pierre bourgault speaks at 1971 PQ congress

Uploaded by jaaaacques on 10.09.2009

My dear friends
Tonight, I would like to brief you about three things
Reassurance, Solidarity, Respectability.
Until now, at Parti Québécois, we have by all means attempted
to give ourselves a reassuring image in front of the population
...sometimes at the expense of the image of freedom I believe we should embody.
We must understand clearly that reassurance is not freedom.
Inside our party, when we feel reassured,
when we all more or less agree with one another, then, things are obviously fine.
But it is often a sign that freedom is jeopardized,
the freedom to discuss openly, which make us all feel less reassured
In front of the people of Québec, we have as well very often attempted
to display to our People a facade of reassurance, just like traditional political parties do.
Of course, voting for the Liberal Party, or for the Union Nationale, is reassuring
And how many times have we not tried
to prove to the People of Québec that we could also give them reassurance.
Let's be serious in our approach: with us,
we are perfectly aware that we are more on Freedom's side than on reassurance's.
The Independence we are trying to realize is not reassurance.
Statu quo is reassurance.
The democracy we expect out of life is not reassurance.
It's difficult, it's exasperating, it's exhausting at times.
But that's also what makes a free political party.
I think it is our duty
to not hide anything to the population
about what we believe to be necessary and true.
How many times have we backed off from our political program
because we feel that such and such point of it could scare people?
It's our duty to convince people
that this is necessary and true.
What use could it be for us
to have the best solutions
if all we can do is keep them for ourselves?
Because we fear it will scare some voters away?
What use is it to have the best political party
if we do not dare, everywhere across Québec,
to show people who we really are?
Without hiding any ideas or any people away.
I want to talk about solidarity
that we must all display toward the entire Independence movement
The Parti Québécois
is the most important piece
of this movement, although we are not the only (pieces)
And how many unnecessary occurences have we witnessed
(that) outside from our Party, there is nothing else.
Well, there are indeed, outside from our ranks,
people who promote (independence) with as much sincerity and honesty as we do
Could it be that we are sometimes enclined to denounce them?
After all, we reap benefits from their involvement.
I will name only one, his name is Michel Chartrand
We benefit from his involvement
We take advantage of his involvement
The entire Independence movement benefits from his work.
And we do not have the right,
just because he's just been in jail,
or because we don't agree with all he says or the way he talks
That doesn't allow us to say:
< I like Michel Chartrand, but however...>
Such < but, whatever > makes me sick.
We've had enough of that.
I must rapidly conclude
by telling you we must refrain ourselves
from letting us indulge in an image of respectability
which is the traditional image
projected by the noteworthy, the posessors, the well-to-do, the bourgeoisie
Respectability is not an image
This is rather where you get
when, after years, we find ourselves faithful to our initial goals
faithful to our initial ideals
and faithful to our initial dreams.
It is THAT respectability
that we should be aiming at.
You see, what is not respectable today may become so tomorrow
And this stands for Men as well as for Ideals
Ho Chi Minh was not respectable, but he became so.
Castro was not respectable, he became so.
De Gaulle was not respectable, he became so
because they remained faithful
to the dreams of their youths
and that's what I'd like the Parfti Québécois to do:
to remain faithful to the dreams that created it.
...last year, when I was defeated, I remained perfectly faithful to the Party
And now that I'm elected at the (Party's) executive council
...I think my attitude won't change, I'll stay as faithful to the PQ as I was in the past.
Will you be able to work with René Lévesque, in particular?
We'll let a week or two elapse so we can both catch our breath
I think it's always possible to work even when we find personal difficulties with one another
In the last ten years, I often had to work with dificult people
and with people who had a hard time working with me
And we always made it through. I don't see why it couldn't be done this time too.