La Langue a Terre – Are English Signs Really an Insult to French Quebecers in Montreal by Jamie Gilcig

La Langue a Terre – Are English Signs Really an Insult to French Quebecers in Montreal by Jamie Gilcig

jg2CFN – It seems that a large core of Quebecers are determined to bring language issues to the forefront in Quebec.

 

CTV in Montreal reported on a new documentary about the issue.    LA LANGUE À TERRE, directed by Jean-Pierre Roy and  Michel Breton essentially floats that Quebec should only have French spoken with only French on signs and that by having a bilingual presence in Montreal it’s a death knell of the French Language.

Their synopsis paints it a bit kinder, but still is pretty clear showing the same xenophobic and frankly mentally and emotionally insecurity that plagues so many Quebecers and has pushed the province to the point where many Canadians wish it would separate compared to 1995 when the country came to Montreal to clearly say that Quebec should stay.

Is Montreal a Francophone or a bilingual city? A difficult question to ask without generating a heated debate, and the recent controversies about language confirm the deep malaise that polarizes Quebec society. But a fundamental question arises: more than 35 years after the passing of Bill 101, what is the situation of French in Quebec? Is the bilingualism of its metropolis a threat to the survival of the language in Quebec? 

Frankly anyone that complains about a sign stating that the consumer loves Italian is an insult to Quebecers needs therapy at this point.

Bill 101 is now 35 years old.  The cost to Quebec as their bridges crumble and sink holes open up in downtown Montreal is clear.   Eradicating the true heritage of Montreal and the contributions made by non-Francophones is something shameful.  Ironically its the very deed and actions that language nazis like Mr. Roy is worried about.  Eradicating a culture and society based on language.

But in 2013 it is very clear that Canada and its government have not made any attempts to do such a thing to French across our nation.   It’s quite the opposite as official bilingualism has spread across Ontario; New Brunswick is officially bilingual, and you can’t get a good job or advancement in the Federal government or most agencies in Ontario without passing a French as a first language test while in Quebec it’s unilingual Francophone time with no real accomodation for non Francophones.    Compare civil servant population ratios in Quebec vs Ontario for example.

No, Quebec doesn’t need more laws.  Quebec needs one on one therapy for people like Mr. Roy to overcome their insecurities and realize that their words and actions are the death knell of French as they’d like it simply because it’s a total turnoff to their own people.

Nobody wants to be forced to do or be anything that they don’t want  to be.   Forcing people what language to speak doesn’t work.  And frankly it’s not up to English Canada to save the French language.

Isn’t it time to say “ENOUGH” to people like Mr. Roy?  Isn’t it time for our Canadian government to protect all Canadians including English speakers in Montreal?

And maybe isn’t it time for Canadians to have a National dialog across the country and decide if the cost of official bilingualism is really what people want?

It’s time for Quebec to respect the rest of Canada in the manner that it’s been treated which most reasonable people would agree has been really really well.  It’s time to push that pendulum back so it could swing in the centre.

While nothing will happen overnight Quebec makes its choices by whom it elects and how tolerant they are of some of the hate crimes committed against Anglos, from forcing people to speak French on breaks to how the public is treated by service providers.

Maybe; just maybe, it’s time to fix the roads and build bridges instead of trying to chase another generation of its young people away in the hopes of winning another referendum?

Jamie Gilcig – Editor – CFN and Former Montrealer.

(Comments and opinions of Editorials, Letters to the Editor, and comments from readers are purely their own and don’t necessarily reflect those of the owners of this site, their staff, or sponsors.)

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85 Responses to "La Langue a Terre – Are English Signs Really an Insult to French Quebecers in Montreal by Jamie Gilcig"

  1. frizbee   August 27, 2013 at 10:38 AM

    Is there something wrong with you Robert???

  2. Highlander   August 27, 2013 at 11:42 AM

    frizbee
    August 27, 2013 at 10:38 am

    “Is there something wrong with you Robert???”

    Fanaticism

    “The nationalist not only does not disprove of atrocities committed by his own side ,but he has the remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them”…………………..George Orwell

    This statement best explains the conditions whereas those “agitators” are under.

