NDP MP Alexandre Boulerice Says He Does Not Like The Niqab

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Slumberjack

Mr. Magoo wrote:
So everyone just waits at the side of the road until a female officer can be pulled from some other duty? 

The duration would necessarily vary depending on the effectiveness of their policies around equitable employment and the success of their recruiting and retention efforts as I mentioned, which I would argue are related challenges in this day and age that shouldn't be weighted against accommodating the individual's rights.  It should't be one systemic issue chasing another, like a dog attempting to link up with it's tail.

Quote:
Or should a female officer just sit around headquarters playing sudoku until needed?

Secondary duties.  Off the side of one's desk, etc.  You get a call, maybe once or twice a year, you step out for half an hour or so.  It doesn't seem as if it would be all that difficult to manage.

Quote:
Again, we don't get to choose the sex, skin colour or sexual orientation of public servants.  If you collapse somewhere and someone calls 911 for you, you don't get to summon the last of your energy to say "... *gasp* tell them I don't want a GAY paramedic!  I have religious beliefs!!!"

Again you're staggering sideways toward the unreasonable, and trying to sluff it off onto what seems fully reasonable to consider within the scope of this society.

Quote:
I'm not aware that when we specify that women should strip-search women, and men strip-search men, that we're making some kind of special accomodation to some religion.

That goes to the gender allowance argument.  If you're keeping up, they're now connected in the context of this discussion around a request for an allowance based on gender, like at a traffic stop, that could be considered a reasonable accommodation of a religious practice within the scope of the society.

Quote:
And where do atheists figure into this?

They don't.

Quote:
And that said, should we get rid of that too, in the interest of fairness?  I'd rather that a fully competent, professional female be allowed to strip-search me than have to promote a society where I have the right to demand that the man who searches me be heterosexual "in keeping with my morals".  SMALL PRICE TO PAY.

Again, a mixture of the absurd and the unreasonable is what you have going on there.

Sineed

lagatta wrote:

Nothing has "failed". You're the one resorting to bombarding the thread with images to discourage dialogue.

To put it mildly, I disagree with Mr Magoo on many issues, but I think you are shutting down discussion and accusing people who might have good reasons to hold other opinions on this matter of "bigotry".

Furthermore, I am disturbed by these guys who are supporting conservative religious clothing for women on the grounds of, I guess, diversity, despite evidence that plenty of women from those same cultures are strongly opposed to such clothing. Surely checking our white privilege means hearing all opinions and not just those of one side.

Isn't it ironic when white progressives embrace religious conservatives as more fully representative of their respective cultures?

Unionist

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
They can have a picture taken by women photographers, and when asked to present a picture ID or to reveal their face for comparison purposes with an ID card, they can do so if it is a woman asking for verification of identity.

So everyone just waits at the side of the road until a female officer can be pulled from some other duty?  Or should a female officer just sit around headquarters playing sudoku until needed?

No. Someone's religious belief that only women can look them in the face is trumped by the Charters (both the Canadian and the Québec one) which guarantee equality between women and men. E.g., Section 28 of the Charter:

Quote:
28. Notwithstanding anything in this Charter, the rights and freedoms referred to in it are guaranteed equally to male and female persons.

Strong statement. I support it.

And as I mentioned before, the Québec Human Rights Commission - the same one which blasted the PQ's xenophobic "charter of values" - gave a written interpretation in 2010 saying that the Quebec Health Insurance Board didn't have to provide females on demand to satisfy someone's unwillingness to show their face to a male (when taking photos for health cards).

onlinediscountanvils

Sineed wrote:

Isn't it ironic when white progressives embrace religious conservatives as more fully representative of their respective cultures?

I don't think anyone's doing that.

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

I don't know if a person is a 'religious conservative' by the way they dress. The issue is beyond comprehension for most, and making assumptions about the religious, personal, and family situations of a person without being in their confidence is rash.

