Wednesday, May 25, 2011

NHL Coaches Show the Power of Biligualism

Three out of the four semi-finalist teams in this year's Stanley Cup playoffs are coached by a Francophone, two Quebeckers and one Franco-Ontarian. Not only are the coaches bilingual, their English is just about impeccable, as you can see in this video.

video,

The NHL operates in English and whether you come from Quebec, Newfoundland, Russia, Finland, Sweden or parts unknown, you better be able to speak English if you want to participate.
These Francophone coaches are shining examples of the opportunities that bilingualism offers Quebeckers to those who choose to embrace the most important language in the world.
 
Unfortunately, there are nationalist voices in Quebec that are actually fighting the notion of learning English as a second language, because they see it as a threat to their own French language and Quebec culture.
In this regard, Quebec must be one of the very, very, few places in the world where the benefits of learning English is actually a subject of  public debate.

The most repeated argument that militants make against English is that Quebeckers should not be obliged to learn it, because most of them will end up spending a lifetime in a unilingual situation in Quebec, where they can work and recreate exclusively in French.

And so, this idea, that if you don't aspire to work outside the province, you needn't learn English assumes that children in grade school have already made the decision to remain in Quebec.

The old teaching axiom of telling kids they can be anything they want, if they work hard, apparently doesn't apply in Quebec.

Perhaps Quebec teachers should ask kindergarten students for a show of hands to determine who wants to remain in Quebec and who wants a wider horizon. Those toddlers who have decided that they will spend their entire life in Quebec can safely be exempted from English class!

To make the decision easier perhaps teachers can explain to the five year-olds that they needn't learn English because their best shot at success lies in Quebec. After all, its hard to make it in the real world and perhaps Quebeckers can't compete. After all, few from Quebec have been successful internationally,  nobody from Quebec has ventured into space, nobody has headlined the most popular show in Las Vegas, nobody has run an international entertainment company or became a world champion car racer or poker player or for that matter, a coach or player in the NHL, or anything else that demands talent and excellence coupled with English.

The message to these students, that their horizons end at the Quebec border, is criminal, fostered by a ruling class who have chosen their own unilingual path.
Most of those who run Quebec politically, socially, and educationally are such unilinguals. Seeing themselves as successful, they see no problem with unilingualism.

The saddest part of all this is when Quebeckers realize that not having English is a handicap, it's too late for most.
Last summer I went on a European cruise and was seated for dinner each night beside a large table of sixtyish Quebeckers. One member of the group spoke English and he had to order dinner for everyone each night. I imagine he had to make all the arrangements for touring and excursions and I can't imagine how the group got around Italy, Greece and Turkey without English. As in just about every international domain, the tourist industry operates in English.

One morning, I overheard one of the Quebeckers inquire of the tour guide (in halting English) as to when her group was to exit the ship.
After receiving a very polite answer, she turned to her friend and asked.
"Qu'est-ce que ça veut dire 'corter do ate?''

How on Earth would anybody want to condemn their children to a lifetime of that!

Travel opens the eyes as to the necessity of English. I'm reminded of all those francophone high school graduates who sew a Quebec flag onto their knapsack, travel to foreign destinations, only to discover that they cannot be understood without English and that nobody has a clue as to which country that little blue flag represents. It's an eye-opener that comes sadly late in the game.

Not everyone in Quebec feels that English is a threat. In fact almost 80% believe that bilingualism is an asset. Here's an open letter by Gaétan Frigon who at one time ran the Liquor monopoly, the SAQ and Loto-Québec;

 "Our history is littered with situations which prompted us to protect and promote French in Quebec. However, this promotion has too often taken an anti-English form rather than a pro-French.

The idea was to prevent our young people from learning English too early lest they become anglicized. But it is time that our vision of the English language change. The English of yesteryear that we fought for so long, no longer exists. The English of today is not the language of the victorious British, but rather one imposed as the international language of U.S. hegemony, ever since the end of the Second World War.


Quebec today must adapt to this reality or risk losing any competitive advantage in its relations with other countries.


In fact, in world history, there has always been one language that more or less dominated. Latin was this language for the longest time. French had also been, especially at the diplomatic level. There have been attempts to impose upon the world the language of Esperanto, but it failed. Today, there is only one language that can be classified as international, and it is English.


