US President Donald Trump took a lot of people, including US defense officials, by surprise on Wednesday morning, announcing on Twitter that the US military would no longer allow transgender soldiers, and attaching a dangerous and illogical, easily refuted justification for the change. Before the end of the day, however, the Canadian Forces had its response ready:
The official Twitter account of the Canadian military tweeted a photo from the Toronto Pride Parade in July. Canadian military band members play instruments decorated with rainbow flags in a scene designed to provoke FOMO. In what was probably a deliberate attempt to mimic Trump’s writing and tweeting style, the text read: “We welcome Cdns of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Join us!”
As the CBC reports, Canada’s existing policy unfortunately still refers to “transsexuals,” but its terminology is currently under review. Notably, it also instructs “commanding officers and leadership at all levels to prevent discrimination and harassment and to ensure all members are treated with dignity and respect regardless of gender identity.”
This is not the first time an official government account in Canada has subtweeted the American president. At 10 p.m. Eastern time on election night in November, when it appeared that Donald Trump was poised to win the presidency, the Canadian government tweeted: “In Canada, immigrants are encouraged to bring their cultural traditions with them and share them with their fellow citizens.” It was an obvious statement about the anti-immigrant comments Trump made repeatedly during his presidential campaign.
Most controversially, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau trolled Trump following Washington’s initial announcement of a ban on travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries.
That caused some criticism, with some Canadians seeing the tweet as an ill-advised approach to international diplomacy and others pointing out that Trudeau had actually capped the number of Syrian refugees that could enter the country under its lauded sponsorship program.
Nevertheless, Trudeau’s profile and popularity abroad has only continued to reach new heights since Trump has moved into the White House. If it’s possible to reach peak Trudeau, it may have happened this week, when his photo appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.
The gleeful tweet from the Canadian Forces might nudge some Americans to ask again: How easy is it to move to Canada?