The Flutter Of The Wing Of A Butterfly Disturbs A Distant Star, which applies to all of Life – Psychologically, Mentally, Physically and Emotionally . . . for every Action there is a Reaction, and for every Reaction there is a Counter Action.
I DON’T CLAIM TO UNDERSTAND THE UNIVERSE . . . BUT I DO KNOW THIS:
We don’t live in a Vacuum or Black Hole, where Sound and Light Theoretically CANNOT ESCAPE in contrast to our own personal Universe on Planet Earth, where we live with an Abundance of Everything Including near Infinite Interaction.
A STRANGE THING HAPPENED UPON LEAVING THE PROVINCE OF QUEBEC:
IN 1995, the Ethnocentric Province of Quebec held its Second Referendum to LEAVE Canada, and supposedly LOST the Referendum by less than One Percentage Point. After the Referendum LOSS, the Smart Money Bet on the Transfer of Power from the current (not too popular) Quebec Premier (Akin to a US Governor), Jacques Parizeau, to an EXTREMELY Popular Quebec Politician, Lucien Bouchard.
THE STRATEGY WAS . . . After the LOSS by less than 1%, Parizeau would CEDE the Premier’s Office to Bouchard, who would then hold a SNAP Election, followed by the Euphoria of a Political Victory with another immediate Referendum, asking the French People of Quebec if they wanted their own Country – YES OR NO, which to all political thinkers would have WON THE DAY for Separatist Quebec.
THEN A STRANGER THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO NOT HAVING THE REFERENDUM:
The French People of Quebec were assured by EVERY METRIC CONCEIVABLE, that if they Voted OUI (Yes) to LEAVING CANADA, the separation would be PAINLESS from Canada, and there would be NO CHANGES WHATSOEVER in Terms of National and International Agreements, Money Transfers, Jobs, Social Services . . . ETC.
AND BASED UPON HOW THE FEDERALISTS & QUEBEC “ANGLOS” . . . campaigned to keep Canada Together, by Acquiescing to virtually all of Quebec’s DEMANDS, literally BEGGING Quebec to stay within Confederation – there was NO REASON FOR FRENCH QUEBECERS NOT TO BELIEVE BOUCHARD.
YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND THIS . . . Since the 1960’s, French Quebec has been passing Draconian Laws literally MAKING THE UNRESTRICTED USE OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE ILLEGAL, with the General English and Ethnic Response being . . . Tell Us How We Can Comply – WHICH INCLUDED ALL ENGLISH MEDIA, POLITICIANS AND ELITISTS.
AND THEN CAME ME . . .
IN MID APRIL 1996 – I staged a RALLY at Fairview Shopping Center, which at the time was Montreal’s PREMIER High Fashion and Quality Shopping Mall, located in a Part of Montreal (West Island) that was also at that time perhaps as high as 90% English, where the Stores REFUSED to Post ANY English on their Signs.
I sent out Press Releases with Notification of the Anti Quebec Separatist Rally to the French and English Media. I also called a few English Language Radio Stations to see about getting some News to Support this Rally, which was somewhat a waste of time.
AND THEN EXPECTING A FEW DOZEN PEOPLE . . . to show up at my Rally, to stand with each other in Solidarity for our FREEDOMS, Anne, my Sisters and Brother-In-Laws, a few Partners-In-Crime, and some Friends ARRIVED at Fairview to Make Our Stand in an Empty Shopping Center Parking Lot.
I’m not going to go into the fascinating GAZILLION things that happened before the Rally, other than to tell you that before High-Noon, on a weekday, which was the time and day I chose for the Rally to begin, I didn’t expect much Support or Participation, but when you DROP THE GAUNTLET, you have to be Prepared to See It Through To The End, No Matter What You Expect.
SO WE SET UP . . . and Hunkered-Down for the WORST, expecting no one to show up – and then the People started to come, First a few Cars, Then by the Hundreds, Then by the THOUSANDS, Until the Police started Shutting Down Exit Ramps on the Trans Canada Highway before and after the Exits for Fairview – And the parking Lot where the Rally was Staged, which I was sure would be empty, was Jammed-Packed with English Speaking People, who Came NOT TO HEAR AN ACQUIESCENT SPEECH . . . But Rather, to Hear DEFIANT FIGHTING WORDS – Which I Didn’t Hold Back.
In the Words of one of Montreal’s English Language Radio Show Hosts . . . “Galganov Let It All Fly, And The Crowd Went Wild”.
In essence . . . what I said, NOT especially to the English Crowd who came to RALLY FOR THEIR FREEDOMS, but rather to the French Media, who were there in Abundance with their Cameras, Microphones and Satellite Trucks – “YOU’VE BEEN LOOKING FOR A FIGHT FOR YEARS . . . WELL NOW YOU’VE GOT ONE”.
I DON’T WANT THIS TO READ AS IF IT IS I – I – I & ME . . . ME . . . ME – BUT:
FROM THAT MOMENT ON . . . I didn’t Relent for a Second. I literally TERRORIZED all Stores which Refused to put-up English Signs, who thought it was EASIER to go along with a Linguistic RACIST Government, rather than showing Respect to their English Clients.
WE RALLIED EVERY DAY . . . In front of Name Brand Stores, Literally Shutting Them Down until they Put up English Signs.
I held RALLIES throughout English Montreal, Ottawa, and even in the Belly of the French Separatist Beast (Quebec City). I Rallied at . . . and SHUT DOWN the MONTREAL Offices of the Office Quebecois de la Langue Francaise (Quebec Language Police), which TERRIFIED the English Merchants of Quebec.