If a Chinese person wants to do business with a German, chances are they do it in English. If a Japanese person wants to do business with a Spaniard, chances are they will do it in English as well. And if a Quebecker wants to converse with a Korean, chances are they will do so in English.


If you go around the world, the English language becomes a passkey that allows you to be  understood by almost everyone, anywhere, and without regard to political status of countries where you find yourself. 
In my many travels around the world, I have personally experienced that my knowledge of French was totally unnecessary, but where I was lost without a working knowledge of English.

Even in large cities of China, the signs designating the street names are in Mandarin and English. A country like Vietnam, most of whose inhabitants still spoke French a few decades ago, has changed dramatically. Today, only people over 50 still speak some French while the younger ones are learning English as a second language and speak it fluently. The same phenomenon also occurs in Italy, where the second most spoken language is not French, but English.


In Quebec, our response to English is still negative because of our history and it is unfortunate, because it brings us into a dead end. It is a sign of what we've been, but not a sign that we must become as an
emancipated people . Whether we agree or not, our youth will eventually be losers if they do not speak English, simply because young people all over the world will master English.

In taking up English, we as a people show that we are mature enough to put aside the English symbol of British rule and adopt English by necessity as the only international language.


In doing so, Quebecers clearly demonstrate that they are mature, by being able to live and work in French at home without crushing the English language that has become indispensable as a second language.


In fact, in most non-English speaking countries, governments are doing everything in their power to ensure that their children learn English as soon as possible. we should certainly not want Quebec to become the only nation in the world where young people leave school without mastering the only language that they can  be universally understood elsewhere on the planet.


Mastering English as a second language is a priority for all Quebecers, separatists as well as  federalists. Otherwise, we will simply become a Francophone ghetto without a future.
" LINK


Further reading: No Klingon in Quebec

41 comments:

  1. I don't have to listen to Alain Vigneault. I heard him when he was coaching the Habs. I'm no Canucks fan, but at least a Canadian team will at long last be competing for the Cup, and I do hope they win it this time. They're due, and I thought Vigneault was a good coach with the Habs, and I was very pleased to learn when he became the Canucks' coach. He just didn't have the horses to win much with the Habs during his era in Montreal.

    If there is still one thing the Habs seem to do well, it's groom their coaching staff. Claude Julien started with the Hamilton Bulldogs. In fact, I attended a Bulldogs game where the only thing separating Julien and me was the pain of glass behind the players bench. I saw the notes in his hand. Tampa took our "next one", but it was sporting of the Habs to give this fellow his chance to shine now rather than wait his turn. He's doing just great.

    The most interesting Habs' coaching revelation to me took place in 1995, and no sports writer or broadcaster talked about it. If any readers recall, the New Jersey Devils took on the heavily favoured Detroit Red Wings for the Cup, and the Devils won it in that abbreviated season. Nobody noticed that this was a battle between the master and the pupil, with Scotty Bowman, the winningest coach of all time as the master, and Jacques Lemaire, whom Bowman at one time coached, as the pupil. In 1995, the pupil outcoached the master. Oh, and lest we forget the pupil was «pur laine».

    I thought though that Lemaire proved his merits as a coach over a decade earlier. In 1984, his Habs made it into the playoffs with a sub-.500 record for the first time since my birth over a quarter century earlier (75 points in 80 games). They made it to the third round of the playoffs, losing to the NY Islanders whose dynasty ended in the Cup Finals against Edmonton that year (and Edmonton's dynasty began). The next year the Habs regained first place in their division and had an entertaining product. Lemaire decided after that season to take an assignement in Europe. He was not fired like most NHL coaches eventually are.

    Lemaire also coached for a whole decade in Minnesota before coming back to New Jersey and even coming out of retirement at the insistence of their GM.

    Finally, my jaw just about hit the floor when I learned of Jacques Demers's illiteracy. He is fluently bilingual, and I never would have guessed he was illiterate, but that was what threw everybody off the track. His story is sad, and I imagine it took a plenitude of courage to come forward with that story, but he did a lot of good for having done so. It was actually very inspiring.

    This all goes to show Francophone coaches have done well for themselves. Certainly learning English is a major ingredient for their success. When 29 of 30 teams operate 100% in English and only one or at most two (when the Nordiques were around), you know which way things are going to go, at least languagewise!

    Béliveau, the Richards, the Guy La's (Lapointe and Lafleur) and the many others who didn't speak English when they joined the Habs certainly learned it when they railed and flew West of the Ottawa River...eventually.

