"FLQ manifesto will remain part of Plains of Abraham event, says artistic director"

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toddsschneider
"FLQ manifesto will remain part of Plains of Abraham event, says artistic director"

http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5gFkDuTWmZv9AiRpcdJ1fbsY9UKjg

MONTREAL — Organizers of a spoken-word event planned for the anniversary of the battle of the Plains of Abraham demanded a public apology Saturday from the provincial minister responsible for Quebec's capital region,

The organizers have taken issue with Sam Hamad over his accusations they are being apologists for terrorism by including reading the Front de liberation du Quebec's manifesto in their performance.

"When you accuse someone of fomenting violence, it's serious," said artistic director Brigitte Haentjens, one of four volunteer planners for the show.  "This team is profoundly insulted by the comments and we're asking for a public apology" ...

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Well, if you really wanted to go there, todd, francophones could probably consider what General Wolfe did to be just as much terrorism as anything the FLQ ever did.  Also, the FLQ only killed one guy(the anti-labour Labour minister of Quebec).  I think Wolfe's body count was a mite higher.

Is there a REASON you started this thread?  Other than your obsession with demonizing francophones and your totally discredited belief that Quebec anglophones are discriminated against?

Fidel

When the old line parties have nothing to offer ordinary Canadians, which is quite often, sometimes they resort to the politics of division and bigotry as diversion. And it's a low and fascist place to foment chaos from in times of capitalist economic upheaval. 

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Welcome back, Fidel.  Did you get the pm I tried to send you while you were gone?

martin dufresne

Mmmm... I could have sworn I started a thread on this at 1:58.

Fidel

Ken Burch wrote:

Welcome back, Fidel.  Did you get the pm I tried to send you while you were gone?

Yes I did and thanks, Ken. I sometimes post without considering who it is I'm replying to. Sorry bout that eh. I find it impossible to be angry with you. You must try harder.

toddsschneider

Ken Burch wrote:

Is there a REASON you started this thread?  Other than your obsession with demonizing francophones and your totally discredited belief that Quebec anglophones are discriminated against?

"STM bus driver refuses to speak English, calls police: Passengers kicked off bus after man asks driver for time – in English"

http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/driver+refuses+speak+English+calls+p...

MONTREAL – At least now he knows how to say "Quelle heure est-il?"

Muhammad Ahmad Munir, a master's student from Pakistan studying at McGill University, was kicked off the No. 66 bus at 6:45 Friday morning after he asked the driver what the time was in English.

"I got on the bus and I didn't have a watch, so I asked the driver for the time," he said. "She started talking in French and I didn't understand what she was saying."

The 32-year-old native of Islamabad came to Montreal a few months ago to enroll in a master's degree program in Islamic studies at McGill.

After twice telling the bus driver he didn't understand French, she responded in English, saying: "I don't speak English."

"I then told her that she just showed me that she does speak English, and that's when she really got angry" ...

toddsschneider

Fidel wrote:

When the old line parties have nothing to offer ordinary Canadians, which is quite often, sometimes they resort to the politics of division and bigotry as diversion. And it's a low and fascist place to foment chaos from in times of capitalist economic upheaval. 

Like some of the franco nationalist groups invited to the event:

Quebec entertainers, artists and politicians are expected to take part, including [Parti Quebecois leader Pauline Marois and ex-premier Bernard Landry] and Bloc Quebecois Leader Gilles Duceppe ...

[Said artistic director Brigitte Haentjens:] "This event is a reflection of our history and the manifesto is part of our history. No one from outside will tell us what to include" ...

The lineup for the Quebec City event features some controversial figures such as Patrick Bourgeois of the pro-sovereignty newspaper Le Québécois, whose backers mounted the opposition against the military re-enactment and alluded to potential violence at the event ...

 

martin dufresne

 

toddsschneider

That's a reaction we could expect from the Jejunes Patriotes du Québec, Martin. I would say "knock it off", but ...

