I’m what I like to call a Quebec refugee. For me I decided that no matter how much I loved Montreal that the city of my youth is long gone and what it’s been replaced with is something that while pretty to look at is not where I want to be.
Sad yes, but I’m not looking for sympathy. I marvel from the outside and make occasional trips to visit family, occasionally eat at Schwartz’s and shake my head as I try to get back without a bridge collapsing or chunk of road smashing my windshield.
Quebec is the special flavour that distinguishes Canada from the US in so many ways. I still get this odd and warm feeling when I hear French when I travel. My neighbor when I lived in Beverly Hills turned out to be a French Quebecer who over joints and drinks would lament about Kraft peanut butter. We were homey’s, as were friends I had growing up who were French even though some of their relatives or friends pooh poohed they having an Anglo friend.
Quebec made choices that have rippled across Canada. By choosing to essentially be a linguistically driven province they have given people like Stephen Harper the justification for Canada not to be bilingual. The standard line is if Quebec is going to be French why should we not just be Unilingually English and frankly it’s hard to argue.
Likewise as nice as the dream of all of us being Officially bilingual and as valuable as that could be is it worth the cost of implementation across the vast majority of the country? Is there any real reason why other than to accommodate a small minority of non-Quebec Canadians or those that fled the Province during the 70’s and 80’s for financial reasons?
You see many Anglophones in Quebec were the most sympathetic to Francophones and their drive for their rights. I know I was until I started to really face the realities of Quebec and it comes down to the fact that no matter how well we may speak French we aren’t French and that there are many in Quebec that believe and live this. I have a cousin that graduated from Oxford and worked his ways up the ladders at Hydro Quebec. I don’t think his journey would have been the same if his name had been Larose…
The Internet changed Quebec forever. Those strange things taught from French Text books didn’t ring so true when confronting people from outside Quebec, and most of the stuff in the rest of the World is in English. It’s not that French was bad, but there’s a Zeitgeist that really is wild in La Belle Province. Even movies dubbed in French in Quebec have to be dubbed differently than if they were in France. Many Quebecers have this inferiority complex and chip on their shoulders feeling that not only we Anglophones look down on them but French from France too.
At a certain point though enough becomes enough and people either leave or turn the channel. Watching the last Federal election I thought it was genius how Mr. Harper just gave up on Quebec. He saved money in not trying to bribe and cajole its citizens. He helped encourage the NDP behind the scenes to kill off the Bloc and the end result is that he has his majority and Quebec is in an uneasy position.
It’s one Provincial election from becoming a total political circus; but Quebec, like a fading Coquette that can’t get her way with Rich Men the way she used to now has to face certain realities as Canada shifts its power base to the West; something Quebec itself has helped by driving away countless youth and business.
Quebecers really have to decide if they want to stay in Canada and I have a hunch it’s they that will have to bring something to the table instead of being brought prezzies.
Montreal will never be the same. It’s a ghost of what was. It’s become something very different than its history. Years of Language intolerance, high taxes, and way too much drama have made Toronto the powerhouse it is. It still has some magic, but for many the price of admission negate its value.
The irony is that certain PQ types are complaining now about English in Montreal, but the reality is that you really can’t force people which language to speak and when managers and businesses can speak French fluently can you really throw sticks at them and complain?
Can Quebec really afford to be hiring 40 new Language police in a time when important areas of its government are going through freezes and lay offs?
The talented Lysiane Gagnon wrote an interesting piece in the Globe & Mail today about the Language Wars in Montreal.
Whereas the “enemy” used to be the English language, now the “enemies” are the anglophones themselves, even if they speak French fluently.
While the sampling from the article that quote came from is less than 1,000 people this isn’t a new perception. Quebec has some big choices to make and in life if you sometimes don’t make a choice it’s made for you.
You can comment on this story below.
As an American, I enjoyed my 4 years living in Montreal (working on the 1976 Olympics). It like seemed such a special place then.
Remember one thing folks – The liberals brought in a lot of this expensive nonsense, bilingualism (forced french), multiculturalism, the charter, rights this, rights that…but the Conservatives have done nothing to repeal any of this crap. ??? Liberal, Tory same old story.
