by Jeff Burgar
People may as well start calling it the Twitverse and FoolsBook. Because that’s where, it seems, an awful lot of twits and fools show what they are made of at one time or another.
MLA for Lesser Slave Lake Pat Rehn joins a growing list of people putting their worst foot forward over travelling to other countries during Covid-19 shutdowns and slowdowns.
Ron Phillips, Ontario provincial finance minister, resigned, or was fired from cabinet, after people learned he was vacationing in St. Barts in the Caribbean. There are other politicians coming to light.
Here in Alberta, municipal affairs minister Tracy Allard and MLA for Grande Prairie, was chastised by premier Jason Kenney after news broke she was holidaying in Hawaii the past days.
At least, Rehn and Allard didn’t try to cover up the fact. Phillips however, posted warm seasons greetings to folks while sitting close to his fireplace at home. It was pre-staged of course. Not terribly unusual for anybody to pre-do something to make sure it looks good. Except for Phillips actually toasting his toes on a beach a thousand or so miles away when the greeting was released, indicating it was planned much in advance of the trip.
Meanwhile, Rehn’s greetings were met in his constituency with ridicule on social media.
While Phillips is out of his cabinet post, for the moment at least Allard is still in Jason Kenney’s cabinet. Kenney announced on Friday he and his government “wasn’t completely clear” on what was meant about people travelling during these times.
Kenney also says “Tens of thousands of Albertans are currently out of province, many of them on vacation in warmer climes. There is no public health order or legal barrier barring them from doing so.”
He also added he was not prepared to restrict air travel, indicating airlines and companies such as Calgary’s Westjet are important company to Alberta.
Meanwhile, thousands of Alberta businesses, from restaurants to movie theatres to gyms, are indeed ordered closed. Hawaii and Mexico fine places to spend money. Alberta, not so much?
Both Rehn and Allard have since apologized.