by Margret Kopala
Letter to the editor published in The Globe & Mail, December 24, 1994
Andrew Coyneís status quo response to the plan put forward by the Premier of Quebec sends a message of soulless pragmatism and promotes the already pervasive cynicism that the ideals informing Canadaís development as a country are no longer viable (Beware The Third Option Between Separation And the Status Quo - Dec.12) Equally mistaken is the response proposed by Jeffrey Simpson that federalists should sing from the same hymn book. This risks failure of Charlottetown Accord proportions but with worse consequences (The Federalist Choirmaster Musters His Forces To Sing In Chorus - Dec.9).
Rather, the federalist response should be to implement intellectual-style guerrilla tactics aimed at sidelining and overcoming Quebec Premier Jacques Parizeauís plan. These tactics should be clearly targeted and involve all Canadians - political parties, the provinces, etc. - having an interest in the outcome of the referendum. The overall objective would be to create a number of options for Quebeckers and other Canadians to consider, one or more of which is capable of sidelining Mr.Parizeauís. Any that failed, or simply didnít capture the imagination of the country, wonít have placed its existence in jeopardy.
Such a strategy allows us to build on the many constructive lessons available from our recent constitutional history. It also allows Canadaís political parties the opportunity to develop their positions on national unity, an issue which is likely to dominate in the next federal election.