(This is posted on my Gazette blog site)

As Quebecers are beginning to see, the government’s proposed Charter of Quebec Values — which would restrict workers in public institutions from wearing some religious symbols — has led to a rise in racist incidents here, as a Gazette editorial reported on Sept. 18.

The Gazette’s headline:

Editorial: The ugly fallout of Quebec’s problematic charter

In Europe, according to an article on The Independent site, “Gay, lesbian and transgender people face shocking levels of violence, discrimination and abuse across Europe, with gaps in EU and national legislation robbing them of justice and creating a climate of fear, a new report by Amnesty International says.”

The Independent’s headlines:

An intolerant continent: Europe’s shocking attitude to gay people creating a climate of fear

Amnesty International report says governments are ignoring violence and discrimination

I’m not going to draw more parallels between Quebec and Europe, or even try to explain the motivation for acts of hate, except that they all come from the same wellspring — intolerance.

Are intolerance and bigotry one and the same thing? According to my dictionary, when it comes to the intolerance of another’s beliefs, race, politics, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation etc., yes, the words are synonymous.

Intolerance = bigotry.