If you want to be truly progressive, address the issue as to how the thugs hide behind the patronage of the old stock parties.

martin dufresne

Haven't the dominant group - NOT Francophones in Canada - always had the privilege to define who are the "thugs" and who are legitimate armed supporters of the status quo?

 

martin dufresne

Haven't the dominant group - NOT Francophones in Canada - always had the privilege to define who are the "thugs" and who are legitimate armed supporters of the status quo?

 

toddsschneider

"Feds to proceed with Plains of Abraham event despite FLQ brouhaha"




http://tinyurl.com/klmmzx

... In an interview with Le Devoir, Landry said there's nothing wrong with looking at history for what it is.

"The documents and the sad events (of October 1970) are part of our history and that we remember them - without celebrating them - we commemorate, not celebrate, is not worthy of controversy in my opinion," Landry said.

Ironically, that was the exact argument organizers of the original battle re-enactment had been making before it was cancelled amid protest by nationalist groups: that it was all about commemorating, not celebrating, the historic event.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

self-delete.

martin dufresne

Nice bit of sloppy editorializing from Canadian Press, that last paragraph. Comparing a military defeat to the reading of a text... This after quoting approvingly arch-Angryphone William Johnson who claims that the Plains of Abraham attack saved French Canada from being sold off like Louisiana...

Instead of grandstanding, CP should do its homework. There is absolutely no truth to the FLQ Manifesto having provoked a "string of bombings" as the author claims: "...The planned readings include the manifesto of the terrorist group that triggered the 1970 October crisis with a string of bombings and kidnappings in support of Quebec independence..." The only bomb related to the FLQ to be set after the Manifesto's writing exploded in July 1974, behind Sam Steinberg's home... in the face of Robert Samson, the RCMP agent that was setting it!

But hey, whatever the market will bear, eh?...

 

Unionist

martin dufresne wrote:

Instead of grandstanding, CP should do its homework. There is absolutely no truth to the FLQ Manifesto having provoked a "string of bombings" as they claim: "The planned readings include the manifesto of the terrorist group that triggered the 1970 October crisis with a string of bombings and kidnappings in support of Quebec independence."

Martin, the CP sentence is badly constructed - clearly (I hope!) the clause "that triggered..." modifies "the terrorist group", not "manifesto".

martin dufresne

That's plausible.

 

toddsschneider

martin dufresne wrote:
Haven't the dominant group - NOT Francophones in Canada - always had the privilege to define who are the "thugs" and who are legitimate armed supporters of the status quo?

Maybe so.  Which is why, since francos are the domineering group in Quebec, the authorities never lay a finger on the JPQ, and they are freely sponsored by the so-called respectable nationalists. The old bad cops, worse cops routine.

I'm still waiting to see what disciplinary measures are taken towards the thuggish bus driver for telling the "other" guy to speak White, then throwing everyone off the bus and calling the cops to come to her aid.  And to see which groups rally around her.

Not even worth mentioning  in the French press, evidently.

Unionist

toddsschneider wrote:

I'm still waiting to see what disciplinary measures are taken towards the thuggish bus driver for telling the "other" guy to speak White, then throwing everyone off the bus and calling the cops to come to her aid.  And to see which groups rally around her.

Not even worth mentioning  in the French press, evidently.

You think the facts aren't dramatic enough, so you make them up?

Busdrivers in Montréal are not required to be bilingual, even though the vast majority of them happen to able to function in English, and the STM tries to assign English-speaking drivers to certain parts of town. Sometimes there are replacements, and it's not always possible.

Nor, to my knowledge, are they supposed to be an information service telling passengers what time it is.

This driver obviously didn't speak English - very rare in my experience. The fellow asked her the time in English. She replied in French. He persisted in English, obviously being rude. She finally explained, "I don't speak English". He then baited her, saying that if she didn't speak English, how was she able to say that in English?

At this point, if I were the busdriver, I would have pulled out a dictionary and taken the time to work out how to tell this pompous fellow to go f*** himself and hitch a ride. Instead, she felt threatened by this persistent person, and called the police and asked the passengers to vacate the bus.