    Score one for Mr. Frigon's words of wisdom above.

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  2. English is necessary (a must), but not sufficient. To be able to fit into this multi-something world, you must speak English AND at least two other languages.
    These coaches are a great example and, Deo gratias, many people in Montreal (=real Quebec part of Canada) are like them.
    Go Bilingualism Go!

    WESTALLOPHONE++

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  3. By keeping les Quebecois in the dark when it comes to English as a second language training (by fear tactics), the Quebec government has created a captive tax base unable to vote with their feet and move outside of the province. Quebec Inc. is a massive beast that is dependent on a certain level of tax revenue. As English speaking Quebecers, each one of us have family members or friends that have left Quebec at some point for political or economic reasons. Few francophones can say the same. All they can do is keep their head down and keep paying taxes regardless.
    The hypocrisy here is that the ruling class of Quebecois happily send their kids to English private schools in Westmount or to schools with proper English training while pushing Bill 101 on the rest of Quebec and paying lip service to the SSJB or the Mouvement Montréal français.

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  4. Wow Vigile must hate this Frigon guy with all his crazy talk about what it takes to be successful. I couldn't agree with him more. It's time Quebec got over losing the war 400 years ago. Nobody cares. Learn English AND promote French AND be successful. It's very simple.

    Go Canucks Go!

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  5. Editor,

    Kudos, one spot-on piece. It seems that with their quest of independence, the separatists are ready to sacrifice the well-being and the advancement of the population.

    I come from Asia. In many parts of East and Southeast Asia the population is not readily exposed to the English language while the langua franca (how ironic!) of Asian business world is English. So we can see people learning English like crazy in Asia. In China, they are learning English in the thousands in sport arenas. Look at anglophone university graduates here, good portion of them are leaving for China, Japan or Korea to teach English.

    So imagine my surprise when I came here. While Quebec has the most exposure of English without actually being English, a faction of influential people in Quebec denies the population the opportunity to learn English. While in Asia people are trying to be competitive with English skills, here the burden lies with the companies trying to make the invesment. Is it not any wonder why the economic footprint of Quebec is in steady decline since 1980s?

    What is not disclosed is that with its geographical location, it is impossible for the province to function without English capability. For everything that we Quebecers enjoy in French for granted, there is someone behind the scene translating it from English. Just look around. Your electronic equipments, your building, your vehicles, your clothes, your food. Even if they are made in Quebec, along the supply chain somebody must have spoken English to have them here.

    And to augment the Editor's point, I have not found ONE person from Quebec, one person outside of political domain, who has big success, who are well-known out of Quebec, who does not speak English. Even if Guy Laliberte and P.K. Peladeau are said to be separatists, they do have good command of English.

    On a separate note, Mississauga Guy said, "...at least a Canadian team will at long last be competing for the Cup..."

    Hey, the Senators went to the Finals in 2007. I actually watched that game 5 when they beat the Sabres to go to the Finals at the Byward Market. The atmosphere and the celebration the night after was amazing. Point is, four-year is not THAT long...

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  6. Editor: “there are nationalist voices in Quebec that are actually fighting the notion of learning English as a second language, because they see it as a threat to their own French language and Quebec culture.”

    They see it as a threat to their position of power and privilege. They couldn’t care less about anything else.

    -----

    Editor: “Quebec must be one of the very, very, few places in the world where the benefits of learning English is actually a subject of public debate.”

    It’s the only place, as far as the teaching of the English language is concerned. Even in countries that are not politically aligned with the United States and the West, the use and the teaching of the English language is not a matter of debate, but rather a given (North Korea and its unfortunate inhabitants exempted, but I assume it's not what the Quebec ruling class would like to aspire to anyways... or maybe it would?)

    The only other place I can think of that targets English legislatively is France with its Toubon Law of 1994, but the law, passed by the pompous French “elite” aligned with L'Academie Francaise, is a butt of a joke amongst many Frenchmen. It certainly doesn’t enjoy the sacred cow status in France as Bill 101 does in Quebec and Canada.

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  7. ...to Troy: Good rebuttal, and you're right, I forgot about Ottawa's Cup appearance in '07, but that's how memorable it was.

    Anon @ 8:06AM: Right on! I very vividly remember discussing the ulterior motive of the Great Charter of Charters back at its inception in '77, and I hypothesized way back then it was to create a language prison. They wanted to ensure the population couldn't leave and therefore be stuck to pay the confiscatory taxes they slap on their population.

