PQ's charter of values

421 posts / 0 new
Last post
Unionist

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Wearing high heels is not protected by either the Quebec or Canadian Charter.  Freedom of religion and freedom of expression are covered by both.  The reason why the Quebec Human Rights Commission is so definiitive is because under our Canadian Human Rights laws a ban like this would have to have a Bona fide occupational requirement for its implication.  Irrational fear of the other is not a BFOR nor is I want to save these people from themselves.  Its not like a Judge has to wear a hardhat.

 

Agreed.

6079_Smith_W

Yup. Agreed as well.

6079_Smith_W

But cco, it's not the same thing.  I have no desire to go around this again, and its clear we simply aren't going to agree.

But it is not the same - and not simply for the reason that a person is free to take a pin off and put it back on after work.

 

 

cco

6079_Smith_W wrote:

The question has been raised about bias and trust on the part of people wearing those clothes. I am just saying it begs the question of how  we can claim to know what goes on in someone else's head, and why we leap to those judgments more when it comes to things which are unfamiliar than things which we are used to.

We couldn't know what was in the head of a judge if she were wearing a Conservative party button, either, nor would that judge's sensibilities presumably be affected by her not being allowed to wear one. We still don't allow it, though a biased judge wearing no political flair at all would likely be no more biased if allowed to sport it.

I've stated my problems with the charter several times upthread, but the fact remains that just because we can't analyze what's in someone's head, it hasn't stopped us from promulgating codes of dress to create the appearance of state neutrality, whether or not that's actually effective. Those policies are also more aimed at the observer than the wearer.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

The thing about religious people is you never know how they vote unless they tell you. Its not like they are all the same even if they go to the same mosque or temple. 

This law strikes at the heart of the rights system in this country.  Who else should we fear and thus feel free to deprive them of the right to pursue some jobs. 

cco

6079_Smith_W wrote:

But cco, it's not the same thing.  I have no desire to go around this again, and its clear we simply aren't going to agree.

Fair enough. I'll do my best to avoid engaging you further on the subject. And while we're at it, I'd like to go out of my way to thank you for keeping our discussions on this matter civil and relatively free of rancour on an obviously emotionally charged subject.

 

For others in the thread who do wish to continue discussing it, however:

For those of us who aren't religious, the idea that government officials have a constitutional right to advertise their religion in the course of official duties while advertising one's lack of same (say, with a "There are no gods" lapel pin) is forbidden can often come off as strange. And if it's a given that many people who veil themselves do it only out of "modesty" or "body comfort" when "I'm having a bad hair day" wouldn't be an accepted reason for a non-religious person to buck the dress code, then it's a circumstance where certain recognized religions (don't expect judges with pasta strainer hats or E-meters on their desks to be deciding cases anytime soon) are given the benefit of the doubt in ways that nonbelievers or those with equally strong political convictions aren't.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Claiming this kind of religious exemption to any clothing rule with a general application first requires that you prove that it is a necesary part of your religion. If you do that then the employer needs to then claim a BFOR.  If you say bias is a concern then prove it.  The legal test for bias is not that I think someone might be biased especially if it is merely based on the fact that I know what religion they are. If it was then any aboriginal person could get any settler stock Judge recused for bias. Frankly the FN's person would have a far stronger case for the potential for bias than someone saying they don't trust a devout Moslem woman or Sikh man because they are religious.

Unionist

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Claiming this kind of religious exemption to any clothing rule with a general application first requires that you prove that it is a necesary part of your religion.

That's not entirely correct. Your belief must be sincerely held, and of a religious nature, to require reasonable accommodation. It doesn't have to be a part of any "religion" as such - in other words, it doesn't matter whether anyone else shares that particular belief or not. But if the "belief" is of a non-religious nature (like culture, or fashion, or political, etc.), then accommodation doesn't apply on grounds of freedom of conscience.

This is a fairly good summation of the law IMO: [url=http://blog.firstreference.com/2011/01/31/how-to-decide-if-a-religious-b... to decide if a religious belief should be accommodated[/url]

 

6079_Smith_W

cco wrote:

For others in the thread who do wish to continue discussing it, however:

Yes, back at you on the civility, thanks. And I'm not against discussion with you; feel free to respond to me. I just don't want to repeat things endlessly on a point where it is clear we are at an impasse.

