Saturday, October 5, 2013

By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday, October 5, 2013

Another former premier and prominent separatist has come out swinging against the proposed Charter of Quebec Values.
Lucien Bouchard sat down with a La Presse columnist and outlined his views on the charter, saying he had previously not wanted to intervene, but that he found the divisive discourse troublesome.

Bouchard largely echoed the opinions put forth by another former premier in another newspaper Thursday.

In a letter, Jacques Parizeau called the charter extreme, divisive and unnecessary. In his interview, Bouchard said his predecessor had the right idea when it came to the proposal.
“What Mr. Parizeau wrote, it makes sense, it brings us back to real values of the tolerance and openness of Quebec society, but highlights the fundamental principle of secularism, developed around rules,” he said.

Bouchard said religious symbols should be banned for public employees in positions of power, such as judges and police officers, and that those who provide and receive government services should not be able to cover their faces.

He also said the time is right to take down the cross in the National Assembly. Although the charter would ban “ostentatious” religious symbols, the PQ has argued the cross in the legislature is a reminder of Quebec’s heritage and should stay put. (Source: CTV)