🇨🇦 Meet Canadian Senator Nancy Ruth

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Who inspired you to get involved in public life?

I am the fourth generation of women in my family to be involved in ecumenical social action and public policy reform.

What do you think are the biggest public policy issues facing Canada today?

We have not built a shared vision of a country that builds on all of our people and not on debt, either public or private. Violence against women is deeply embedded and costly in all kinds of ways. Governments make all kinds of human rights commitments to values and tools, such as constitutional equality rights and the implementation of gender-based analysis, and then ignores them.

hon-nancy-ruth-senate-photoWhy should more Canadians care about what happens in the Senate?

c150-logo-red-nouvnew_1469624863855_engThe Senate has always had a unique constitutional role with respect to the protection of minorities, which in my view has expanded since the patriation of the Constitution of Canada to have a unique role in ensuring governments meet the requirements of all Charter rights, including equality rights.

What legislative or committee work are you most proud of participating in to date?

Four stand out. I played a role in ensuring that the then Auditor General, Sheila Fraser, studied the federal government’s implementation of gender-based auditing, and found it dismal. The Senate Standing Committee on Human Rights’ study on “Women, Peace and Security: Canada Moves Forward to Increase Women’s Engagement” led to Canada’s implementation of a national action plan. I also introduced the first bill in the Senate on medical aid in dying (Bill C-225). I am a leader of the public campaign for a gender neutral English National Anthem (www.singallofus.ca) and I am the sponsor of Bill C-210, An Act to amend the National Anthem Act (gender) in the Senate.

Translation in French follows

Qui vous a transmis le désir et l’intérêt de participer à la vie publique ?

Je fais partie de la quatrième génération de femmes de ma famille à jouer un rôle lié à l’action sociale œcuménique et à la réforme de la politique publique.

Selon vous, quelle est la plus importante question de politique publique au Canada à l’heure actuelle ?

10444382_10152084729661890_7990077022073516117_nNous n’avons pas encore bâti une vision commune de notre pays qui se fonde sur toute notre population et non sur notre dette, publique et privée. La violence contre les femmes est encore profondément ancrée et a d’importantes répercussions économiques. Les gouvernements prennent toute sorte d’engagements pour le respect des valeurs et le développement d’outils en matière de droits de la personne, notamment le principe constitutionnel de l’égalité et la mise en œuvre de l’analyse comparative entre les sexes, puis ils ne les respectent pas.

Pourquoi un plus grand nombre de Canadiens devrait s’intéresser aux travaux du Sénat ?

Le Sénat a toujours joué un rôle constitutionnel unique en ce qui a trait à la protection des minorités. Je crois que, depuis le rapatriement de la Constitution du Canada, ce rôle a évolué et consiste maintenant à faire en sorte que les gouvernements respectent toutes les exigences de la Charte, notamment les droits à l’égalité.

À quels efforts législatifs ou travaux de comité êtes-vous le plus fier d’avoir participé ?

Quatre travaux me viennent à l’esprit. D’abord, j’ai contribué à faire en sorte que la vérificatrice générale, Sheila Fraser, examine la mise en œuvre par le c150-logo-red-nouvnew_1469624863855_enggouvernement fédéral de l’analyse comparative entre les sexes. Elle a brossé un tableau plutôt sombre de la situation (rapport déposé au printemps 2009). De plus, l’étude du Comité sénatorial permanent des droits de la personne intitulée « Les femmes, la paix et la sécurité : Le Canada agit pour renforcer la participation des femmes » a mené à la mise en œuvre d’un plan d’action national au Canada. J’ai aussi déposé au Sénat le premier projet de loi sur l’aide médicale à mourir (projet de loi C‑225). Enfin, je suis l’une des dirigeantes de la campagne publique pour un hymne national anglophone neutre (www.singallofus.ca) et je suis la marraine, au Sénat, du projet de loi C-210, Loi modifiant la Loi sur l’hymne national (genre).

What is a hidden gem in your region that more Canadians need to know about?

Use Pat Staton’s book, Toronto Women – A Walk Through History, to learn about women here; see Toronto’s diverse neighbourhoods and eat in local restaurants with terrific world food.

Can you name a guilty pleasure song / album that always makes you smile and why?

Anything from K. D. Lang.

What is the last book you read or movie you saw which you recommended to someone else and why?

The movie Play Fair, about women and sport in Canada – because we need to know what is working and what is not. The book It Was Their War Too: Canadian Women in World War I – because too often the official narrative gives token space to the contributions of women. Both are open access on the Internet.

What sports team (amateur/professional) do you support?

Live theatre and music are my national passions.

Pouvez-vous me nommer un trésor caché de votre région que les Canadiens gagneraient à découvrir ?

