In an open letter in La Tribune on Canada Day (“Canada Day: with pride and enthusiasm”, La Tribune , June 30), Liberal MP for Sherbrooke, Luc Fortin, Pride and enthusiasm for being Canadian.
He said, “For 150 years, Canada has been a reference throughout the world in terms of principles that are the envy of all peoples: openness, inclusion and tolerance”. Considering that the last 150 years have been marked by the hanging of Louis Riel, the prohibition of teaching French in Ontario for decades, the arbitrary imprisonment of Japanese during the Second World War and independence activists during the crisis of independence, October, from residential schools to assimilative purposes, to name but a few examples, we must admit that this statement is false.
As for Alexander Galt’s contribution to Confederation, if it can be welcomed, it should not be forgotten that the presence of Anglo-Quebecers among the Fathers of Confederation was not counterbalanced by that of Franco-Canadians from other provinces, so that today Franco-Ontarians are deprived of constitutional rights enjoyed by Anglo-Quebecers before the courts and the Legislative Assembly.
It is not a question of blackening the history of Canada, but of reminding us that it is not the role of a member of the Quebec legislature to speak only of its parts of light. If Canada is perfect, then why does the government want to change its constitution? To be credible in this regard, every Quebec member should accurately criticize Canada, its history and current wrongs, think of its environmentally harmful tar sands development and, by contributing to the strength of the Canadian dollar, To the economy of Quebec and its exporting regions, including the Eastern Townships. In short, the member for Sherbrooke should defend Quebec and Estrie rather than sing the praises of Canada.