Brit: Trump shouldn't punish Canada for our 1812 glory

This Englishman living in New York has become wearily accustomed to Americans claiming credit for British inventions ...

Posted: Jun 7, 2018 6:14 AM
Updated: Jun 7, 2018 6:14 AM

This Englishman living in New York has become wearily accustomed to Americans claiming credit for British inventions and achievements.

All the mythmaking at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown can't change the fact that the sport is based on rounders, a game for children in the UK. Thomas Edison may have produced the first commercial lightbulb, but it was an Englishman -- Humphry Davy -- who came up with the arc lamp, and another Brit -- Warren De la Rue -- who turned it into a bulb.

Disastrous colonial adventures overseas? Rest assured, we've been doing it for a lot longer than you have.

Which is why I find Donald Trump's latest blunder all the more egregious.

During an apparently difficult call to discuss import tariffs with Justin Trudeau, the Canadian Prime Minister, Trump reached into his historical locker as he searched for just the right metaphor to express his national security concerns about those notoriously restive neighbors to the north.

He reportedly asked: "Didn't you guys burn down the White House?"

Doh. You don't need me to tell you that those "guys" were in fact British troops setting about the time-honored tradition of trashing anything we could not hold.

He may not have been claiming the action for America. But it still hurts. How could he get it so wrong?

If I were a forgiving man, one who assumed the American President knew his colonial history and the course of the War of 1812, I would give him the benefit of the doubt. Back then all Canadians were Brits, of course. Maybe that's what he was getting at.

But sadly I'm not generally given to this kind of charity and thus tend to the view that your commander-in-chief knows chuff all about the War of 1812. Not even the fact that it ran for almost three years. (I kid you not. Look it up on Wikipedia.)

As such, the blunder cuts the expat Brit to the quick. Can we not even be afforded our little bit of fun as we slip from relevance in the world? Do we not get our chance to remember that we were once capable of burning the seat of power of the mighty United States, if only quickly, fruitlessly and (if I remember "The Star-Spangled Banner" correctly) mostly at night?

For the burning down of the White House remains a favorite punchline among British diplomats, journalists and politicians in Washington.

It is only a few years since the British embassy was forced to issue an apology for posting a photograph of the White House in cake form surrounded by sparklers.

"Commemorating the 200th anniversary of burning the White House," read the cheeky caption. "Only sparklers this time!"

Too soon?

You see, our plucky island nation doesn't have much left. Our empire is gone and I keep reading in American newspapers that Britain is sliding into austere irrelevance.

So leave us this little bit of history. Please let us imagine that a good British ransacking is decidedly not the same as being ransacked by our polite cousins in the north.

West Lafayette
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 34°
Kokomo
Broken Clouds
36° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 30°
Rensselaer
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 34°
Fowler
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 34°
Williamsport
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 34°
Crawfordsville
Overcast
33° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 27°
Frankfort
Scattered Clouds
36° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 31°
Delphi
Overcast
35° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 31°
Monticello
Overcast
35° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 31°
Logansport
Overcast
32° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 32°
Tranquil pattern continues...
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 367329

Reported Deaths: 6122
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion49899902
Lake31027490
Allen21054342
St. Joseph19435249
Elkhart19020249
Hamilton15894184
Vanderburgh11174138
Tippecanoe1041036
Porter951297
Johnson7969178
Hendricks7565165
Vigo6855108
Monroe613955
Madison5960126
Clark585487
Delaware5659108
LaPorte5377106
Kosciusko521449
Howard430580
Bartholomew391566
Warrick372776
Wayne370296
Floyd367080
Marshall347252
Grant334554
Hancock330465
Cass330032
Noble298150
Boone289756
Henry287541
Dubois284834
Jackson271838
Morgan267446
Dearborn258833
Gibson226533
Shelby223562
Knox217524
DeKalb215738
Clinton212725
Lawrence210152
Wabash201825
Miami197318
Adams195924
Daviess179951
Montgomery178029
Jasper174317
Steuben172316
Ripley171325
Harrison169726
Fayette167939
Whitley166117
LaGrange162534
Huntington158212
White156224
Putnam152231
Decatur149646
Wells147136
Randolph145725
Clay143126
Jefferson141119
Posey138422
Scott134027
Greene123654
Jay118817
Sullivan116018
Jennings109617
Starke107628
Fountain9988
Fulton99219
Spencer9918
Washington9169
Perry90321
Carroll83913
Franklin81628
Orange80128
Vermillion77013
Parke7496
Owen74411
Tipton68927
Blackford67317
Rush6688
Newton64015
Pike61021
Pulaski51721
Benton4653
Brown4346
Martin4136
Crawford3722
Union3122
Warren3013
Switzerland2825
Ohio2547
Unassigned0290

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events