27 November 2014

What our Supreme Court can teach Spain about secession

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/what-our-supreme-court-can-teach-spain-about-secession/article21125746/


It’s not often that you attend a symposium on constitutional law in Quebec and expect to be flummoxed. This in a province where, not that long ago, it was thought that children dreamed not of playing in the NHL but of teaching constitutional law.

But on a cold morning last December, in a small, dark room at the Université de Montréal, those in attendance witnessed an extraordinary political scene. There they were, in a high-noon intellectual shoot out: Stéphane Dion, father of the Clarity Act, and his old political foe, Joseph Facal, former intergovernmental minister in the PQ cabinet.

Don Macpherson: Comic Sugar Sammy's apparent defiance of Quebec's language law

http://montrealgazette.com/news/quebec/don-macpherson-comic-sugar-sammys-apparent-defiance-of-quebecs-language-law

Comic Sugar Sammy is good at making people laugh with his observations in French as well as English about life in Quebec. He’s also good at provoking hard-line nationalists to anger.
Last week, signs appeared in several Montreal métro stations advertising tickets for Sammy’s current standup shows. They prominently displayed a startling message, in English only: “For Christmas, I’d like a complaint from the Office de la langue française.”
It was a dare to the Office québécois de la langue française, the provincial government agency that enforces the Quebec language law familiarly known as Bill 101, which generally requires that French be predominant on commercial signs.

23 November 2014

Louise Mailloux honorée par le Mouvement laïque | National

Louise Mailloux honorée par le Mouvement laïque | National



Le Mouvement laïque québécois
décerne cette année son Prix Condorcet-Dessaulles à la professeure,
auteure et polémiste Louise Mailloux pour souligner sa contribution à la
promotion et à la défense de la laïcité au Québec.
Le Mouvement estime que par ses fréquentes interventions dans les
médias et ses nombreux écrits, dont ses volumes «La Laïcité, ça
s'impose» et «Une Charte pour la nation», Louise Mailloux a contribué de
façon notoire à la liberté de conscience au Québec.






Louise Mailloux, une ex-candidate du Parti québécois qui défendait le
projet de Charte des valeurs, a souvent créé la controverse par ses
propos. Elle avait notamment présenté ses excuses le printemps dernier
aux personnes qu'elle aurait pu «offenser ou blesser» en qualifiant le
baptême ou la circoncision de viol.

21 November 2014

Anne Lagacé Dowson calls for investigation into EMSB election - Montreal - CBC News

Anne Lagacé Dowson calls for investigation into EMSB election - Montreal - CBC News



Anne Lagacé Dowson, who was defeated
in her run for chair of the English Montreal School Board, is calling
for a formal investigation in one ward and a recount in another after
Sunday’s school board election.




Lagacé Dowson says the vote in Ward 7 (Ahuntsic/Montreal North) was rigged.



Sylvia Lo Bianco, the candidate seeking re-election in that ward
under the banner of Team Angela Mancini, won by a margin of about 800
votes. Lo Bianco’s sister ran the polling station.

Sugar Sammy asks for OQLF complaints, Montreal lawyer complies | CTV Montreal News

Sugar Sammy asks for OQLF complaints, Montreal lawyer complies | CTV Montreal News

18 November 2014

Lessons from the Quebec Charter of Values - Winnipeg Free Press

Lessons from the Quebec Charter of Values - Winnipeg Free Press



For instance, evidence from this past spring indicates that average
Quebecers rate immigrants as 51 on a scale that ranges from 0 (meaning
"really dislike") to 100 (meaning "really like"), 10 points lower than
in the fall of 2012 when Premier Pauline Marois and the PQ government
were first elected. Moreover, findings also indicate that Quebecers'
average ratings of more specific groups such as ethnic minorities,
allophones and racial minorities are now much more negative than they
were two years before. Our data also indicate that francophones and
independentistes, core components of Quebec society, have even more
negative perspectives toward these groups. In other words, these
attitudes cannot only be attributed to the more extreme views in Quebec
society.




