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Author Topic: Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)  (Read 930 times)

Sefiru

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Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)
« on: May 07, 2019, 07:50:06 pm »
If you haven't heard, a law has been proposed in Quebec to ban civil servants 'in positions of authority' from wearing religious symbols while on the job. It's been controversial, to say the least. (link) (link) (audio link)

Personally, I'm with the person in one of the linked articles who called this 'a solution to a problem that doesn't exist.' I'm not sure what such a law is supposed to accomplish, other than pander to xenophobes.

The phrase 'separation of state from religion' was tossed around a bit, but I don't think anyone with sense would view, for example, a police officer wearing a turban as the overall government mandating Sikhism. Also I can't help the feeling that there's a bit of 'Christianity as default' behind this, since it's one religion that doesn't (in most denominations) mandate any particular mode of dress.

Thoughts?

Uneryx

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Re: Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2019, 11:20:27 pm »
If you haven't heard, a law has been proposed in Quebec to ban civil servants 'in positions of authority' from wearing religious symbols while on the job. It's been controversial, to say the least. (link) (link) (audio link)

Personally, I'm with the person in one of the linked articles who called this 'a solution to a problem that doesn't exist.' I'm not sure what such a law is supposed to accomplish, other than pander to xenophobes.

The phrase 'separation of state from religion' was tossed around a bit, but I don't think anyone with sense would view, for example, a police officer wearing a turban as the overall government mandating Sikhism. Also I can't help the feeling that there's a bit of 'Christianity as default' behind this, since it's one religion that doesn't (in most denominations) mandate any particular mode of dress.

Thoughts?

Ugh. I think you're right in your assessment of this pandering to xenophobes. Specifically since the articles and activists involved mention the hijab more than other modes of dress, which just sounds like anti-Muslim discrimination.

If this law were advocating for something along the lines of enforcing that civil servants are beholden to the government above their religion (a la punishing behavior like Kim Davis's refusing to issue an LGBT couple a marriage certificate for religious reasons despite the law of the land saying otherwise), then okay. But restricting people's right to dress themselves according to their faiths is... icky? And the top of a slippery slope, tbh.

I mean... making it so not even schoolteachers can practice tenets of their religion? Ugh. This is a super iffy law and I hope it doesn't pass.

EnderDragonFire

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Re: Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2019, 10:06:03 am »
If you haven't heard, a law has been proposed in Quebec to ban civil servants 'in positions of authority' from wearing religious symbols while on the job. It's been controversial, to say the least.

I'm gonna post before I read other people's comments. I wanna be honest about how I fee; this offends me on fundamental level and makes me very angry. Freedom from religion is important, but so is freedom of religion, and many religions mandate wearing symbols of affiliation.

Sikhism for example. You cannot even be a Sikh without wearing certain very visible symbols. So this law would effectively ban Sikhs from office entirely. Same for Hijabi women.

Mandatory irreligion isn't secularism. That's state atheism, and it is just as bad as having a state religion! Forcing all civil servants and politicians to be overtly irreligious is just as bad as laws that ban atheists from office or require people to be sworn in with a Bible... just the opposite side of the divide.
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Sefiru

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Re: Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2019, 06:24:24 pm »
Sikhism for example. You cannot even be a Sikh without wearing certain very visible symbols. So this law would effectively ban Sikhs from office entirely. Same for Hijabi women.

Is it just me, or are Sikhs most often dumped on due to prejudice against *other* religions?

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Re: Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2019, 09:23:45 pm »
Is it just me, or are Sikhs most often dumped on due to prejudice against *other* religions?

Yeah, at least in the USA, lots of morons mistake them for Muslims and harass them. (Not to say that harassing Muslims is acceptable in any case; it most certainly is not!)
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

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Re: Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2019, 08:58:08 pm »
Is it just me, or are Sikhs most often dumped on due to prejudice against *other* religions?

I don't have any stats to demonstrate that Sikhs get it most, but it's not just you; I too have observed that they get a lot of that - and going back well before the post-9/11 increase in Islamophobia.

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Re: Quebec Bill 21 (Secularism law)
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2019, 04:22:32 am »
Is it just me, or are Sikhs most often dumped on due to prejudice against *other* religions?
Probably, and especially because Sikhs stand out. My own department manager is a Muslim from the subcontinent, but nothing about him screams "Islamic" in day-to-day activities. It's obvious that he's from a foreign background, but that describes many people in modern day Houston. A Sikh, though, has his religious identity front and center. True, most folks couldn't elaborate on the differences involved...but the ones you're speaking of probably don't care.

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