This is not a call to arms
Cult MTL’s intrepid photographer Owain Harris gets his vote on
Soooo… how ‘bout that election?
There isn’t much to be said that hasn’t already been said about the events that unfolded last night, both across the province and more specifically, at Metropolis in Montreal.
Quebecers voted yesterday to oust Jean Charest from his role as leader of the province, instead electing Pauline Marois — Quebec’s first female premier — to a minority government.
Jean Charest is expected to announce his exit from the National Assembly later today.
If the numbers are any indication, our fellow citizens were hesitant in their support of the Parti Québécois — they gained 31.9 per cent of the vote, with a familiar hair of a fraction separating them from the Liberal runners up, who came in second with 31.2 per cent of the vote.
That’s the way the democratic cookie crumbles, folks. As Kevin Dougherty said over at the Gazette, “A very sad start for someone who is a democrat. [...] Shooting people is not democracy.”
But let’s not get confused here. One crazy guy bringing a rifle to a political rally should not be the martyr for the PQ’s separatist cause. This isn’t the catalyst for the much-feared war on the English language in Quebec. What this should be is two things: an example of why the long gun registry is crucial in this country, and how Quebec deals with its mentally ill.
To all the Montreal-born anglos promising to leave the province now that the PQ has a fragile grip on power — this is your home, and if you want to abandon it instead of participating in its future and progress, fuck you.
We, as Montreal anglos, deserve a place at the table as much as anyone else who makes a home here. We’re born here, we study here, we live here, we have families here — we’re a part of Quebec’s fabric, of what makes this city and province such a curiosity across the country and around the world.
We’re all needed here to usher Quebec into a future where green policies and technologies are widespread; where Montrealers’ open attitudes about religion, sexuality and ethnicity promulgate throughout the province and where people can get a quality education at a reasonable cost to further contribute to society. And perhaps even a future where women and racial minorities can lead governments.
If we don’t like the PQ, or any other political party that takes hold beyond this term, we have to hold them accountable. Leaving or throwing up your hands in defeat isn’t holding anyone accountable — that isn’t democracy, just as much as shooting people isn’t democracy. ■
A vigil outside Metropolis (59 Ste-Catherine E.) takes place tonight at 8 p.m.