In terms of more specific
feelings of trust, our evidence shows that most Quebecers are only
"somewhat" trusting of "people from other countries" and that trust
levels have also declined by 10 per cent since Marois came to power.
This is particularly significant given that religious neutrality was the
stated intention of the proposed Values Charter. More striking still
are the findings that, since the Charter's proposal, Quebecers are even
less trusting of "people of another religion" and they are particularly
untrusting of those "who wear overt religious symbols." Once again, the
major segments of Quebec society -- francophones and independentistes --
stand out as being among the least trusting of these groups overall.





Lastly, when asked if they spend time with "people who were not born
here," most Quebecers indicate that they do this only a "few times a
year or not at all" as opposed to more regularly. Moreover, our data
indicate that Quebecers in general, and francophones and
independentistes in particular, are even less inclined to frequently
"spend time with people who wear overt religious symbols." These
findings are particularly relevant as they reveal an important
underlying impasse in one major region of this country in the ongoing
experiment with pluralism.

15 November 2014

Kelly McParland: Sovereignty’s children follow the tune of the Pied Peladeau

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2014/11/14/kelly-mcparland-the-parti-quebecois-could-find-itself-just-another-subsidiary-of-p-k-peladeau-inc/

Pierre Karl Péladeau, the right-wing business magnate who plans to run for the leadership of Quebec’s left-wing Parti Quebecois, has one apparent attraction for the job. He’s well-known.
Beyond that single qualification, there is not much to recommend the man for the job. The PQ is a union-friendly party, while Peladeau is detested by unions. It views itself as a populist party, while Peladeau is the privileged offspring of one of the province’s wealthiest families. The party is in a period of decline and needs a skilled politician to direct a revival. Peladeau’s ham-fisted performance did much to turn the tide of the last election in the Liberals’ favour.

It’s a wonder he would even consider running, and that the party would consider electing him. But Peladeau has a Titanic-sized ego, with the sort of overwhelming self-regard that blinds him from any views other than those he chooses to hold. If Canada has a Donald Trump, it could be P.K. Peladeau.

14 November 2014

The Suburban News | Elections Quebec clarifies school election rules

http://thesuburban.com/news/articles/?id=article04451



Following protests about the conduct of last week’s school board
elections, The Suburban received a number of queries asking what are the
rules that govern the process and how individuals can file their own
complaints.
The objections ranged from long lineups, rude election
staff and an inability to accommodate seniors and the disabled, to poor
compilation of and adherence to the eligible voters roll, as well as
allegations of campaigning in polling stations and employing school
board staff as political volunteers.
Asked about the lengthy queues
and allegedly intemperate election staff, Elections Quebec told The
Suburban that that is the responsibility of the returning officer, who
is appointed by the school board.

12 November 2014

Mayor getting more power over executive committee

http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/mayor-getting-more-power-over-executive-committee

The mayor’s powers have increased dramatically since the executive committee was created in 1921 as a condition for the province to release the city from trusteeship.
The government had placed the city under trusteeship as it teetered on financial ruin after years of overspending and corruption.
As a result, the executive committee was intended as a limit on the spending power of the mayor. The mayor didn’t have a seat on the executive committee, and its members were appointed by council from among its ranks. The executive committee was charged with managing municipal employees and the budget, while council adopted bylaws.

14 October 2014

Don Macpherson: Nobody looks good in Quebec National Assembly debate on Pierre Karl Péladeau's conflict of interest

http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Macpherson+Nobody+looks+good+Quebec+National+Assembly+debate+Pierre+Karl+P%C3%A9ladeau+conflict+interest/10281471/story.html

Péladeau’s ethical judgment and self-restraint were thrown into question on Friday, when he was forced to admit that he may have broken the rules after all. La Presse had reported that he has used his position as an MNA to further his interests, an apparent violation of the letter of the Assembly’s ethics code.
Péladeau wrote on his Facebook page that when he sought government support for its bid for another company against an American rival, “there was never any question of favouring Quebecor.” He explained that he simply wanted to keep the company in Quebec hands — which happened to be his own.
The most charitable explanation is that a possible future premier of Quebec doesn’t know a conflict of interest when he’s in one