 

cco

Understood, Smith. I'll make my best effort.

kropotkin1951 wrote:

The legal test for bias is not that I think someone might be biased especially if it is merely based on the fact that I know what religion they are.

The discussion isn't about bias per se. Unless we're talking about, say, an Elections Canada case involving a given party, knowing what party a judge belongs to wouldn't automatically prove she's biased either, especially given you could run into her at a party convention just as easily as you could run into a judge at a religious service. It's about the appearance of neutrality in public service, something that's guaranteed when it comes to political beliefs but not religious ones.

kropotkin, you're making your points based on what the law currently is, and while Unionist has you beat on the particulars, I'll concede that the thrust of your argument is essentially correct. What I'm talking about is whether the law should be this way, and thus I think we're often talking past each other, much as if a discussion about the harm of marijuana use involved repeated citation of the relevant Criminal Code sections.

Unionist's link is an excellent summary of the way things currently stand:

Quote:

...sincere and “deeply held personal convictions or beliefs connected to an individual’s spiritual faith and integrally linked to his or her self-definition and spiritual fulfilment, the practices of which allow individuals to foster a connection with the divine or with the subject or object of that spiritual faith”

...intentionally vague to provide protection and accommodation for a broad spectrum of religious observances, practices and beliefs...

...religious beliefs need not be acceptable, logical, consistent or comprehensible to others to be entitled to protection, and courts must not presume to determine the place of a particular belief in a religion or the plausibility of a religious claim. In short, the fact that no religious group espouses such beliefs, or that the religious group to which the individual professes to belong may not accept such belief, will not determine whether the belief is a religious belief...

...the religious accommodation rules do not apply to requirements based on personal preferences rooted in non-theological bases such as culture, heritage or politics.

So that's the law as it currently stands, and as a non-believer, I happen to find that positively ridiculous. Your sincerely held beliefs give you a get-out-of-rules-free card, as long as they're spiritual. It's the law, and it may even be the Canadian consensus, though I haven't seen any specific polling on it beyond the feel-good concept of "freedom of religion". But I don't agree with it.

Unionist

Neither do I, cco. It allows freedom of "religion" (largely undefined) to trump other deeply held beliefs. Somehow, the original "negative" freedom of religion (i.e. the freedom not to have some religion imposed on an individual) morphed, via various Supreme Court decisions, into a positive right to have one's religious beliefs accommodated. That's not what the federal Charter says, but that's how it has been interpreted. I don't like it much, but I also see how it can be applied in a fair and compassionate manner. Where you run into problems is where it displaces or affects other rights.

 

6079_Smith_W

And there are limits. Unionist's example (here or in that other thread) of a judge who feels s/he is entitled to deliver a prayer in open court. In a radio discussion on the situation here in Saskatoon there was someone from Vision TV who claimed that it was her duty as a Christian to pray and declare her faith

Never mind that not all Christians feel the same way, I'd say that would be ruled out, and rightly so, as an interference. 

I see this as different, though.

6079_Smith_W

@ Unionist

Cross-posted with you.  Essentially it is the same right running into itself - the right not to have others' beliefs imposed on you. It's just that it is not being equally applied - as cco points out - to many people, including some atheists. Hence we have our mayor last week not even acknowledging it as a position.

There are some points of conscience which are recognized without a formal religious foundation - like pacifism in some states.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

The interpertation of the Charter is also tied to the God factor in our Constituion. I supported my MP when he opposed the inclusion of this into the Charter.

"Whereas Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of law"

I disagree completely that religion in our constitution is only the right not to be forced to be a Catholic or member of some other religion. It is also the right to chose what religion one belongs to and to follow the dictates of one's religion without being discriminated against.  None of the decisions are black and white they are all nuanced shades of grey.

The other real question is what is "sincere."  I am not aware of any cases where the courts have held that a personal believe not shared by any other adherents counts as a sincere believe. Unionist you can correct me if I'm wrong but please cite the case so I can read the nuances in the decision.

An atheist being told they had to wear a cross when going to work because that was the employers dress code would have just as much right to refuse and would be accomodated. Of course like a Sikh with a turban an atheist like me would stand out because we would not be wearing the same garb as everyone else at the workplace.

Quote:

Fundamental freedoms

2.Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms:

(a) freedom of conscience and religion;

(b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication;

(c) freedom of peaceful assembly; and

(d) freedom of association.

...

Multicultural heritage

27.This Charter shall be interpreted in a manner consistent with the preservation and enhancement of the multicultural heritage of Canadians.

