Most Canadians do not want US border reopened

81 per cent of Canadians want the US border to remain closed to non-essential traffic.

81 per cent of Canadians want the US border to remain closed to non-essential traffic.

There was a minor hullabaloo, and an impressive Twitter ratio, late last week for an upstate New York congressman.

Congressman Brian Higgins sent an open letter to Canadian Public Safety Minister Bill Blair, requesting that Canada immediately plan a phased reopening of the Canada US border, which as been closed since March 21, as both countries agreed a closure was appropriate in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.

The closure has been extended a couple of times, and is set to expire on July 21, although all signs point to it being extended again, given the absolute explosion of COVID-19 cases in the United States.

It was the suggestion by the congressman that the border be opened, with no mention of his country’s abysmal failure to contain the virus, that caused many Canadians to push back.

Higgins proudly announced on his Twitter page that he was leading a bipartisan push calling for the border to be opened.

The response from Canadians was swift.

No thank you, tweeted @MichelleTypoQ

Clean up your backyard before you attempt to enter ours.

Sorry, we’re closed, she continued

Absolutely no way. Get #Covid19 under control and we can talk again. The majority if Canadians do not want border open for non-essential travel – @ElkeBabiuk

@calmecam “Let’s be clear: There exists no galaxy, universe, solar system, dimension, reality, alternate reality, planet, continent, area code, or zip code in which Canada and Canadians will accept American exportation of #COVID19.

Do your own damn work first.

THEN let’s talk.

NO!

The USA had more new cases of #COVID19 in the past two days than we’ve had since the pandemic started. How dare you try to put Canadian lives at risk! What kind of true friend/ethical neighbour would do that?! This from @meanwhileinCanada

The tweets go on and on, the ratio something to see.

Recent polling suggests that Canadians are firm in their desire to keep the border closed.

Last week a Nanos Research poll conducted for the Globe and Mail found that 81 per cent of Canadians want the border to remain closed to non-essential travel for the foreseeable future.

Interestingly, polling finds that Americans mostly want the border to reopen. Not surprising, given Canada’s achievement in flattening the curve — Americans are hardly at risk of COVID-19 spreading from the north into their country.

And I am in agreement with my fellow Canadians. I believe the border must remain closed until the United States begins to flatten the curve. And frankly, that doesn’t appear to be on the near horizon.

Personally, I would love to travel to the U.S. I have a new grandson who was born in Virginia on March 22, 2020. I have not met him, and have resigned myself to the fact that he may be well over a year old before I can hold him.

But it’s not worth the risk. We have all been asked to sacrifice to slow the spread. Meeting my grandson is just one of those things I have to put off.

Could we use the economic benefit to our tourism industry? Yes, but again, not worth the risk.

Canada, as a whole, has done pretty well. The United States has not. Simple as that. I could go on for many, many column inches as to why that may be, but I won’t.

Keep that border closed.

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