Of course, all we know about this incident is from the passenger himself - he was the only one who went to the media.

So you see, todd, your take on this incident is founded in some kind of anger which I don't understand. This is Québec. The language of Québec is French. We take pains to explain that fact to anyone who comes here to live even temporarily, like this fellow. I do hope he enjoys his stay, but he should learn a little humility.

 

martin dufresne

Well put. Women's experiences of harrassment at work are routinely pooh-poohed, even when someone is doing such a high-attention task as driving a bus! The driver followed instructions to the letter and maybe avoided an accident or dangerous escalation of this guy's attitude. She deserves respect from progressives, not insults from our resident francophobe.

 

Snert Snert's picture

She probably saved many lives.  It's a good idea to phone the police ANY TIME someone won't speak the local language.  Don't take chances!

Unionist

To repeat - is it clear to our cynics here that he berated her for not speaking a particular language - not the other way around?

Anyway, if I were her, I would have locked down the bus and read him the FLQ Manifesto until he could repeat it flawlessly.

 

Snert Snert's picture

From the story, it sounded like he berated her for saying she doesn't speak English, then speaking English.  And perhaps he was, as you say, being rude.  But phoning the police over it?  Kicking everyone off the bus over it?

If the story were "Toronto Bus Driver Phones Police When Brown Man Gets Rude" I might anticipate a slightly different response.  I respect that there's all kinds of old subtext going on here, but still.

Unionist

Oh, I forgot, he also threatened to kidnap her children.

Snert, do you remember the "reasonable accommodation" near-murderous frenzy that erupted in the media after Mario Dumont spoke about a couple of non-incidents in Québec? There was a spa without frosted glass in a Hassidic Jewish neighbourhood; a sugar shack that catered kosher food on request of a group; an alleged policy whereby the Montréal police would send female cops when a call involved female Muslims or Sikhs; a maintenance worker who was told he couldn't eat his ham sandwich in the cafeteria of the Jewish General Hospital; a pre-natal class in a CLSC which was made "women only" to save embarrassment for some women whose culture/religion might have kept them away from a mixed class; and a handful of sub-humans from an irrelevant place called Hérouxville who were rocketed into international fame and fortune by the likes of Péladeau and Asper?

And that's all gone now???

So don't take these bullshit stories too seriously. Ask, rather, why certain MSM outlets do so.

 

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:
So don't take these bullshit stories too seriously. Ask, rather, why certain MSM outlets do so.

 

A fair comment, I suppose. I assume that many media outlets have their own preferred spin on things, and that they primarily exercise this spin through the choice of what they cover and what they don't (along with the Editorials, of course) but I usually assume that the spinning doesn't extend to deliberate misrepresentation of facts. So I'm sure that some Anglo editor or owner was drooling at this story, but in and of itself, I'm not assuming the story to be false.

 

But your advice of late seems to be "slow down", and I think that's probably good advice.

Unionist

Snert wrote:
So I'm sure that some Anglo editor or owner was drooling at this story, but in and of itself, I'm not assuming the story to be false.

I never intended to suggest, even to hint, that the story was "false". Same with all the other irrelevant incidents which were used to create an international frenzy, the Bouchard-Taylor Commission, distorted election results, etc. etc. I'm quite sure some variant of all these things happened.

When I say "bullshit", I mean the nefarious spin, sensation, and publicity placed on irrelevant isolated incidents used to create (in the extreme) pogroms and race riots.

 

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

martin dufresne wrote:

Well put. Women's experiences of harrassment at work are routinely pooh-poohed, even when someone is doing such a high-attention task as driving a bus! The driver followed instructions to the letter and maybe avoided an accident or dangerous escalation of this guy's attitude. She deserves respect from progressives, not insults from our resident francophobe.

 

Martin is right on this.  This whole thread is, once again, about todd's attempts to con the rest of Babble into thinking anglophones are persecuted in Quebec.   It's been proven to him over and over and over again, that they aren't, but he won't stop with this.