19 September 2014

Edinburgh, Quebec

Cameron says 85 percent turnout unprecedented; Quebec had 95 percent in 1995

01 July 2014

Déclaration du chef du NPD à l’occasion de la Saint-Jean-Baptiste « NPD du Canada

Déclaration du chef de l’Opposition officielle à l’occasion de la Saint-Jean-Baptiste « NPD du Canada



«En ce jour de fête nationale, je me joins aux Québécois et aux
francophones de partout au pays
pour célébrer la richesse de la langue
et de la culture françaises
d’ici.



Quelque 500 ans après l’établissement au Canada des premiers
Européens, il y a de quoi être fiers de l’épanouissement du français en
terre d’Amérique. Ensemble, nous formons une nation riche, forte et
diversifiée où des valeurs d’égalité et de respect nous rassemblent.



Au nom du Nouveau Parti démocratique, je souhaite à tous une belle
Saint-Jean-Baptiste et des célébrations marquées par la joie de partager
un héritage commun. »


23 June 2014

Quebec Values


(via interfaithcalendar.org/)

(N.B: All outlooks that give meaning to the lives of adherents are included in the term "religious")
Materialism understands the world as it is now to be the only reality that matters for humans.
Adherents include atheists, secular humanists and various other forms.
Some adherents are aggressively opposed to traditional religions other than Roman Catholicism.
Some actively promote the abolition of religion that takes seriously a divine being and a reality beyond the perceived world and universe.

“You cannot say we’re going to allow for the postponement of the vote according to one religion, because other religious communities will also demand the same,” he said.
(i.e., religious accommodation is unreasonable)
 “The issue here is the principle of not setting the election date according to the different religious holidays. There are more than 100 religious holidays in the calendar.
(NB:
Not all holidays are Sabbaths)
The PQ has proposed that non-Christian religious symbols be banned in the public sector, but that the Catholic crucifix would still be allowed, reflecting Quebec’s heritage.(Catholic Christianity is 'established')
French

Beaulieu says, “Let them walk,” when asked what unilingual anglophone transit users, who cannot speak French to métro ticket-takers, should do.
(French is the only language that service personnel should use)









Maclean's: A bit of background on Mario Beaulieu



So Mario Beaulieu, president of Montreal’s Société-Saint-Jean-Baptiste, is peeved at how during the election, “Anglophone media in Quebec and Canada multiplied accusations of xenophobia and all sorts of other slanderous insinuations towards sovereignists and defenders of French.” Let’s put aside the tar-brush generalization of “Anglophone media”—we aren’t all the same, Mario—and the fact that he didn’t cite a single example of Anglo media’s supposed overindulgences in his letter. Rather, let’s have a look at the recent past of the organization that is making these accusations.

In 2006, the SSJB hosted Fleurdelix et Les Affreux Galois, a band with ties to the “Rock identitaire français” movement. Two of its members, Jonathan Stack and Simon Cadieux, are former members of a band called Trouble Makers, which was on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of known white power rock bands.

Fleurdelix et Les Affreux Galois played the SSJB’s headquarters on Sherbrooke Street at the behest of François Gendron, then the SSJB’s youth wing president. Gendron has longtime ties with noted Front de Libération du Quebec member and convicted murderer Raymond Villeneuve ...

20 April 2014

Globe editorial: Couillard should bury the Charter of Values

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/editorials/couillard-should-bury-the-charter-of-values/article18061611/