    I don't think Troy realizes that most of that first PQ cabinet back in '77 had English language education:

    Jacques Parizeau: London School of Economics
    Jacques-Yvan Morin: McGill, Cambridge & Harvard.
    Yves Bérubé: M.I.T.
    Denis Lazure: University of Pennsylvania
    Claude Morin: Columbia U, New York City
    Robert (Pronounced: Ro-BEAR) Burns: McGill U.
    Camille (the Nazi) Laurin: Internship at Boston U. Hospital

    Others with no formal education in English who picked up the language very well were the brother act, Pierre-Marc and Daniel Johnson Jr., who both joined their father and became premier of Quebec for a time (both unelected to the role), Denis de Belleval and René Lévesque. Even others with heavier accents like Yves Duhaime and Bernard Landry still handled themselves very well in English.

    It's a real paradox how many of them spoke English so well, received university credentials at top notch schools and had brilliant careers yet aimed to suppress their own people to selfishly create a captive population that is language deficient (even in their mother tongue) and taxed to within an inch of their lives.

    Without this captive base, French weakens all the more insofar more people can leave Quebec with enhanced language skills...if they choose to do so, and I'm sure some would. There are some (sadly, not enough) who make the brave decision to leave their French environs and confines to learn English the hard way, i.e., through immersion, but is often their only option, and congrats to them on their bravery and determination.

    BlueWhiteRed: Quebec lost its war in 1759, just over a quarter century ago, not 400 years ago. A mere technicality as it was still long, long ago.

    For those who are still dedicated to smiting English, stupid is what stupid does. It's too bad this collectivity was led astray by the despotic leadership of the Roman Catholic church, coupled with politicians who fed off their collective ignorance, but the Quiet Revolution in part ended that putrid part of their history. It's equally sad though they ended up clinging to another false doctrine in the name of the Great Charter of Charters, Bill 101. More hard lessons to be learned, putting the majority of the population that much further behind the eight ball!

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  8. Welcome ot the gettho, not sure if Frigon realised it, but Quebec has put themselves in a gettho to start with. Quebeckers are so endoctrined with the language issue, i remember one of my bosses at Provigo at the time,she told me, i wished i had learned english, i asked her why then she against immersion to learn english earlier, i might as well have invoked satans spawn judging by her reaction, followed by a coworked usal old lady from eaton rant. u can almost script this like clock work when talking about this in montreal.

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  9. @ Mississauga Guy,

    "Quebec lost its war in 1759, just over a quarter century ago, not 400 years ago. A mere technicality as it was still long, long ago."

    I believe you meant to say Quebec lost its war just over a quarter millenium, or 250 years ago. Excellent post, by the way.

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  10. So repeal bill 101 and give us back our equal rights in kebec. Rights that we had from 1759 on...until the bigots took over in the 60's and 70's, the bigots that brought in bills 22, 178, 101...

    Repeal bill 101 or rot in hell or kebec bigots.

    Its called history for a reason,leave it alone.Show some respect!Its bad enough that Quebec has spent the 5 decades wiping out our real BNA, UEL history in Quebec but now the same thing is happening outside Quebec.This is just sickening.Quebec = 5 decades wiping out the English language and culture with racist,anti-English language laws such as bill 22,178,101…Just a fact.Racism,bigotry,ethnic language cleansing and human rights violations alive and well in kebec.Kebec where the English,Scottish, Irish,United Empire Loyalists…built the province since 1763,where the Union Jack and Red Ensign flew until 1950.Again just the facts.This lie, this revisionist BS that Quebec is a French province and that Canada is bilingual is just that,an outright lie.1 million people have been forced out of the province of Kebec(original native spelling)due to this type of hatred/lie/spin.While all this is going on in Quebec they are forcing the French language outside kebec in every province.Everything and anything the French demand,they are getting across this entire country.Its called bilingualism (another lie never clearly defined on purpose).What’s really going on?”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.Nice, eh? The same thing is now going on outside Quebec.From the removal of our real flag in 1965...Let’s remove,revise, and lie about more of our real BNA,UEL history.Enough is enough,wake up people."Loyal She Began, Loyal She Remains."Go learn our proud,BNA and UEL history.These were the builders of our country since 1763,not this phony,revisionist lie,spin,nonsense,this bilingual,multicultural,2 founding nations, linguistic duality lie,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.Leave our real history alone.