The bus driver had every right to do what she did.  She deescalated a situation with a passenger who obviously showed a propensity for violence.  This had NOTHING to do with language, and todd knows it.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Quote:
This is Québec. The language of Québec is French.

Yes, but the reality is that there are large numbers of unilingual Anglophones in the province who can trace their roots in this province back many generations, like here on the Lower North Shore, for example. Provincial services are fully available in English here. It's the reality of the situation. Although occasionally there are missteps - just yesterday our radio announced a public meeting with the Quebec Minister of Transport to discuss the road construction. Turned out it wasn't really a public meeting of that type at all - it was entirely in French and Innu, respecting the construction workers, and totally ignoring the Anglophone residents who actually have lived here for generations. It was actually a kind of church service that had something to do, I suppose, with the aboriginal population of nearby Natashquan giving their approval to the project - that part of the "meeting" was entirely in Innu which no resident of Kegaska understands, and which obviously was for the benefit of Innu employees of the construction company. When it was over, I went straight to the Minister and his aides and asked questions - in English, as I speak no other language - and all of them answered in perfect English. Given that Kegaska is a community of Anglophones that traces its roots back to early Newfoundland and earlier Ireland and England, and that the provincial representatives speak perfect English, couldn't they have had the decency to say a few words in English to the assembly?

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:
She deescalated a situation with a passenger who obviously showed a propensity for violence. 

 

Obviously showed a propensity for violence?

 

Can you give us some kind of hint as to what he did that made it clear that he had a propensity for violence?? As I read the story, he argued with her. It's not clear to me how that indicates a propensity for violence.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Transit workers are trained to read passengers for signs of volatility.  This transit worker obviously saw them.  She'd have done the same thing if a francophone passenger had become verbally abusive in the way this man did.  That was standard bus company training.

Unionist

Boom Boom wrote:
Yes, but the reality is that there are large numbers of unilingual Anglophones in the province who can trace their roots in this province back many generations, like here on the Lower North Shore, for example. Provincial services are fully available in English here.

And so it is in Montréal, and many other parts of Québec, where unilingual anglophones can live all their lives here and scarcely miss a beat - as I'm sure you'll agree.

That couldn't happen to any other linguistic minority anywhere else in North America, nor in most countries for that matter.

That's why bullshit stories like the one in the Gazette are so potentially harmful.

But you know, Boom Boom, when you say "large numbers of unilingual Anglophones", the percentage is constantly falling - not because Anglophones are leaving (that train left long ago), but because they're learning French.

 

 

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:
Transit workers are trained to read passengers for signs of volatility.  This transit worker obviously saw them.  She'd have done the same thing if a francophone passenger had become verbally abusive in the way this man did. 

Ah. A lot of assumptions in there. But you mentioned a "propensity" for violence. Are you confident that this transit worker was not only able to tell that someone is about to become physically violent, but also that that this violence is the result of some kind of character flaw or similar?

And why is she driving a bus rather than practicing psychiatry? Or the criminal justice system? Seriously. If she can tell, at a glance, that someone has a propensity for violence, I'd like her working for the police. Let's get all these people with violence in their genes off the streets, yes?

Sorry, Unionist. I really, honestly had meant to take your advice and let this thread fizzle, but it looks like we're talking about a real story now. The real story of the psychic bus driver whose Spidey Sense would tell her when someone is about to make the leap from nonviolent bickering to physical assault! That's some story, you've gotta admit.

Unionist

Don't forget the kidnapping element. And I know the Gazette didn't mention this, but two of the passengers were Green Party members from B.C. that had crossed the floor to join l'Action démocratique.

This story is potentially huge.

 

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Uh...don't you have to have a seat before you can cross the floor?

