The current ruling government in Quebec has set the country aflame with heated debates about its recently released Charter of Values, seeking to restrict the wearing of overt religious symbols in the public arena.
While this document is being promoted by its authors as an attempt to solidify the separation of church and state, upholding secularism in public life, many are naming it as a blatant racist document, aimed most specifically at people of the Muslim faith. It also opens up the possibility of public officials carrying tape measures to ensure that crosses worn as jewellery do not exceed a certain size.
Might I propose an alternative Charter of Human Values that would include the following:
- The right of all human beings to be loved and respected, based on who they are and not what they wear
- The recognition that the most common denominator of human life is difference—in colour, in size, in shape, in gender and in orientation. And that this difference is beautiful!
- Building bridges to others is vital to the health and well being of the entire planet and to the dream of peace among peoples of the earth.
- Building a bridge to another human being begins with a shared life experience—like birth, death and any one of the other life passages that make up our human existence.
- Any law, statute, creed or charter that lifts up one group of people while at the same time marginalizing another is to be summarily dismissed as contrary to the collective will of our caring, compassionate human family.
What would you add to this Charter of Human Values?
I also direct you to a website link called The Charter for Compassion. It is a powerful statement of how we might live together, with honour and respect for each other.
Blessings and love,