    Brainwashing through idealism,closed mindedness through fanaticism.

  3. edudyorlik   August 27, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    @Highlander RE: POST on August 27, 2013 at 11:42 am

    CHECK …

  4. Highlander   August 27, 2013 at 1:48 PM

    Oops OQLF study showing That allophones are converting to francophone MUCH faster then anglophone .

    The study contradicts the original premise on which the government’s proposed language legislation, Bill 14, is based.

    http://www.montrealgazette.com/opinion/Macpherson+Inconvenient+OQLF+study+with+trash/8834642/story.html

    OOPS BETTER BURY THAT ONE !

  5. Robert M.   August 29, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    Finally I have seen the movie.It was amazing.The good news is that it doesn t concern you in Ontario.Ca ne regarde que nous au Quebec.C est pas le reste du Canada qui peut nous aider.On va en faire un debat et discussion au Quebec.Je pense qu a present ,vous pouez penser tout ce que vous voulez.Ca vous regarde.Thank you.Good bye.
    Pour mieux comprendre,procurez-vous une copie de ce documentaire .

  6. admin   August 30, 2013 at 4:49 AM

    Robert many of us in Ontario are here because of people like you. We gave up on Quebec. Sadly though many of us still have relatives, friends, and loved ones that we have concerns about. See, people like you just don’t get it, and never will.

  7. highlander   August 30, 2013 at 5:00 AM

    admin August 30, 2013 at 4:49 am

    There is no logical reasoning with fanatics Admin .
    Been near 3 years we have been advocating “equality”,yet this fanaticism goes well beyond reasoning even when we have provided ample data to support our statements.

    I guess for them language is their new religion!

  8. Robert M.   August 30, 2013 at 5:43 AM

    Anglos speak french in Quebec…

  9. Robert M.   August 30, 2013 at 5:43 AM

    Les anglais parlent francais au Quebec..

  10. Eric   August 30, 2013 at 6:21 AM

    Robert M, Quebec has more bilingual (Eng/Fr) people than in the rest of Canada combined, English is not going away in Quebec, especially if you want some tourist dollars. The same is not true in the rest of Canada for French. Why not build on what brings us together instead of the all for me thinking?

    http://www12.statcan.gc.ca/census-recensement/2011/dp-pd/hlt-fst/lang/Pages/highlight.cfm?TabID=1&Lang=E&Asc=1&PRCode=01&OrderBy=999&View=1&Age=1&tableID=402&queryID=1

  11. sean   August 30, 2013 at 7:21 AM

    Like I said, is there something wrong with you robert?????

  12. stellabystarlight   August 30, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    highlander wrote: even when we have provided ample data to support our statements.

    You forgot to mention how many times your data was corrected or proven wrong……like in not factually true.

  13. Jason   August 30, 2013 at 9:57 PM

    I am a young professionnal who grew up on the south shore of Montreal. I am proud when I answer French is my first language when asked.

    However, I chose to move to the US a few years ago. I could not take it any more.

    When will Quebec ever wake up and realize that the whole language war is keeping it from progressing/ focussing on the real issues.

    Yes, the US sure has it’s problems, and the government here also makes bad decisions. At least, they only get 15% of my hard earned money to mess up with instead of 50%.

    Malheureusement, je penses jamais revenir…

  14. sean   August 31, 2013 at 5:06 AM

    @ stella

    Is there something wrong with you ????

  15. sean   August 31, 2013 at 5:15 AM

    @ robert, stella

    Perhaps you two could forfeit your Canadian passports and give up all the benefits you receive in Canada.

    You could then work on the separation of quebec from Canada, and all of your points would be moot.

    I certainly support quebec in its quest for separation.

    They already have their own immigration laws, their own language laws, their own set of code of values, when it comes to religious symbols, their sign law, their fanatical protection of language laws to the detriment of all other languages, specifically English.

    In short they are their own country now. So leave and take bilingualism with you.

    You go your way and we’ll go ours.

    And oh, foot your bills as well.

