Ending the reign of ignorance

When we look at our elected representatives making decisions with an eye to public opinion, without bothering to learn about the reality of a situation, it’s clear that our society is dominated by views that may have no factual basis. This is the reign of ignorance that Jean Laberge has described in his book Le devoir à l'éducation (p. 104). This ignorance is being assisted by Quebec’s high rate of functional illiteracy, by the media’s frequent tendency to pander to preconceived views instead of providing objective information, and by the educational system’s obligation to hand out degrees to students who don’t always deserve them—just to fill quotas for academic achievement.

To end this reign of ignorance, and system of governance, Équipe autonomiste has decided that one goal of its mission will be to inform the public. The party will set an example and inform itself before taking any position. We may thus wait before addressing some issues so that we can gather enough reliable information to make an informed decision. A recent case has been the position of Équipe autonomiste on the Quebec firearms registry. We have familiarized ourselves with this issue and, this past weekend in Drummondville, even attended conferences that were hosted by Canada’s National Firearms Association. Previously, we had relied on sensationalistic and emotional media reports. Some of the conference speakers showed, with the backing of evidence, that registration of long guns, such as hunting rifles, will not improve public security and will cost a lot, especially because this information is already made available to police officers whenever one applies for a licence to possess or acquire a firearm. We now are clearly against such a registry and wish to inform the people about the reasons for our stand.

On this and other topical issues, the party wishes to organize regular conferences that will be open to the public. The aim will not be to raise funds for the party but simply to ensure an informed citizenry. One of these information activities will be in Quebec City, this coming March 9, and will cover the following issues: multiculturalism, by Daniel Laprès; education, by Jean Laberge; and feminism and the status of men, by Gilbert Claes. We’re inviting the public and journalists to come and attend in large numbers. Please reserve a seat.