For those who think governments in New York or Washington can become too intrusive, we offer this thought: Thank your lucky stars you don’t live in Quebec.
There, the provincial legislature has unanimously passed a resolution calling on all shopkeepers to stop saying “Bonjour hi” when they greet customers. “Hi” is too English for the Quebec language police. From now on, store owners are officially requested just to say “Bonjour.”
These are the same people who cracked down on an Italian restaurant in Montreal for using the word “pasta” on its menu and who invented a French word for hamburger. Sadly, hambourgeois never really caught on.
If you know about Quebec, you know where this comes from. Many there fear loss of its French identity in a province where the vast majority of residents speak that language but where, for decades, English-speaking people held seats of power.
Nevertheless, this is loony. Or, more perhaps appropriately: C’est le fou-fou.
Here’s a stop-the-presses moment (not). The results of a new survey from the Pew Research Center show that men and women believe they are more different than similar. Much of this treads on familiar stereotypes, such as men are tough and women are nurturers.
Anyone who doesn’t believe there are differences only has to look at who has been outed for sexual abuse in recent years and whom the victims have been. There are exceptions, of course, but for the most part we all know what’s what.
Other than that, though, and with our Quebec friends in mind, we’d like to say, vive la différence.
Here’s one for the books. One of President Trump’s lawyers says that because he is the nation’s chief law enforcement officer, he cannot obstruct justice. The president-as-king’s view of government appears to be: “L’etat, c’est moi.”
That’s le fou-fou.