Here’s the thing about the Charter of Values: It was the perverted solution to a problem that never existed. Mr. Couillard knows as well as anyone that the bill was created by the PQ to sow fear and division in Quebec, both of which serve the darker side of the separatist cause. To his credit, he kept saying as much before and during the election campaign. And his popularity grew as a result.
There were simply no crises that precipitated a call for a law banning conspicuous religious symbols from the offices and bodies of public servants. The Bouchard-Taylor Commission had spent a year examining the question of reasonable accommodation and concluded it was not a preoccupation for the majority of Quebeckers. If anything, the commission said, Quebec should do more to accommodate religious minorities, though it suggested that judges, Crown prosecutors, police officers, prison guards and the president and vice-president of the National Assembly be prohibited from wearing religious symbols.
How that was twisted into the Charter of Values, with its draconian call to eliminate religious garb from tens of thousands of public-service jobs, even if that meant eliminating the employee in the process, is a mystery that will forever be confined to the consciences of the PQ’s now-redundant election strategists. Mr. Couillard should leave it there. If he truly feels that the combined force of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Quebec Bill of Human Rights and Freedoms, the courts and the ongoing maturation of modern Quebec society are not enough to manage the reasonable accommodation of minority religious rights in Quebec, then perhaps his government can make itself feel better (and keep the PQ quiet) by adopting an anodyne motion restating that Quebec’s government is secular and that men and woman are equals. But the smarter play is to just wait. After six months go by, and then another six, and then a few years, and Quebeckers realize the supposedly imminent threats that the Charter of Values was purported to be a bulwark against never existed in the first place, they will lose interest in the subject and develop even more of a distaste for politicians who play the identity card.


12 April 2014

William Johnson: Quebec — land of political myth

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2014/04/12/william-johnson-quebec-land-of-political-myth/

The Supreme Court established that Quebec can only secede by revolution or — with the agreement of the other provinces and the federal Parliament — with an amendment to the constitution. Such a negotiated agreement would include defining new frontiers. A credible third referendum could not merely ask about a preference for independence over federalism; it would have to define the territory that would emerge with independence. That would almost certainly exclude the lands of the Inuit, the Cree, the Montagnais, the Mohawks and — probably — the Outaouais region. Would the Québécois still vote for a new country cut by half?
The secessionists are not alone in having fundamental assumptions to rethink. The Quebec Liberal Party, ever since the Quiet Revolution, has also been formulating its constitutional policies under an illusion. All the premiers, from Jean Lesage to Jean Charest, have called for a supposed renewal of the federation. But what all of them offered was not a federation, but rather a confederation, a union of two sovereign states, on the model of the European Union. And all assumed that Quebec could demand whatever constitutional change it really wanted and, if it failed to obtain it, the alternative was to secede.
The demands for constitutional change were in fact revolutionary, and hence unworkable. We have been at an impasse from the start. If Philippe Couillard decides to pursue an amended constitution, he will have to begin by discarding all the federalist illusions and utopian dreams of the past six decades. Only then would an agreement become possible.

Macpherson: Only federalists can awaken the sovereignty movement

http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Macpherson+Only+federalists+awaken+sovereignty+movement/9729247/story.html

Former PQ leader Pauline Marois wanted to take the initiative with a strategy of “sovereignist governance,” trying to create winning conditions by provoking crises between Quebec and Ottawa.
Her government was defeated before it had much of a chance to apply the strategy. But it probably wouldn’t have worked anyway.
The sovereignists need federalists to prove to Quebecers that Canada doesn’t work. And for the past 19 years, the federalists have refused to co-operate.

20 March 2014

Cape May offers tips on French Canadians | The Daily Journal | thedailyjournal.com

Cape May offers tips on French Canadians | The Daily Journal | thedailyjournal.com



Dining is a good example. Wieland said French Canadians have a
European philosophy about dining. It is taken very seriously. They don’t
want to be rushed. They want the waiter or waitress to be informed and
helpful.


Wieland said the tourists are very value-conscious, and
they tip based on the quality of service, starting at 10 percent and
with 15 percent the top end. She noted Americans usually tip at 20
percent no matter how bad the service is.


“They don’t eat — they
dine. If you rush them, which often happens in the summer, they will tip
as they feel is necessary,” Wieland said.

