The students of Quebec must be getting upset or disappointed about now. Only a month ago they were amassed in real democracy, participating on-the-street democracy with up to 200,000 protesters defying the Quebec Government’s implementation of anti protest laws (Bill 78); and they kept marching so they had won the war. Premier Charest calls an election, slamming the door on democracy and replacing it with a sham Party Democracy – he might as well have said, the election is called, people need not participate, just fall asleep as the parties do their thing and most importantly vote for me.
What began with the Charest’s original assessment of the election (who do you want to be governed by, the street, the separatist, or Me), has quickly faded to the political dirt brawl befitting mud wrestlers. In the last of the debates squabbles of corruption and separatism dominated the debate, while there was scant minutes of mention on student tuition fees. Student needs, or for that matter, the peoples needs have nothing to do with this process, it is election survival, and the gaining of or maintenance of power that is at hand. Politicians cannot concern themselves with anyone else’s trifles when ego survival is at stake. Accusations are volleyed back and forth between the Parties, and the media report on the game as lightly as a sports event, the game is meant to keep to themselves. Media, also take a part in the game is ours only.
It becomes entirely to difficult when the people try to intrude in a process, entirely too democratic. So, stay on script, no questions and control your audiences. And for heavens sake stop all your MP’s from talking or expressing thoughts, they have none other than the leaders.
I give a warning to the Quebec democratic closed politicians, the roar that been heard in the streets will not be silenced by a silence to public concerns; ignoring students feelings or needs will not placate the tinderbox brewing in Quebec’s streets. Look beyond winning the political prize of winning an election, or you may reap the whirlwind of the protest streets. Let the healthy fear politicians have garnered by the past protest marches open your ears to the voices of the street. In- your-face street politics is here to stay because all respect of our democratic process(?) has now been trampled in the street, born of your own neglect. In a warning to Premier Charest, by one CLASSE student union leader, “Be careful and watch out for the power of the people…they will have to answer to the population”.
While politicians do not speak to the students issues, I, a political activist will speak to the concerns over rising tuition fees and student debt. Look at the role of the Bank of Canada before 1974, when the Government of Canada would ask the Bank of Canada to create money for the Government’s use. Discover at that same time the provinces could call upon the Government for debt-free funds to finance the provinces’ programs. Quebec can ask for funds to help reduce student tuition fees. There is your solution.
To any that read this post, and know a student, particularly a student of Quebec, please forward this post on to them.
For reading on a similar former post read “Not My Idea of a Party”