Friday, 6 February 2015

Blog post #3 -- JUST A FEW RADICALS

Blog post #3 -- JUST A FEW RADICALS

The headline reads...

St-Denis restaurant owner harassed for "Quebec bashing."

The owner of Donair Cite on St-Denis says he's been harassed and threatened because of his politically active past.

See the original story at: THIS LINK

In the story written by James Foster of CJAD news in Montreal and posted on the CJAD website Feb 6, 2015, the owner of a Donair shop called Donar Cite says he is being harassed and threatened because of his politically active past.

The story goes on to tell of how the owner, Mr. Langseth's Facebook page has been getting fake one star ratings which say he does not respect Bill 101 and should be shut down.

There is even an ominous post on his Facebook page with a screen shot of an image showing Langseth with the words "we are watching you." Sounds pretty threatening to me. 

This brings me to the gist of this blog post which highlights how bullying and threats of violence are so often used as effective tools. 

Effective tools in the sense that they are intended to cause those with opposing views to cease being vocal about those opposing views out of fear.

Though the preceding story revolves around the Parti-Quebecois, the  underling element, (BILL 101) has more to do with -- language -- and more specifically, the use of the English language, and for that matter, even the defence of the use of the English language.

This idea of using fear and intimidation to stifle the English language, the English speaking people AND  -- any form of defence of either --  within the province of Quebec has some of its roots in the days of the FLQ when the country saw those types of threats and intimidation techniques pushed to the level of bombings and ultimately to the murder of cabinet minister Pierre Laport.

There are many other examples of these threats.  Some {as seen in this newspaper article to the left} even invoke a modern day FLQ to add an extra layer of fear in order to dissuade any use of the English language in that province.


Here, in this video you see an example

of a man being bullied and physically abused

for requesting service in English

 in the province of Quebec.

Sure, it can be argued (and often is) that this is "an isolated incident." However, it is clear that there is a sociological element to these kinds of incidents which, in a place like the province of Quebec where laws like BILL 101 exist, means that incidents like this send a clear message to those watching that it's perfectly fine to treat the English speaking people this way.

That kind of "we are French, we stick together" camaraderie element also shines through within the question the police ask the man when they arrived,

"why didn't you just talk to the girl in French as this would have stopped all this nonsense."

As for the those from the "silent majority" who got involved at the time, there is often a sense of camaraderie among them as well.

On the other hand, the so called "silent majority" who witness these kinds of things yet do not get involved are either 

A) afraid that they will be the outcast against the many and become a victim as well.
Or perhaps, and more poignantly
B)  are part of the silent majority who feel a sort of kinship for "the common goal" and their common language.


Here is an example of the bullying which involves peer pressure in a middle school (of all places).

Full marks to Keila for her tremendous bravery under such a huge amount of pressure and also kudos's to Mr. Eugene Melnyk for the classy way that he and his team handled this situation.

Her school held a "wear your hockey jersey to school" day, somehow expecting that ALL students would be wearing Montreal Canadians jersey's.  But Keila showed up with her Senators jersey and was told to either take it off or leave school and go home.  
Yikes !! The so called "adults" (the people that are supposed to be providing her with an "education" acted in this childish way?

Then, in this example we see "one of their own" becoming the "target" of threats and intimidation as his property is vandalized because he actually stood up to the FPTB.


And this example...
Where a gas station chain decided to change its name to reflect a marketing strategy only to have to change it back after employee's were threatened and other groups threatened to organize boycotts.


Sure, these threats and intimidation tactics are indeed generally carried out by “just a few radicals” but the outcome is often favorable (though double edged) when it comes to the image left with the silent French majority within the province of Quebec.  

As previously stated, these threats and so on tend to scare those in opposition into inactivity / slash / submission while at the same time sending “a clear message” to the "silent majority" (moderates among their own clan) that any opposition to their radical views could land them in the cross-hairs themselves.

A trend we are seeing in other cultures right now also.

One cannot discount the added so called "benefits" which the silent French majority in the province of Quebec reap from their silence in the sense that it keeps the French language strong, dominant and powerful.  Thus, one can almost understand why they stay silent to some degree.

After all, what could be so bad when the end result is the French language gaining more power and prestige on the world stage?

The problem however, is that the silent majority are left with a stigma attached to them as a result of their silence which says ...

What of this -- means to the end -- strategy?
Who cares if a few radicals do a few nasty things while we, the silent majority stay silent and feel safe within the notion that we have an arms length innocence as a result of not personally being the ones to “pull the trigger” or “throw the firebombs” so to speak?

    "The peaceful majority are irrelevant."
        -- as the "few radicals" continue driving the main agenda and running the show -- 

The sentiment invoked by Brigitte Gabrell in this video speaks to the sentiment that Canadians are left with when they are all too often confronted with the -- oh so familiar response from the silent French majority when they say, 

"relax, Not all French people are like that" 

"it's just a few radicals."

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