Sunday, May 25, 2008

When Secularism Is Not Secularism


"En un mot, je veux, je le répète, ce que voulaient nos pères, l'Église chez elle et l'État chez lui."
-Victor Hugo (1802-1885)

Gérard Bouchard and Charles Taylor have foolishly proposed an "open secularism" for Quebec in their report. However, it doesn't take Aristide Briand's brain to understand that if we keep mixing religions with public, legal and political affairs, we'll never be secular.

In their report, they wrote that Quebec (if not Canada) will still be secular if religions and the state are mixed together in order to accommodate religious minorities. First of all, Bouchard and Taylor wrote that the crucifix at our National Assembly should be taken out "in the name of the separation between the state and the church" and that recital of Christian prayers in municipal councils should be forbidden. On the other hand, while justices, policemen and gaolers are not allowed to wear religious symbols, teachers and public servants will have the right to do it. Secondly, add to this the absurd idea that religious minorities should get days off (along with their salary) for their religious celebration.

The problem here is that Bouchard and Taylor are using their report to practise ideological imperialism. If you're against religious accommodations, you probably don't understand something to "cultural dialogue", according to them.

Moreover, with their pathetic use of the term "open secularism", it appears that my secularism is racist, close minded and extremist. As for them, they believe that theirs is so open-minded! In a nutshell, while Bouchard and Taylor stipulated that no Christian prayers must be recited in Quebec's municipal councils, it's funny to see that they propose all kinds of things that link the state to religions.

For instance, why should a female teacher from a public school be allowed to wear a hidjab? Why should Orthodox Jews from Outremont be allowed to have their heruv still hanging over the streets? Why should a Sikh be allowed to wear his turban? Why should the crucifix be taken out while religious minorities are allowed to practise religious exhibitionism? Why should a public servant get the right to wear a Christian necklace? Why the hell should taxpayers' money be used to build a committee that studies all possible ways to accommodate people with special religious views?

I said it many times on this blog (as well as in public) and I'm going to repeat it: the public space must be secular. This means that religions, through rituals and symbols, have no place in public places, that is places used by all citizens regardless of the colour of their skin, their religion or their ethnicity. Moreover, as far as we're concerned, public places are not mainly designated for religious purposes.

Moreover, if you look at Canada's case, the display of religious symbols has sparked enough problem of racism in our society. This shows us that religious accommodations are nothing more than a complete failure.

I'm saying it, because unlike Bouchard and Taylor, I don't believe that religious freedom must be absolute. Of course, if people want to believe between their two ears that a certain religion will guide them correctly, then I've got no problem with that. However, anybody must understand that the only place where you can practise a religion are: 1) at home; 2) in a place of worship (church, synagogue, mosque, temple); 3) in a private religious school; or 4) in a cemetery.

With this said, even if your right to practise religion is restricted to some places, you don't lose your freedom of conscience. Moreover, the RCMP is not going to knock at your door just because you practise your religion in your apartment! I don't want to see any cunts comparing France, the cradle of real secularism, to China, Vietnam or the Spain from the Reconquista. No, Mr. Bouchard and Taylor, I'm not being a racist by favouring French-style secularism. When school is over (or your day at your workplace), you may want to go to your place of worship (or your house) to practise your religion with the accoutrement that you want.

And to paraphrase Quebecker humorist Nabila Ben Youssef, I agree that we should accommodate people with a handicap, but people who suffer from an intellectual deficiency because of their religion can find help.

Again, with a Jesus freak acting as our Prime Minister in Ottawa and a man without balls trying to be Quebec's Premier, I don't think that Canada will become really secular tomorrow.

PS: This is one of the rare moments when I write a post by not being serious.


Version intégrale du rapport Bouchard-Taylor - Get more Legal Forms
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