10444382_10152084729661890_7990077022073516117_nLe livre de Pat Staton, Toronto Women – A Walk Through History, pour découvrir les femmes d’ici, les différents quartiers de Toronto et les restaurants locaux où l’on y découvre des mets incroyables de partout dans le monde.

Pouvez-vous me nommer une chanson ou un album qui vous fait toujours sourire ?

Tout ce que fait K. D. Lang.

Quel est le dernier livre ou film que vous avez recommandé à quelqu’un et pourquoi ?

Le film « Play Fair », sur les femmes et le sport au Canada parce que nous devons savoir ce qui fonctionne et ce qui ne fonctionne pas. Il y a aussi le livre « It Was Their War Too: Canadian Women in World War I » parce que trop souvent les récits officiels laissent peu de place aux contributions des femmes. Les deux sont accessibles sur Internet.

Quelle équipe de sport (professionnelle ou amateure) appuyez-vous ?

Le théâtre et les concerts de musique sont mes passions nationales.

Pourquoi êtes‑vous fière d’être Canadienne ?

Nous sommes tellement chanceux de vivre dans un endroit pacifique, le monde est bienvenu ici et tous ensemble, nous pouvons jouer un rôle de premier plan pour apporter la paix et la justice aux autres.

Courtesy of Parliament of Canada – Posted Sept 16, 2016

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How do LGBT rights look in your country?  and Why are you proud to be Canadian?

We are blessed to live in a peaceful place, the world is welcome here and all together we can take leadership on achieving peace and justice for others.

Some big things have changed for women and lesbians in my lifetime in Canada. Others, like violence, have hardly changed. I do not see the world through LBGT eyes. I see it through the eyes of a woman. Being a lesbian is my second level of discrimination.

“L, B, G and T are different communities — communities in a big, diverse and complex world of communities. We deserve to be treated as such, not lumped together as “Other.”

Over the past 30-plus years in Canada, women and LBGT communities in Canada have made legal gains. Canada adopted a constitutional Charter of Rights and Freedoms in 1985. It has offered a degree of substantive and formal equality for the disadvantaged. I look to the Charter to ensure that people achieve equality in their day-to-day lives, as Canada guarantees affirmative action in its Constitution.

In 2005, Canada became the fourth country in the world to legalize same-sex marriages. We forgot to fix our divorce legislation so that those who had married here could divorce here! We’ve fixed that now.

When I came of age in the 1950s and 60s, there were few spaces I could go to be safe as a woman and as a lesbian. That remains the case today for many women, for many lesbians. We have been formally accommodated, both in the mainstream and in gay culture, but not fully included.

Economic, social and cultural realities, like all aspects of violence, remain gendered and racialized. We spend vast amounts on the ISIS war on terror, but not on the war on terror against women and girls, the violence in the next room, street or town. Now the buzz is that because sex and gender are a matter of personal choice, across a spectrum and fluid, we have no use for sex and gender. I do not believe this. Sex is determined at birth with a DNA pattern. Gender fluidity is a matter of personal choice.

Ultimately, through these changes, I remain committed to laws, communities and spaces that address widespread and deep discrimination against women in all of their diversity.

Courtesy of CNN – By Nancy Ruth a Canadian Senator – posted  June 27, 2013.

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PRIDE AT ACADIE LOVE — CELEBRATING A CULTURE OF INCLUSION AND OPENNESS: SEN. CORMIER.


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🇨🇦 Fête nationale du Québec (Fête de la Saint-Jean)

Jean Baptiste day header2

Saint Jean Baptiste Day (Fête nationale du Québec, Quebec National Holiday, la Saint-Jean, St. John the Baptist Day) is the national holiday of the Canadian province of Quebec.

Held annually on 24 June, the Fête nationale du Québec (formerly known as Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day) has been a statutory holiday in Québec since 1925. Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day has been celebrated in North America since the early days of 5950814599512064New France. Originally a religious celebration, it took a more patriotic turn in 1834 with Ludger Duvernay. The first Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day parade took place in Montréal in 1843. Since 1984, the Mouvement national des Québécoises et Québécois (MNQ) has organized the festivities of the Fête nationale du Québec. Various francophone communities across Canada also celebrate Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day.

Célébrée le 24 juin de chaque année, la Fête nationale du Québec (anciennement appelée la Saint-Jean-Baptiste) est un jour férié au Québec depuis 1925. En Amérique du Nord, la Saint-Jean-Baptiste est célébrée depuis les débuts de la Nouvelle-France. À l’origine une fête de dévotion, elle prend une tangente patriotique à partir de 1834 avec Ludger Duvernay. Le premier défilé de la Saint-Jean-Baptiste a lieu à Montréal en 1843. Depuis 1984, les célébrations de la Fête nationale du Québec sont organisées par le Mouvement national des Québécois et des Québécoises (MNQ). On célèbre aussi la Saint-Jean-Baptiste dans les différentes communautés francophones du Canada.