 

ygtbk

The Charter of Values gets slammed again, this time by the Quebec human rights commission:

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2013/10/17/human-rights-commission-blasts-pqs-dangerous-and-unnecessary-values-charter/

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Actually no one in the case disputed the sincerity of the Catholic beliefs of these parents.  You missed the nuanace again.  Its one thing to say I have a sincere belief it is another thing to prove the sincerity of that belief when you are the only person who holds that belief. 

You are right the narrow test is not other peoples beliefs however the reality is that if only you hold a belief then it becomes the focus of where the nexus with religion arises from.  But that only arises in cases where the sincerity of the belief becomes an issue. If a persons sincerity is accepted then the focus switches to what is the right that has been infringed.

An atheist like myself would have a hard time proving it is discriminatory to make me appear before a Sikh Judge just because he wore a turban.  It makes no difference how sincere my belief in the separation of church and date might be I would need to prove the infringement.

Quote:

[24]                          It follows that when considering an infringement of freedom of religion, the question is not whether the person sincerely believes that a religious practice or belief has been infringed, but whether a religious practice or belief exists that has been infringed.  The subjective part of the analysis is limited to establishing that there is a sincere belief that has a nexus with religion, including the belief in an obligation to conform to a religious practice.  As with any other right or freedom protected by the Canadian Charter and the Quebec Charter, proving the infringement requires an objective analysis of the rules, events or acts that interfere with the exercise of the freedom.  To decide otherwise would allow persons to conclude themselves that their rights had been infringed and thus to supplant the courts in this role.

6079_Smith_W

There is one significant case in Manitoba that is a bit of a monkey wrench, though not incongruous with your point at 364, k:

http://www.queensu.ca/humanrights/educationalressources/ebulletin/religi...

I wonder if it was pointed out that her clerk's job would include prosletyzing, or if they just chose to back her into a corner because she wasn't Mennonite.

A bit off-topic, but the same campus  (the tax-funded high school) was the site of a rally against anti bullying legislation:

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/prayer-against-bill-held-in-tax-f...

 

 

jerrym

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Even in Ontario the Church of England was always only one of the Protestant denominations and it did not control anyone esxcept some of its members. 

However, the Orange Order did control most Ontario politics and society for much of its history. 

Quote:

The Orange Lodges have existed in Canada at least since the War of 1812. It was more formally organized in 1830 when the Grand Orange Lodge of British North America was established by Ogle Robert Gowan in the Upper Canada town of Elizabethtown, which became Brockville in 1832 (according to the plaque outside the original lodge in Brockville, Ontario). ... Most early members were from Ireland, but later many EnglishScots, and other Protestant Europeans joined the Order.

Fraternal Organization[edit]

The Order was the chief social institution in Upper Canada, organizing many community and benevolent activities, and helping Protestant immigrants to settle. It remained a predominant political force in southern Ontario well into the twentieth century. A notable exception to Orange predominance occurred in London, Ontario, where Catholic and Protestant Irish formed a non-sectarian Irish society in 1877.

Protestant ascendency & Politics in Toronto[edit]

Historian Hereward Senior has noted that the Orange Order’s political ideal was expressed in the word “ascendancy.” "This meant, in effect, control of the volunteer militia, of much of the machinery of local government, and substantial influence with the Dublin administration. Above all, it meant the ability to exert pressure on magistrates and juries which gave Orangemen a degree of immunity from the law. Their means of securing ascendancy had been the Orange lodges which provided links between Irish Protestants of all classes. This ascendancy often meant political power for Protestant gentlemen and a special status for Protestant peasants."[1] In the context of Toronto, such ascendancy was sought through the Corporation (as the administration of the city of Toronto was known). By 1844, six of Toronto’s ten aldermen were Orangemen, and over the rest of the nineteenth century twenty of twenty-three mayors would be as well.[2]

Electoral riots[edit]

“Ascendancy,” or control of this legal and political machinery, gave the Orange Order a monopoly on the use of “legitimate” violence. Between 1839 and 1866, the Orange Order was involved in 29 riots in Toronto, of which 16 had direct political inspiration.

