I regret that I wasn't able to live-blog the results from France's presidential election yesterday, but I have a good excuse to explain my absence...
...I was meeting with some of the voters from that election.
It was my pleasure on Sunday to play host to two very wonderful and charming members of France's Blue Revolution, the populist movement founded in late 2005 to reclaim France's lost liberties. It was "La Revolution Bleue"s habit of holding regular meetings in France, that inspired us to hold similar meetings of our own, in public, here in Vancouver, as of January 2006.
By pure coincidence, a French couple who participate in that organization had, quite a while ago, selected our fair city as the site for their vacation this year; imagine their surprise when they subsequently discovered our existence, and the work we had been doing on their behalf.
They took the initiative to contact me, and our correspondance culminated in our getting together yesterday for a (regrettably wet) guided tour through some of my favorite Vancouver sites.
Our face-to-face discussions proved to be very emotional for me; I found myself thinking over our talk for many hours following our encounter, my mind struggling to imagine living under such conditions. (I offered a far more lengthy than usual prayer of thanks that night for having been blessed to be born in Canada) As gripping as it is to read newspaper headlines or blog articles (or blog comments) on France's problems, it is something far more touching to physically meet and greet people confronting these problems as an inescapable part of their daily lives.
Here it is, a full day later, and I remain deeply moved by the stories that were shared. Sorting through my emotions and shaping them into more intellectual patterns, I emerge even more committed towards acting as I can to be of continued service to the patriotic French in their fight to free themselves from the noose placed around their collective necks through the socialist dirigisme of too many years reign.
We have so many allies, and potential friends, in France. The conservative habit, exacerbated on blogs, of tarring all the French with blanket condemnations such as "they deserve what they are getting", does a great disservice to the decent people there trying to live rightly and justly.
The gracious couple I met most certainly do not "deserve" the ills that have befallen France, that is for sure.