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I don't know who put the announcement on our community radio yesterday, but that is where the misstep began. We were invited to a public meeting where the road construction would be discussed. However, that was not to be the case - instead, it was a religious ceremony for the Innu construction workers here - somewhere between 36 and 42 of them. The ceremony was entirely in Innu, with a French introduction and some comments in French from the Minister of Transport at the end. We were kept waiting 45 minutes outside the hall as the Minister was late arriving, then the  ceremony lasted another 45 minutes. So I think the annoyance of the Anglophone community of Kegaska can be understood - it wasn't a meeting to discuss road construction as advertised on the radio, and there was no English content during the entire 45 minutes once we were inside the hall. Just poor planning is what it appears to be, but on whose part I have no idea.

Vansterdam Kid

Ken Burch wrote:

Transit workers are trained to read passengers for signs of volatility.  This transit worker obviously saw them.  She'd have done the same thing if a francophone passenger had become verbally abusive in the way this man did.  That was standard bus company training.

Holy inference Batman. We could also pretend, because the guy was a Pakistani Muslim, that she was some sort of a racist too. I mean who really knows, right? It's quite possible, especially if he was wearing traditional Muslim garb. And judging by the reports of the other bus passangers it kind of sounds like the bus driver was more than a bit unpleasant, seeing as she told the driver following her not to pick up any of the other passangers who were waiting at the next stop during the morning rush hour. From the Gazette report the bus driver sounds like a vindictive ass. But in a sense is this that big of a deal? Well no because transit workers are often rude and provide terrible customer service.... think of Larry the bus driver from The Simpsons who kept tapping his "Don't talk to the Driver" sign. I thought the transit workers were largely rude in Montreal, and it wasn't because of language, because I think they're largely rude in other cities like Vancouver and New York.

Sean in Ottawa

The point might be that both sides are right-- the reinactment might have been okay if the reading including the FLQ document were both scheduled along with many other things. The feds by going for the bare-assed reinactment out of the context of the rest of Quebec history fouond themselves in an intolerable position.

 

Sean in Ottawa

I know people who are able to say they don't speak English clearly enough but cannot go much further.

 

In fact I can say I don't speak a couple languages in their native tongues -- I can add a hello and goodbye and little else-- why assume that a person able to say they don't speak a language can say more? This is often the most important thing you learn first in order to make it clear you don't understand. It is very presumptuous to imagine she could say more.

Vansterdam Kid

Well yes that's quite true. Though I'm speaking to the behaviour exhibited to the other passangers. All in all rude people speak all languages. Big deal.

toddsschneider

It's presumptuous to anyone not conversing in French in Quebec is some sort of ethnocentric caricature. This guy reportedly speaks four languages other than French.  He might have some insight for us all into multiple language acquisition, if not assertiveness.  I doubt the bus driver has much to offer on either score.

toddsschneider

Why not include every possible permutation of commemoration in the Plains of Abraham event, just so no one's feelings could possibly get hurt, federalist, nationalist, sovereignist and easily pissed? A carnival of commemoration, fun for the whole family, broadcast live on Radio-Canada TV?

Because history, and society, is not about protecting everyone's feelings.  But it is about trying to play fair, given our failings.  Suck it up, grow up, and get along as best you can.  And most of the time, despite the very real bus harassment incident here in Montreal, franco, anglo and allo, we do.  Now that would be reasonable accommodation.

toddsschneider

I shouldn't dignify that francophobe libel with a comment, since such comments are so utterly untenable.  I am an ethnocentrophobe, as are most of the people I would identify with.

As a recipient of harassment, I would never deny real harassment when I can see it, whatever the gender dynamic.  Personally I can't wait for the report to the Commission des normes du travail. Or for the reactions of the Centre for Research Action on Race Relations.

 

Unionist

Ken Burch wrote:

Uh...don't you have to have a seat before you can cross the floor?

Montréal buses are divided among party lines. The Greens were seated in their section. When the shooting started, they ostentatiously rose and crossed over to the ADQ section. When the tactical unit arrived, they were totally confounded, because the passenger manifest didn't match the chief electoral officer's records. The affair ended peacefully, thank God, but it could have been a lot worse.