18 March 2014

Intégrisme: la «montée» imaginaire | Jean-François Cliche | Élections québécoises

Intégrisme: la «montée» imaginaire | Jean-François Cliche | Élections québécoises


(Québec) Lundi, en nos pages, la
candidate péquiste dans Bellechasse Linda Goupil disait voir les signes
d'une montée de l'intégrisme religieux au Québec, citant le cas d'une
équipe de l'Université Laval dont un membre dérangeait les réunions pour
aller prier, et celui d'une femme en bikini dans une pataugeoire de
Sillery qui avait senti le besoin de se couvrir après l'arrivée de
femmes voilées.
Mme Goupil n'était pas la première candidate du Parti québécois à
tenir ce genre de discours. La semaine dernière, sa chef Pauline Marois
parlait d'un «risque d'infiltration» par des intégristes musulmans. «On
l'a vu, a-t-elle déclaré. Il y a quelques représentants d'une vision
intégriste de leur religion qui sont venus donner des conférences ou
rencontrer des gens au Québec. Il faut s'en inquiéter.»






Dans tous les cas, ce sont des musulmans qui sont montrés du doigt.
Alors voyons voir si les faits soutiennent l'idée d'une montée de
l'intégrisme islamique.

Councillors, even a mayor, excluded from small town caucus meetings

http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Councillors+even+mayor+excluded+from+small+town+caucus+meetings/9628237/story.html

Too dense. Too loose-lipped. Too contrarian.
Those are some of the excuses town councils have used to justify expelling a local councillor or mayor from the council’s private caucus meetings.
In January, a majority of council members in Senneville and in Town of Mount Royal each barred a local elected official from attending any more of their monthly closed-door gatherings, where they admit they debate and negotiate council business.

17 March 2014

Paul Wells: The legal realities missing from the sovereignty debate in Quebec

The legal realities missing from the sovereignty debate in Quebec


So: U.S. recognition would be “an essential condition” of achieving secession over Ottawa’s objection. And there was no way to obtain it. Secession would happen by negotiation or it would not happen at all. And it’s hardly clear that it could happen by negotiation. Quebec’s PQ government may believe it can ignore Canada’s Constitution, but (a) it’s wrong and (b) the rest of Canada couldn’t. Secession would require constitutional amendments and therefore the consent of every provincial legislature. Alberta and British Columbia require their own referendums before ratifying any constitutional amendment. So a Quebec secession referendum would automatically trigger at least two others, on a deal whose terms are also spelled out in the Clarity Act: “division of assets and liabilities, any changes to the borders of the province, the rights, interests and territorial claims of the Aboriginal peoples of Canada, and the protection of minority rights.”

16 March 2014

10 of the best Tony Benn quotes - as picked by our readers | Politics | theguardian.com

10 of the best Tony Benn quotes - as picked by our readers | Politics | theguardian.com



Tony Benn was known as an eloquent and inspirational speaker. Here are
ten of his most memorable quotes, as picked by Guardian readers

12 March 2014

William Johnson: Hard truths for separatists

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2014/03/12/william-johnson-hard-truths-for-separatists/

The basic assumption is that the merest majority Oui vote, in a referendum structured entirely by the Quebec government, grants a mandate for Quebec to secede, unconditionally. That assumption is confirmed by a law on the books in Quebec, passed in 2000 under premier Lucien Bouchard, and titled Bill 99, An Act respecting the exercise of the fundamental rights and prerogatives of the Québec people and the Québec State.
This law, now challenged before the courts, was defended by the supposedly federalist government of Jean Charest. It’s generally accepted by Quebec’s public opinion as normal and legitimate, despite the fact that it contradicts head-on the Supreme Court of Canada’s 1998 decision in the reference on Quebec’s secession.

04 March 2014

Bataille linguistique sur Facebook: l'OQLF retire sa plainte | Guillaume St-Pierre | Actualités

Bataille linguistique sur Facebook: l'OQLF retire sa plainte | Guillaume St-Pierre | Actualités

L'Office québécois de la langue française (OQLF) a retiré sa plainte visant une commerçante de Chelsea.
La propriétaire d'une boutique de vêtements, Eva Cooper, pourra continuer de privilégier l'anglais dans ses publications sur la page Facebook de son commerce, mais devra à tout le moins ajouter un mot en français.
«Je suis satisfaite. Je pense que leur position s'est adoucie», a commenté Mme Cooper.