People who are in Canada have the benefit of Canadian rights and freedoms. If individuals are being treated unconstitutionally, we should push for the enforcement of the law. We cannot act on a complaint until we hear one. On the other hand, we should not use wishful thinking to put a non-existent complaint there. The debate between secularized ex-Muslims and those who wear traditional clothing is fierce. I have heard extreme and ridiculous arguments from the secularized. No one has a monopoly on logic.

Being secular myself, I am going to be biased to the secularized, no matter how ridiculous their arguments. But I don't know if the difference is as important as having common views on the things which affect us all. We are all trying to crawl out of patriarchal authoritarianism one way or another. Whereever we may be in that struggle may be way different.

onlinediscountanvils

Alexandre Boulerice wrote:

It is not a practice that we like, the niqab, nor one we agree with. We live in a society where usually we can see people’s eyes, face, expression.

Frantz Fanon wrote:

This woman who sees without being seen frustrates the colonizer. There is no reciprocity. She does not yield herself, does not give herself, does not offer herself.

quizzical

onlinediscountanvils wrote:
Sineed wrote:

Isn't it ironic when white progressives embrace religious conservatives as more fully representative of their respective cultures?

I don't think anyone's doing that.

i do...

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Sineed wrote:

Furthermore, I am disturbed by these guys who are supporting conservative religious clothing for women on the grounds of, I guess, diversity, despite evidence that plenty of women from those same cultures are strongly opposed to such clothing. Surely checking our white privilege means hearing all opinions and not just those of one side.

I do not support conservative religious clothing. I only support a womens right to chose what ever she wants to wear.  I lived in a coop for decades and I see the sari as just as much a symbol of a paternalistic culture where women are repressed. I see womens repression everyday in ads that strip them of their dignity and sell them as commodities. But I don't tell them what to do because they are women and have the right to do whatever they fucking want to. Telling people, especially a man telling women, that one doesn't like their life style or religious expression or sexual orientation is a bigoted outlook on the world because it means the person speaking doesn't tolerate or accept the choices but instead insert their intolerance directly into the women's lives by making public denunciations.

onlinediscountanvils

quizzical wrote:

onlinediscountanvils wrote:
Sineed wrote:

Isn't it ironic when white progressives embrace religious conservatives as more fully representative of their respective cultures?

I don't think anyone's doing that.

i do...

...because people have said things that would seem to support that? Or is this just a gut feeling that you have?

quizzical

oh i'll go with the former not the latter..it seems to be a habit here for some progressives to believe what may be a minority representation is a full representation of the whole, and not just in this instance.

 

onlinediscountanvils

Ok, so would there be a quote or two to support that? 'Cause I've followed this thread fairly closely, and I can't recall reading anything like that.

lagatta

The women I was talking about aren't all secular, and some wear headscarves. Moreover, I don't think even my secular friends of Muslim Maghrebi and Levantine origins would define themselves as "ex-Muslims". Probably because that term is used by neoliberal right-wingers who support imperialist wars. But I have no shame whatsoever in fighting for secularism as opposed to any attempt to impose religious values on civil society. Usually the most dangerous ones come from majority religions. We've succeeded in eliminating a lot of that oppressive crap (such as faith-based school boards) in Québec, but far too much remains, such as funding for private schools, many of which are religious and teach the inequality and subservience of women. The majority of these are Catholic or evangelical Christian, not fundamentalist Jewish or Muslim. Despite a loss of many of their power bases and a radical erosion of the base of churchgoers, they still have powerful interests such as real estate.

Some of this "colonizer" stuff veers on the nutty. The people colonized here are First Nations and Inuit people, not immigrants. Immigrants, especially of colour, are often victims of racial and other forms of discrimination, but they aren't "colonized". There is a strange, essentialist discourse on the part of many on the anglo left that runs counter to the fight against racism and discrimination. I don't know where that stuff comes from, postmodernism? I've worked for decades on issues of labour and housing discrimination, and a lot of the workers/tenants/potential tenants or homeowners don't like to be pigeonholed in such categories, like Trudeau (and now Harper!) trotting out "ethnics" in "ethnic dress" while denying people their rights to equality as humans and citizens.