  16. stellabystarlight   August 31, 2013 at 9:16 PM

    @sean with his new moniker……being you dislike the laws of this GREAT country, feel are being treated so badly and always complaining YOU SHOULD LEAVE and while you are at it bring the freedom fighter gang with you.

    Perhaps Syria would be a good place for you guys to live. They like fighting their own, their gov and want to rule and dictate. I do believe you would be happier there. Give it some thought. Just looking out for your well being and happiness.

  17. highlander   September 1, 2013 at 7:18 AM

    stellabystarlight August 31, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    As usual the deep insight from stella .

    ” YOU SHOULD LEAVE”, this seems always her solution to the problem.

    When one has to deal with “LANGUAGE APARTHEID” and wants equality ,the other who advocates for the status Quo says :

    “YOU SHOULD LEAVE ”

    Democratic principles are the guiding platforms for change ,and having to tell people “YOU SHOULD LEAVE ” If you don’t agree to LANGUAGE APARTHEID is oppression of thosei that wish to make a positive change that benefits all it citizens.

    Perhaps stella it is you that “SHOULD LEAVE” this forum as you in nearly 3 years have not contributed positively,whether through informed conversation /material .

    Your only intent over the time period has been to berate,antagonize and threaten others ,you always will remain a BULLY.

  18. Edudyorlik   September 1, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    highlander@
    RE: POST on September 1, 2013 at 7:18 am

    on August 31, 2013 at 9:16 pm stellabystarlight wrote,
    “YOU SHOULD LEAVE ”
    ——————————–

    This is their shtick highlander. Just like they did and are doing the same damn thing in Quebec. They form their own posy, make their own inner circle rules, then when everyone gets fed up with it they just leave only to have their businesses and land filled with so called, “more desirable (to their own inner circle) “pure laine” society. It’s like what was done to the Jews but instead of killing them these French Xenophobes just they make their lives so damn miserable they leave.

    I CANNOT believe this is going on in MY OWN COUNTRY and the damn federal government is doing nothing about it.

  19. edudyorlik   September 2, 2013 at 8:46 AM

    Hey sean.
    It would appear that your superior knowledge of history has put a damper on hungry for the truth (AKA: lives for lies) I have a feeling he’s gone off to study and brush up 🙂

    Thanks buddy 😉

  20. Eric   September 3, 2013 at 9:22 AM

    stella by star light, PM Diefenbaker said a few words that should help people stay.
    “I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I think wrong, and free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.”

    The millions who left Syria had good reason, we have good reason to stay, fight, live long and prosper!

  21. stellabystarlight   September 3, 2013 at 11:07 AM

    @eric…..you got that right, we have many freedoms in this country, I’ve been saying that all along.

    However, one freedom you and the freedom fighter gang don’t have, will never have BUT THINK YOU HAVE is the freedom to run this country and to dictate what laws should and should not be implemented.

    If your ideas are so great DO LIKE GALGANOV, RUN FOR OFFICE….see how far you will get with that one.

    CANADA THE LAND OF THE FREE
    LET’S KEEP IT THAT WAY!!!!!!

  22. edudyorlik   September 3, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    CANADA… THE LAND OF THE NOT SO FREE
    especially if you are Anglophone and live in the province of Quebec, Canada where the English language is outlawed, diminished and repressed.

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-r8OszZvdzyM/URPkKCj5caI/AAAAAAAAAa4/XvYI1o-359c/s250-no/Sign+-+Everything+in+French+only.jpg

  23. stellabystarlight   September 3, 2013 at 1:51 PM

    yep yorlik is right again and he has you tubes videos to prove he is right **smile**

    This country is lucky to have a guy like him to enlighten us on the atrocities that are going on in Canada. Disgusting and shameful is what it is. No Canadian should have to go through this quagmire.

    Folks, don’t despair, the freedom fighters will take you out of bondage and free the oppressed. They will set this nation free. Have faith…..they will not let us down!!!

  24. Eric   September 3, 2013 at 1:53 PM

    stella, every Canadian has the right to dictate laws, to speak about them, to join other like minded people if they so choose, and openly discuss them. There is nothing wrong with telling your government that you do not want to be forced to put a bilingual sign up and it should be OK to put one up, if you so choose.

