Constitute the nations

Traduit de l’article : Constituer les nations

Today, I’m going to tell you a short Québec story. This unique province at the east of Canada. In 1492, Christopher Columbus discovers America, and then Jacques Cartier will land in Quebec in 1534, but there was already a small amerindian nation who lived here. Let’s jump a few years later and in 1776, the Americans became independent and the United empire loyalist took control of the north and young Québécois nation who was already established for about 200 years. England than becomes the legislator of the country. The most known battle remains the battle of the plains of Abraham (Battle of Québec) between Louis-Joseph de Montcalm-Gozon and James Wolf. These were the days when the British empire took control of North America. England is then governed by a monarchic system. That’s why Canada will become a conglomerate of 3 differents nations governed by legal and royal laws while the French people, on the other side of the continent will loose themself from the monarchy in 1799. Then how Quebec finds itself in all this.

He wanted the free people to write it by themself on their own constitution. In my opinion, it belongs to the very people to define itself.

In 1867, during the London Conference, Canada is officially created. So from now on, the United Kingdom let those nations (the United empire loyalist, the Québécois and the amerindian nation) work out together. The country was created according to the current laws, that is a mixture of old laws scattered through an official document established by England. During the last 150 years, these laws evolved by means of the political authorities who was elected, under the supervision of England. A hundred years later, in 1967,  Charles de Gaulle will come to praise our nation by saying:  » Long live to Montréal, long lives Québec lives free Québec  » (Loose translation). This famous words put back right in the strong Quebec values and identity. A thing he forgets to mention back then was the Amerindian nations which suffer the same issues silently. This was Charles de Gaule, this man who contribute to the writing of the French constitution of the 5th republic. A constitution written by the politicians but not the French nation, it’s important to note this here.

In 1982, United nation puts back between Canada’s hands the power to constitute itself. Once again, it’s an important gesture which was made by the Kingdom. This constitution would finally allow the nation to define itself as free people. But René Lévesque, this famous Québécois politician did not sign the Constitution for the reasons which we know (See La nuit des longs couteaux). He did not want the country to write the Québécois identity by themself. He wanted the free people to write it by themself on their own constitution. In my opinion, it belongs to the very people to define itself. It is for these reasons that he ask throught the 1980 referedum if the Québécois wants their own country. The same question was ask to the free people in 1995 during the second referendum. These two events took place while the political party, the Parti Québécois was at its peak. But even with these two democratics events of asking the Québécois if they want their own country, it did not succeed. It is incredible, when we look back at what took place in Spain when Catalans people were arrested by the police to just be able to vote. This situation never occurred at this level in Quebec during these referendums.

But who are we as a nation? This exercise was never made. The question was never posed to the free people and to the First nations and it’s the main problem today.

If I pursue the story, it’s in 2006 that the Canadian government established that the Québécois are a nation within a united Canada. This was stated at the same times for the First nations (Amerindien). But who are we as a nation? This exercise was never made. The question was never posed to the free people and to the First nations and it’s the main problem today. The french language is the most obvious example of what defines us. The territory in which we live, the rights of the person, the fights of the women in our history are all of other example there which defined us as nation. But that is not the government to define this but the nation themself (First nation, Québécois, United empire loyalist…) to do so. It’s the free people themself who know their values and what they want to protect for their children. I also think it should be preserved for at least a hundred years, in my opinion. Because as we know, the United States are stuck with their 1787 constitution and it is not evolving through time. The American values of that time was quite different from how it is today. So that’s why I think it has to be open up again by the nation after a certain period of time. In conclusion, when Charles de Gaulle came out and said “live free Quebec”, in fact he meant, free to form, free to say who we are as a nation to the world because they are no nations like us around the globe….

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