Ah, Canada. The wonderful thing about Canadian politics is that it's been the same thing for the past 139 years. Quebec is still whining about becoming a nation.
The problem comes down, as it usually does, to semantics. That's probably one of the ugliest words in the English language. Semantics. People debating over the definition of words. I don't think it's coincidence that it rhymes with pedantic. ;)
For those asleep, let me wake you up. Our Great and Mighty Prime Minister Stephen Harper suggested that Quebec be recognised as a nation within Canada. As you might expect, this did not go over well with the Bloc. It definitely threw the Liberals through a loop, however--they apparently did not see this one coming.
Now I will admit that my first reaction was this: That's stupid! Quebec isn't a nation! Look, either you're nation or you're not, and Quebec isn't a nation.
But some part of me knew I was wrong, or at least suspected it. So I trundled over to Wikipedia and looked up what a nation actually was, because believe it or not, but I didn't know--and I doubt many people do know the difference between nation and country. I draw your attention to the ambiguity in usage section.
After reading the article, I've changed my opinion. Quebec certainly does fit the definition of a nation; it has a very distinct and rich culture that has existed throughout all of Canada's history; the Québécois are indeed a people. If more people understood what the definition of a nation was, maybe this wouldn't be such an issue.
Now as if that wasn't shocking, I will now make the revelation that I particularly agree with Stephen Harper on this issue! :o At least, this is what I think: Quebec should be nation, since it fits the definition. It should not, however, be politically independent from Canada. In other words, Quebec is not a sovereign country. I like you, Quebec. :hug: Why go?
The issue of Quebec sovereignty, unfortunately, is hard to separate from the issue of Quebec nationalism. Nationalism is a really complicated concept that causes a lot of inconveniences on any side of the debates. I respect that Quebec has a strong culture, but I don't think that it would benefit either the rest of Canada or Quebec for Quebec to become its own country. Look at Nunavut: the Inuit have their own culture too (well, okay, what's left of it after we suppressed it for a century or so...), but should they separate? No. Politically, we are stronger as a cohesive body. Canada has always been a country that is supportive of multiculturalism--we are a country of many nations. I'm rather proud of that.