No question, Payette is highly accomplished. Heck, she can name all the planets. We have no doubt also that some of the stories leaking out suggesting inappropriate behaviour on her part are diversionary tactics aimed at redirecting our attention from the WE scandal.
That said, both Payette and her detractors should keep one thing firmly in mind: As an institution, the Crown is intrinsic to our democratic system. Don’t play politics or denigrate it. One only has to look at the shambles in other countries around the world to understand how blessed we are with a stable government.
Don’t mess with success. Canada is a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy with the Queen as our head of state and the prime minister as our head of government. It works just fine.
Payette should either pull up her vice regal socks and do the job she’s paid to do, or move gracefully aside. To the backbiters who are sniping at her: You’re not just attacking a person. You’re undermining a system of government that’s made this country the envy of the world.
Our system isn’t broken. It doesn’t need fixing — just a little fine tuning now and then.
This country has been blessed with some truly distinguished vice-regal representatives.
As Governor-General, Ray Hnatyshyn opened up the grounds to Rideau Hall, allowed public skating and held concerts there.
Our present G-G is Julie Payette. Her predecessor, David Johnston, had the perfect resume for the role: A hockey-playing lawyer with a distinguished career in academia. He and his wife, Sharon, embraced the job and understood its quirky requirements.
Sadly, some G-Gs become starry-eyed about their position. They believe they not only represent the the Queen in Canada. They think they are royalty and start acting in a haughty fashion.
That’s when the tiaras hit the fan.
The job requires a unique mix: An understanding of constitutional niceties and a passion for people.
In theory, the G-G is appointed by Queen Elizabeth. In practice, the prime minister advises Her Majesty. In promoting Payette, a former astronaut, Justin Trudeau tried to squeeze a round peg into a square hole. She doesn’t seem engaged by the job and isn’t a people person.