Control of 'the Corporation'[edit]

The Orange Order became a central facet of life in many parts of Canada, especially in the business centre of Toronto where many deals and relationships were forged at the lodge. Toronto politics, especially on the municipal level, were almost wholly dominated by the Orange Order. The highly influential weekly newspaper,The Sentinel, promoted Protestant social and political views and was widely circulated throughout North America.[4] At its height in 1942 16 of the 23 members of city council were members of the Orange Order.[5] Every mayor of Toronto in the first half of the twentieth century was an Orangeman. This continued until the1954 election when the Jewish Nathan Phillips defeated radical Orange leader Leslie Howard Saunders.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orange_Order_in_Canada

Quote:
 

The first Conservative Party in Upper Canada was made up of United Empire Loyalists and supporters of the wealthy Family Compact that ruled the colony. ...

The modern Conservative Party originated in the Liberal-Conservative coalition founded by Sir John A. Macdonald and George-Étienne Cartier in 1854. It is a variant of this coalition that formed the first government in Ontario with John Sandfield Macdonald as Premier. ... After losing power in 1871, this Conservative coalition began to dissolve. What was originally a party that included Catholics and Protestants became an almost exclusively English and Protestant party, more and more dependent on the Protestant Orange Order for support, and even for its leadership. The party became opposed to funding for separate (Catholic) schools, opposed to language rights for French-Canadians, and distrustful of immigrants. ...

Pre-war dynasty[edit]

After 33 years in Opposition, the Tories returned to power under James P. Whitney. .... It also enacted reactionary legislation (such as Regulation 17) against the French-Canadian population in Ontario. The Tories were in power for all but five years from 1905 to 1934. 

Late in the 1930s and early in the 1940s, the Conservatives re-organized and developed new policies. ... The party would dominate Ontario politics for the next four decades.

The anti-Catholic, anti-French, anti-immigrant strain of the Tories was evident under Drew and his successor, Leslie Frost, who embodied all those elements.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progressive_Conservative_Party_of_Ontario

Quote:
 John Sandfield Macdonald, QC (December 12, 1812 – June 1, 1872) was the first Premier of the province of Ontario, ... Sandfield Macdonald would be the last Roman Catholic Premier of Ontario for 132 years; not until Dalton McGuinty became premier in 2003 would another Roman Catholic assume the office. After Macdonald's tenure, sectarian tensions in the province rose, and the Conservative Party increasingly became identified with the Orange Order and sectarian Protestantism.
 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Sandfield_Macdonald

How extensive was Orange Order control? In Smith Falls, the town I was born in, my grandmother told me that there were no Catholic doctors, lawyers, or municipal workers allowed when she first arrived in 1912. Eventually, they allowed one of each, but that was it for a considerable time. My father told me that, when the first French Catholic moved to the town, the Ku Klux Klan (which essentially was the town's Orange Order as my father personally recognized most of them when he snuck up on one of their meetings in a field) burnt a cross on the French Canadian family's lawn (see White Hoods: Canada's Ku Klux Klan by Julian Sher to see more about the connections with the Orange Order). 

In 1961, I moved at 13 to Brockville (birthplace of Ontario's Orange Order). Within months, our next door neighbour, a French Catholic, came over with a big smile on his face. Knowing we were Catholic (I am an atheist now), he told us he could not believe his luck. He had got a job with the municipal government - the first French Canadian and Catholic to ever do so. His prestigious job? Sewage plant worker. When the first African Canadian teacher was hired (there were three African Canadian families in a population of 20,000) there were major protests against it. 

In Smith Falls and later in Brockville, which were at least 80% Protestant, the words "There's a Catholic" were enough to sometimes start a beating. Not conincidentally, one of the biggest events in both towns was the annual Orange parade to celebrate the defeat of the Catholics at the battle of the Boyne in 1690 in Ireland. 

In the late 1960s, this region was given money because it was economically depressed to create brochures to attract business. In the brochure, the local leadership gave as a reason for business to locate there: the region is made of 87% hardworking Anglo Saxon Protestant stock. 

The sectarian mentality of Ontario typified by the Orange Order only began to change in the 1960s and there still strong undercurrents of it running through the province today. While this is different form of sectarianism than that found in Quebec, it is not correct to say that there was no extensive sectarian control in Ontario's history as the exception to the rule of Orange Order dominance in London, Ontario mentioned above tells one how dominant it truly was. 

 

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Yes Eastern Ontario has a long bigoted history when it comes to French Catholics but even that area was not controlled by the clergy, although a nasty Protestant organization is close.