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  11. Mississauga,

    I did not know that particular fact (the '77 PQ cabinet), but I do know that a number of separatist elites actually benefit themselves from English education.

    As I illustrated elsewhere in this blog, I took 2007 Quebec leaders' debate. Of the three persons debating (Charest, Boisclair, Dumont), only Charest did not have a degree from an English-speaking university. His law degree was from Sherbrooke. Boisclair had Master's from Harvard and Dumont had Bachelor's from Concordia.

    And we know that Charest was the most federalist among those three.

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  12. The latest developments must be scaring the Quebec elites shitless. Not only demographic changes such as this:
    http://www.cyberpresse.ca/actualites/quebec-canada/education/201105/24/01-4402472-plus-dallophones-que-de-francophones-a-la-csdm.php

    …but also the changes in the political “consensus”, where the “established” order was the BQ’s monopoly on the federal level, and the two cheeks of the same backside's (PLQ, PQ) monopoly on the provincial one. With the advent of the NDP and Francois Legault (mildly nationalist but explicitly non-separatist, unlike the PLQ which is timidly non-separatist), the “elites” are feeling uneasy, and it’s evident lately in the news, including the “federalist” LaPresse, whose Montreal section today features madame Harel, La Marche des Patriotes, the “allophones taking over Montreal schools” bit, and Bernard Landry “denouncing” both Layton and Legault:
    http://www.cyberpresse.ca/la-tribune/201105/23/01-4402010-bernard-landry-denonce-layton-et-legault.php

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  13. Just to add some more umph to the Editor's point.

    The Stanley cup winning coach this year is garaunteed to be bilingual and of French desent. (the editor probably posted before Vancouver won last night)

    Not sure how the language idiots could argue that. Probably explains why not a single one of them, not even Press 9, has chimed in today.

    It's always hard to fight a losing battle.

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  14. "...mildly nationalist but explicitly non-separatist..."

    Hein ?!?

    Vous ne comprenez vraiment pas les subtilités de la politique Québécoise,n'est-ce pas adski?.

    Legault a simplement le cul entre deux chaises.Sa position face a la souveraineté est temporaire et la structure et les buts de son hypothétique parti sont plutôt nébuleux.

    S'attaquer aux syndicats et aux commissions scolaires pour mettre tout ses oeufs dans l'éducation,n'est certainement pas l'idée du siècle.

    Ceux qui applaudissent et appuient aveuglément un tel projet,oublient ou ignorent qu'il y a une chance sur 3 que leur famille soit touchée,de près ou de loin,par une telle initiative.

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  15. http://www.cyberpresse.ca/la-tribune/201105/23/01-4402010-bernard-landry-denonce-layton-et-legault.php

    Bernard Landry: “"Un parti qui choisit une candidate unilingue qui n'est jamais allée dans la circonscription qu'elle doit représenter commet une arnaque. Moi, quand je me suis présenté dans les comtés, j'y suis allé. J'ai fait du porte-à-porte. C'est invraisemblable d'envoyer partout des gens qui ne pensaient pas être élus. En démocratie, quand on veut être élu, on est présent et on va voir tout le monde."”

    They’re like a broken record about this NDP unilingual candidate, for almost a month now. What Landry says does make sense, but you know what, people DID vote for her. How about accepting that? Doesn’t it also say something about the BQ – that people preferred a no-name who they’ve never seen over the BQ candidate?

    And who is Landry to lecture us about “démocratie”? The democracy is already a sham – a limited number of choices/parties (whose exposure to the public and thus any chance of winning is decided by the media collusive with the elites), no “none of the above” option for people to be able to unequivocally reject the consensus (a low voter turnout can easily be rationalized away, but a 90% turnout with 60% win for the None of the Above couldn’t be), electoral districts set up with the aim of maintaining the status quo instead of producing a just representation (in Quebec specifically giving advantage to the Regions over Montreal, thus unthreatening to unrepresentative and asymmetrical dominance of Francophones over non-Francohpones)? To that, Landry would like to add another condition – vote only for those that WE point out to you.

    Well, the next step after this is a dictatorship.

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  16. Another indication that our "democracy" is a racket is of course the so-called "public opinion polling", that's used by political parties and the media to mold public opinion under the guise of gauging it. I don't know how I could have overlooked that one.

