I can give you additional examples of how historic societal conditioning has influenced how we relate to our country.
In this post I am again going to lean a bit heavier on Francophone perspectives – simply because most of this blog already deals with helping Anglophones to see what aspects of Canada their own partial conditioning has perhaps them from being aware of.
A couple of post ago, I gave an example of conditioning from one of the better produced and conducted French-language radio interview programs, Radio-Canada’s Desautels le dimanche. I believe this program is one of the most objective and probing interview radio programs in Québec. But even with this status, it too and its guests are not immune from conditioning.
Using a similar program as an example, a few weeks ago the program “Faut pas croire tout ce qu’on dit” interviewed a number of people who were talking and debating about one of Québec’s hot topics in 2014/2015:
- The question was “How to “de-radicalize violent tendencies towards violence” or prevent “violent religious radicalization” of Canadian youth and citizens, all in the context of world jihadist movements?”
The issue stems from too high of numbers of Canadian youth
- having gone to fight in Syria alongside ISIS, or
- who were stopped from going to fight in Syria, or
- who have attempted to / succeeded in implementing violent acts in Canada based on violent religious radicalization.
Other high-profile interview and debating television programs have also featured this same topic many times over the past 18 months. These programs include well-known programs such as Le Club des ex (on RDI), TLMEP (on Rad-Can), 24/60 (Rad-Can), Mario Dumont (LCN). The debate has been brought up numerous times in the National Assembly of Québec, and is constantly tossed around by very “passionate” columnists in all newspapers.
The argument and debate in Québec has mostly revolved around two questions:
- What measures should Québec explore and use to deal with this issue?
- What measures is Québec taking versus those which “Ottawa” is not taking, or which do not work when taken by Ottawa?
This has been made into one of many of Québec’s election issues (federally, and provincially in by-elections). It is one being which is used by opposition parties to garner better polling results in Québec.
Yet, I yet have once to hear anyone ask, in any of Québec’s high-profile public platforms, “How have other provinces been dealing with this issue?”, or “What has happened in other provinces which we can learn from in Québec?”
Rather, Québec’s high-profile public platforms seem to have fallen victims of incomplete conditioning regarding the above two questions. Media or political platforms seem to be oblivious to the fact that:
- These are issues which other provinces across Canada have been dealing with longer than Québec,
- Other provinces have already taken measures to counteract “violent religious deradicalization”,
- There appears to be results from initiatives taken in other provinces (either at an intervention, education, community, and religious level),
- That Ottawa is not the only “platform” with which Québec should compare its own efforts or goals on these issues,
- That Ottawa’s jurisdiction (and abilities) in this matter can be much different from those of the provinces, and thus the “obsession” with which Québec’s high-profile public platforms use Ottawa as a point of comparison are perhaps grossly misplaced.
You may recall the “wave” of jihadist adherents from Calgary (Alberta) who went to fight in Syria quite some time ago. You may remember the Via Rail bomb plots in Toronto (Ontario). Yet, mysteriously, when Québec’s public platforms talk of similar issues in Québec, why is it that other provinces’ experiences and “deradicalization initiatives” are not brought up? It is as if they never existed and that any “jihadist radicalization” issues are unique to Québec.
I believe the answer is that Québec’s public platforms of discussion have fallen into a narrow conditioning trap.. As with these issues, Québec’s platforms often approach other important matters from a rather narrow, introspective and Québec-centric approach. It creates a false “expectation” on the part of Québec’s public platforms that Québec is unique, isolated and at odds with and from whatever else may be happening elsewhere in Canada. This stem from much of our recent history (which I covered in previous posts in this series on conditioning).
Yet, this disconnect with what is happening in Canada is artificial and should not be promoted. Other provinces have been dealing with these same issues — all within the same legal, societal and political frameworks as Québec. A few provinces have vital experiences they could share with Québec on this front, and there is evidence their efforts have had an effect (hence, note the drastic drop-off in the last 6 to 12 months of such incidents occurring in provinces outside Québec).
Yet, such incomplete conditioning (ie: misplaced expectations and exposure) on the part of Québec’s public platforms and forums risks a dangerous side effect of allowing segments of Québec’s population into believing they are isolated, unique, and at odds with their compatriots elsewhere in Canada.
It is a conditioning trend which is frustrating, to say the least. Furthermore, language barriers does not help either.
Language barriers prevent much of Canada’s high-profile Anglophone media, political figures and societal experts from being able to partake in, and cross-communicate with French-language media forums. It does not allow people in Québec to see their same daily and societal issues of importance are also being shared across Canada.
A lack of bilingualism (on the part of Anglophones) and ignorant disinterest (on the part of Québec’s public forums) does not help one bit. A lack of Anglophone participation in Québec’s media circles perpetuates the notion of the Two Solitudes.
Both sides need to make efforts.
I’ll have more examples in upcoming posts.
SERIES: HOW THE PRESENTATION OF EVENTS IN MODERN HISTORY WHICH HAVE CONDITIONED US ALL REGARDING HOW WE VIEW OUR PLACE IN CANADA (13 POSTS)
- Conditioning: A contributing factor in the notion of the Two Solitudes – Introduction (#275) Part 1 of 13
- Conditioning: And its affect on our cultural cohesiveness and national psyche (#276) Part 2 of 13
- Conditioning: The importance of gestures (#277) Part 3 of 13
- Conditioning: In the context of Canada’s “modern” history (#278) Part 4 of 13
- Conditioning: The goal of the “Estates General of French Canada” (#279) Part 5 of 13
- Conditioning: Modern Canada’s “First” Night of the Long Knives – a trigger for the all the rest (#280) Part 6 of 13
- Conditioning: What happened after the Estates General? (#281) Part 7 of 13
- Conditioning: From the 1980 referendum until present (#282) Part 8 of 13
- Conditioning: Wrapping up history and moving into the “now” (#283) Part 9 of 13
- Conditioning: Daily examples of “an Incomplete Picture” – post A (#284) Part 10 of 13
- Conditioning: A few words regarding the death of Jacques Parizeau (#285) Part 11 of 13
- Conditioning: Daily examples of “an Incomplete Picture” – post B (#284) Part 12 of 13
- Conditioning: Daily examples of “an Incomplete Picture” – post C – Closing post (#287) Part 13 of 13