I went to a Catholic boarding school in Brockville in the '60's and I still love the historic bulidings. Before that I lived in Sudbury and like most Ontario mining towns there was a French area and an English area.  Almost all the Francophones were Catholic but there were also a lot of English and Italian speaking Catholics as well.  The city was about 45% francophone and there is no doubt that there was discrimination and bigotry.  I spent the summers in NB with my Acadian relatives so I straddled both solitudes to a certain extent. My Acadian cousins all spoke both French and English but I could never learn French. My Montreal cousins told me stories about growing up in the '50's and '60'S and of being put down by Quebec kids for being Acadian.

Culture is a very multi-hued thing and trying to reduce it to simple terms is not usually helpful.

Unionist

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I disagree completely that religion in our constitution is only the right not to be forced to be a Catholic or member of some other religion. It is also the right to chose what religion one belongs to and to follow the dictates of one's religion without being discriminated against. 

I completely agree. By "negative" right, I meant precisely the right not to be discriminated against. What I meant by a "positive" right (poor term) was, for example, that if your religious belief requires that you can't have any contact whatsoever with a member of the opposite sex ever, that an employer or public school must comply, unless they can prove undue hardship. That positive duty was read into the anti-discrimination laws initially by the courts. I'm not all that convinced it's necessary to guarantee freedom from discrimination.

Quote:
The other real question is what is "sincere."  I am not aware of any cases where the courts have held that a personal believe not shared by any other adherents counts as a sincere believe. Unionist you can correct me if I'm wrong but please cite the case so I can read the nuances in the decision.

You are, indeed, wrong - it has been clearly ruled, and upheld, that you can be all alone in your religious delusion belief:

J. Deschamps, writing for a unanimous panel wrote:
[22] [I]t was in Syndicat Northcrest v. Amselem, 2004 SCC 47, [2004] 2 S.C.R. 551, that the elements of a definition of freedom of religion were outlined.  In that case, Iacobucci J. explained that a person does not have to show that the practice the person sincerely believes he or she must observe or the belief the person endorses corresponds to a religious precept recognized by other followers.  If the person believes that he or she has an obligation to act in accordance with a practice or endorses a belief “having a nexus with religion”, the court is limited to assessing the sincerity of the person’s belief (paras. 39, 43, 46 and 54).

[url=http://csc.lexum.org/en/2012/2012scc7/2012scc7.html]Source.[/url]

 

6079_Smith_W

Not just Ontario, jerrym

It was the Orange Order that was behind the burning of the parliament buildings in Montreal in 1849, over the issue of rebellion losses in Lower Canada - the same compensation they had no problem with people in Upper Canada receiving.

I think a few of them made their way out west here too.

 

lagatta

A video of Françoise David presenting Québec solidaire's proposed Charter of Secularism (not of "Québec values"). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tacLuCvDiE&feature=youtu.be

terrytowel

Celine Dion has just voiced her support for the Charter of values

It’s a very delicate question to answer because I’ll hurt some people and please others but you have to have an opinion. For me, it’s not about the veil—it’s beyond that. I’m not against what people wear but if you go to the hospital, and you are in Quebec and we have embraced you and opened our country for you to live in a better world, you have to adapt to our rules. If the doctor is a boy or a girl, you’re gonna see the doctor that [is] sent to [treat] you. You can’t just say, “My religion doesn’t permit me to see a woman or a male doctor.” That’s the problem for me. If I’m going to see a doctor and he is gay, I’m not going to have a problem with that. It should not be an issue.

It’s just that these women who practise the things they believe in have to adapt to our country. They have to not change our laws. Because you have a lot of Anglican or veiled women in a school—you can’t just take off the [Catholic] cross from the walls, or take down Christmas trees. If I go live in their country and have to be veiled, I will.

http://www2.macleans.ca/2013/10/26/on-the-highest-note-she-ever-hit-her-...

Unionist

Opportunism and desperation. These characters don't deserve to be anywhere near government.

[url=http://www.ledevoir.com/politique/quebec/391913/une-charte-des-valeurs-s... Charter of Values without compromise[/url]

The text will be tabled tomorrow.

 

lagatta

I doubt it can pass. Wonder how Québec solidaire will vote - abstain?

In practical terms, removing the nice, highly-overqualified ladies in hijab working at our CPE (early childhood centres) would be an utter disaster for our childcare and early childhood education.

Unionist

lagatta wrote:

I doubt it can pass. Wonder how Québec solidaire will vote - abstain?

