They’re just misunderstood


There’s no such thing as Victoria Day in Quebec. Fondness for the monarchy doesn’t exactly run deep and you’d be hard-pressed to find any self-respecting politician willing to celebrate ol’ Vicky in public. So Monday’s holiday is actually known as the “Journée nationale des Patriotes” (Bernard Landry had it changed from Dollard Day back in 2001).

Despite the thoroughly crappy weather, about 200 people showed up at a rally in Montreal to mark the occasion. (If there’s a civic holiday in Quebec and no one rallies under the fleur-de-lys to celebrate it, does it really happen? The answer: not really.) But you have to wonder if organizers weren’t wishing some of the attendees had stayed home instead of dropping by. According to a report in La Presse, skinheads and a bunch of other undesirables joined in the celebrations, though they didn’t seem to cause much of a stir:

“When I first saw them coming, I thought they were a bunch of neonazis and I’m sure I wasn’t alone,” said Virginie Tremblay, a devout sovereignist. “When you talk with them, you realize they’re not fascists, but they do look like them.”

Among the the low-rent, browshirt-wannabe groups that turned up was the Milice Patriotique Québécoise (the Patriotic Militia of Quebec). A statement on the milita’s website insists they’re not a bunch trigger-happy nutjobs; they’re just interested in “self defense”:

We want to be prepared to defend Quebec, its language, its population, its natural resources, its environment. We want to defend Quebec against its adversaries, against the politicians who spend our tax dollars all wrong, against those who once again want to parcel our land, against those who think they’ve “won the war against the separatists,” and who think it’s all over, that Quebec will never be independent. Nothing is over.

Here’s a link to their membership application form. (It even includes a hilarious attempt at an English translation!) But be warned: if you want to sign up, you’ll need to send in $100 and four passport-sized photos, as well as get someone to vouch for you. They’ll also want you to have hunting and gun licenses, and they’ll probably make you shell out for a whole whack of goofy army surplus gear. But if it’s any consolation, even in the MPQ’s eyes, Quebec doesn’t seem to have any enemies (political or otherwise) who can’t be defeated by some fancy paintball guns. So the whole ‘combat’ part of it might turn out to be kinda fun.


They’re just misunderstood

  1. Something about the fact that you’re writing this from Toronto kinda’ bugs me. If people are going to diss my province they should at least live here. Its easier to fight something from within.

  2. Elsewhere people celebrate their monarchs. We? We celebrate armed rebellion. The reason I love my province.

  3. It make sens to me, their a need for such organisation in Quebec. Why not

  4. hey there, Quebec is a NICE place to live, they would accept you even if you dont like them, so, shut up.

  5. Yup, I most certainly live in Toronto. But I’m not sure why that makes the MPQ any less ridiculous an idea.

    I’m certainly not suggesting the MPQ and other movements like it are representative or even relevant. But I also can’t imagine there exists an ethnic or geographical condition that would make me think they’re not embarrassing. No matter which side of the federalist/sovereignist divide you’re on, I fail to see how a bunch of paintball geeks masquerading as a revolutionary vanguard contributes to anything but comic relief.

  6. thank you!

  7. hahaha a paintball team !!!!

    you are right they sell nice paintball replicas! BUT I heard most of them have a bunch of legal guns @ home ;)

    and I guess that if there is a war, they will also be able to gat alot of illegal gear like M-16, AR-15, M4 A1, C7, C9, C6 and so on, dont forget that most quebecer in the canadian army are separatists. you guys from toronte are just jalous that US, QUEBEC are starting a new rebelion, you guys just dont have anything to say and let me figure, you are probably happy to be canadian, eh ?

  8. @Dominique: I live in Quebec, and I’ll say it: these guys are idiots.

