Canada has often been described as the mosaic society reflecting a vast diversity of cultural heritages and racial groups; a global village of varied traditions and faiths; a nation created by immigration from all around the world.
In reality, according to 24Hr newspaper,
… the debate raging through Quebec over how far society should go to accommodate immigrants’ religious and cultural practices could soon spill over to the rest of Canada.
A majority surveyed Canadian believe that the country should draw a limit on allowances for religious and cultural activities (including prayer space) in public schools, hospitals, workplaces and during sports activities.
Across the country, 53 per cent of Canadians said they felt immigrants must fully adapt to the country’s culture, compared to only 18 per cent who felt the notion of reasonable accommodation reflected their views. Full article
So, are they against, Multiculturalism in Canada?
Here in Vancouver, one of famous radio commentator/a top music promoter, Bruce Allen is under fire for his remarks aired Sep. 13th on his minute long show “Reality Check” on CKNW radio against Sikh- and Muslim Canadians. His view might reflects those 53 per cent of Canadian.
In his minutes-long daily editorial, Bruce Allen cited Sikh uproar with Passport Canada when children wearing kerchiefs in their photos were denied documentation, and controversy surrounding berka-clad women’s right to vote without revealing their faces.
Sep 13th. Reality Check
“If you choose to come to a place like Canada, then shut up and fit in … these are the rules,” he said in his broadcast rant. “There’s the door. If you don’t like the rules, hit it. We don’t need you here.”
Richmond MP Raymond Chan filed papers yesterday requesting the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission investigate Bruce Allen’s remark and added he would urge the 2010 organizing committee to strip Bruce Allen of his high-profile position if he does not retract his remarks and make a public apology.
Canada, as far as I know, promotes multiculturalism. And we Canadian celebrate and respect multiculturalism. As an immigrant and a minority to the society, Bruce Allen’s remarks crossed a step over the line of fire and believe he may have offended Sikh- and Muslim Canadians as there is no law stating voters have to be identified by their faces and no law forcing Sikhs to change their last names, as he inferred. But, I also agree the part of Bruce Allen’s view regarding the rules, as the fundamental value of society, that immigrants also have to adopt local customs, laws and values. Isn’t it the principle 101 to any society or country?
<update> Bruce Allen’s words about it on Sep 26, 2007