That would be quite the cop-out, IMO. If a dish contains good stuff and shit, you get rid of it. You don't say, "chacun à son goût".

Quote:
In practical terms, removing the nice, highly-overqualified ladies in hijab working at our CPE (early childhood centres) would be an utter disaster for our childcare and early childhood education.

No kidding. If they pull this crap, it'll be the first time in decades that I'll have to re-think what I'm doing here.

 

Unionist

Here is the English text of this piece of crap - it's in a PDF link on [url=www.assnat.qc.ca/en/travaux-parlementaires/projets-loi/projet-loi-60-40-... page[/url]. It's made to be defeated, IMO, and then the PQ can try an ADQ 2007-style surge by appealing to fear, suspicion, and stupidity.

What's good for headache, indigestion, and moral revulsion?

 

Unionist

Françoise David is on CBC Radio Noon right now talking about this bill.

She says it's more radical than what Drainville originally described.

She says it's designed to fail in the Assembly (my thought exactly in previous post!).

She says Art. 10 is particularly bizarre (gotta go check that after I finish my live-babbling here...).

Oh yeah - this is where any public body enters into a service contract - govt. can require that the dress code be extended to other bodies!

Françoise says the govt's obsession is really to do with the Muslim veil - and that's specifically targetting women who want to be doctors, teachers, etc., but who also want to maintain their identity. We don't need to ban these religious signs for state employees.

QS wants to have a real consultation. We have to take our time to allow organizations to prepare briefs, be respectful, listen to everyone. After that, we'll take the bill article by article, and we'll surely have amendments. QS cannot accept this bill as it is.

ETA: Ok that's it, brief chat with Françoise is over.

 

lagatta

I've been listening to the Radio-Canada noontime show - Françoise David just spoke on that too, and said basically the same thing.

Yep, and a lot of hijabis who ARE doctors, teachers or other professionals are working at lower-paid jobs in CPEs (early-childhood-education - daycare centres). Discrimination on the basis of dress is not the only obstacle medical professionals face - I knew an Algerian dentist (not a veil-wearer) who was working at a Van Houtte café. (Lots of educated Maghrebis and some Middle-Easterners seem to work at that chain - another (male) Algerian friend was horrified by their "wrap" sandwiches, with a filling half chicken, salmon etc ... and half mayonnaise...). Many medical professionals in particular are blocked by local professional orders, despite staff shortages in their professions.

A lot of parents will be up in arms, because they have these well-spoken ladies with master's and doctoral degrees in charge of their wee ones...

Obviously, this bill won't become law, buti it is very nasty, cynical politics.

A Radio-Canada listener said that Malala, who wears the hijab and was almost killed by fundamentalists for defending girls' right to education, is proof that the veil is not necessarily a sign of fundamentalism.

 

jerrym

I don't think the PQ wants the bill to pass. They want it defeated after keeping in front of the public for several months and then once it is defeated plan to make it the centre of their spring election campaign, proclaiming they need a majority in order to get it passed. If they win, they will then proclaim themselves the servants of the people by then passing the bill. 

lagatta

It can't possibly pass. Their new and stricter version means there is no way QS on the left or CAQ on the right can support the damned thing.

Unionist

I stand by my view (Sept. 11 above) that the PQ's game plan is to corner and destroy the CAQ. CAQ has already said they would be willing to ban religious garb for teachers, so they're severely compromised on the whole issue, besides of course what Bouchard-Taylor said. If they go one or two steps further, and the PQ dilutes its wine a bit (which they can easily justify by "better a first big step than nothing at all in a minority government situation"), then CAQ is irrelevant and then finished.

If CAQ and the PQ refuse to budge, then back to the "we need a majority, can't get anywhere like this", and then they eat CAQ's lunch in a few key ridings.

I'm not saying that's what will happen. I'm saying that's what the PQ is hoping for (one or the other). It's desperate and opportunistic, but nothing else makes sense to me. They need to destroy the CAQ in order to get back (in their mind) to the PQ-Liberal binary which gave them power ever since the Union Nationale bit the dust.

That they are willing to stir up xenophobia, ADQ-style, shows just what enemies of social progress they have become.

 

lagatta

Yes, because if not, there was no social crisis that led to this.

