In an exchange of e-mail letters with Dave Mankovsky of Atalanta (another ex-Montrealer), this is what he wrote in response to me when I said:
“I love driving into Montreal as often as I can. It’s nice to see my friends and enjoy my favorite eating places. But it’s much nicer knowing that at the end of the day, Quebec is not my home”.
By David Mankovsky:
Agreed. Living in Atlanta, I get to visit Montreal once or twice a year (to see my parents). But I am awfully glad to be out of there.
Having been brought up in NDG and Cote St. Luc, there used to be such a vibrant Jewish community. Now all my friends have left the province, and all that is left is the older generation (my parents’).
It is really sad to walk through the Cavendish Mall and see nothing but older people in their 70’s and 80’s. The Quebecois have broken the great Jewish community of Montreal that we were a part of – the great businesses, restaurants, synagogues and families.
And to think that as liberally-minded people, we voted for the Trudeaus, the Lesages, the Mulroneys and the Chretiens who sacrificed our community to assuage the separatists who pushed us out. With quiet assent and tacit approval of the Gazette and CJAD.
I feel an extreme sadness when I visit my parents in Cote St. Luc (they want to finish their days there and will not move elsewhere) and see how our Jewish community has almost vanished.
Saturdays and Sundays are so dead in an area that was bursting with life on weekends when I was young.
That is why I no longer care for “liberalism” – it is always a one way street – we open up our arms and accommodate, and “they” take advantage of it to drive us out.
That is why I am an extreme hawk when it comes to Israel (let us keep what is ours and not squander it away by degrees to those who hate us and want to drive us into the sea).
I learned this lesson well in Quebec – liberalism does not work.
My Brief Response:
There is nothing written in the preceding by Dave Mankovsky that I, or hundreds of thousand of ex-Montrealers will not agree with. Especially those ex-Montrealers of the Jewish community.
When CJAD, the Montreal Gazette, CFCF television, the CBC stations (radio and television) and other appeasing media, either ignored blatant discrimination, or made excuses for discrimination, or worked arduously to help the majority in their quest to make the English community invisible, they became our biggest enemy.
AND WE HELPED THEM through our collective silence.
Montreal will never recover to what it was before our English media sold us out. It will not necessarily be a bad place to live. But it will never be the place it once was.
So, like Dave Mankovsky, I too feel a marked sadness every time I visit Montreal and see how much of what was, that is no more.