Monday, September 23, 2013

What not to wear - maybe?

The province of Quebec in Canada has proposed a law banning all obvious religious symbols in the form of jewellery and clothing for people working in government jobs, i.e. civil servants. This provincial bill would contravene our national statutes for freedom of religion, which operate at the federal level. But then Quebec has rarely considered itself a part of Canada. They don't even celebrate Canada Day, preferring to celebrate St Jean Baptiste Day instead.

Ironically, although Jews will be forbidden to wear yarmulkes, Sikhs, turbans and Muslim woman, hijabs, at work, if they work for the government, the province will not remove crucifixes from any of its public buildings, particularly the huge crucifix hanging over the speaker's chair in their provincial parliament. This apparently has nothing to do with religion, but everything to do with tradition.

You will be permitted to wear small symbols of your beliefs, such as a necklace with a cross or a Star of David on it. This means, of course, that there will be by-laws mandating the size of these items and some will be subjected to being "measured."

Nature and culture

For years the dominant religion in Canada was Christianity, which divided itself between a Protestant majority in the western provinces including, Ontario and roughly a Catholic majority in the eastern provinces, beginning with Quebec. However, Canada is now home to many different faiths and religious practices. Our federal charter of rights protects these.

This will not be the first time that Quebec has challenged the sovereignty of the federal government. We await the outcome of the debates over this bill in the Quebec legislature.

Well, it does make for more interesting news than the national debt :)

The picture? It's a cross in the hills of Liguria, Italy. I climbed half way up a mountain to see an old monastery there. Art is often based on religious beliefs and practices. We need to preserve freedom of religion, everywhere.

Have a colourful day!!


  1. Gotta love the religiosity of the choice. A turban, a kipa, a burka- all are religious symbols; all of which are larger than the typical cross worn by Christians...
    Religious discrimination shielded by political correctness is still discrimination

  2. This is pathetic. Aren't there more pressing issues officials could address?

  3. I have two thoughts and neither is appetizing.

    1. There is some other kind of chicanery going on and the gov't has pulled this to distract from the real problem.

    2. This is really aimed at Muslims and they threw in some other people so it wouldn't be that obvious.

    Gotta love governments.

  4. I am saddened that government can be so hypocritical as to keep crosses on buildings while keeping people from wearing their own religious symbols. I am also annoyed, yet not surprised, that these officials waste everyone's time with issues that really shouldn't matter.

  5. How incredibly hypocritical! Why are Christians considered above this law?

  6. The governments of the world not longer care one way or another about us, they just do what ever they want to. I believe that this is a smoke screen for something else that they will slip into law while nobody is looking

  7. Interesting! This kind of problem will always rear its head when there is a declared state religion. Very hard to proclaim freedom and openness, while also declaring that one religion is superior than others.
    Cheers, Gordon

  8. Are you sure that you are not living in France? This all sounds very French to me.