The Conservatives have allowed all of these liberal polices to remain??? How come?
The simple facts are as more francophone’s get hired for all government positions less and less English speakers are working for their own governments across the country. Don’t believe me; Go check the stats for yourself. Francophone’s are over-represented in all levels of government including hospitals, law, policing…etc. No fairness, no representation by population. They call it bilingualism, yet the term is never defined on purpose and believe me it doesn’t mean fluency in 2 languages in Canada, at least to the French it doesn’t. No political party will speak for the English speaking majority in this province and country. Practical bilingualism, where numbers warrant… is never defined on purpose. In Ontario, NB it now means segregation. The French (they are actually metis, a mixed race, not french) are demanding French only facilities all over the province, not bilingual, French only. $ Bilingualism is really nothing more then a hiring quota for francophone’s and that is a fact…just ask yourself, why are francophone’s over-represented in all government jobs and how come more and more positions are being designated bilingual all the time? And just as important, how come they are NOT fluently bilingual? Some can barely speak English!
See whats really going on here?
So while Quebec bans the English language (bill 22, bill 178, bill 101…), wipes out its real BNA, UEL history, while ethnic language cleansing is going on in Quebec, the rest of the country is forced to fund whatever the French (metis) demand. This is going on in every province. Go check.
“First Quebec, then we take over the rest of the country, one step at a time…through bilingualism…” PT, “How to take over a country through bilingualism…” SD. How ? First comes the right to communicate with gov’t in a minority language (ie French),then comes bilingualism, then comes the right to work in the language of choice(ie French), then comes a bilingual boss,(ie French) then comes a exclusively French department and on it goes until its all French. Its happening all over the country, Ontario, New Brunswick…That’s what’s really going on.
Go learn our proud, real BNA and UEL history. These were the builders of our country since 1763. Not this phony, revisionist lie, this bilingual, multicultural, 2 founding nations, linguistic duality lie, propaganda, spin that we’ve been living with since Trudeau, and kebec forced this upon the nation. We’ve been part of the British Empire since 1763 and officially an English speaking country for over 200 years…just a fact.
Until the charter and all the bs (bilingual, multicultural, phony rights…crap) connected to it gets repealed, we will continue to self destruct as we have for the last 5 decades. Until bill 8 in Ontario is repealed the french will continue to take over and wipe out our real BNA, UEL history. They have been bragging about it for decades and the Conservatives have allowed this to happen.
“My roll as Secretary of State of Canada is first and foremost to ensure that my French compatriots in Canada feel with deep conviction, as I do, that this is their country and that it reflects their image”. “I too had some difficult years as a politician; I’m still having them, in fact, because everything we undertake and everything we are doing to make Canada a French state is part of a venture I have shared for many years with a number of people”. “You know the idea, the challenge, the ambition of making Canada a French country both inside and outside Quebec — an idea some people consider a bit crazy, is something a little beyond the ordinary imagination”. – Serge Joyal, Secretary of State – Page 2 ‘ENOUGH’ by J.V. Andrew. – Serge Joyal – Now in the Senate.
“First Quebec, then the whole country, one step at a time…”
Time to end this phony bilingual jobs scam.
General James Wolfe, now I’ve seen everything! But I agree its time to end the bilingual job scam!
I don’t know how we could have forced bilingulism from coast to coast. We already spend billions per year in a few select geographic areas. Ontario alone spent over 600 million per year, and over the last couple of years we have had human waste reports in our waterways of Ottawa and Halifax, awful Indians living conditions and more, should we not be fixing those things first?
Where would we get the people for the positions? We already have one video with Mr. Cameron, how many more Mr. Camerons would there be?
Quebec wants to be a protected french reserve in the greater North America continent. How are the other protected cultural reserves doing in North America? Be careful of what you ask for.
Eric thanks -and yes there are many more Mr.Camerons out there that have been disadvantaged-how many hundreds of thousands of individuals has this effected -perhaps millions -far more then the francophone population in Ontario .I believe that this has become systemic discrimination across the country ,people wake up to this -its wrong to discriminate even though in the interest of political correctness .
