Oh no, Canada

It’s still nearly two years until the next presidential election and already the chatter’s begun:

“If Sarah Palin wins in 2012, I’m moving to Canada.”

I hear it more often than not these days—indeed, any time the conversation turns to politics, whether the topic centers on President Barack Obama’s seemingly stalled presidency, the results of the last election, the GOP’s newly acquired dominance or what it all means for the next round of political campaigning.

People, seriously—shut up.

First of all, despite Palin’s latest media blitz—excessive tweeting, a new book and a new “reality” TV show—there’s no guarantee that this real American is going to succeed if she sets out to nab the Republican nomination.

Second, even if she did—even if she went all the way to the White House—moving to Canada is, absolutely, the worst thing you could do.

I know, I know—you’re just joking. Kind of.

It’s not that I haven’t also fantasized about a life north of the border (lower crime rates, free health care, cleaner air, all that hockey) but every time you threaten (jokingly or otherwise) to move to the Great White North, another terrorist wins.

For real.

Another terrorist wins because you’re letting your fear of a whacked-out nation compromise your allegiance to all things United States.

I am sick of hearing people tell me they couldn’t “handle” a Palin presidency—that they can’t bear the thought of seeing her destroy this country with her folksy, gotcha-styled politics.

I get it. I really do. Why even pretend to be bipartisan? I can’t stand her. I think Sarah Palin is savvy but not necessarily smart, and dangerously out of touch with the great cross-sections of people who make up this country: People of ethnicity; gays, lesbians, etc.; atheists and those who practice a private spirituality outside of church; feminists and scholars. Freaks and geeks and everyone in between.

You know, all the “not real” Americans.

That said, I’m not about to turn this country over to her. I’m not about to let her make a mockery of everything I hold dear: freedom of religion; freedom of choice; freedom to bitch about lazy, disconnected, camera-hungry politicians.

It’s the most unpatriotic thing I could think of doing.

Perhaps I’m overreacting—after all, you made the same declaration right before the Supreme Court awarded Dubya the first presidency in 2000. You said it again on the eve of his 2004 victory over John Kerry. And I’m pretty darn sure I even overheard you mutter it as John McCain threatened to close the gap on President Obama.

And yet here you are.

You never packed your bags, you never applied for a Canadian visa, and you never even checked Craigslist for apartments in Vancouver.

Now take it one step further: Stop being so damn passive-aggressive and stop running away (even theoretically) from ideas and politics that differ from yours.

You don’t hear the tea partiers joking about political flight, do you? No, they’re rallying even harder to bring their insanely fear-based ideology to the masses.

It’s time to think like a tea party voter and fight back.

Don’t wait until the seemingly impossible happens and Palin wins the GOP nomination and then the presidency. Take action, read up on the issues, campaign, proselytize and get out the vote.

Whatever you do, keep Canada out of it—even if you’re just joking.

Because, frankly, that joke isn’t funny anymore.