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Nov. 12: So long … and bon voyage. Plus other letters to the editor

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So long … and bon voyage

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It is hard to think of a world without Leonard Cohen musing about the human condition (Leonard Cohen, 1934-2016, Nov. 11). It is harder to determine which recent event most hastened his passing: the death of Marianne; the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Literature to the vastly inferior Bob Dylan; or the election of Donald Trump,disproving Mr. Cohen's thesis that democracy is coming to the USA.

Ian MacKay, Ottawa


Most importantly, Leonard Cohen gave us words worth a thousand pictures. Bon voyage, Leonard.

Pierre-Richard Gaudreault, Sherbrooke, Que.


As in other moments of despair, Leonard Cohen came by to remind us of a true and enduring and loving power, the power of song.

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Christine Davis, St. Catharines, Ont.


Parsing the win, and the loss

Re The Lesson Of Hillary: Retreat Is Not An Option For Women (Nov. 11): Hillary Clinton did not lose "because she is a woman." The United States voted for change, any change. And of what change, only time will tell. The loss of the election was by the Democratic Party which would not and did not change. Now, maybe it will.

Thank you Hillary! You did the best any man or woman could. You deserved to win and notwithstanding the outcome, you are a winner.

Gary Wilson, London, Ont.

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Kamal al-Solaylee is not wrong in pointing to the "racial fault lines that ravage his country" as a major reason for Mr. Trump's upset of Ms. Clinton (Don't Kid Yourself: This Was All About Race, Nov. 10).

But at least one non-white progressive man, Barack Obama, twice bettered white male candidates in two successive elections to win and re-win the presidency. And to get to the Oval Office in 2008, he beat Ms. Clinton, a far more established and experienced white candidate, in the primaries.

What are women, white and non-white, to take away from Mr. Trump's defeat of the same Ms. Clinton? That any man, whether gifted like Mr. Obama or boorish and unqualified like Mr. Trump, can win the presidency over a woman, regardless of her ethnicity, intelligence or experience.

The coalitions of blacks and Latinos on whom she counted seem to have largely stayed home. And many, many white women chose to ignore Mr. Trump's vileness toward their gender to vote for him rather than Ms. Clinton. That, I think is the saddest part of all.

Erika Ritter, Toronto


Canada is offering to renegotiate NAFTA in an effort to warm ties with Donald Trump (Ottawa Offers To Renegotiate NAFTA Deal, Nov. 10). I can't imagine anything less warm than the experience of negotiating with someone who has reneged on thousands of contracts simply because he had the power and money to do so. Ties with his government will be on his own chilly terms and we are naive to think that it might be otherwise.

Elizabeth Barr, Toronto


Re Trump's Win Sends Canada An 'Exciting Message': Leitch (Nov. 10): This anti-elite – and quite possibly anti-intellectual – "message" is one Canadians do not need to hear. It was not long ago that we threw out the federal Conservative government for promoting similar views. Leadership contender Kellie Leitch has been quite rightly condemned by her Conservative colleagues for attempting to bring Donald Trump's message north of the border. Such a message has no place in our society.

David Holmgren, Calgary


It is strange how when actual election results contradict the forecasts of liberal pundits, they try to explain their own failed predictions by accusing the voters of racism, xenophobia or some other unexpected exercise of base instincts (Trump Backers Aren't Economic Losers, Nov. 9).

If racial resentment explains the success of Mr. Trump, how is it that Barack Obama has carried such high approval ratings, much of it among those same, supposedly fearful and poorly educated whites. It is just possible the voters may have entirely legitimate reasons for their decision, including the rejection of a smug and corrupt establishment that has completely lost touch with ordinary Americans.

Herb Schultz, Edmonton


It seems many Americans may now want to immigrate to Canada (Nervous Americans Look North, But It's Not an Easy Jump To Make, Nov. 10). A more efficient alternative would be that the progressive states on the East and West coasts vote to separate from the Disunited States and join Canada.

Of course, it would require a vote for a state to exit. This could be called Sexit. Donald Trump might not understand the meaning of such a vote, and even vote in favour.

John Bakker, Eagle Bay, B.C.


Shaken and stirred

Re James Bond Was Right (Life & Arts, Nov. 9): Writer Eric Velland states that "martinis are stirred, not shaken." That may be the preferred method of certain elites to ensure clarity of the liquid; however, James Bond was quite specific that his martinis were to be "shaken, not stirred."

But with the results of the U.S. election we face uncertain times and a martini is most welcome – whether shaken or stirred. Please make mine a double.

Vic Bornell, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.

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