As my son embarks on his first year of school, I can’t help but feel how privileged he truly is. He attends a fully bilingual school which is his right, according to Quebec laws. However, this right is only made possible in Quebec because at least one of his parents were educated in English. This of course, compliments of Bill 101 which was passed as law by the then governing separatist Parti-Quebecois in 1977.
Fast forward almost 40 years later and we’re still spinning our wheels with the never ending language debate. This debate has found it’s way into countless homes in our province. I know this by the numerous conversations I’ve had with French speaking friends and clients. The overwhelming feedback I’ve received is straight to the point, Why shouldn’t I have the right to choose my child’s language of education as you have ? Unfortunately, I don’t have an answer for them. The so called democratic Quebec government says they don’t have the right.
My heart goes out to these parents as they see the value and benefits that it would provide for their children. I don’t have to worry about this as I know that my boys will grow up being able to express themselves in several languages. Could you imagine the opportunities that these children will have ? They’re endless !
We all know that English is the international language of business. We all know that thanks to technology, you can communicate with anyone around the world. Why should a government have the right to take this away from any child ? All because of their insecurity and the age old argument that we must protect our French language and culture. I’m all for protecting one’s language and culture but not at the expense of a parents right to choose. This goes against all human rights and liberties.
I don’t pretend to have a solution but for the good of Quebec and all these parents, Bill 101 must go or at least be amended. Too bad that no politician has the courage to admit this and heaven forbid, do anything about it.