  9. Robert De Niro- Really? What is this new rebelion of which you speak? You’d think that i would have heard of it- I hear some pretty vicious arguments from drunken students, particularly during elections- but i’m yet to hear anything about a rebellion. Or a war, for that matter. I’m not from Toronto- my hometown is Eeyou, Quebec, and I am a student at Laval- and I am going to say it: I am proud to be a canadian. The survival of the french fact in North America is because of our association with Canada, rather than despite of it. Good luck with your rebellion, eh?

  10. I am not taking any part to that (for now), the rebelion will happen when people are gonna have enought on how canada treat us. I am a proud quebecer but not proud to be canadian. I wont be joining the militia because I could loose my job if I do (I work for the federal…funny, eh?) but, I know there will always be people that will defend us, in here, just in case…

    @Martin: did you ever read on the subject or you are just a colon ?

  11. Sir- Canada pours huge amounts of money into our province. I’m not complaining- but proportionaly, we are over represented and over funded. It reminds one of a divorced parent who pours gifts onto it’s child out of guilt. A proud quebecer but not proud to be canadian… sir, the two go hand in hand. One cannot exist without the other- for without Canada, Quebec would doubtlessly soon become part of the US, with the rest of Canada to follow. An entire culture, a language and a province would all assimilate into the great ‘melting pot’ that is the US.Our survival is dependant on one another. Look at the fate of those Quebecers who moved to NEw England to look for work- generations of history, gone. Now look at the survival of Quebecers in, for example, Manitoba. It has a significant french-canadian population that has managed to retain its language. What are we being defended against? If it’s assimilation, then a ‘rebellion’ requiring ‘defence’ would have the exact opposite effect. The only people we need defending from is ourselves, the sad truth.

  12. @Robert: I’m a semicolon, actually. Thanks for asking.

  13. First off, here is pictures that I’ve found over the net after hours of seeking !


    And second, Mme Marie-Claire, I don’t think that it’s about canadian population that Quebec holds against at, but more to whom that slow our economy, home language, and society in general.

    you cant take a bunch of people, like the common canadian, and held them responsible for our existance, indeed. what I say here is that the enemy is REALY within our territory. Theese people that dont give a damn about adressing others in public just IN FRENCH. that’s not that hard to understand? I ask you two things as a citicen of Quebec and you forget one!

    Is it that hard? One; respect our laws and TWO; you can speak whatever the language you want home or with friends, etc. But in PUBLIC things and commerce, serve us in french. write first in french, then speak it! Quebec, in my opinion is the best place over Canada to live in, if your first wish is to get accepted. The proof; when I first came in (Im from romania) I wasnt even able to speak a word of french, but my english whas good because I studied it a bit back at school… but my first reaction in here where to learn the language people where talking in my new homeland.
    you see, not that much complicated to get a place that respects you ALL THE WAY.

  14. @Robert: This is off-topic, but you’re gonna have to take down the spam link on your name. I mean, really, you should know better.

  15. I wonder if the anglophones who have lived here for generations would agree with you. When I started university this year, I vollunteered to tutor the anglophone and foreign students because I am bilingual. I don’t see any problem with them speaking their own language in public-and most of them have to speak french to navigate a bank, store tec. Of fact, that was the main complaint of the people I tutored- that they were under the impression they were coming to bilingual country, and they found that they needed french not only for their classes but for everything else.Last summer I planted trees north of thunder bay for a job. I write english much better than I speak it, mostly because my dielect is very thick and difficult to understand- that aside, I was generally able to be understood when buying goods and depositing my paycheck. Yes, i got some odd looks, and quite a few “what? can you say that again? speak slowly! speak louder! what?”For the first time I understod what it’s like to be an anglophone in Quebec.HOwever, as I found out, the one thing one can do in either language throughout Canada is file a police report. I suppose that thats really the sign of a bilingual nation. ANyways, my friends and I adressed each other in french the ntire time e were there, in public. I don’t see why that sa problem.

  16. Roberto de niro, does it disturb you just because it doesn’t fit in your “french boogymen” stereotype of the typical independantist?

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