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  17. "They’re like a broken record about this NDP unilingual candidate..."

    Quelles sont les chances qu'un candidat unilingue francophone soit élu dans la région de Toronto?

    Tic tac tic tac....0%!

    Ainsi va la vie dans ce magnifique pays.Je commence a croire que nous (collectivement)sommes des loosers,vraiment.

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  18. Amen, Editor, Gaétan Frigon, and adski.

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  19. "It’s the only place, as far as the teaching of the English language is concerned. Even in countries that are not politically aligned with the United States and the West, the use and the teaching of the English language is not a matter of debate..."

    Comment peut-on être aussi stupide ou totalement débranché de la situation Géo-politico-linguistique du Québec pour vomir une telle ânerie.Le pire dans tout ça c'est que kiki est sérieux et vit (parmi nous) au Québec depuis des années.Réellement idiot ou sous l'effet d'un hallucinogène quelconque.

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  20. ...to Anon @ 12:22PM: Quite right, I meant to say a quarter millennium ago, not a quarter century, and thanks for your compliment re my earlier contribution.

    Adski, because of my age, I remember many of the members from that first cabinet, and it's hard not to forget how the poor saps from Quebec were being told what they can't do by their supposed "betters" who had the privileges of earning enormous academic credentials leading to rewarding careers.

    In my opinion, Quebec was led astray by bad religious leaders and exploitive political leaders who fed off the lousy church doctrine.

    Perhaps at long last French Quebec society is turning the corner and with immigration being an increasingly important part of the Quebec fabric, the old demons are losing their significance and so are the separatists. I'm hoping the Dark Ages in Quebec are finally coming to an end...decades after the rest of the continent moved forward.

    Until then, trolls like Press 9 et al will keep shooting their yaps off with their vitriolic drivel. It sometimes takes time to flush the crap down the sewer.

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  21. How come no one mentiones the Scandinavian countries where English is taught from the first grade - in state-run schools? Do the kids actually go home and speak English? No, they still speak their native language at home (I have relatives and friends living both in Norway and Holland).

    Also I come from a European country with a latin-based language. From early on we were taught two foreign languages, as part of the curriculum. Also, there were high-schools subsidized by the state (actually the entire education system up to university is state-funded) where the main subjects were taught in German, English or French, so kids were learning everything except math and the mother tongue (grammar and literature) in one of those three languages, depending on the highschool. Did kids go home and spoke to their parents in any other language than their mother tongue? Um... no.

    So all this paranoia about Bill 101 being extended to CEGEPs and (later, probably) university is pure nonsense. I can't believe how people fall for what some... political parasites feed them.

    Oh, and btw... learning more than one language from early on raises the IQ. I am not talking about two-digit points, but enough to matter. Even if 5 points, it brings one from 69 (legally 'tarded - I am sorry, can I say that?) to 74 (within the normal range). So why would parents deny their children the chance to be smarter?

    Montreal Allophone

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  22. Adski a plus de crédibilité qu'un twit qui obfusque, ment et utilise 3 différent noms pour régurgité des idioties.

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  23. "Do the kids actually go home and speak English? No, they still speak their native language at home (I have relatives and friends living both in Norway and Holland)."

    Hé Ducon!Ont-ils la première puissance anglophone au monde dans leur cours arrière?

    Faites-vous exprès pour être aussi idiot ou c'est de naissance?

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  24. Very, very well said. Très, très bien dit. I am perfectly bilingual, proud of it and so thankful.

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  25. Mississauga Guy: “the poor saps from Quebec were being told what they can't do by their supposed "betters" who had the privileges of earning enormous academic credentials leading to rewarding careers.”

    Some may argue however, that it’s not true because of a relatively high rate (40-50% depending on which source you look) of En-Fr bilingualism amongst Francophone Quebeckers, ignoring the fact that these Quebeckers learned English in opposition to the official line, not in agreement with it (i.e. essentially through civil disobedience). This is the same fallacy as with the English Quebec minority being the “best treated minority in the world”. Essentially, this fallacy takes something that’s thriving (English minority) or occurring (En-Fr bilingualism) and it presumes that it therefore must be well-nurtured and supported. But that’s not the case. Some things may thrive and occur independently of many other things, or even despite the obvious opposing forces. This “post hoc ergo propter hoc” fallacy – “afterward therefore because of” – falls flat because not every event that occurs now is caused by an event or action that precedes it or runs parallel to it.

