Saturday, November 8, 2008

Quebec versus the Headcovering

Do you remember the recent world making news that France rejected a woman from becoming a French citizen because she held on to her extreme form of modest Muslim dress including a face covering? (She had learned French very well, and had "integrated" in other ways.) So that this won't happen to them, perhaps, and for other reasons, the French Canadian province du Quebec has outlined a more clearly written list of requirements, so that you may know in advance what will be and will not be accepted from its citizens, should you consider moving there.

"We have consensus- Charest"
The Gazette, Montreal, November 8, 2008

The crisis over reasonable accommodation of newcomers to Quebec, seen by some in the province as a threat to their identity, has been settled, Premier Jean Charest said yesterday

"Today, we have a consensus on the measures that we have adopted," the premier said on a campaign stop in the Mauricie region, where the identity debate was set off two years ago when the village of Hérouxville adopted its code for living, which banned the burning of women, genital excision and attributes of non-Christian religions, such as head coverings and kirpans [Sikh ceremonial daggers].

"Not everyone will agree and we don't expect we will get unanimity on these measures," he added.

Starting in January, immigrants to Quebec must sign a declaration saying they will respect Quebec's common values and promise to learn French, acknowledge they understand that men and woman have equal rights and that political and religious powers are separate.The immigration application of anyone who refuses to sign the declaration will be rejected.


I hope that I don't sound ignorant for asking how the village of Herouxville adopted a code which banned "attributes of non-Christian religions, such as head coverings", when head coverings are an attribute of many varieties of those in the "Christian religions", including Roman Catholic.

The 2001 census showed the population to be 83.4% Catholic Christian (including 83.2% Roman Catholic); 4.7% Protestant Christian (including 1.2% Anglican, 0.7% United Church; and 0.5% Baptist); 1.4% Orthodox Christian (including 0.7% Greek Orthodox); and 0.8% Other Christian; as well as 1.5% Muslim; 1.3% Jewish; 0.6% Buddhist; 0.3% Hindu; and 0.1% Sikh. An additional 5.8% of the population said they had no religious affiliation (including 5.6% who stated that they had no religion at all). - wikipedia/Quebec

So which heritage and identity are we going for there, Quebec?
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