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The best of Quebec City – 5 activities not to be missed during the Canada Day holiday

Le meilleur de Québec – 5 activités à ne pas manquer pendant le congé de la Fête du Canada

Saint Jean Baptiste Day, which is a public holiday in Quebec, is a day to remember John the Baptist, a Jewish preacher who baptized Jesus Christ.
©iStockphoto.com/BCWH

Origines de la Saint-Jean

Quebec BallonLa fête de la Saint-Jean-Baptiste tire ses origines des célébrations du solstice d’été, une très ancienne coutume païenne voulant que des feux soient allumés pour célébrer la lumière à l’occasion de la plus longue journée de l’année. En France, l’Église catholique récupère cette fête et y associe la figure de Jean le Baptiste, cousin de Jésus.

La tradition d’allumer le feu de la Saint-Jean pour marquer le début de l’été est transposée en Nouvelle-France dès 1646. En 1694, Mgr de Saint-Vallier en fait une fête chômée vouée à la dévotion. La Saint-Jean continue d’être célébrée après la Conquête, mais ce n’est qu’en 1834 qu’elle prend une couleur politique qu’elle conservera jusqu’à nos jours.

Origins of Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day

Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day originated from celebrations of the summer solstice, an ancient pagan tradition in which fires were lit to celebrate light on the longest day of the year. In France, the Roman Catholic Church adapted this holiday and associated it with John the Baptist, cousin of Jesus.

The tradition of lighting the Saint-Jean fire to mark the beginning of summer was brought to New France in 1646. In 1694, Mgr de Saint-Vallier declared it a public holiday dedicated to devotion. Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day continued to be celebrated after the Conquest, but it was not until 1834 that it took on the political tone it still has today.

What Do People Do?

c150-logo-red-nouvnew_1469624863855_engVarious events are organized on Saint Jean Baptiste Day. These range from large scale public celebrations, such as rock and jazz concerts, sports tournaments, parades and firework displays, to small family or neighborhood happenings, such as yard sales, picnics, barbecues, bonfires and children’s entertainment. Many church bells ring in celebration and public dances and fun fairs are held. Some events may be held on the evening of June 23 and many are broadcast live on television, radio or on the Internet. The celebrations are coordinated by the Mouvement national des Québécoises et des Québécois.

Public Life

Saint Jean Baptiste Day is a public holiday in the Canadian province of Quebec. Post offices and many stores are closed. Public transport services run to a reduced schedule in some places or may not run at all in other areas, such as the province’s rural regions. If June 24 falls on a Sunday, the same day is a paid day off for those who work on Sunday. June 25 becomes a paid day off for workers who do not ordinarily work on Sunday.

Background

Midsummer festivals, such as those linked with the June solstice, were held in Europe for thousands of years. When people converted to Christianity, elements of these festivals were combined with feast days for Christian saints. In France, the celebrations around the feast day of Saint John the Baptist were widely enjoyed and French colonists st-jean-baptisteintroduced these traditions to North America.

The patriotic tone of the Saint Jean Baptiste Day celebrations began in 1834. In that year Ludger Duvernay, an influential journalist, visited the St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Montreal, and was inspired to create a similar event for French Canadians. In 1843, he established the Saint Jean Baptiste Society to promote the celebration of Saint Jean Baptiste Day. This organization was supported by the Catholic Church, which saw it as a way to promote social and moral progress. In 1908 St John the Baptist was designated as the patron Saint of Quebec, re-enforcing the connection between Saint Jean Baptiste Day and French-Canadian patriotism.

During and after World War I, Saint Jean Baptiste Day was barely celebrated, but in 1925 Saint Jean Baptiste Day became a provincial holiday in Quebec. After a period in the 1960s, when the structure of society in Quebec changed greatly, this holiday became very political. However, in 1977 Saint Jean Baptiste Day was recognized as the ‘national’ holiday of Quebec and the mood of the celebrations gradually moved towards that of the secular celebrations in modern times.

Quebec BallonLe 8 mars 1834, Ludger Duvernay, l’éditeur du journal La Minerve (importante publication au Bas-Canada et voix du Parti patriote) fonde la société Aide-toi et le ciel t’aidera en compagnie de George-Étienne Cartier, alors étudiant en droit, et de Louis-Victor Sicotte. Cette société, dont le nom rappelle une organisation secrète et révolutionnaire fondée en France en 1827, annonce celle des Fils de la liberté et est en quelque sorte l’ancêtre de la Société Saint-Jean-Baptiste. L’organisation se donne pour objectif de doter les Canadiens français d’une fête nationale et d’en organiser les célébrations, comme le font les Irlandais de Montréal depuis 1824 avec le défilé de la Saint-Patrick.