    It is perfectly OK to tell your government you expect fairness in hiring with merit first, unlike that insidious Bill C-232 before the Senate.

    At the very least, Howard Galganov provides everyone more insight by posting here once maybe, than you have provided us with over a few years.

  25. john Murry   September 3, 2013 at 3:38 PM

    I wonder what would happen, if the Province of Quebec seperates, would Quebec be called “province of Quebec” or “State of Quebec USA”? What language would they have to speak then?
    Food for thought!!

  26. silentfrancoamerican   September 7, 2013 at 6:07 AM

    Ontario has become nothing more than Fruit land home of American enterprise , third rate immigrants , a highly unintelligent providence , glad i got out, Thank god for Quebec a refuge of normality !

  27. Highlander   September 7, 2013 at 8:03 AM

    silentfrancoamerican
    September 7, 2013 at 6:07 am

    ” third rate immigrants , a highly unintelligent providence , glad i got out, Thank god for Quebec a refuge of normality !”

    Third rate immigrants ? Can you be more insulting to immigrants ?We all are immigrants in this country!

    Careful there silentfrancoamerican your ethnocentric comments are bordering racist ,But thank god as you have a refuge limited in Quebec where attitudes like yours is excepted and encouraged!

    Yes Quebec the NEW DEEP SOUTH OF CANADA!

    “A highly unintelligent providence “-did you know that Quebec has the highest high school dropout rates-as you say “Thank god for Quebec a refuge of normality !”

  28. Lachapelle   September 23, 2013 at 2:36 PM

    Born in Montreal-French family-Learned English in English school my first 6 years of school since my father had so much trouble communicating with only his French language. He said we all needed to be bilingual in the family (4 kids) for a better future life….

    This said, I can say that what media like mostly is to light fires around subjects. Some to make an old fire burn longer – sometimes to “sell” more news.

    In English Canada, you get bits of info leading you to keep on thinking the French are against you. In French Canada (Quebec) our history wasn’t always as “equal” as it seems today. Lots of historical efforts where made to keep our culture alive, including our English heritage. We are not against English, we are for French culture to be preserved on a territory dominated buy English.

    Please simply realize this is to preserve our rich differences. English is taking over a great % globally. Of course English don’t feel the danger of their culture being taken away from them. But take 5 and put you and your family, and loved ones in our shoes and see how you would react and what you’d like to put in place to preserve what it is that makes you what you are.

    I now have 2 children of my own now. We are a French family and I try to speak English to my kids regularly. I really want them to be able to reach out easily in life. As much as I have family in Ontario, in the USA, and great friends in BC I will always be standing up straight for my French culture and will always think that preserving Quebec Province and it’s French culture is a richness for all of Canada and even North America.

    If everybody could only where one color, how sad would the global picture be?

    In Quebec, we love Canada but we simply have a need to protect what we are in priority. That French color we bring.

    The short circuit hatred pushed buy the medias that NEED the attention, is responsible for short thought people using harsh words (French or English alike) against each others….

    But when I drive to see my brother in Ontario, I see no walls separating Ontario and Quebec. It seems to belong only in the minds of those not thinking twice about what they where told to think. Canada is beautiful with its differences all across.

    Merci for your time here. I now gotta go kiss my lovely wife with a French kiss! 🙂

  29. stellabystarlight   September 23, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    Lachapelle wrote: But when I drive to see my brother in Ontario, I see no walls separating Ontario and Quebec.

    That is correct there are none.

    Unfortunately, there is a small group who are trying to build a wall between the two provinces and adamantly working on trying to separate this country.

  30. stellabystarlight   September 23, 2013 at 4:35 PM

    Lachapelle wrote: He said we all needed to be bilingual in the family (4 kids) for a better future life….

    Your Father is a very smart man. Living in a country that has two official languages your father did the right thing. I am sure it has paid off.

