Senator Cruz burning the bridge to the nation of his birth was treated indifferently here in the US, where many Americans regard Canada as merely a handy way to keep Michigan from bordering on the North Pole, just a vast tract of tundra thinly populated by freezing, gravy-slurping drunks who talk funny. I figured that the reaction had to be more heated in the Great White North, though, so I contacted a Canadian, Peter "Petey" Peterson, who happened to be hanging out at the barbecue grill at my condo complex in California, where many Canadians go to temporarily escape Canada.
"Well, mostly we feel slightly depressed about it," Petey said, "but that's the way we Canadians feel about almost everything. They say it's the lack of sunshine, eh?"
If Cruz is elected President, do you think Canadians will feel proud of him like Kenyans are proud of Obama, despite the fact that he just gave your whole large cold nation the back of his hand?
"Oh, sure. Most Canadians come to the US just so they can star on Saturday Night Live, yunno, and we think that's great, so having one as the President is even better."
Did you know Ted Cruz during his Canadian years?
"Sure. Even after his mom and pop took him back to the US, he used to come back in the spring when the snow melted and help us drink those cases of Labatt's we'd forgotten in the yard in the fall. And we'd go out and club a few seals together before the ice broke up. One time he tried to club a seal with his big Texas belt buckle. We told him not to. 'Use a bat, Ted,' we said. Well, that seal turned on him and broke his leg, yunno. We had to take him to the hospital. 'Now that you've gotten the socialist medicine, does that make you a socialist?' we teased him. He got pretty mad."
I'll bet. Do you think it's even going to be an issue when Ted runs, now that he's released his birth certificate? I mean, no one ever claimed Obama's mother wasn't American, but Ted's friends tried real hard to keep him off the ballot anyway. Will the other candidates call Ted 'the Canadian candidate' or do you think the other Republicans will let Ted slide on not being native-born?
"Oh, they let him slide, for sure. But, yunno, what might be embarrassing for him is if the other candidates start releasing the medical expenses their ma and pop had to pay when they were born. You Yanks think there's something character building aboot getting those surprise six-figure bills along with your little bundle of joy, but Mr. and Mrs. Cruz didn't pay nothing when little Ted decided to be born in Canada. That could hurt him in the primaries."
Sure, I could see that. I can almost hear zingers like "Freedom isn't free, but being born in Canada is." But I'm glad Canadians are good with one of their own being President of the US.
"Ya, mostly. There's some grousing, yunno, that he could've waited until after hockey season to renounce his citizenship. Some people in the border provinces are worried, too. They want to make sure we beef up border security."
Um, Petey, looking at the map of Canada, they're almost all border provinces. That's a lot of worried Canadians. What for?
"Oh, they're afraid Ted might try to get back in."