Quebec, Kirpans, Face Veils, and Values
by Trent Gilliss, senior editor
At first glance, this story from the National Post intrigues because Sikhs are barred from the Quebec National Assembly because of their daggers. And, what were they there for? To testify on a bill banning face coverings. That is worth clicking through and reading more about.
But, check out the last statement from one of the Assembly’s members about multiculturalism. It almost scoots right on past if you don’t stop to think about it. Now, this American citizen’s ears haven’t heard an idea like this stated in such bald fashion; I’ll admit that it’s challenging, and somewhat unsettling:
“By a vote of 113-0, the Quebec National Assembly adopted a motion Wednesday supporting the decision by security workers to bar four Sikhs who came to the assembly to testify on Bill 94, banning Islamic face coverings.
The four refused to remove their kirpans, small ceremonial daggers. In 2006, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the kirpan, which Sikhs carry wrapped in fabric under their clothing, is not a weapon but a religious symbol, like a crucifix.
Parti Quebecois member Louise Beaudoin, said multiculturalism is a Canadian value, not a Quebec value.”
(photo: Tyler Anderson/National Post)