I've read Fanon, of course, but a long time ago. Believe he was talking about Algeria in that passage. I also knew some of his comrades in that struggle; most of them have passed away now for "biological reasons". Several of them had links with the national liberation struggle here in Québec. Sadly, Franz Fanon died at only 36, of leukemia.

Slumberjack

lagatta wrote:
Some of this "colonizer" stuff veers on the nutty. The people colonized here are First Nations and Inuit people, not immigrants. Immigrants, especially of colour, are often victims of racial and other forms of discrimination, but they aren't "colonized".

That refers to attitudes toward immigrants one would assume.  We can jerrymander societies all over the world to suit our purposes, but when people come here it's assimilation time.  Conform or we'll write you up in the laws.

Quote:
There is a strange, essentialist discourse on the part of many on the anglo left that runs counter to the fight against racism and discrimination. I don't know where that stuff comes from, postmodernism?

Essentialist and postmodernism discourse did not originate in the anglo sphere.

lagatta

Thanks for telling me something I already knew and is not a response to what I actually wrote.

Slumberjack

I believe it's a good enough effort in response to your suggested bias where it concerns language, as if the 'nutty' and the 'strange,' which have been associated with essentialism and postmodernism, have somehow been mainly taken up by the anglo left.  Whichever way you prefer to describe it, I don't know if that is the case as you've put it.  What is it that you are trying to accomplish with these adjectives, while at the same time attributing them as a peculiarity within the anglo left, as if this is not to associate the terms 'nutty' and 'strange' with some of the participants in this conversation.  Can you not engage with the substance of the conversation without going down that road?

onlinediscountanvils

Alexandre Boulerice wrote:

It is not a practice that we like, the niqab, nor one we agree with. We live in a society where usually we can see people’s eyes, face, expression.

Frantz Fanon wrote:

This woman who sees without being seen frustrates the colonizer. There is no reciprocity. She does not yield herself, does not give herself, does not offer herself.

lagatta wrote:

The people colonized here are First Nations and Inuit people, not immigrants. Immigrants, especially of colour, are often victims of racial and other forms of discrimination, but they aren't "colonized".

No shit. I posted the quote because I think it applies to the current attacks on Muslim women. Read 'colonizer' as 'dominant white supremacist culture'. 

voice of the damned

SLUMBERJACK wrote:We can jerrymander societies all over the world to suit our purposes, but when people come here it's assimilation time.  Conform or we'll write you up in the laws.

So, then your argument would only apply to immigrants from countries which Canada played a role in colonizing? For example, since Canada had sweet-fuck-all to do with the colonization of the Phillipines, we don't need to conider Filipino immigrants as colonized, insofar as we are deciding what if any accomadations the Canadian state owes to them? 

 

lagatta

I spoke of it among the "anglo left", just because that is where it seems most apparent, at least from here. It was not a reference to specific participants in this thread.

A Québécois friend, younger than me, of Québecois and Chilean origins and currently living in Chile with his family there, was really astonished by some of the tenor of the comments here and in other left media in the ROC:

Salut (lagatta),

J'ai lu cet article ("Shit white feminists do") et tes commentaires plus que pertinents.

En vérité, j'ai fait l'effort depuis quelques mois de lire plus de textes de la gauche canadienne, pcq je me suis rendu compte que je n'en connaissais pas assez en parlant avec des amis à  l'étranger. Conclusion: je suis étourdi par l'espèce de "puritanisme" d'une grande partie des articles que j'ai lu. Pas de mouvements, pas ou peu de luttes, pas de vrais débats stratégiques, mais sans cesse ce genre de texte moraliste qui enseigne comment on devrait parler et penser, quels bons mots utiliser*. Toujours à éviter les jugements qui pourraient heurter celles qu'on suppose les plus opprimées parmi les opprimées. Je sais que l'oppression est tout une question, mais chais pas... manque quelque chose (exploitation?, classe?, révolution?).

