Sunday, January 16, 2011
Quebec Ethnics Destroy the Separatist Dream
The newly elected Part Quebecois government, while giddy with its success at the polls was no less realistic that its dream of sovereignty was a goal that under the then, present circumstances, notwithstanding the election victory, was far from realizable.
Elected on the platform of good government first, and perhaps sovereignty later, the Parti Quebecois swept to an overwhelming victory in terms of parliamentary seats, but still only garnered 41% of the popular vote.
Getting the population to move from that percentage, to the 50% plus one support needed in an eventual referendum, was a problem that the new government was determined to tackle head on.
The first order of business was to transform the mindset of Quebeckers from comfortable Canadians, to that of paranoid Quebeckers, which was to be accomplished by heightening and focusing on the differences between the French and English elements of society through manufactured conflict, reminding us of the proverb that tells us that "In danger, there is opportunity"
The demonization of the English, already a popular theme among the militants, would be brought to the mainstream, so that an US versus THEM mentality could be created and exploited in order to sell the political agenda of separation, through the artificial fear that the English were out to destroy Francophone culture and the French language.
And so it was decided to come down hard on Quebec's English population, the demonization would be subtle, yet substantial.
Quebec Francophones would be introduced to the big lie that living among the English was a toxic formula for assimilation, notwithstanding the fact that French has thrived under just such conditions for the 250 year period of the so-called 'colonial occupation'
Dr. Camille Laurin, drafted Bill 101, Quebec's infamous language law, an instrument of division, meant not only to promote French over English, but to establish English speakers as second class citizens.
When René Levesque first saw a draft of Bill 101, he almost choked, pointing out to the good doctor that many of its provisions were clearly anti-constitutional and could never withstand any sort of court challenge. The wholesale stripping of language rights seemed to the newly elected Premier overly harsh and cruel, something that he admitted, deeply humiliated him. But the cabinet backed the hard line and Bill 110 became law.
Dr. Laurin happily admitted that his law was unconstitutional and that portions would surely be struck down in the Supreme Court, especially those parts making French the only official language of the courts and Parliament, something expressly forbidden in the BNA act.
To Doctor Laurin the inevitable reversals in court could be manipulated to amplify the theme of French humiliation and victimization that would bolster the cause of sovereignty by proving to the ordinary man in the street that Ottawa was determined to undermine the legitimate defence of the French language.
The effect of Bill 101 was electrifying.
Not only did it reset the historical direction of language relations in the province, it served to terrify many Anglophones into leaving the province in a historic Exodus, a migration of epic proportion, not seen in this country since the displacement of the United Empire Loyalists after the American War of Independence.
The law also had the effect of chasing the head offices of much of the big business establishment out of Montreal, where they once represented over 70% of all corporate power in Canada, to Toronto and parts west. The departure of the mighty SUN LIFE insurance company set off the stampede that represented the final nail in the coffin of Montreal as Canada's leading city.
Driving the highly mobile Anglos out of the province was a dream come true for the separatists who were rubbing their hands in glee as this secondary gift of Bill 101 proved even more satisfactory than could have been imagined.
The loss of the business establishment and sizable portion of the English community was deemed to be what today we call 'acceptable collateral damage,' a dose of painful medicine, necessary if Quebec was to find its own path to sovereignty.
In spite of these 'successes' the first referendum loss in 1980 was not unexpected, but not particularly disheartening to separatist forces in general and the Parti Quebecois in particular. The numbers were such that the separatists could reasonably look forward to another kick at the can at a later date, once the full force of the English retreat was realized, coupled with the gradual upward acceptance of sovereignty by the francophone majority as a result of the various Parti Quebecois programs and the effect of Bill 101.
The separatists were not troubled by the fact that the minorities had voted massively against sovereignty in that first referendum.
It was understood that since these 'outsiders' had already been assimilated in the greater English community, due largely to the fact that they were educated in the English education system, it was natural that they would align themselves on the NO side.
Up until that time, Muslims, Jews, Greeks and other non-Catholics had been denied entry into Quebec's French schools which was then run by the Catholic Church. These minorities were forced into the province's Protestant system, which was run in exclusively in English. Even the Italians, themselves Catholic, attended their own separate English schools. The desire of the Catholic church to isolate French Quebeckers from the influence of the immigrant 'heathens' would have an incalculable impact on the future of the sovereignty question.
However, the separatists were confident that this would change once all the immigrant students were forced into French schools as per Bill 101, which was thought to be, the ultimate assimilator.
They believed that while the first generation of immigrants would remain aligned with the English, the second and certainly the third generation, educated in French, would assimilate into the French community.
The referendum results of 1995 proved this theory as flawed as the Maginot Line.
'Allophones' as they became to be known, even those educated in French, voted massively in favour of Canada.
For separatists, losing the referendum by the slimmest of margins was difficult enough to digest, but the realization that Allophones had made the difference, felt like a knife through a heart. While they always expected the remaining English community to vote NO, the rejection of the sovereignty option by the allophones in such a massive proportion, fuelled a bitter sense of betrayal.
It boiled over in Jacque Parizeau's raging post-referendum concession speech, where he specifically pointed the finger at the allophones as the cause of the defeat.
The grand demographic plan of getting rid of a significant proportion of Anglos and replacing them with assimilated immigrants has blown up miserably.
The separatists had inadvertently opened a Pandora's box, and the sheer numbers of immigrants that continue to come to Quebec makes sovereignty a virtual impossibility, as long as second, third and forth generation immigrants continue the voting pattern of their parents.
All this is not lost on hardliners.... and they are not pleased. In fact they are enraged. Watching sovereignty go up in smoke is a dish hard to digest.
And so the backlash has begun. Although Parizeau was the first to unload on the ethnics, it was left to pompous and insufferable Yves Michaud, another PQ hardliner to enunciate the new mantra of nationalists, that the Ethnics betrayed the 'real Quebeckers" by voting massively for Canada.
This rage has morphed into an unprecedented racist attack on all Quebec minorities. Born in the pages of nationalist websites, this campaign of hate has crossed over into mainstream media.
Allophones have now become "Les Ethnies," a term that is nothing more than a pejorative for these 'outsiders' who have replaced the English as the enemy of nationalist Quebeckers.
For those who think I'm exaggerating, read my next few posts for a shocking exposé of the open demonization of Quebec's ethnic communities and their portrayal as a threat to the cultural and linguistic 'purity' of the Quebecois 'pure laine'.
It isn't pretty.
Tomorrow- The extremist websites racist attacks on Ethnics.
Posted by Editor on 1/16/2011 10:31:00 PM