02 March 2014

Le Parti vert du Québec sera éco-socialiste | Métro

Le Parti vert du Québec sera éco-socialiste | Métro



MONTRÉAL – Le Parti vert du Québec entend diversifier ses politiques en vue des prochaines élections, afin d’augmenter ses appuis.
Le nouveau chef Alex Tyrrell, en poste depuis 5 mois, explique que le Parti vert sera une formation éco-socialiste.
Ainsi, l’environnement demeurera sa priorité, mais le parti défendra aussi un système de santé public, et proposera entre autres un programme universel de soins dentaires pour tous les Québécois. Il est également en faveur de la gratuité du transport en commun.

01 March 2014

World governing body officially allows turbans in soccer following Quebec controversy

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/soccer/world-governing-body-officially-allows-turbans-in-soccer-following-quebec-controversy/article17185651/

Soccer’s international rule-making body has officially decided to allow players to wear religious headcovering during games.
The International Football Association Board, which sets the rules for FIFA, made the decision today — extending a two-year trial period during which hijabs and turbans were allowed on the field.

28 February 2014

Don Macpherson: Diane De Courcy’s Bonjour-Hi remark isn’t so funny

Don Macpherson: Diane De Courcy’s Bonjour-Hi remark isn’t so funny



We laugh at the apparent pettiness of Diane De Courcy’s attempt to
discourage Montreal businesses from greeting customers with a “Hi” as
well as a “Bonjour.”


Nevertheless, the Parti Québécois language minister’s remarks this week
about “Bonjour-Hi,” an offer to serve the customer in either French or
English, have serious implications for English-speaking Quebecers.


For
it’s an attempt by the PQ government, by pressure if not legislation,
to discourage not only private businesses from offering service in
English, but even individuals from speaking English in public.


05 February 2014

Op-Ed: The other notwithstanding clause (Section 28)

Op-Ed: The other notwithstanding clause


It seems obvious that there will be constitutional challenges to
Quebec’s proposed Charter of Values, which prohibits “conspicuous”
religious symbols for provincial civil servants and contains other
requirements purportedly relating to the removal of religion from the
provision of government services (and even some non-governmental
services, like daycares.)


Usually, the arguments revolve around
what seems to be a clear violation of freedom of religion under the
Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, provoking in turn further
constitutional sabre rattling in other quarters that raises the spectre
of Quebec simply invoking Section 33, the “notwithstanding clause.”
Quebec has done so before. Supporters of the Charter of Values maintain
that the government could use Section 33 to validate the legislation to
preserve Quebec’s “secular” society.


What has not been
acknowledged, by the Quebec government, its supporters, nor any of the
other commentators on the issue is that there is a very obvious block on
using this “notwithstanding clause” when it comes to legislation
affecting the rights of women. There is, in fact, another
“notwithstanding clause.” Section 28 of the Canadian Charter of Rights
and Freedoms guarantees all rights and freedoms equally to male and
female persons, “notwithstanding anything in this Charter.” In 1981,
when the Charter was being negotiated, the feminist drafters of Section
28 successfully beat back an attempt to make it subject to the Section
33 override clause, in a very public battle. There is no question about
whether a province could use the Section 33 “notwithstanding clause” to
override a court decision invalidating a law on the basis of sex
discrimination.

04 February 2014

Editorial: Good riddance, Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act

Editorial: Good riddance, Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act



A new ruling from the Federal Court of Appeal is a new twist in the
headache-inducing story of the hate-speech provisions of the Canadian
Human Rights Act. Politically, it makes the issue muddier, as it will
allow supporters of those provisions to argue that they have the courts
in their corner. But the courts tell governments what they can and can’t
do, not what they should and shouldn’t.


The court found that Section 13, even with its penalty provision,
does not violate the Constitution. It is a limit on free speech, but in
the court’s view, an allowable limit.
The ruling is interesting, from a political standpoint, because
Parliament passed a private member’s bill last year repealing Section
13. The ruling suggests that if any government wanted to reinstate
Section 13 or something like it, it might be able to do so without
violating the Constitution.




