In recent weeks and months, the separatist fear mongers in and around the Parti Quebecois have played fast and loose with terms “Quebec bashing” and their new favourite “francophobie.”

PQ supporters trying to paint any criticism of their backwards-looking and incompetent party as an affront on Quebec, Quebecers or the French language is simply put, lying.

The blue and white Fleurdelisé is not just the flag of the separatist movement. It’s my flag, too. It’s your flag, it’s your children’s, your neighbour’s and your family’s flag, too. If you were born and raised here or if you chose to come to our province for a better life, the flag of Quebec belongs to you.

The truth is that it’s a population’s responsibility to always question its government, whether it’s the party it voted for or not. It so happens that our current minority government is likely the least competent in both Quebec and Canadian history, but that’s beside the point. What would happen if their antiquated dream came true and Quebec became a country? Would the PQ make it illegal to question the government of the new state? Obviously not. So why do we allow them to take the mantle of all that is protecting Quebec? Why do we let them claim any questioning of their ferociously misguided policies is an affront to the Québécois Nation?

Because for far too long, we’ve let them be les Québécois while the Anglophone and Allophone communities pledged their allegiance to Canada only. 

It’s time for us to stand up and let our voices be heard as proud Quebecers. It’s time the non-francophone population of Quebec stands up on its feet and says to the majority: Nous sommes Québécois. We are Québécois.

Time to get a seat at the table

For a generation, Anglo Quebecers let the separatists shape the debate. We reacted, we complained, but in reality, except for the brief run of the Equality Party, we did nothing. We let them make us feel like aliens in our own home.

Now a new generation of Anglos and Allos is coming up the ranks and we’re not afraid to fight for our seat at the table. Nobody is more proud to be Canadian than I am – and I mean that – nobody. But that doesn’t mean I can’t also be fiercely proud to be Québécois. One does not negate the other.

The blue and white Fleurdelisé is not just the flag of the separatist movement. It’s my flag, too. It’s your flag, it’s your children’s, your neighbour’s and your family’s flag, too. If you were born and raised here or if you chose to come to our province for a better life, the flag of Quebec belongs to you.

It belongs to all of us.

That’s why the PQ is afraid of us. Because they see us coming and they know that we’re about to stand up and take ownership of this province in partnership with the francophone majority.

For a generation, it’s been separatists with the PQ and federalists (including almost the entirety of the Anglo and Allo communities) with the Liberals. That has created a complete lack of representation for Anglos and Allos in the National Assembly.

The Liberal Party of Quebec has shown time and time and time again that it is indifferent to the hopes, dreams and desires of the Anglo and Allo communities.

That’s why I made the move to join the Coalition avenir Quebec. Internally we’re still a small group, but we’re growing each day. When I speak with friends and family about the idea of a party that unites people from both sides of la question nationale, I’m almost exclusively greeted by doubts at first before people become inspired by the idea.

That’s because it’s an inspirational party. When a man like François Legault, a separatist since he was a teenager, can stand up and say that the sovereignty idea’s time is past, it shows great courage. That his party is made up of many former provincial Liberals and Péquistes who all recognize that the dichotomy of the past has left Quebec lagging behind the rest of the country shows that people can work together.

For our part, it’s time we get a seat at the table and stand up for our rights and dreams in Quebec City rather than sending people who don’t care about us to the National Assembly. The Anglophone and Allophone populations of Quebec need to get behind a party that actually wants their input.

It’s time we stand up and own our place in Quebec. It’s time we stand up and be heard: Nous sommes Québécois. We are proud to be Québécois. The PQ does not own this province – we all do.

In 2014, let us unite behind the progressive ideas of the CAQ and start being heard.

I won’t sit on the sidelines anymore. Neither should you.

The PQ does not own this flag: The people do, and that includes ALL Quebecers.
The PQ does not own this flag: The people do, and that includes ALL Quebecers.
Advertisements