Salut

(le camarade)

*PS. Évidemment, Ça n'empêche pas plusieurs de répéter les mots "nation"
"national" "country" sans jamais pluraliser.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

First of all I know not I single person on the West Coast who sees themselves as part of something called the "anglo left." I love your ability to not only make up categories to shove other people into but you even get to ascribe characteristics, mostly negative, to your fictional category. 

I don't understand how you can understand that Quebec is not the same as Ontario but you think you can lump all other Canadians into one of your boxes.  Your nation has chosen to fight non-Xian religions under the guise of secularism. Me I don't like religions but I don't want to live in a society were people cannot express themselves freely. If your nation wants to ban religion everywhere then get on with it. 

However unlike your view of the "anglo left" I don't think that all people who live in Quebec share the same views on issues because they share a language.  I think also that your total anti-secularism including Xian sects is a minor strain in Quebec politics. I may be wrong since I live on the other side of the continent but I can be persuaded otherwise if a majority of your province demands that the Xian symbols be removed from public buildings so its not just the Sihks who can't wear their symbols.

In the meantime it is only other faiths that are under attack by some but not all Quebec progressives. To me tolerance means accepting things one doesn't like out of respect for the fundamental equality of the other.  It is not for me to judge and berate others for their choices and that is what the Harperites and Alexandre are doing.

In BC which is not Ontario or the Martitimes nor the nation of Quebec nor Alberta or any other region of our country we had this divisive debate about Legions and the RCMP and religious symbols.  The people promoting the anti-Sihk postion were right wing Reform types from Alberta and what we call the Bible Belt in the Fraswer Valley. Xian's who hate other religions and want Canda to remain a good Christian nation.  After the horrors of the government interning our own citzens for being of a different background we chose to tolerate other peoples expressions of who they are. It does not denote in anyway approval of any of the misogynist religions and the various and too numerous to list ways that women are subjegated by some people who claim to be religious.

All women should have the right to chose and no holier than thou Xian's like the Harperites are going to change my mind. The NDP needs to understand that this issue is not black and white and it is seen very differently on the West Coast than in Calgary or the nation of Quebec.  I don't understand why so many posters from Quebec who hate Harper with a passion will in fact support this attack on individuals who chose to express themselves by their clothing. I mean can't you see it is all part of the war hype that Harper is pushing and attacking the women who wear a specific symbol will not change anything for a single oppressed woman. 

Unionist

I wouldn't know where to start with your diatribe, kropotkin. We in Québec have eliminated religious education from public schools - had to amend the constitution of Canada to do that. We beat back the racist xenophobic attack (for now) reflected in the PQ's "charter of values". Remind me when the West Coast had to wage a struggle of that nature, let alone win one. And after reflecting for a bit, you should seriously quote one single sentence from one single babbler which can be characterized as an "attack" on individuals who choose to cover their faces. Your rhetoric has gone over the top and doesn't seem to be coming back any time soon.

Oh, and by the way, if I tell you I don't like women covering their faces in public - or if I tell you I find the wearing of high heels by women degrading and dangerous - or if I tell you that anyone who says "I want women only taking my photo" for a licence should be told "sorry, no, not in 2015" - then I guess you'll just have to mark it down to that's my opinion, and yours is different. If you choose to characterize it as "bigotry", I guess I'll have to smear you as an Enemy of Gender Equality, and we can go 10 rounds. I prefer that we try to understand each other.

I know where you stand on issues in life, and I agree with almost all of it, and respect the rest. Try to do likewise. You want to call me and lagatta allies of Harper? Expect a hopefully brief and irrational curse word in return, then hopefully a return to progressive unity and discussion.

lagatta

I don't feel any animosity to comrades in BC or anywhere else, just a degree of misunderstanding, as expressed (more strongly than I would) by my friend now living in Chile.