16 January 2014

Charte de la laïcité: le Barreau propose le statu quo, regrette Drainville | Paul Journet

Charte: le Barreau propose le statu quo, regrette Drainville | Paul Journet | Charte de la laïcité

M. Drainville soutient que le Barreau a négligé les modifications proposées à la charte québécoise des droits, un texte quasi constitutionnel. On y ajouterait la laïcité et la neutralité de l'État, ce dont les juges devraient désormais compte.
Mais pour le Barreau, la neutralité religieuse ne doit pas être confondue avec l'invisibilité de la religion. Elle «favorise au contraire la manifestation harmonieuse des consciences et des croyances individuelles», lit-on dans son mémoire. L'État devrait donc «ni favoriser, ni défavoriser» les croyances religieuses. Cette position rejoint celle du chef libéral Philippe Couillard.
Le Barreau rappelle que selon la jurisprudence, si on limite la liberté de religion, il faut prouver qu'on règle un problème documenté, et non des perceptions. Et il faut ensuite prouver que les moyens pris sont proportionnels à l'objectif, avec une atteinte minimale aux droits. Aucune étude n'a été fournie par le gouvernement, souligne le Barreau. Le ministre Drainville répond qu'on peut aussi légiférer pour défendre des principes.

15 January 2014

The Suburban News | The brutish temper of Quebec’s times

The Suburban News | The brutish temper of Quebec’s times



In December of 2010, this paper first raised the alarm on an OQLF (Office québécois de la langue française) directive to Quebec government agencies. That directive mandated those agencies not to communicate with any business or employer in any language but French. And that included businesses of under 50 employees to whom the Francization provisions of Bill 101 did not even apply ...



We have seen it through the values debate. Not that it should be our greatest concern right now in Quebec, but the government could have put forward reasonable lay regulations that affected only the legislature, courts and security authorities. There is precedent in western law and history for that. But it went as far as it did — into health care, social services and every aspect of our public square – precisely to once again stir up that voting mass of narrow-mindedness from which it seems to draw more and more of its support. It is practicing what the courageous writer Jean-Charles Harvey called — in the time of Duplessis — “La politique de la peur.” ...



 By its actions, the Marois administration is not only violating Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms, but Quebec’s own protections against linguistic discrimination as well as the UN Covenant on Religious, Ethnic and Linguistic Rights of 1992, which Quebec acquiesced to by reference. Further, whatever one’s position on the language laws, law must never be retroactive. The acquired rights of all must be respected. Respect for acquired rights is a central organizing principle of all civilized systems of law ...

08 January 2014

The Suburban News | Anglophones demanding more respect for English

The Suburban News | Anglophones demanding more respect for English



In the last year, from the perspective of the anglophone community, the main Quebec political battles have been focused on what appears to be the successful fight against the proposed tougher language law Bill 14, and the ongoing fight against the proposed Charter of Quebec Values, which will heat up during upcoming hearings.
But a lesser known battle has been brewing in the last few weeks of 2013 — the battle for more respect for the English language, in areas where such respect might be assumed.
The battles against the provisions of Bill 101 softened in recent years, since the disappearance of the original Equality Party and Alliance Quebec. There have been notable exceptions in the form of “language eruptions,” mainly coming from misjudgments by the Office Québécois de la Langue Française that resulted in the international embarrassments of Pastagate and the frozen yogurt spoon saga

03 January 2014

Graham Fraser: For a ‘foreign body,’ Canada does a lot to include Quebec

Opinion: For a ‘foreign body,’ Canada does a lot to include Quebec

The Quebec government’s minister of international relations, Jean-François Lisée, said recently that Quebecers no longer have a connection to Canada, and that Canada has become a “foreign body.” He is not alone. Former Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff said something similar a year and a half ago in an interview with the British Broadcasting Corporation.
I don’t think this is the case.
To begin with, when exactly was this golden age characterized by a Quebec commitment to the rest of Canada? During the First World War?