There is a rift in New Brunswick. It isn’t physical. It isn’t even cultural. It’s mental. The silent majority of this province believes in duality and bilingualism. As I do, they see beauty in diversity, and understand the importance of maintaining a society which supports many nations in the fulfillment of their national goals, while uniting us all as inhabitants of a shared territory and as neighbours in a shared experience.
On the other side of this growing rift. there are Anglophones and Francophones who have refused to see the world as we do. They lay blame on one another for our common troubles and would rather starve than feed each other.
This column is not about them. I have denounced their hatred once and will not be mired in it again.
This column is about the silent majority and what we can do to mend this divide.
Here at UNB I propose a club. A quick survey of the active clubs and societies here on campus tells me that there is everything from a Bangladesh Cultural Society to a Thai Student Association, but that there is nothing dedicated to Acadian and French language and culture. With your help, dear reader, this can change.
I am officially calling for the creation of the Acadian, Francophone and Francophile Student Association (AFFSA). The object of this club would be to provide a welcoming environment in which students may express themselves in French, meet other French-speaking and francophile students, and discuss issues relating to la francophonie both on campus and in the wider community.
In order to make this a reality, we would need an executive. If you are interested in taking on the role of president, vice president, treasurer, or secretary, if you are interested in being a member, or if you just want to get in touch, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll chat. If you choose to send me hate mail instead, please note that I will post it publicly on my own pages.
I know that starting a club is not going to change the world, but it’s my worldview that the world changes one club at a time. Join me. We’ll see where it takes us.