Is any of this relevant almost three years later? Yes, because mini-versions of the Quebec protests still play out on Canadian campuses. They may not be about tuition, and their ideological bent could be left or right. But too often when students organize around political causes they take on the same unsavory tones that reject dissent and make straw men of opposing arguments.
As citizens of the "free world" -- North Americans, at least -- we have a great power bestowed upon us: the right to vote. Yet this basic right is often taken for granted. Understandably, enacting one's support for politicians can be frustrating, but fundamentally they are chosen by us to manage our tax dollars. And listen up: you pay taxes.
Despite the many upstanding, ethical police officers out there, the force has given the public numerous reasons to question its conduct. There have been a number of high profile cases of alleged police brutality in Canada and Quebec, including the 2010 G-20 Toronto summit protests, the 2012 Quebec student protests, and the Robert Dziekanski taser incident.
Where politicians and pundits are right is that there is more political power in our generation than even we realize. Organizations, social movements and politicians lusting after "young voters" is actually making the problem worse. The narrowing of electoral participation as a direct translation to political action has led us to miss the forest for the trees, a forest that in Canada is probably being threatened to be clear cut, plowed for a pipeline, or removed to make way for a new mine -- and that's a big, big problem.
Yesterday... All my troubles seemed so far away... Those might be the words going round the head of Premier Pauline Marois and her minister for hig...
Dear Premier Marois, Speaking at the infamous Summit on Higher Education you held last month, McGill Principal Heather Munroe-Blum warned, "The quali...
After the second protest in the last two weeks following a provincial summit on higher education, everything about Montreal's current spring weather seemed to have year-old Maple Spring undertones to it, including violence, arrests and injuries. The plight of student debt, post graduation underemployment, and rising housing costs are all unarguably quite legitimate burdens faced by my generation. Will free tuition as demanded by the Association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiante (ASSÉ) and its followers solve these zeitgeist conundrums? Unlikely.
Just before the New Year, Samara asked for nominations for the Best Moment in Canadian Democracy in 2012. Despite the cynicism that we all feel from time to time, these five serve as important reminders that there are democratic mechanisms at our disposal, and that despite Canada's imperfections we are lucky to live here.
Recently, I heard a Grade 6 student explain that he and his friends had walked out of school to protest against a government measure that they believed had resulted in their teachers' rights being taken away. The principal was not impressed. I think we should be very impressed. What are our children in Canada seeing in the streets of our cities and towns? Idle No More, Occupy, protests in Ontario and Quebec by teachers and students -- and remember the G-20 protests in Toronto in 2010? While some of us looked the other way, the children are still watching.
There have been protests across the country over these developments and now we face the increasing prospect of massive government loan default from people who can't pay their way out of debt in the stalled economy.
The latest Angus-Reid survey reflects an unexpected continued surge for the New Democrats across the country. From British Columbia and Newfoundland, where the party has never elected an NDP government, it is on the verge of electing itself for the very first time. This is a very surprising reality for Canadians as the NDP is becoming more mute on important issues and concentrates all power within its leader while neglecting the voices of its large caucus.
The student protests shut down Quebec higher education, gained international attention and shook that province's politics. By all accounts, the democratic protests were highly successful at gaining attention.There's only one catch: the protests were anything but democratic. Indeed, it would have been illegal for any labour union in the country to conduct itself the way the student union leadership did. The next Quebec government needs to democratize the student associations. If they want the right to strike like regular labour unions, shouldn't they be held to the same basic democratic standards?
The Québec media has been buzzing over the announcement made by Léo Bureau-Blouin that he will run for the Parti Québécois during the next election.This will push the former FECQ president into a new kind of politics. Will he be able to continue the fight against the tuition fee hike in this forum? I loathe people who get involved in student politics as a springboard into partisan political life.
The Quebec student protesters are coming for Premier Jean Charest, and what better way to do that than to formally align yourself with the opposition? After months of denying any political favourtism or formal ties to the opposition, one of the Quebec student protest leaders, Leo Blouin, is stepping up to the political plate.
If student loan rates double on July 1, it will be a perfectly-timed call to action for America's current students, unemployed graduates, and anyone already struggling to pay off a mountain of student loans, just before school starts back in session
It irks me when I hear people speak of distinct society and how Quebec is so different from the "Rest of Canada" (ROC). The media tries to play on it and so do the politicians. I guess that it's easier to try to sell the idea of sovereignty to someone if you first convince them that you have nothing in common.