1. If I need to speak french, why don’t french need to speak English to the same caliber.
2. Schools don’t teach Franglais/Quebecois slang….so how do you pass that test??
3. I at least try to speak french, and don’t get mad at them for not being able to speak english, but it seems to be “ok” for french people to get pissed off when we can’t speak their language.
Catch 22….I’ll just move to the U.S. The Spanish seem to understand english just fine.
A big wast of money. The rest of canada is already contributing too much of tax payers money for this province.
Word. And by word I mean truth. And by truth I mean I generally agree with all of the above. Bonne Easter.
Wholly molly! Can’t believe I just ate the whole thing, that is, read all the above about a lot of hurting, challenging, intolerance and anger. So sorry for all on both sides of this never ending age old saga. Burying history, lying and cheating ways of enforcing laws and obvious deceiving, bullying, arrogance in the workplace and in our schools. Is this in Canada you say? It makes me believe that even though we are 200 plus years in the making, we will continue to go through our growing pains unless we do a grand gesture on both sides of the equation. Both French and English will always be bigoted, discriminatory, hurt, accusatory, angry. all of the above unless we make this concerted effort to become truly married to the idea of cohesion. This will continue to take a few more generations of time with schooling in both languages despite the demographics of Quebec. 6,000.000 Quebec Canadians are a lot of people. The only way to become one peoples and to draw Quebec back into a desire to be part of a full, complete confederation is, now these are strong words people, to become truly bilingual within the rest of Canada. Without that, Quebec will continue to show its bigoted ways, gnash at the teeth with it claws out and deny us forever, just like they did at the Meech Lake Accord years gone by.
If Ontario and the rest of Canada did that, declaring English only, we would truly be two countries by now, BUT WE ARE NOT TWO, WE ARE ONE. I much prefer being the one, yet it will take work and the Anglo backlash now is to build one, the one resource Quebec (for now) refuses to adopt……….learn the other guys language.
The problem we are experiencing NOW is that demographics have caught up with us and even gotten ahead of us, as in the case of our local CCH hospital. We have more grown-ups who either did not have the ability or blindly refused to foresee the future direction of government, nursing and a myriad of bilingual job requirements as well as a lot of, prematurely placed, requirements. In many ways we truly have been tricked into or face fed the idea of national bilingualism. Being force fed or not, it really is too late to change as we have been affected across the board……in legal terms as much as quiet subliminal ways. Like it or object it I am afraid it is here to stay. Adopt, adaptor move out. Please don’t move out. We all need each other. It’s late for me but NOT for you.
These experiences will continue. The ONLY right way is change through attrition, NOT denial of employment or advancement.
Canada is too multicultural mode. We cannot appease all languages in the world without far more derision than we now have. By giving, giving and giving, we continue to be taken to the cleaners by far too many immigrants. By not requiring restrictive language needs of Canada pf the two official languages we allow quagmires of passive resistance all over the country. In a way, most of us are showing our illiteracy as much as anything, especially in the languages of our country, CANADA.
Finally, to quote the famous economist, John Kenneth Galbriath (1908 – 2008)
1) In all life one should comfort the afflicted, but verily, also, one should afflict the comfortable, and especially when they are comfortably, contentedly, even happily wrong.
2) People are the common denominator of progress. So… no improvement is possible with unimproved people, and advance is certain when people are liberated and educated. It would be wrong to dismiss the importance of roads, railroads, power plants, mills, and the other familiar furniture of economic development…. But we are coming to realize… that there is a certain sterility in economic monuments that stand alone in a sea of illiteracy. Conquest of illiteracy comes first.
@Dave Windsor…let me see if I understand you. Are you saying that, even though it’s wrong, we should give the Francophone Quebecois everything they want to try to convince them to stay as part of Canada?
Bribes have not worked so far. How would total capitulation to the separatist agenda unite Canada?
No NO No NO
NO…………………no bilingualism ACROSS CANADA! If Quebec wants their protective rights, then the rest of Canada wants their protective rights also!