Le 24 juin 1834, Duvernay convie certains notables de Montréal à un premier banquet de la Saint-Jean-Baptiste chez l’avocat John MacDonnell. Lors de cette soirée, qui est avant tout une fête politique réunissant une soixantaine de francophones et d’anglophones (dont le député Louis-Hippolyte LaFontaine, le futur avocat et premier ministre du Canada-Uni George-Étienne Cartier, le maire de Montréal Jacques Viger et le Dr Edmund O’Callaghan), les convives lèvent leur verre aux 92 résolutions, aux États-Unis, aux réformistes du Bas et du Haut-Canada et à ceux d’Irlande. Dans le compte rendu de ce banquet, plusieurs journalistes incitent la population à fêter publiquement la Saint-Jean-Baptiste l’année suivante, ce qui fut vraisemblablement le cas dans nombre de villages.

Fr: Fête nationale du Québec (Fête de la Saint-Jean) 

EN: Fête nationale du Québec (Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day)

Symbols

The fleurs-de-lis represents the flower of an iris or a lily. The fleurs-de-lis is also associated with the Virgin Mary and her purity. It was a symbol of French speaking people and their kings after King Clovis I converted to Christianity in the year 493. It was taken from the papal seal or coat-of-arms when the king converted, to symbolize the strength and significance of the French nation in its union with the Papal state. Quebec’s flag is one-and-a half times as wide as it is high and has a blue background. The background is divided into four rectangles by a cross and each of the four rectangles contains a single white fleurs-de-lis. The flag of Quebec and the fleurs-de-lis are widespread symbols of Saint Jean Baptiste Day. Many people choose to wear blue or white clothing to the celebrations.

The best of Quebec City – How to take advantage of the National Holiday in Quebec City

Le meilleur de Québec – Comment bien profiter du congé de la Fête nationale à Québec

{Bonne Fete} “Happy Birthday “Canada 2016”

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Canada

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I don’t claim to be politically correct but for what it’s worth my personal option on the future of Canada and whom ever leads this country towards foreign & economic stability c150-logo-red-nouvnew_1469624863855_engall depends on who is at the master control, leading the country to where ever that maybe. Back in my day, when I was a boy I remember my dad and his loyalty to the liberal candidate at that time was none other than Pierre Elliott Trudeau, he was the 15th Prime Minister of Canada from April 20, 1968 to June 4, 1979, and again from March 3, 1980 to June 30, 1984, today we see his son Justin all gun whole to take the bull by the horns and push Canada forward. I hear a lot of negativity in that regards, everyone thinks he’s to young for such a task, and I am not sure as to why they think that way. Mr Harper only supports family values, making it clear he is not supportive of the LGBT community, and he supports the major corporations over the people’s, he is not concerned about the common man or the diverse society’s and people’s of this country, but the one and only thing we can say of him is he holdscanadian-flag-heart canadian-flag-heart Canada’s economic and foreign affairs close to heart, which is a great thing but unfortunately the people are left behind. In the age of a new generation and a more complex society he just can’t keep up with the “Jones” it’s not about me a 54 year old veteran who’s been there and done that, as is Mr Harper, it’s now time for a younger leader to step up and take control of this country’s business. Not only to be concerned about the deficit, foreign and economic affairs, don’t get me wrong these are important issues and it’s great that he can bring Canada to a new age of political and social change, as I really think that it’s possible right now for any politician to accomplish. The people (A new Generation) a younger generation is rising and they need a leader that will speak and represent them on the current issues in today’s society and that’s not Mr Harper.

The Right Honorable Pierre Elliott Trudeau: Canada's 15th Prime Minister.
The Right Honorable Pierre Elliott Trudeau: Canada’s 15th Prime Minister.

It’s about a country that stands behind it’s citizens, to respect them and listen to what they have to say, all it’s citizens, that’s where I think Mr Justin Trudeau would fit in the picture, a leader who is familiar with today’s issues that are of concern to Canadian’s right now, Mr Harper, is stuck and guided by old ways of thinking, what was good for Canada then may not be what’s best for Canada now and Mr Harper seems to be blind to this fact, issues that are currently of a major concern for the majority of Canadians today. I could mention several issues of grave concern right now, but I won’t, concerns of the now generation that Mr Harper and his conservatives see as purely nonessential. This is exactly the reason Canada needs young blood, like Justin Trudeau as a driving force to move Canada into the future and beyond, he maybe young and lack experience but I believe that if given the chance he is the man that will move Canada forward to a brighter and prosperous future for all Canadians. When the next Federal election rolls around in Oct 2015 lets not forget and reserve your right to vote and elect Justin Trudeau for the next Prime Minister of Canada, a Liberal Government to represent not only economic and foreign affairs but to represent all the diverse society’s and people’s right here, right now of this great country of ours as well, because as a leader you cannot lead only half the people, you must lead all the people.
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