    The rate of En-Fr bilingualism does not prove anything about the intentions of the drafters of Bill 101. These “statesmen” (most of whom as MGuy pointed out enjoyed success thanks to their command of English) have set out to deny the same privileges to others. They set out to engineer a captive society over which they’d rule without external interference, having successfully manipulated the federal government into acquiescence.

    That they fell slightly short of this objective does not mean that they haven’t tried.

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  26. "...sometimes takes time to flush the crap down the sewer."

    Did you left Québec in 84 ? XD!!!

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  27. “best treated minority in the world”

    Adski,une fois pour toute,nommez une autre minorité aussi bien traitée que la vôtre.
    Nous sommes très bon avec vous et vous le savez très bien.Quelqu'un vous empêche-t-il de vous exprimez librement sur la place publique?

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  28. Mississauga Guy: “Perhaps at long last French Quebec society is turning the corner and with immigration being an increasingly important part of the Quebec fabric, the old demons are losing their significance and so are the separatists”

    This reminds me of a passage from an article I read recently titled “Cretinismo Eroico” and published in The Nation in July 1988. In it Christopher Hitchens recounts a visit to Prague in its last year of communism. He ends the article with this:

    “The Castle still looms above the city from the Hradcany Hill, but it is inhabited by pygmies who were fished out of the dustbin of history, and whimper in their sleep at the thought of going back to it”

    Substitute the “Castle at the Hradcany Hill” with Outremont, Le Plateau, Quebec City, L’Assemblee Nationale, or wherever the creeps fished out in the 1960’s now reside, and this statement fits the Quebec elite perfectly.

    (The collection of Hitchens’ edgy articles from between 1985 to 1993 was published in 1993. Topics range from international to domestic American issues, and span a very interesting historical period. Highly recommended: http://tinyurl.com/3j4om2c)

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  29. "The collection of Hitchens’ edgy articles from between 1985 to 1993 was published in 1993..."

    Rien de plus récent kiki et surtout de plus pertinent?

    Mon père dirait : Ce petit poloc tourne les coins ronds.

    Un peu a la manière des tests d'intelligence destinés aux primates.Certains sujets tentent désespérément de faire entrer un cube dans une forme circulaire ou l'inverse.

    Moi je dis:Circonvolution intellectuelle générée par le désespoire de revoir un jour Montréal retournée aux mains des anglos.Quel fantasme!

    D'une certaine façon,vous me faite pitié kiki,surtout avec le dépoussiérage de vos "ouvrages" aussi désuètes qu'inpertinents.

    Plus il y aura d'anglos dans la métropole,plus nos lois seront renforcées.Logique implacable et fort cruelle pour les individus de votre acabit.

    Try again!

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  30. “Rien de plus récent kiki et surtout de plus pertinent? “

    It’s very important if you realize that people and things don’t really change.

    “le désespoire de revoir un jour Montréal retournée aux mains des anglos”

    If the choice is between the Westmount Rhodesians and Outremont neo-Rhodesians, then I’m choosing “none of the above”.

    The interesting thing about people like you is that back when Montreal was ruled by the Anglo clique, you weren’t looking at them with disgust – you were looking at them with envy. Your objective was not to do away with them as much as to emulate them. Like the pigs in Animal Farm who banished the abusive farmer, but then moved from the stable into his house, started sleeping on linen sheets, and proclaimed themselves more “equal than others” (which sounds awfully close to “les maitres chez nous” doesn’t it?)

    “plus nos lois seront renforcées”

    You do know that most people wipe their asses with your laws. I, for example, have the pages of bill 101 printed on my toilet paper.

    “Try again!”

    Your English is truly impressive.

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  31. "You do know that most people wipe their asses with your laws. I, for example, have the pages of bill 101 printed on my toilet paper."

    C'est très bien adskouille,de cette façon elle vous accompagne au quotidien et dans les endroits les plus intimes.

    De plus votre érudition sur les habitudes des porcs ne surprendra personne ici,connaissant vos origines d'Europe de l'Est.Les Polonais sont,parait-il,de grands spécialistes en ce qui a trait aux charcuteries et aux saucisses en tout genre (incluant même la viande de chien) hyper-cancérigènes selon les spécialistes.

