Jonathan Ganz is a Royal West Academy student in Grade 10. He lives in Montreal-West. He shares his experience with dealing with language in Quebec.
I was raised in English and have taken French courses but am not fully bilingual.
While I don’t hold much of a view on the political side of things, in my day-to-day life, it really is not much of an issue of whether or not people around me speak in English or French. I know enough French to get by, the majority of the people I am around speak English and it has been incredibly helpful and fulfilling to be able to switch to French when needed.
It is the simple things that seem to surprise people, like overhearing the cashier responding or asking in French and then switching to it for the duration. People seem very surprised when someone (especially a teenager) is capable of responding in both languages.
Even those who have little understanding of the other’s language try to make ends meet and I have yet to meet someone who refused to change their language while speaking.
While I know that there are people out there who are firmly stationed on either side of the language barrier, I believe that with a little tolerance, a resolution can be found that makes both parties happy. No one wants an extreme measure or drastic change but there is still a bit too much of a wall between the French and the English in Quebec and with no change that enmity will stay for a long time.
Jonathan Ganz sent his story through OurNews! What about you? What is your story of being an anglophone in Quebec?