From Pearl Harbor, to a Lack of Federal Voting Reform in Canada

First, A Bit of History

Ok, so I know you think I am stretching here, but give me a chance to explain why voter reform was doomed by an event more than seventy-five years ago.

On December 9th, 1941, Imperial Japan declared war on the United States of America. To this point, most historians will agree that the USA was maintaining a public neutral face(1 2 3) in the war in Europe, and the war in the Pacific. While the US President Franklin Delano Roosevelt recognized the danger the Axis powers represented,

“…The American public was decidedly isolationist and antiwar. Memories of the expense of World War I — in lives and money — were still fresh. In 1934, Congress passed the Johnson Act, which prohibited loans to nations behind on World War I debt repayment. The Neutrality Act of 1935 forbade the export of arms, ammunition or implements of war to belligerent nations” — PBS (4).

With the bombing of Pearl Harbour, and President Roosevelt’s “Infamy Speech” (5 6) all of that changed in the span of less than 48 hours. The USA moved from a stance of clandestine support to one of total war.

However, most men of the era — those men that would need to be conscripted to fight in two massive overseas wars against well established and battle-test militaries — were working in factories. The USA was an industrial powerhouse, producing all manner of modern era goods at a pace that few other regions of the world could manage.

All of that economic resource — the man power — would have to be redirected towards swelling the armed forces. So who was going to run the factories? Those factories were needed build the ships, planes, tanks, trucks, bombs, bullets, medicines, food rations and every other thing that goes into running the supply chain of a global war abroad. Without workers, the USA war effort was done before beginning.

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