The state should not be in the business of telling citizens what to think and what not to think, what to believe and what not to believe. Nor should state authorities dictate what clothes one should wear. Secularism is not about what one wears, but what one thinks. Religious neutrality does not reside in one's clothing but in one's mind. Wearing a turban or a kippa is a personal choice and has no incidence on one's impartiality. I hope that the Parti Québécois comes to realize that it is erring with this draft policy. It should go back to the drawing board and return with a new approach that builds on the Quebec values of liberty, equality and diversity.
General Counsel and Senior Government Advisor - Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs
Quebecer, jewish, author and former MP. Richard Marceau received the 2012 Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Jewish Book Award.
At a time when LGBT communities face frightening and growing prejudice from governments overseas, Canada's Bill C-279 serves as a stark moral contrast with the likes of Uganda, Russia, and numerous undemocratic regimes across the Middle East. It is often overlooked that the "T" in LGBT refers to the transgender community, members of which continue to face serious discrimination in some quarters. In supporting C-279 and calling on Parliament to enshrine greater protection for transgender Canadians, I am proud that we continue the legacy today.
08/12/2013 12:00 EDT
I find myself disheartened by the direction that the conversion debate is unfolding in Israel and the Diaspora. While we cannot hope to be, nor should we strive to be, uniform in our views, we have an obligation to be united as one Jewish people. It makes no sense that Orthodox converts, including those looking to make aliyah (moving to Israel), face the possibility of seeing their fully halachic conversions retroactively annulled.
05/15/2012 04:56 EDT
The Jewish lobby is given a lot of media attention. But what people should really focus on is the so-called pro-Palestinian lobby, a lobby that is, when one looks closely, more anti-Israel than pro-Palestine. And one that promotes values that are the polar opposite of Canada's. One can support the existence of a Jewish state in the Middle East and support the Palestinians' legitimate national aspirations.
05/05/2012 11:34 EDT
Those self-styled liberals who accuse right-wingers of having "taken possession" of the word "Zionism" are trying to equate Liberalism with a one-sided criticism of Israel. As if to be a true liberal, one must basically put the blame solely on the Jewish State for the current situation in the Middle East. I refuse.
04/27/2012 12:23 EDT
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