I also Raised Money, as well as Money I took from Ourselves and our Business, to Finance Court Challenges to Support People who were attacked for Using the English Language CONTRARY to Quebec’s Bigoted Laws.
I Wrote, Directed and Produced DOZENS of Radio and Television Commercials, which I paid for, to BROADCAST all along the American Side of the New York and Vermont Borders with Quebec on the Sunday News Shows, saying ALL I COULD to Eviscerate Quebec for its Draconian and Racist Laws . . . Telling Americans NOT to Visit Quebec, but if they do . . . THEY SHOULD UNDERSTAND THIS:
“The Unrestricted Use Of The English Language Is Against The Law In The Province of Quebec – So Govern Yourself Accordingly”.
NOT ONLY DID I RUN THESE ADS ON BROADCAST MEDIA . . . I also BOUGHT Back Lit Billboards in MANY of America’s Preeminent Airports in their Departure Lounges, WHICH GAVE THE SAME MESSAGE.
AND THEN I TOOK THE SHOW ON THE ROAD . . . To the Manhattan Harvard Club, Wall Street, and the US Congress, where I met with Sitting House Members, plus throughout the Rest of Canada, where I traveled Delivering the same message of FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION in Canada From Coast To Coast.
At one point, I went to the Prime Minister’s Ottawa Residence with a Microphone and Bus Loads of People DEMANDING our Equal Rights, with a Simple Message. “If We Can’t Have Peace Where We Live . . . Neither Will You – Where You Live”.
THIS FIGHTING STRATEGY HAD MULTI PURPOSES & RESULTS:
1 – The English Speaking People and Federalists, FINALLY knew that they weren’t Alone, and that there was at least ONE Person amongst Others who was WILLING TO GO TO THE MAT FOR THEM . . . Come Hell Or High Water.
2 – The Dirty Little Canadian/Quebecois Racist Secret was no Longer RESTRICTED to Quebec Alone, since very Few People in Canada, let alone the Rest of North America and Around the World had a Clue about this DEPLORABLE Fascist Set of Draconian Anti-English CANADIAN LAWS, since Quebec was still a part of Canada (which it still is) when Quebec passed and enforced these Laws, even though Canada had the Constitutional Authority To Disavow Them.
3 – Quebec’s French Community FINALLY Understood that Separation was Hardly Going To Be The-Walk-In-The-Park the Quebec Separatists Promised them that it would be.
4 – AND FINALLY . . . The French Population of Quebec, for the FIRST TIME EVER, really understood how much the English Quebec Population HATED their Language Laws, and what they thought of them.
AND DURING ALL OF THIS . . . I went to War Against ALL The English Media with the Exception of Two . . . CIQC AM 600 Montreal Radio, which was the Little Engine which Thought It Could and Did, and the Independently Owned Suburban Newspaper.
ALL THE OTHERS WERE THE ACQUIESCENT ENEMIES OF FREEDOM.
AND FOR THE FRENCH PRESS . . . I Never Refused an Invitation to be on French Radio, Television, or even in the Printed French News, even though I knew that I was always invited by them to DERIDE, DEFAME, & DIMINISH ME, because, as long as I was in THEIR FACE, and in their Language . . . I Always GAVE Better Than What I Got.
SO WHAT HAPPENED AS A RESULT OF THESE 3-PLUS YEARS OF TORMENT?
The Anti-English Language Restrictions and Ethnocentricity is Still a Major part of Quebec. A Huge Number of English and Ethnic Quebecers have since left Quebec for other parts of Canada and the USA, including Anne and Myself. And many more are still leaving.
Quebec is a Basket Case, where Quebec’s Infrastructure is falling apart. Montreal has become a shadow of its former self. And it seems that the only people coming to live in Quebec these days, are poor Moslems escaping from worse conditions, using Quebec as an entry point into the Rest Of Canada.
Quebec is still Preaching SPECIAL STATUS FOR ITSELF ABOVE & BEYOND the ROC (Rest Of Canada), even though Quebec Survives EXCLUSIVELY on the MANY BILLIONS ($10-Billion Per Year) of Dollars it receives every year through Welfare Paid by the Other Provinces, Packaged as Equalization Payments, even though Quebec still practices Ethnocentric Nationalism.
THE IMPORTANT MESSAGE HERE . . .
As The Title Of This Editorial Intimates . . . Every Voice Will Be Heard, and EVERYONE, whether alone or as part of a Group – CAN & WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
I and all the others who FOUGHT alongside me, COULDN’T Reverse the Ethnocentric, Discriminatory and Racist Laws of Quebec, since the English Media were Not Our Friends, and the Federal Government Worried More about Votes and Staying In Power . . . but, what was going to be a 100% SURE THING SNAP REFERENDUM, which Quebec was all but Guaranteed to have won, from which Quebec would have SECEDED from Canada, NEVER HAPPENED, because WE USED THE FULL EXTENT OF FREE SPEECH, which says all that needs to be said of the CRITICAL IMPORTANCE OF THE FIRST AMENDMENT.
IF I HAVE ONE REGRET . . . about this entire aspect of my history . . . it is – if I had it all over to do again, I would have simply told the Disaffected English Speaking People to Leave Quebec, and PRAYED for Quebec to LEAVE CANADA, which is an altogether different story . . . But I’m Sure You Got The Point – FREE SPEECH ROCKS!
Best Regards . . . Howard Galganov