    Vous pourrez vous vanter (non vautrer) d'avoir amélioré les connaissances d'un seppie sur le sujet des cochons.Tellement connaisseur qu'on pourrait présumer que vous avez déja partagé le même toît ;)

    Votre français est tout aussi impressionnant que mon anglais,félicitation!

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  32. DEPressED9
    je vous conseille de lire un livre de Paul Watzlawick nommé "Anleitung zum Unglücklichsein" : Vous y trouverez le secret pour rester toujours un petit unilingue miserable tel que vous l'êtes...
    Ah, désolé ! J'ai oublié : vous n'êtes pas capable de lire les langues étrangères (probablement, y compris la vôtre). BBaaannggg!

    WESTALLOPHONE++

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  33. @ mae west hello fun

    Suivez ces étapes attentivement,tss!tss! concentration s.v.p!:

    Select profile / Name/URL / Sous l'étiquette "name" indiquez votre pseudonyme et cliquez "continue",voila.

    De cette façon,vous n'aurez plus a signer vos déconcertantes bafouilles et votre prochain gribouilli sera affublé automatiquement de cet insignifiant pseudo qu'est WEST machin truc.

    Ne me remerciez surtout pas.Aider un démuni porte chance paraît-il.

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  34. @ Press 9

    "Hé Ducon!Ont-ils la première puissance anglophone au monde dans leur cours arrière?"


    Let me see if I got it right. The problem is, in your opinion, that anglos speak the same language as the neighbour South of the border, is that right? Should Canada had Swahili or German spoken by the majority (meaning that the anglophones from Qc would speak them instead), you'd have nothing against it, right? You'd gladly let the commercial signs up in either of these languages, SSJB would have never existed and the ridiculous amount of money they are receiving from OUR taxes would have been put to better use, we'd all hold hands and sing?

    Doesn't that make you a wee bit hypocrite? Which greatly complements your overt xenophobia! Good job!

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  35. “Should Canada had Swahili or German spoken by the majority (meaning that the anglophones from Qc would speak them instead), you'd have nothing against it, right?”

    This particular fallacy is based on proximity and numbers. Meaning that if language X is close to location Y and is spoken by a large number of people, then we should logically proceed with its cleansing from location Y.

    The problem is that then a bunch of people come in and they arbitrarily define the “close” and the “sufficient”. So for example the US is close enough to count, but France (where only French is spoken) is not close enough to make a case for those Anglos/Allos who want to keep the English language. Also, the US population of 350 million is “sufficiently high”, whereas the France population of 60 million is not “high enough”. So it’s all dandy, but who do we let decide the criteria, and how do we know his/her decisions aren’t…errr….biased? Or political?

    Also, the fallacy has an obvious flaw – the closer the proximity of language X and the greater the population of speakers of language X – the MORE (and not less) seriously should the language X be treated. Treating is less seriously can ONLY arise out of political considerations (power, control, entitlement), with little or no regard for the practical consequences.

    So not only are the seppies hypocrites but also ignorant hucksters and manipulators, motivated 100% by power and privilege, and not (as they would like to have us believe) by cultural concerns.

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  36. "Anleitung zum Unglücklichsein"

    Kossé ça tabarnak?Un code postal du Kurdistan ou tu t'es enfargé dans l'clavier?

    Let's try again mystery dude!

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  37. "...100% by power and privilege..."

    Vous ête en amérique du Nord kiki,pas au Tibet.

    Sacré adski,toujours au mauvais endroit au mauvais moment.

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  38. @ Adski

    I can only agree with you - that was my point, not as nicely put. Thank you.

    Montreal Allophone

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  39. Has anybody examined how the people in Belize (formerly British Honduras) are maintaining English as their language, and whether they have had to resort to anything like Law 101 to keep out Spanish, or whether they are consciously teaching Spanish to their children in addition to English so they can speak with their neighbours? Also, what about the French départment of Guyanne (French Guyana) in South America?

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  40. "...départment..."

    French keyboard?...Hmmmm.

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  41. @Press 9

    Nope. I simply type "option" and the letter "e" on my iMac to create the accented "é". I was typing that word in French out of politeness, but I blindly assumed it was spelled the same as it is in English. It isn't. The correct French spelling is département.

    The reason I used that word at all is that many Americans wrongly assume French Guiana is the equivalent of Puerto Rico, Guam, or the Virgin Islands. But Guyane isn't a territory or commonwealth of France---diplomatically, it IS France and the proper equivalent would be Hawaii or Alaska.

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