Wednesday, September 11, 2013

What makes sense in Québec...

Very soon Pauline Marois (PQ Prime Minister) will unveil the now “notorious” The Charter of Quebec Values (CQV).
The CQV seeks to separate “Church from State”.
“Far from being a divisive factor between Québecers of all origin, the charter will become the overall consensus and therefore strongly unite the population as was the case in regards to law 101.”-Pauline Marois.
From a political perspective, Marois is of the opinion that, “leaving your religion at home” is to become an integral facet of Québec culture.
She contends that the governmental civil service will be devoid of any public religious symbolism which may or may not be perceived as being non-inclusive within the Québec culture.
After all...if the government wishes to pursue the “distinctiveness” of what makes Québec so unique; it must contend and limit the degree of its “ethnic” markers eh?
Bernard Drainville (the driving force behind the proposed bill) is convinced that the newly introduced legislation will be welcomed by all who live in the province.
Making a mockery of the CQV is easy; to present logical assurances as to why Marois believes it to be so, is another matter.
Of course you are aware that Québec already has enshrined religious rights seven years ago?
The 2008 Bouchard-Taylor report delved into this very issue and came to the conclusion that 73 cases over a 22 year span does not equate a crisis in the making.
Recent polls suggest that 53% of “Québecers” agree with the introductory CQV measures.
I would like to ascertain how this was possible since the document itself is yet to be circulated.
There is disquiet among Québec residents; why construct a piece of legislation which targets religious symbology?
We speak of Muslim issues in Québec, but in truth it is a “Montréal” issue in Québec.
Meriem Bouzidi (is a resident from Québec) who voluntarily converted to the Muslim faith responded by saying,
“Who continues to believe that Muslim women are battered? That they are not equal to humans? What are submitted? What are obliged to wear this unfortunate scarf? That still holds this sterile speech? Pauline Marois and her followers apparently.”
These are not the sole retorts aimed at the proposed legislation.
Malik Yacine (also from Québec) spoke at length in describing actual accounts of intolerance within the Muslim faith.
He also makes it clear that in doing so, does not preclude any personal gain as to what was burned into memory.
“I am not here to advocate on behalf of Québécois or Canadians; but I tell you truly and in all sincerity, and without hypocritical intent of what I have personally witnessed.
I do not seek personal accolades or any other recompense of the sort from Québecers whom are of the opinion that my personal statements does in fact mirror their own personal agendas. I only share with them my new identity and the laws and values which binds us all.”
Nevertheless if we understand this legislative bill to be the genesis of further political frameworks devised to launch a sovereign-ist platform; it has some logical merit.
The civil servant’s union public relations people have already voiced their “official” declaration on the matter.
 If we take le “Syndicat de la fonction publique du Québec” it is in favor of such a policy. Other syndicates such as the “Fédération autonome de l’enseignement” (FAE) are opposed.
“Preventing someone from wearing a hijab or kippa isn’t a way to ensure the secular nature of the state and its institutions.
 For us, respecting secularism has nothing to do with whether you wear religious symbols or accessories.”-Sylvain Mallette, FAE president.
What strikes me as bizarre is how can you welcome complete secularism in some public service sectors and eliminate it in others?
This desire by Pauline Marois to become “neutral by all appearances” is incoherent.
Especially so when the crucifix’s adorning above the legislative assembly is to remain.
The term, “wedge politics” comes to mind; the question is will it work in this case?
Some political pundits are convinced that the CQV will cause some partisans (left leaning sovereign-ist) to transfer allegiances.
Others are making direct connotations to René Lévesque and his language minister Camille Laurin.
They argue that policies are not meant to become a popularity contest but rather a matter of preserving what is deemed to be of national importance.
France anti-immigration secularism policies are more stringent than those proposed by Marois; and are definitely xenophobic in nature. Is this what a sovereign Québec might look like?
There were two online retorts (among many) which can surmise the issue.
“Marois is protecting a native Canadian identity. Let multiculturalism triumph and eventually there will be no recognizable Canadian identity, certainly not one our forefathers could recognize.”-unknown author.
If we look at the American example-it is succinct. You’re American first-you can be anything else second.
This is precisely what Marois wishes to achieve in Québec.
“What is going on here looks a lot like the majority trying to marginalize and make invisible other people who don't look like the majority or share the same beliefs.”-unknown author.
Who would of thought that a Québec separatist provincial government-to be more in-line with pro-American sentiments than the province of Alberta?

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