’re not a white Christian, it’s not there,” said Pavick. “You will be stepped on and downtrodden.”
Asked whether Trump will become more practical and pragmatic as president, Pavick said he might.
“But there’s a double-edged sword there, because he was elected by virtue of the … many of things that he said — much of his hard-line rhetoric,” said Pavick.
Pavick believes Canada should step up and become that shining beacon as a model for tolerance, foreign affairs and international issues, naming Canada’s acceptance of Syrian refugees, engaging the world on climate change, peacekeeping work overseas and Canadian-Cuban relations as examples.
“I think that Canada has always been this kind of even-keel in the world,” said Pavick. “So now more than ever, we’re called upon to continue to be that — be a sense of reason.”
Pavick lauded the recent election of Justin Trudeau, saying that Trudeau allows Canada to present a friendly, non-combative face again.
“Stephen Harper’s rule was somewhat dystopian,” said Pavick. “There was a lot of [secrecy] about it.”
Pavick explained his journey to becoming a new-stock Canadian started 11 years ago when he wrote to two pen pals in Canada on an online site. His current wife, Debbie Pavick, replied.
“By the way, if you’re looking for any hinky-doings online, you can look for another,” Pavick said of Debbie’s reply.
They got married in Pittsburg and in 2010, Pavick started the process of moving to Canada. They eventually ended up in Kamloops, but decided to move to Hope because of better weather.