Quebec Separatism Consigned to the Ash Heap of History.

Apr 13

In the wake of the Parti Quebecois’ stunning collapse and defeat in the recent Quebec provincial election, pundits in the province and across Canada hastened to caution that the PQ’s defeat didn’t mean the end of the separatism dream.

Nonsense.

True, there’s been times since the PQ first came to power in 1976 where they were written off and their fever dream of Quebec as a sovereign nation appeared to be dying, only to return with a fury several years later.

For Quebec separatists, the dream is over.

For Quebec separatists, the dream is over.

But this time it’s different. Once separatism bubbled to the surface in the recent campaign, it changed the course of the election. What appeared a sure victory for the PQ within four weeks turned into a stunning rout.

Numerous polls of Quebecers indicated separatism, along with the PQ’s odious “Charter of Values” designed to discriminate against overt displays of religious beliefs, were at the bottom of the voters list of priorities. Jobs, the economy, health care, infrastructure and concerns over widespread government corruption were of more importance.

Times have changed and Quebec is no longer the cauldron of linguistic tensions it once was. The separatists are ageing, most now well into middle-age or senior citizens. They’re being elbowed aside by younger, more multicultural Quebecers, who have no memory of the real and imagined grievances of the past.

They want to live in a strong Quebec in a united Canada. They want what all Canadians now want. Good jobs. A thriving economy. Improved health care and infrastructure. More oversight over government spending. They understand only too well they can’t have that in a separate Quebec nation.

They also understand the world around them is changing. Global economies are more closely tied now. The internet has increased and improved contact and commerce with people in other provinces and countries. An insular Quebec is not for them.

The separatist dream had its high-water mark in the early-1990s. It’s been dying ever since. Sure, the dwindling deluded will try to keep it alive. But its time as a driving as a genuine driving force in Quebec and Canadian politics has finally has come and gone. It will never rise again as a serious issue.

Separatism is dead, and Quebec will be better off because of it.

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