I certainly stand in solidarity with labour and social movement comrades everywhere in the Canadian State and beyond, and am strongly against the reactionary nationalism of such figures here as Lucien Bouchard or François Legault. And am absolutely no friend of Harper. Neither is Alexandre Boulerice, who just rips into Stevie every chance he can get.

Our big anti-religious fight here was against the Catholic Church. I was too young to have taken part in the Quiet Revolution, but there was a final act in which I did play a minor part - supporting a Moroccan woman friend who was campaigning to be a school board trustee, by the way - against the fundamentalist Catholics whose reactionary party, the Regroupement scolaire confessionnel was dead set on preserving confessional education, denying sex ed to teens, and, by the way, against any accommodation for the many kids in the district where she was running - none other than Côte-des-Neiges, where there were people from the world over and people of many faiths (or none, of course). We won. They were very, very nasty opponents. And soon after, there were no more confessional school boards; they were organized along language lines.

MÉMO, while secular, was never against "reasonable accommodation" for pupils of different beliefs, including allowing them to wear long sweatpants and long-sleeved t-shirts instead of more revealing gym shorts. And a lot of kids of "old stock" backgrounds also preferred that, when bashfulness kicks in around puberty! And tackled the real problems of underfunding and overcrowding of schools in "new immigrant" neighbourhoods.

There are still a few fights against fundamentalist Catholicism going on outside the largest cities, in particular, against Jean Tremblay, the mayor of Saguenay, a hidebound Catholic fundamentalist (intégriste) with all that entails. He still insists on a prayer before town council meetings. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Tremblay See: Prayer of the City Council .

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Different nations different struggles.

I mostly reacted to Laggata's use of the ROC and anglo-left categories that I refuse to be put into.

Unionist; I'm intolerant of racist language in my presence so I do know how you feel to a certain degree. As for reminding you of struggles in BC, I actually mentioned the struggle we had over the wearing of religious symbols in the RCMP and in our public places like courtrooms. I know that it was not a Quebec struggle so it is irrelevant to you but it was actually a major fight here.  I am proud to say the bigots did not win. We respect everyone's rights here.  This thread is not about you it is about an NDP MP who chose to state he did not like some citizens choices of clothing. By definition tolerating something in ones society means that our public officials should not attack you publically for your choices. We either tolerate religious difference or we don't.  If one can't tolerate the sight of a women in a veil then they are by definition intolerant. Its just the english language. I cannot see anything that is progressive in picking on only one religious symbol while giving everyone else a pass. IMO the government should not be policing peoples religious beliefs and determing what symbols are to be banned so therefore IMO MP's should also not be advocating for the banning of their personal dislikes.

 

Unionist

kropotkin1951 wrote:

  This thread is not about you it is about an NDP MP who chose to state he did not like some citizens choices of clothing.

I'm getting tired of this - plus those babblers upthread who call Boulerice an "asshole". This is painful ignorance of the first order. It's bigotry. Boulerice is far more anti-racist and anti-imperialist than a schmock like Mulcair could ever be. He ran a petition against the incursion in Gaza before Mulcair even had enough of a sense of shame to make some milk-toast comment about it. Boulerice is a consistent anti-racist and anti-Islamophobe, where the NDP as a whole hasn't got a fucking clue yet. Boulerice does not deserve this ignorant smearing just because he states his views honestly - and just because you can't understand what he's saying.

Such as, his speaking out loudly and publicly against the fascist PEGIDA their attempt to organize here. Read this, or get someone to translate it for you, or use Google Translate:

[url=http://ici.radio-canada.ca/regions/montreal/2015/03/26/002-pegida-rassem... de Pegida samedi : des élus montent aux barricades[/url]

And this:

[url=http://www.boulerice.org/index.php/en/actualites/item/322-ensemble-contr... against Muslims must end![/url]

Of course, if you and others here choose to see allies as enemies - good luck to you and bon voyage.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

You are right Unionist in every single one of your opinons and if I at first didn't agree I now see that its just I can't understand what he's saying. I will now go back to lurking since it is impossible to discuss anything on this board given the superior understanding and progressiveness of many of the Quebec posters. I will let them go back to telling us what anglo-leftists and people in ROC (whatever the fuck that is) are thinking. After all you are so much more progressive given the nation you reside in.