Sure, a lot of people were horrified by the Shafia murders, but in general, they weren't even veiled. There are no shortage of such controlling, murderous pricks among the majority population groups. There was no particular call for anything in the wake of that massacre; mostly being shamefaced about youth protection services failing to adequately react - or be listened to.

lagatta

Here is the reaction of la Fédération des femmes du Québec: http://www.ffq.qc.ca/2013/11/un-vivre-ensemble-qui-cree-de-lexclusion/ Basically, "officializing exclusion" and not listening to many critiques from civil society. More at: http://laicitefeministe.com/

cco

Wonder if death by poisonous reptile would qualify as "undue hardship" in Canada:

Quote:

"The only thing I ask people is to say 'Yes, he has a right to religious freedom."

"It doesn't bother me that they took the snakes because I can always get more snakes. There can always be more snakes that can be found. And that don't deter me," said Hamblin. "What bothers me is that this is not a place of business. This is not a home. Had this been a home or a business, yes, raid it. But this is a church. This is a place of worship."

"The point of it being a venomous snake is to show a nonbeliever, not of snakes being right, but of God's true power," said Hamblin.

He said while he obeys other laws, this law violates the law of God. Hamblin claimed despite the citation and upcoming court date, church services would still continue with serpent handling in the future.

"If I don't get the snakes that they came and took from me, one way or another there will be serpents here for the services, if we have to fly them in by an airplane, one way or another, we'll see serpents here at the service," said Hamblin.

Good to hear he obeys all laws that don't "violate the law of God". Since we've all received the Word, I can't imagine how this would cause any conflicts.

lagatta

Here is a left perspective on the Charter debate from student leaders Jérémie Bédard-Wien and Alain Savard: http://www.europe-solidaire.org/spip.php?article30295

Much ink has been spilled about the Charter of Québécois Values since it was announced last month by the Parti Quebecois (PQ) minority government. Seldom has a social issue garnered so many reactions, from English Canada’s moral high ground to the contemptuous “Jeannette Manifesto” signed by twenty prominent Québécois women in support of the charter. Opinion polls signal deep polarization: on one side, conservative religious believers and pro-charter seculars; on the other, anti-charter believers, open-minded seculars — and anglophones.

By the way, it is misleading to draw an equivalence between the Crucifix in the National Assembly - get that damned thing out of there! and the Cross on Mont-Royal. The latter was erected by money raised by the Société Saint-Jean-Baptiste and the contributions of many thousands of humble Montrealers; it is certainly testimony to the deep Catholicism of 1924 Montréal, but not a religious symbol in a legislative or deliberative chamber. I don't know any Brazilian atheists or members of the large Jewish and Muslim communities there who want the Jeebus (Cristo Redentor) removed from the mountain in Rio de Janeiro, or Turkish secularists who wanted to pull down Hagia Sofia or the Blue Mosque.

I was in a surrealist group that wanted the cross removed and replaced by a monument to desire - we can only hope.

cco

Assembly's only female Muslim MNA breaks with Liberals over Charter

Quote:

Fatima Houda-Pepin wrote in a letter to The Canadian Press that she is "flabbergasted," "hurt" and "shocked" by one of her colleagues' comments on the chador, wondering if her party's views on equality between men and women was modeled on those of countries such as Saudi Arabia and Iran.

"I refuse any drift toward cultural relativism under the guise of religion, to legitimize a symbol like the chador, which is the ultimate expression of oppression of women, in addition to being the symbol of radical fundamentalism," she wrote.

lagatta

On CBC Mtl today, they were calling Ms Houda-Pepin the "only Muslim in the National Assembly". Obviously, that depends on one's definition of Muslim. Cultural background, or personal faith?

This thing really is turning into a crock of shit, on all sides.

cco

Are you saying she doesn't count as a Muslim? Is that because of her record of mosque attendance, or the fact she considers the chador oppressive? How liberal do liberal Muslims (and Christians, and Jews) have to be before they no longer count as such?

Unionist

Oh come on, cco, lagatta obviously meant there are other "Muslims" in the NA as well, if you count the cultural meaning. How can we misunderstand each other so thoroughly here?

Um, unnecessary example: I'm a Jew. But Judaism? Don't get me started. Yet I'm sure the MSM would call me a Jew. When they say "the only Muslim", you really have to wonder what kind of DNA and EEG testing they've done...

cco

Oh. Yes, I completely, utterly failed to grasp that. Whoops. My sincere apologies.

lagatta

I was obviously referring to Amir Khadir, who is a Muslim in the same sense that Unionist is a Jew and I am a Catholic. I don't count people on the basis of their families' religion, unless they do so, or if they are forced to do so, usually under situations of discrimination and repression.

cco, I'm surprised you could have thought I'd question anyone's right to be affiliated to a human group...

apologies accepted! This is getting so bloody screwy.