Red, John and coco: We are already their…………in the next generation or so. there are no more choices. Prime example is the $17,000,000 high school built in Yellowknife no less to service French education. ALL GOVERNMENTS accross Canada have already accepted french as part of their ‘gradual’ requirement for future communications and hiring from todays kindergarden on up. You and I are already collateral just like our unilingual french neighbors. Service Canada is a required bilingual department……….accross Canada……yes, including in Quebec.
The french fact has been upon us for years now. I have nothing to do with it. Our own governments have already aquiest to it long ago. If you honestly have a solution to turn things around, go for it but I would first suggest you read some of ‘James Wolfes’ writings first or re-read his letter above within this series. The man obviously know more of what he is talking about a lot more than you or I.
Write our MP as well as our MPP but they’l just put you off as another of those french or english unilinguals who refuse to become part of THEIR Trudeau, solution that Trudeau him self wrote long before he brought in his bilingual laws.
Good luck my friends. It may not seem like I understand or that I am not with you on this but I most certainly am and do. I too am unilingual English from central Ontario. The french fact happens to be a strong influence through out Ontario whether we
like it or not.
Dave Windsor is sending a very defeatist message. He writes that Official Bilingualism is here to stay and that we should just accept it. Dave, the country has spent countless billions since 1969 in the attempt to force bilingualism in Canada – it hasn’t worked. Even Stephen Harper in 2001 realized this: http://www.ottawasun.com/2011/07/15/canadas-not-a-bilingual-country
It is so sad to see that Stephen Harper is still too afraid of Quebec and the French vote. What he said in 2001 still holds today!! Official Bilingualism is a failed Liberal policy and we have to acknowledge that this policy has caused more disunity within Canada than any other policy. French is not an easy language to learn unless you are living among people who speak and live in the French milieu and why would you expect that in Canada where the French-speakers are concentrated in such a small area (Quebec and Northern N. Brunswick)? English is the language of the masses in Canada and the world – do not allow this failed policy to marginalize the rest of us!!! The recent fiasco with Michel Thibodeau suing Air Canada successfully demonstrates the stupidity of people who will take this policy to the extreme, ignoring the fact that the guideline of “where numbers warrant” has not been respected.
I beg the Conservative government to define this term so that we can bring common sense into the debate.
If you are keeping an eye on public opinion, this is growing against Official Bilingualism because it is so obvious that the policy has failed on so many fronts. It was rejected by Quebec which has done its best to marginalize English-speakers while they pretend that it is all because they are forced to do so as their language & culture are under serious threat. If a language & culture are diminishing in use, it is because that language is diminishing in relevance and no amount of artificial life support with massive public funding is going to help. This unfair marginalization of the majority has only turned the privileged minority into a group that is now hated because of the unfair and undeserved position afforded by the policy of Official Bilingualism. If you care for the psychological health of the English-speaking majority, please define the term, “where numbers warrant” and enforce its application on a reasonable basis.
@”Dave Windsor”. I realize Canada will never be French. However, Canada could survive as one (as you wish) with a bit of tweaking of the OLA: make English the official language of English Canada as French is now the official language of Quebec. This linguistic parity will bring peace and happiness to all of Canada.
There is another solution Quebec craves for a long time and English Canada is ready for: separation. Sweden and Norway , Checks and Slovaks thrive after separation, and so will Canada and Quebec.
Dave Windsor, Winston Churchill once said – However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results. We are spending so much money on providing work for bilingual people, I am surprised more people do not see it, and fight back.
I am saying man made the rules, man can change them.
To Dave Windsor.
Your so wrong.
First point, Quebec never signed the charter, Although in the charter at the end in smaller print, (Just in case anyone might actually read and understand it) was a clause exempting Quebec from the bilingual status. Therefor, they don’t have to speak or provide English services or translations.
With Quebec being now unilingual French, they should be taken out of confederation without the perks given to them when they joined. For example give back Ruperts land to the aboriginal peoples and make Quebec the 200 mile long narrow corridor it was before confederation. Also make them print their own money and provide their own protection. I’m sure some country will do something to help them financially when they go broke. Oh they already are without the help of the federal system aren’t they?
The Official Languages Act is not about languages. It is about the dream of Francophone extremists attempting to reverse the results of the conquest of Quebec in 1759 and the surrender of New France in 1763 to the British and British Americans of New England.