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

toddsschneider wrote:

Why not include every possible permutation of commemoration in the Plains of Abraham event, just so no one's feelings could possibly get hurt, federalist, nationalist, sovereignist and easily pissed? A carnival of commemoration, fun for the whole family, broadcast live on Radio-Canada TV?

Because history, and society, is not about protecting everyone's feelings.  But it is about trying to play fair, given our failings.  Suck it up, grow up, and get along as best you can.  And most of the time, despite the very real bus harassment incident here in Montreal, franco, anglo and allo, we do.  Now that would be reasonable accommodation.

I can picture it now, a rowdy band of English conscripts doing their "Bomber Harris" routine to remind everyone who actually won that particular donnybrook. Looking forward to seeing the footage. Wink

martin dufresne

I don't know if this is still the case but I remember that Montreal buses used to have a sign saying something like "Please don't talk to me. All my attention is required by the driving.". Toddsschneider's whine seems to be based on the opposite principle. Bus drivers would owe passengers to listen to them, to be bilingal enough to answer whatever question in their language of choice, to tolerate whatever aggravation they choose to dish out, and to be accountable to the Montreal Gazette rather than to their employer for safety procedures. How callously colonial of him...

 

 

toddsschneider

What a careless disregard for proportionality.

Bus drivers already listen to their favorite passengers, who sit right next to the entrance and regale us with their garrulousness for many a kilometre.  Or, the drivers listen to their favorite radio station, at whatever volume they choose, usually a francophone one.  Very aggravating, but fair enough.  I just sit as far back as my self-respect allows.

As you well know, it's not me who insists on bilingual drivers; it's the STM who has a policy of providing them where numbers warrant.  Most of us just want to get where we're going with a minimum of fuss.

The drivers don't need to tolerate harassment, as I already pointed out in reporting an incident I witnessed.  Thankfully in Quebec, we have labour regulations against psychological harassment at work. That's real progressiveness.

As for the Gazette, it was another passenger who was ejected at the same time as Mr. Congeniality, who went on the record also.  She was outraged out the driver's aggressive over-reaction, a feeling shared by the fellow passengers.  The man in question reported that he had never had a problem in Montreal before, and understood the francophone sensitivity about preserving their local language.

 

martin dufresne

...I just sit as far back as my self-respect allows...

Could you explain that bizarre line? You seem to suggest resistance to being "forced to the back of the bus", like Blacks used to be in the racist South? Have you gone that far off the deep end?

toddsschneider

No, not as far as you would like to believe.  No one has forced me to the back of the bus (at least as a passenger), but I and other fellow-travellers do practice civil obedience.  We sit as close to the front as consideration permits, and as close to the back as tolerating the inconsiderate permits.  We also engage the drivers with mutual respect.

If that is bizarre, you ought to ride Montreal buses more often

Caissa

Interesting thread drift. 

I think the FLQ manifesto should be read since it is an important document in Quebec history.

The meta question is whether an important historical  document is ever too name your ism to not be read publicly as a representative historical document.

Mein Kampf comes to mind although I'd like to avoid Godwin's law.

 

 

martin dufresne

Ben c'est raté mon pote... (and not mon pot, toddschneider)

Todd, I ride Mtl buses now and then - I live out of town and mostly bike when in town - but I have no idea what you mean with the following cryptic sentence. Since it apprears relevant to this whole rigmarole, can you explain in less delphic lingo?

We sit as close to the front as consideration permits, and as close to the back as tolerating the inconsiderate permits.

toddsschneider

 

The bus incident had nothing to do with language?  What is obvious is there was an conflict about something.  The language gap was just a precipitating factor.

As for violence, the passenger obviously showed that he is assertive, maybe even aggressive, verbally.

The bus driver is another matter.  Did she have every right to call the police, order everyone off the bus, and call the next driver and tell them not to pick them?  I highly doubt it.  I have been in a harassment situation on a Montreal bus, mon vieux, and all the driver did was eject the offending party of obnoxious teenagers.

Are anglos persecuted? We are discriminated against, in the public service no less.  You think 20% of the bus drivers in Montreal are anglos, reflecting our numbers?

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