What is it with our media in this country (and especially in Alberta) lately? Ever since some wingnut paper in Quebec insinuated that Governer-General designate Michaelle Jean or her husband _MIGHT_ have had "pro-separatist" leanings in the 1990s, they've been howling that she might not be a patriotic Canadian.
I have a news flash for these idiots: Having an opinion in this country - even a separatist opinion - is not a crime. Mme. Jean has committed NO CRIME AGAINST CANADA to my knowledge, even if she did lean towards support for the Quebec separatist movement. (In fact, I have yet to see anything that even suggests that Mme Jean
My politics have changed over the last decade - mostly as I've become more aware of what is going on around me, and how policy affects my life. I find it hard to believe that Mme Jean - or any other reasonably self-aware person - holds the same views of the situation today that they held 10 years or more in the past.
How she voted in the 1995 referendum is irrelevant - Canada is a nation that respects the notion of "secret ballot", and asking someone how they voted on any issue is the height of disrespect - both for the voter and the concept of secret ballot.
The rednecks in Alberta have glommed onto this topic to put a thin veneer over the complaints that Mme. Jean is not a born-in Canada Canadian, and even more offensive to some out here - she's - dear God! - a woman, not white, and Quebecois. About the only thing that could make her more offensive to various parties I've heard out here is if she was a lesbian. (None of which is materially relevant to anything in the role of the GG)
Get over it, people. Go find something relevant to worry over - like say what colour your neighbor has painted their deck!
[Update: Aug 19, 2005]
I found this piece of ludicrous idiocy today. What irritates me more than anything is the blatant stupidity of the associations made:
1. Mme. Jean associates with former FLQers. - So what? Among other things, that was 15 years ago, in the context of a documentary discussion.
2. She used the dreaded "nigger" word. News Flash! The term 'White Nigger' became a part of the Quebec political dialogue in the early days of the separatist movement's rise in the 1960s. I've heard the term show up many times in the past. I don't like it, but it carries a political theatre meaning, not a racist meaning in this context.
3. As I pointed out before, being a separatist in Canada is not a crime, it is a political stance, one that any citizen may carry freely. To the best of my knowledge, the FLQ per se has done exactly nothing after the LaPorte affair - making them more or less defunct in my view. (If someone can show me evidence that they are an active threat organization, fine, but until then, I will assert the FLQ is a non-entity beyond some pseudo-intellectual groups in Quebec)
4. The press is engaging in pillorying Mme. Jean for the acts of the FLQ and others. The most they have done is establish that some of her social circle intersects with the Separatist movements in Quebec. I believe the legal concept being abused is called "guilt by association". Holding her responsible for the acts of the FLQ or other hard-line separatists because she has had dealings with them is like claiming that someone is guilty of a crime because they shared a drink with a Hell's Angel member. It's silly, stupid and ridiculous.
It's time we took our right-wingnut media out back and shot them with a ball of their own excrement. I'm getting sick of insinuation, innuendo and smearing of someone because of their political stripes.