The attempt of the OLA and its many regulations is to force feed the French language where it is not wanted upon an English speaking majority causing English only speakers to lose any ability to participate in their own government or fully in the military. Some French speakers, especially the Quebecois still think it is all about protecting the French language. Our governments from coast to coast at all levels Municipal to Federal know full well it is all about transferring political power to the elite few who are fully bilingual. (17% of the entire population of Canada).
Even the most conservative of Conservative English speaking leadership hate to give up their exclusive power, once they have because of their politically focused career path achieved their power exclusivity.
It is Aesop’s fable all over again of the Fox who lost his tail in a trap called all his foxy friends together and proclaimed they should all cut their tails off because is was the thing to do; smart looking, easier to escape traps, lighter weight to carry around, a select group pf foxes etc. The clan told him to get lost, our Conservative guys ain’t that smart.
Canada will never speak French or Joual or whatever its called in Canada and the double standard of French in Quebec but mandatory bilingualism elsewhere so that only 5% of English speakers can participate (get jobs in all governments in Canada and Crown corporations etc. will ultimately destroy the country.
As someone said, not long ago, Either make French the language in Quebec and English in the rest of Canada the Official language or separation must take place. The unpleasantness has now gone beyond language and has progressed to the Quebecois and Acadian hatred of anything Anglais including the people. It will be responded to in kind as time goes on. Let us separate and totally.
We are two different cultures with two different legal systems and ways of thinking.
way back in 1960 when we had landed in montreal the french schooll (across the street) refused us from entering their school system and we were forced to go to an English school which was 8 blocks away…which was OK by me and my brothers! All to say now in business we are force fed to speak French only otherwise…I want everyone out there in Canada to know that although I live in Montreal Quebec there is alot like me that hate these francophone extremists and if they (french extremists) want to separate I would like to know that Quebec can separate too! and we can make it another province still belonging to Canada! What I would like to say is that everyone writes their comments but we need to step up and all show up at the Conservatives office Stephen Harper and let him know that we want change and NOW…we are just FED UP of this BS!!!!!
One Nation,One Language,English.
Official bilingualism has failed and is wasting precious money needlessly that could be put to better use.
No matter what our origin or nationally, we have the English Language in common. We speak and use it every day.It unites and binds us together.
We are Canadians with no hyphen.
What trudeau did with this bilingual language is such a complete waste of money its far past funny! I understand that in B.C. there are as a first language 129 languages in the elementary schools. French does not even register! If quebec wants to speak french who cares. In western Canada french is about as relevent as Mongolian. BILLIONS of $ has been WASTED on this dying 3rd world language, and if there is anything that will cause the western borders of Canada to be the lakehead its this continuous waste of money. It now seems that western Canada is paying for this & it will not be long before more and more people in the west JUST SAY NO! Instead of WASTING BILLIONS of $ on this, the money would be far better spent on the homeless, the aged, hospitals, pensions etc. etc. etc. If this snow job does not end soon, western Canada will simple say bye bye! Quebec could not afford to leave, what is at the moment Western Canada, certainly can afford to leave & it will. If the west & the Yukon united forming a new Dominion in North America, it would be one of the richest non-opec countries in the world within 5 to 7 years. Not only are we paying to try to prop up some dying language, but we are also paying for quebec to fund some fasict stlye gestapo language police, & paying to discriminate against the English population, or what’s left of them! The way it is now, we have stopped 3/4 of the population from ever obtaining the office of Canada’s P.M. Look at the sorry group whch we have allowed to take over in Ottawa! That language has hurt the military, & pretty much destroyed the respect of the RCMP, just because you must speak some other language to gain any kind of rank! Makes a lot of sence to have some guy from Quebec policing in Alberta or B.C. when nobody can understand the joker! As said on the radio talk show the other day, it seems to have turned into Canada’s CANCER, & the west simply will not stand to be any more infected than it already has been. Even Vietnam (an ex-french colony), has dumped french & taken up English. The international language of buisness. French is not needed in the west & is certainly not wanted or welcome. It does not matter what a politician say’s in an attempt to either gain or keep power. If this is forced west of the lakehead, that is just were the western border of what is now Canada will end……..the lakehead! (0% of Quebec voted not to support Canada in two world wars. They now basically run Ottawa! Maybe the Maritimes could servive without the money which is flowing into Ottawa from the west, but do you really want to gamble your future & the future of your kids on it? I do so hope that these FACTS strike a cord, and is allowed to be printed because there is a growing movement west of Manitoba & it is GROWING!!
