• The Low Down

Bill 21 all too familiar with Nazi Germany

The Editor,


I am saddened and distraught with the news of a fine teacher losing her position due to a fascist law.


Yes. That word. Fascist. A word that echoes through time from another place, from a cold and dark period of human history.


The words I will write may shock some of you, and perhaps in some cases will change the way we interact in our lovely village, but you see, if we do not openly talk about what’s happening, we are, as the saying goes, doomed to repeat it.


My family is refugees, from a county once called East Germany. We escaped from the communists governing us, as life there was untenable. Despite being enemies of the Canadian people at the time, we were given a chance to start a new and peaceful life here.


But before all that, my family members were in the armed services of the German army, controlled by the National Socialist Workers Party, that fooled the German people to take up arms in the vilest of fashions — that of arms against fellow German citizens that were “not German enough” and then on to envelope the world in war.


Yes. The Nazi government.


It all started just like Quebec’s Bill 21. Early in the government running, Germany led by Hitler’s NSDAP (the correct term for what we call Nazis) with … one of the first acts that were passed into law: … The Law for the Reformation of the Professional Civil Service, [enacted on] April 7, 1933.


That law forbade “non-Aryans,” particularly Jews and communists from being in the civil service, notably as teachers, judges, and doctors. Anyone else not considered “ German enough” was also fired.


To myself and my family, this does sound all too familiar. Just like our present Bill 21 removes good people from civil service jobs, the Nazi act of 1933 did exactly the same.

My family was participants and witnesses to some of the darkest chapters of human history. And it all started just like Bill 21.


We know where this path can lead. We cannot change what came before; however we can atone in some small way to the past by shining light on the darkness of misguided nationalism.


Nicholas Tilgner

Low, QC