Letter: Feature on Pascale Déry should have avoided labels

Pascale Déry photo by Barbara Moser.

I have to take issue with a couple of points in your article featuring Pascale Déry. Why does it matter what mother tongue she was educated in? All three candidates are fluently bilingual and Ms. Déry’s opponents have more than demonstrated such in many publications as well as in the Quebec National Assembly: Robert Libman as an MNA and Beryl Wajsman at numerous sub-committee meetings there.

It’s bad enough when nationalists castigate Anglophone or Allophone citizens for not being “pure laine” enough, no matter what they do or say. For a writer in an English newspaper to brand Ms. Déry’s opponents as “Ashkenazic Jewish” so as to perpetuate an unnecessary (and often wrong) stereotype about them and their community is shameful.

Second, Ms. Déry must have almost put a hole in her tongue from the bite when talking about memberships.

Political parties are joined by various means other than papers gathered by candidates and supporters and sent to a Party’s national headquarters in Ottawa (on-line for example). There is absolutely nothing on a form to indicate support for any specific candidate and no roll kept as to whether a membership was sent by a candidate or his/her support team.

Ms. Déry and the writer obviously also ignore the fact that riding associations have pre-existing members who may vastly outnumber any memberships a candidate has solicited. Ultimately any number or subtle hint of a number is useless as the only number that matters is the number of votes the candidate gets at the riding nomination meeting.

In fact, it would suggest to me that between that statement and Ms. Déry’s recent musings on social media, that she’s actually struggling to gain traction in the riding and hoping that enough people either not join the party or, if in it, give up the idea of voting at the nomination meeting by presenting this kind of invincible aura.

— Robert Gauvin

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