Canada is English and should always remain so.
Quebec is the most ignorant province in Canada… This being said from someone who is 100% bilingual and was born and raised in Montreal.
All 3 points said by Bruce are so very true.
The word bilingual does not exist in the French dictionary. When people from other countries move here they are forced to learn the French language, if they wish to learn English they have to pay for it… majority of them don’t bother or can’t afford it, then they get a job as a customer service rep, or in a restaurant, or depanneur, or gas station and make it hard for tourists or English speaking Montrealers to get good service..
I’ve had what they call “the french police” come to the warehouse that I worked at and force 4 people with English last names who might dedal with the public to prove that they can speak and understand french. If they cannot they they must take a ffench course, should they refuse this course then they lose their job. Shouldn’t French people learn English too?
I’ve had them come to a storage facility I worked at 2 weeks after they company posted a bunch of perfectly bilingual signs in the windows and around the facility. They forced the company to change every sign with a threat of a hefty fine per sign because the English must be below the french and half the size.
It’s really hard to get good service in my mother tongue and it’s very frustrating because the majority of people either don’t understand or refuse to.
C’est pas fair.
C’est pas fair- you are so right and yet the population in Ontario is expected to provide bilingual services for that 4% in Ontario .
English Canadians are just sheep -being lead …..willing to be treated as second class citizens by their own government .
English Canadians would prefer to have others make decisions for them and permit their rights to be taken away ….go west English because you cannot work for your government or here in eastern Ontario !
Alot of ignorance fuels this paranoia among English speakers. And quite a few deluded Anglo-supremacist anti-French in the comments.
You write as if English Canada ever respected the French language minorities untill Québec’s French-as-the-common-language policy changed things. That’s not what happened.
French was outlawed pretty much anywhere outside Québec for quite some time and assimilation to English is still very high today in Canada (40% per generation in Ontario, 70% in Saskatchewan).
English Canada never gave half the status to French that English has in Québec.
French speakers are assimilated to English at the rate of 40% to 70% per generation outside Québec. English speakers in Québec benefit a net gain of 20%. It’s French that needs protection and promotion.
When English-speakers in Québec assimilate to French at the rate the Fransaskois lose their language (70% per generation), we will reconsider language planning in Québec.
Every census shows less and less in English Canada know French while more and more know English in Québec. Every year Canada is proving it never tried to make this work.
Time to divorce.
People here in Canada are Canadians – Canadiens and are not English nor French. Compris? You are not of England, Scotland, or Ireland or France you are Canadians. There is a mighty big difference is temperaments, the way you think and act, the way you speak, the way you do business, etc. We are Canadians.
Canadians are supposed to respect one another in both languages and be able to communicate in both and that includes “la Belle Province de Québec” to communicate in English. Québec has become a mild fascist place to live and many people whether of English or French background including “les émigrés” do not wish to be dictated to.
We cannot continue to fight each other since there is enough tourmoil in this world of ours and huge wars are going to come of this. We don’t need these wars here in Canada and in order to change things we have to change ourselves and accept each other for who we are.
We are not from the United Kingdom nor France – we are Canadians. Learn the languages and the more you know the better you are. That goes for Québec as well. Write to the PM and see if things can be turned around. If the people of Québec think that France would accommodate them let the go there and see how they would be treated. This is not the 16 or 1700’s anymore and life overseas has changed tremendously and is multicultural and tons of problems abroad.
EB you don’t even have to live in Québec to be treated like that to be declined of entry into a French school. Both my husband and I speak French fluently and we had to send our children to English-Bilingual schools. Then my husband’s nephew came over after living for five years in Paris France and it was he who had my daughter attend a French school here in Ottawa.