  31. Yves Ranger   October 21, 2013 at 1:28 PM

    well although this was 2 month ago, I was in France shooting a documentary, I received an invitation to view this doc next Wednesday. I’ll be able to express myself, but at first I must say that Montreal has been bilingual since 1663, yes 1663 you have read correctly. The first Montreal fur trade show was held in fall of 1663, where Hurons, Algonquins and even Mohawks came over to sell their furs. But as Mohawks did not speak french and neither frenchmen were speaking one of the 5 Mohawks language, Hollanders were hired by the french. The language was ENGLISH.

    I am writing a documentary on the evolution of the St.Lawrence inland waterway from 1658 to nowadays, if you want to know a bit more on our EVOLUTION you can view the synopsis on my website at yvesranger.org, it is right now in french, did not had the tome to narrate it in english yet.

    I wll let you know my impression on this La langue à terre documentary, but I have a feeling that it is more a political doc as we saw with the german 3rd reich than anything else.

    Yves

  32. jules   October 21, 2013 at 7:09 PM

    Lachapelle that was a wonderful blog that you made and “la province de Québec sens comme chez nous – c’est notre mère et notre père”. In order to succeed you have to be bilingual and it is going to come a time where you need even more. The more languages that you know the better you are. Those who only have one will be left behind. In British Columbia students are learning the Chinese dialects and China is going to surpass the US in economy very soon. I went on videos to see the construction of sky scrapers in China and they outbeat Manhattan. Many people here in Ottawa are bilingual and trilingual and I do not hear the racism and the resentment of not wanting to know other languages. Good for you wanting to teach your children English. Mme Marois and others want to keep the French language and I am all behind her on that one. What I am not for is the separation of Québec or any other province. Yes it is done by a few people who want to agitate matters and usually done by university professors and some lawyers who just want to make trouble. You then get some very racist Anglophones all worked up over everything and they don’t even know what they are talking about. Good for you Lachapelle.

  33. Highlander   October 22, 2013 at 5:53 AM

    Jules written;
    1)”Mme Marois and others want to keep the French language and I am all behind her on that one. What I am not for is the separation of Québec or any other province”

    2)”You then get some very racist Anglophones all worked up over everything and they don’t even know what they are talking about”

    1)-You claim you are all behind her ,do you not realize that her and her parties intent is solely to separate the country .There is a difference in defending a language and oppressing others .
    The intent may be considered admirable to maintain the french language ,but it is not admirable when it oppresses others !

    2) Make this clear Stella when one stands up for ones language be it French or English and providing proof of how the their respective languages are oppressed does not denote that those individuals are racist.
    So when you claim when some very racist Anglophones do not understand you have proven your own bias !.
    There is ample proof has been provided through reputable sources that as many “anglophones ” as you describe them that are at a very large disadvantage and those government policies are akin to legislated discrimination.
    But because they speak up against this form of discrimination you label them racists,would that give me the same right to call francophones who stand up for their language as racists…certainly not!

    The many who believe and speak up on this bad government legislation and request representation by population in hiring like myself are sure to be insulted when standing up for this right and being labelled a racist.

    This has been a tool by french supremacist’s when others outside their circle question validity and fairness of the approach to bilingualism over 40 odd years ,by calling them RACIST,BIGOT people no longer speak up as they do not want to be labeled these names thereby OPPRESSING THEIR RIGHT TO FREE SPEECH AND RIGHTS TO DEFEND THEIR BELIEFS.

    It is rather peculiar that a group that wants fairness in approach to hiring is labeled Racist when the Government data they provide proves that the hiring is indeed VERY BIASED and in many democratic countries would be determined as discriminatory.

  34. dougtheslug   November 15, 2013 at 8:03 AM

    The writer of this page, this article…tells people they “need therapy”. This seems to be a common theme in all the writings of this so-called journalist — every article he writes he lambasts someone in it…”he needs therapy”. Needless to say, this is a grade-school thing to say. No arguments as to “why” this assessment…just “he needs therapy”. {MODERATED} Cornwall…land of the illiterate, home of the hick.

  35. Eric   November 15, 2013 at 8:37 AM

    dougtheslug, attacking the messenger instead of the message is not helpful, and really, some people in positions of political power could use some therapy. The message as I understood it, Quebec is wasting resources, Canada needs to treat the spoiled child with tough love, and the thinking of some is language over all else whether you can afford it or not.

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