The time has come for Canadians to be weaned off the teat of multiculturalism as a primary source of sustenance and self-identity.DiManno goes on to say that the decision is not racist, anlabelingng opposition to the use of sharia "Islamophobic" is missing the point. (But she says it much better than that. Please read.) She closes with this:
Surely, in the 21st century, we are more than the sum total of our diverse parts and hyphenated definitions.
What once bound us together in a less self-assured era - the appealing dynamics of ethnic and cultural distinctions undiluted by melting pot nationalism - served its purpose well for several decades, since first advocated as a cementing ideology by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau.
But somewhere along the line, perhaps when human rights tribunals and clumsily codified diversity legislation began to illogically skew the social balance, asserting minority rights over majority concepts, the whole thing began to unravel.
There is nothing to prevent Muslim women, or people of any faith, to continue seeking mediation from religious authorities. Surely, it is well within the purview of such authorities to give counsel and advice to the faithful. The spiritual and the moral remain realms of temporal consultation. But this province couldn't put its faith in the fallback protections afforded by civil courts, which would still have maintained the right to overrule decisions rendered under sharia law, had the Islamic Institute of Civil Justice been successful in seeking state sanction for Islamic tribunals.Good stuff, I think. Read more here.
The most vulnerable individuals - women accustomed to patriarchal dictates and their children - would likely find it extremely difficult to assert their civil rights, particularly if they are new to this country, unfamiliar with our legal system, and living within an ethnic cocoon, as is the case for many recent immigrants. This might seem, as proponents of sharia law (including some Muslim women) claim, an intrinsically paternalistic view, as if Muslim women are incapable of grasping their own circumstances and require the apparatus of the state to defend them. But the reality is that, for so many women, especially immigrant women who lead insular lives, they do not share, are often not permitted to share, in the values and rights so vital to our society.
I saw this a generation ago in the constituency I know best - Catholic women in Italian families, allowed precious little choice by the domineering, if however well-intentioned, men in their lives.
Islam may be the answer for more than a billion people on this Earth and I in no way wish to diminish the richness of a majestic faith that expresses itself in every facet of a person's daily life. It is, or thus it seems to me, a religion of surrendering to intensely codified conduct. Perhaps this is what makes it so attractive and why it is the world's fastest growing faith. It's not my place to judge.
But there are applications of that faith, as determined by sharia law, that have no formalized place in Canadian society.
That much we do have the collective right to judge, without being called racist.