You have to be persistent to get what you want and if you are not persistent then they put things over you and that is with everything in life.
March 17, 2013 at 2:52 pm
“English Canada never gave half the status to French that English has in Québec.”
Never eh! At the moment most Ontario government institutions are bilingual can you say that for Quebec?NO
As for assimilation what of the many other cultures that still maintain their language?And they are not supported to the tune of billions either .
If you cannot support your own culture financially as well as teaching it to your children perhaps the language is meant to die.Is the rest of Canada is keeping it on artificial support?
French as English is but 2 of the 200+ cultures and languages within Canadian borders many cultures survive without the artificial life support that the french language recieves,so why cant the french?
If this is truly about protecting an endangered language what of the native languages that are near extinct ?Why not protect the near extinct native languages ?
Parpalhon is the french language more important to protect then the near extinct native languages ?
Should the native languages not get the same protection and funding as the French language?
J’aimerais tellement échanger, avec vous en Français, mais puisque nous nous retrouvons sur un blog anglophone, voilà.
It’s true that we are all Canadians but Canada is not a melthing pot. I am a French Canadian, others are Anglo Canadians, still others are of different ethnicities. All are equal but can be different. That, I believe, is the beauty of this country.
But, there are two official languages and everyone is expected to know at least one of these languages. All new-comers to the English
provinces are expected to learn English, and most of them adhere gladly because this language is so dominant.
All new-comers to Québec are expected to learn French, but it is not so easy here, as Francophones are only 2% of the English speaking population of North America.
I must disagree with you, somewhat, Jules because, if everybody learns both official anguages, Canada will then be a melting pot… And, the French language and culture, because of it’s fragility will eventually, be the loser, in such am arrangement.
I would not force bilingualism on all Canadians.
Bilingualism is necessary in border towns and areas, and in and around the Federal Capital where speakers of both official languages cohabitate, work and mix a lot.
Let, Anglos who live away from these disignated bilingual areas be unilingual, in as much as they want to, and allow the same right and possibility to Québecois.
The minorities, including minorities of official languages, should accept to speak the common language of the province they are
in, when mixing with the majority.
I understand this sounds complicated, but it’s what most Francophone are already doing and so are many Anglos, in and around Montreal.
Much still needs to be done… Too many anglos still think, Québec is in Canada. They think and even say, I speak English, speak to me in English, as if Québec was a possession of English Canada. It is not, it is a partner of English Canada.
Québécois do go to France, Jules… And they are treated very well… Thank you.
Il se fait tard,
March 17, 2013 at 11:06 pm
I am surprisingly agreeing with your above statement and not forcing bilingualism upon the rest of Canada.
I will never agree to getting ride of french services “where warranted” but as well we need a measurable ,fair and equitable approach when instituting bilingualism.
Representation by population would be that measurable fair and equitable approach to bilingualism.
“The minorities, including minorities of official languages, should accept to speak the common language of the province they are
in, when mixing with the majority.”
Yes in Ottawa the majority is Anglophone so yes they should speak English right Pierre?
“Much still needs to be done… Too many anglos still think, Québec is in Canada.”
Whether you like it or not Quebec remains a part of Canada and clearly you do not like that thought.
Without a bilingual Quebec, all other provinces should be unilingual English except maybe New Brunswick since they have a French-speaking concentration that is higher than that of the country. All other provinces are no more than naturally 5% French-speaking. If Ottawa has to be a bilingual city because it is the nation’s capital (hate it all you want, Quebec nationalists Quebec is NOT a nation) the federal government should pay the full cost. When all those federal government offices were moved to the Quebec side of the Ottawa River, it was agreed that Quebec would always be bilingual. All provincial documentation in Ontario started being bilingual in 1977, the same year Quebec enacted its English hate law bill 101. Why did Trudeau not move those federal government offices back to the Ontario side? Quebec thinks that it can continue to repress English because it will always be able to make Canada pay for everything wants. Even a sovereign Quebec will continue to take money from Canada by getting the United Nations to adopt a resolution that will force Canada to keep giving money to Quebec as foreign aid so that it can maintain a standard of living that it has grown accustomed to.