Unionist

Suit yourself. But my request is for understanding and unity. Not childishness.

 

Slumberjack

voice of the damned wrote:
So, then your argument would only apply to immigrants from countries which Canada played a role in colonizing? For example, since Canada had sweet-fuck-all to do with the colonization of the Phillipines, we don't need to conider Filipino immigrants as colonized, insofar as we are deciding what if any accomadations the Canadian state owes to them? 

Don't be ridiculous VOTD.  It's disturbing to witness nationaistic sounding speech from behind the protective borders of the nation state as if it were a source of pride.

onlinediscountanvils

Unionist wrote:

I'm getting tired of this - plus those babblers upthread who call Boulerice an "asshole". This is painful ignorance of the first order. It's bigotry. Boulerice is far more anti-racist and anti-imperialist than a schmock like Mulcair could ever be. He ran a petition against the incursion in Gaza before Mulcair even had enough of a sense of shame to make some milk-toast comment about it. Boulerice is a consistent anti-racist and anti-Islamophobe, where the NDP as a whole hasn't got a fucking clue yet.

That was me. If you're tired go to bed. Nobody said they can't both be assholes. It's not like there's a limit of 3 assholes per province.

swallow

Have you viewed the interview, oda? Are you aware of Boulerice's past work? 

lagatta

He was one of the sponsors of the Boat to Gaza. And he has worked tirelessly for immigrant workers.

onlinediscountanvils

swallow wrote:

Have you viewed the interview, oda? Are you aware of Boulerice's past work? 

Yes, I'm familiar with his work on other issues. That doesn't get him a lifetime pass in my books, just as Denis Coderre's statement against PEGIDA in Unionist's link won't make me forget about how he approved the deportation of Algerians back to a civil war zone during his stint as Immigration minister. When Boulerice speaks out against war and imperialism and fights for the rights of migrants, I applaud. When he panders to Islamophobes, I will denounce him.

Are you referring to his interview with Dumont? I watched it, but will admit that despite my four years of French Immersion there was much from their exchange that escaped me. Upthread I quoted some parts of the interview that I take issue with. Were they mistranslated, or was there anything that I missed in the interview that you feel somehow mitigates his comments?

voice of the damned

Slumberjack wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:
So, then your argument would only apply to immigrants from countries which Canada played a role in colonizing? For example, since Canada had sweet-fuck-all to do with the colonization of the Phillipines, we don't need to conider Filipino immigrants as colonized, insofar as we are deciding what if any accomadations the Canadian state owes to them? 

Don't be ridiculous VOTD.  It's disturbing to witness nationaistic sounding speech from behind the protective borders of the nation state as if it were a source of pride.

Your argument was that we should not demand assimilation of immigrants whose countries we have "gerrymandered". What I'm saying is that, taken to its logical conclusion, that would mean we CAN demand assimlation of people from countries we have not interfered with. The Phillipines was just an example of a non-Canadian clusterfuck, not some nationalist crowing about how humane Canada's foreign policies have been.

voice of the damned

My own view is that, if a particular practice or custom violates standing laws, it should be prohibited(eg. you can't drink on the sidewalk in Edmonton, even if that was allowed in your country of origin). And, if the practice doesn't violate standing law, there should be no prohibition. How Canada has treated the homelands of the people who adhere to the practice is neither here nor there.

swallow

onlinediscountanvils wrote:

swallow wrote:

Have you viewed the interview, oda? Are you aware of Boulerice's past work? 

Yes, I'm familiar with his work on other issues. That doesn't get him a lifetime pass in my books, just as Denis Coderre's statement against PEGIDA in Unionist's link won't make me forget about how he approved the deportation of Algerians back to a civil war zone during his stint as Immigration minister. When Boulerice speaks out against war and imperialism and fights for the rights of migrants, I applaud. When he panders to Islamophobes, I will denounce him.