Amir's response to rightwing (Éric Duhaime) accusations that he had a "hidden Islamic Agenda": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ap6gifIMvI

The Khadir-Machouf clan are highly cultivated, lefty opponents of both the Shah and the Mullahs in Iran.

 

cco

Oh, I'm familiar with Amir, though the last time we spoke was over a year ago. I thought I heard the news describe Mme Houda-Pepin as "the only female Muslim in the National Assembly", so I wasn't thinking of Amir when I posted.

Unionist

This incident reveals the multitude of contradictory feelings and divisions and confusions surrounding this issue - the conviction of almost everyone that the state must be free of any religious influence; the xenophobia that lies beneath the surface, ready to be stoked by demagogues; the distaste for the obvious subjugation of women by various cultures and religions (including "our own" culture btw); the distaste for "fundamentalism"; and Allah/God/Yahweh knows what else:

[url=http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/montreal/Liberal+leader+Philippe+Cou... leader Couillard extends olive branch to outspoken MNA[/url]

Quote:

Liberal leader Philippe Couillard says he expects Fatima Houda-Pepin to change her behaviour or risk excluding herself from the caucus.

“When we are a member of a team we can’t be bigger than it,” Couillard said Friday morning in reaction to Houda-Pepin’s stinging criticism of the Liberal’s approach to the Charter of Values.

But Couillard said that despite Houda-Pepin’s statement, she remains a Liberal and a federalist — and she will come back and work with her colleagues.

“I am convinced she will return,” Couillard said.

But he adjusted the party’s position on the charter, announcing he would not sign the nomination papers of a candidate wearing a chador, the full body and head covering.

The blame for this ugly "debate" lies at the foot of the PQ, and before it the ADQ, and any other opportunists who will stop at nothing to achieve some perceived electoral advantage.

 

WyldRage

The incident is due to the Liberal party's untenable position, because it does not base itself in principles, but whatever they feel is ok or not: the Chador is ok, then it's not for elected members, but ok for public workers, why? They can't say, they do it on a case by case basis, based on purely electoral considerations and whatever their leader chooses.

The PQ, the CAQ, the QS positions are all based on principles, that you may or may not agree with: laicity calls for the neutrality of all public workers, those in positions of authority, or those in positions of coercitive authority. Mine is closer to the CAQ (though I will never vote for that party), but all of them can be argued for and against. 

That's the same excuse that is continually used against sovereignty, that was used against Bill 101, and by anyone desiring the satus quo: debate causes divisions, debates are "ugly". I completely disagree. Unlike you, I consider a debate healthy for society because it allows it to decide what they want for the future. You can lament the fact that some extremists use debates to gain publicity, but it's not an argument against the reason for the debate itself. In fact, if you have ever asked yourself if there are limits to Freedom of Religion, you are part of the debate.

In any case, it's the Bouchard-Taylor commission that started this debate by inscribing a ban of religious symbols for people in positions of coercitive authority. The Liberals did not want to make a choice, so they just ignored all the recommendations of the comission they started and let the situation fester. 

cco
Unionist

Debate on the Charter starting right now at Concordia - without the main culprit.

[url=http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/LIVE+Debate+over+proposed+Quebec+Cha...   LIVE: Debate over proposed Quebec Charter of Values: PQ Minister Bernard Drainville backs out of debate over "security concerns"[/url]

What an insult to the Graduate Students Association who invited him. The protest he was "afraid" of, announced by Jaggi Singh the other day, apparently featured 10 people. But his real fear was the students. They just can't be manipulated, as the hapless PQ has discovered.

 

Unionist

Meanwhile, I am proud to announce that after a lively debate this morning, the congress of the FTQ has defeated a motion to support the PQ's charter.

Students - no. Workers - no. The PQ's influence is slipping. Looks good on them.

 

lagatta

That is quite something, as the FTQ has always been a staunch PQ supporter.

I heard just 8 protestors.

Bärlüer

lagatta wrote:

That is quite something, as the FTQ has always been a staunch PQ supporter.

I heard just 8 protestors.

8 protestors against what?

Pages