6) NO TO DIVISION, YES TO SOLIDARITY
Communist Party of
At the end of January, the new CAQ government caucus met in
François Legault admitted that there were discussions in his caucus about the possibility of including a grandfather clause that could allow people already employed to escape the restriction against wearing of religious symbols. But he added that he personally did not like that idea and was prepared, if necessary, to fire those who would refuse to take away their symbols. At the same time, he reiterated his intention to invoke the "notwithstanding" clause if it were found that his law was declared unconstitutional.
On January 29th, the anniversary of the
He was enthusiastically supported by the deputy mayor of
A few days later, going far beyond the question of state secularism, the newly appointed minister of the Status of Women, Isabelle Charest, shared her aversion to the Muslim veil, declaring that it is a symbol of women's oppression. She explained that wearing this garment did not correspond to "her values" and prevent women from flourishing. However, a secular state does not declare itself to be atheist or of any religious form, but only that it is neutral. Nonetheless, Legault refused to correct the words of his minister.
These unfortunate statements are regarded by the media as mistakes
by inexperienced politicians. But objectively they are already helping to
ignite more acrimonious debates and deepen the social split, to the point that
we could think that the government is deliberately applying in
Once again, we can see that social media is beginning to be
inundated with hateful words. The situation is likely to be similar to that
experienced at the time of the PQ's “charter of values” in 2013. Yet there is
no real social crisis or urgent reasons to legislate in haste. The government
acts only on the basis of the interests of the ruling class, not in the
interests of the
All this at the same time allows the CAQ to divert attention from the real issues that are of direct interest to workers. At the end of its late-January caucus, the Government indicated intentions to carry out public service budget and staffing cuts, and services across departments, in order to fund Legault’s election promises. He wants in reality to continue the fiscal austerity policies of the previous government.
Trade-unions whose members are concerned by the prohibition of the wearing of religious symbols, such as teachers, have clearly expressed their intention to stand firm against any law that violates their fundamental rights. Legault knows well that his law against the wearing of religious symbols will not pass as a letter to the post, but he hopes that the people will fall into his trap and let themselves be divided.
The Communist Party urges the working class, its organizations and
the people of
The Communist Party also reiterates its full support to declare January 29 as a cross-Canada day of action against Islamophobia.
(The above article is from the March 16-31, 2019, issue of People's Voice, Canada's leading socialist newspaper. Articles can be reprinted free if the source is credited. Subscription rates in Canada: $30/year, or $15 low income rate; for U.S. readers - $45 US per year; other overseas readers - $45 US or $50 CDN per year. Send to People's Voice, c/o PV Business Manager, 706 Clark Drive, Vancouver, BC, V5L 3J1.)