Are you referring to his interview with Dumont? I watched it, but will admit that despite my four years of French Immersion there was much from their exchange that escaped me. Upthread I quoted some parts of the interview that I take issue with. Were they mistranslated, or was there anything that I missed in the interview that you feel somehow mitigates his comments?

Well, there's a context to the whole thing, Boulerice speaks as a longtime anti-racist organizer and in line with most Quebec left opinion (including much of Quebec Muslim feminism), so he's hardly hatemongering a la Harper. So I was surprised to see you paint Boulerice with the unambiguous "asshole" brush as right-wingers who really are Islamophobes. That's why I asked. I think he mishandled the interview with those comments, and I wouldn't suggest a complete pass, but his intent it seems to me was to persuade Dumont's listeners, not to attack women who dress a certain way. 

onlinediscountanvils

swallow wrote:

onlinediscountanvils wrote:

swallow wrote:

Have you viewed the interview, oda? Are you aware of Boulerice's past work? 

Yes, I'm familiar with his work on other issues. That doesn't get him a lifetime pass in my books, just as Denis Coderre's statement against PEGIDA in Unionist's link won't make me forget about how he approved the deportation of Algerians back to a civil war zone during his stint as Immigration minister. When Boulerice speaks out against war and imperialism and fights for the rights of migrants, I applaud. When he panders to Islamophobes, I will denounce him.

Are you referring to his interview with Dumont? I watched it, but will admit that despite my four years of French Immersion there was much from their exchange that escaped me. Upthread I quoted some parts of the interview that I take issue with. Were they mistranslated, or was there anything that I missed in the interview that you feel somehow mitigates his comments?

Well, there's a context to the whole thing, Boulerice speaks as a longtime anti-racist organizer and in line with most Quebec left opinion (including much of Quebec Muslim feminism), so he's hardly hatemongering a la Harper. So I was surprised to see you paint Boulerice with the unambiguous "asshole" brush as right-wingers who really are Islamophobes. That's why I asked. I think he mishandled the interview with those comments, and I wouldn't suggest a complete pass, but his intent it seems to me was to persuade Dumont's listeners, not to attack women who dress a certain way. 

But I see an even broader context, which is the fear-mongering and scapegoating of Muslims, which this undoubtedly feeds into. I did pick up on the fact that he was trying to appeal to Dumont's (presumably) more right-leaning audience. I just think that's a dangerous game to play when women who wear the niqab are genuinely afraid for the safety of them and their families when the go out in public.

Unionist

Chronic incapacity to distinguish allies from enemies is fatal to any progressive movement.

 

onlinediscountanvils

Oh, the irony.

Brachina

 

 This is the best thing I've seen written on the Niqabs

 http://www.nationalpost.com/m/wp/blog.html?b=news.nationalpost.com/full-...

lagatta

Yes. Though in France as well, a lot of third generation Maghrebi kids don't speak Arabic or Berber. And their expressions (guess similar to Black English in the US) are extremely "cool" and have a great influence on the speech and vocabulary of other French kids. West African immigration is more recent, but young people are also losing their mother tongues.

There is a persistent problem of discrimination when groups are "racialized", though. For example, Haitian Québécois have a much higher unemployment rate despite speaking perfect French and often having high educational attainment.

onlinediscountanvils

Syed Hussan has an excellent post up on rabble.ca right now; [url=http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/hussan/2015/04/those-fight-it-are-called... that fight it are called terrorists, and those that survive it are called criminals[/url].

But it's the postscript to his piece that's especially relevent to this and other recent threads:

I've been told that this post requires greater analysis of the gendered nature of Islamophobia. I agree. Instead of editing it, I'd like to refer you to [url=http://www.newsocialist.org/webzine/analysis/578-islamophobia-in-canada-... post[/url] by Fathima Cader and Sumayya Kassamali.

Both pieces are worthwhile reads.

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