Wednesday, July 12, 2006

First Language?

In an interview recently Prime Minister Stephen Harper referred to French as Canada's first national language.

He was explaining why he likes to start his news conferences in French.

"We have to remember that the original word 'Canadian' meant the French-speaking inhabitants of North America," says Harper, " so it's our first national language. So I say it first and then I say it in English."

Yeah but the French were not the first ones in North America, so maybe it's not our first national language.

Maybe it would make mores sense for the Prime Minister to start his news conferences in Cree.

5 comments:

rondi said...

No, our first national language should be considered Norwegian, if Harper is only referring to white people. This is what the Vikings who came to Newfoundland spoke. And they didn't cheat and walk over a land mass the way our natives did! They came by boat -- much more difficult!

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's nothing more than Harper sucking up to Quebec. Pretty transparent strategy if that's the case.

David Wozney said...

I do not follow the logic of Stephen Harper's statement. One word does not make up an entire language.

A "first national language" for Canada did not exist before July 1, 1867 because the nation of Canada did not exist before July 1, 1867.

On July 1, 1867, the word "Canadian" also referred to English-speaking inhabitants in Canada.

Miles Lunn said...

I think the idea of talking about Canada's first language is a dumb idea. Newfoundland & Labrador were settled by the English before Quebec was by the French. Now it is true French was the first European language in Central Canada. That being said I doubt Harper really believes this. He is just saying whatever he can to win more seats in Quebec where he believes his majority lies.

BBS said...

It was a slow news day