We All Swore We’d Move to Canada if Trump Won. These People Actually Did.
Kate Bratskeir - Mic
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November 15, 2017
Oh, Canada. Home to a police department that hands out “positive tickets” for good behavior, not a single weapon of mass destruction and... Justin Trudeau. For some Americans, the Great White North symbolizes greener grass, an attractive, theoretical escape for those in search of more affordable health care, a lower cost of living or a prescription for quelling feelings of despair post-election.
Historically, when election season comes, Canada appears particularly Eden-like for some people in the United States. “Every election, there’s that chorus of people who insist they are moving to Canada if candidate so-and-so wins,” political reporter Danielle Kurtzleben wrote for NPR. In 2016, the threat to get the hell out felt more sincere than years prior; Snoop Dogg and Barbara Streisand, for example, were among the legion that said they’d leave if Trump were elected. And yet, few people followed through. According to statistics released by Canada’s immigration office, there was just a minuscule increase in applications for Canadian citizenship post-election. And Snoop and Streisand are still living stateside, respectively.
But politics did lead some Americans to rethink their allegiance and commit to a different life. Cori Carl, the 33-year-old managing director of The Caregiver Space, moved to Toronto in the months leading up to Trump’s election. “I was definitely motivated by politics — even living in the magical, liberal bubble that is New York City,” she said in an interview. “As the end of the Obama administration neared and as the campaign was just starting for the next presidential election, the backlash of Obama was palpable. I was really nervous about how that was going to go.”
The Brooklynite first visited Toronto on a whim; after spending the weekend exploring, she “really fell in love with the city.”
“At the end of the weekend I was going back to the airport and I really didn’t want to go home,” she said. “And that was the first time I ever felt that.”
Even so, when she did decide to make the permanent move, Carl said she felt like she was being paranoid. “I knew there were biased crimes in New York against queer people and certainly there’s plenty of gender discrimination, but living in New York I didn’t feel like I was discriminated against on a daily basis. Maybe I had issues with catcalling, but I felt safe,” Carl, who is queer, said. “It was only moving to Toronto that I’m realizing how much discrimination and bias there was in New York.”
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Top image: (Tomas Stehlik/Shutterstock)
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