If you would like to volunteer and join the effort, please contact us at the above email before embarking on any translation work, in order to avoid any redundancies. We cannot accept translations that have not been cleared with us first.
For more useful English-language sources on the conflict, see:
Marc-André Cyr June 4, 2012
In response to student protests, the Montreal Grand Prix decided to cancel its open house day. But since day one of the strike, the media elite agreed that “only the students” would suffer the consequences of their actions. Accordingly, many commentators used the term “boycott” rather than the fixed, and more accurate, term “strike.”
Things seem to have changed since…
To such an extent that all politicians, commentators and business people are rallying together to beg students to cease protesting. Jean Charest, Michelle Courchesne, Gérald Tremblay, columnists, commentators, journalists, TV and radio hosts and experts in all areas are unanimously calling for the defense of Montreal’s tourism industry.
Peace, they say, we want peace.
On their knees
You’ve no doubt heard the chorus of pleas that, as the La Journal de Montréal announced yesterday on its front page, has already begun…
Gilbert “I-swear-I-won’t-do-it-again” Rozon, founder of the poorly-named and generously funded “Just for Laughs” Festival, will meet with student leaders this Monday. He’ll try to explain to them how they’re “doing harm,” not only to his interests of course, but to the entire Montreal economy:
“Francopholies starts Thursday. Imagine an artist playing on an outdoor stage falling prey to protesters banging pots and pans. What’s happening to Montreal is so sad. Montreal is internationally known for its festivals. By attacking these events, the economy is seriously harmed. I don’t believe that students are making any gains by paralyzing festivals.” 
But Rozon won’t have to get down on his knees and beg the students to quit their racket, Yves-Thomas Dorval, of the Conseil du patronat, (Quebec employer’s council) has already done it for him:
” […] we’re asking you to encourage a swift end to protests in public space, even if they are festive, in order to permit calm discussions at the negotiation table, and above all, so that affected cities, notably Montreal, can provide a suitable environment for summer activities.” 
And calls for a truce aren’t only coming from the government’s strategic allies. It seems that the CSN’s Louis Roy (President of Quebec’s Confederation of National Trade Unions) is shamelessly defending the exact same position as his managerial opponent. He thinks it’s time to move on:
“It’s a draw. That means it’s a draw for everyone. The government accepts to forget about what they did in the budget and that they have to change it. And the students agree to take up the subject in public debate and the elections. We’ll all discuss it together, but in another context in the coming year.” 
Paul St-Pierre Plamondon, of Génération d’idées (a youth organization that plants brooms everywhere), also seems freaked out. He argues that we’ve reached a “threshold” and that it’s unacceptable to “threaten people or institutions that are important for our economy or our prosperity, like the Grand Prix.” .
To the majority of our elite, it isn’t corruption, police brutality, mass arrests, or international criticism of Bill 78 that hurts Montrealers, but the protests that are, in fact, denouncing this violence and authoritarianism. Between access to education and the right to political dissidence, and business and tourist festivals, our blessed and benevolent elite has chosen the camp of order and profit.
Surprising? Not at all… Our “Quebec” wants big machines, big plastic turbo breasts and big stupid jokes. Who could blame it? We’re in America, right? We can buy all we want to buy. If the right to assembly and protest is protected under law (at least, under the old law…), we should be on the watch for abuse. Protests should never hinder a show’s smooth operations; we’ve got to be passive observers. The right to profit, regardless of whether it is based on mediocrity, sexism, destruction, fascism  and insignificance, is a sacred right.
This is the principle our elite are defending this week.
It’s not a trivial fact: our economic and political elite, as called upon by the Premier, have been reduced to politely and respectfully begging for social peace. If, at the beginning, we maintained that students wouldn’t get anything out of this strike, that their protests, direct actions and disruptions weren’t justified, we now claim that they’re a significant threat to Montreal’s economy, thus to the whole province’s order and security.
In spite of the media spectacle, repression and injunctions, in spite of the government’s depravity and special law, no one can defeat the strikers’ will. Students have fought and overcome all of the obstacles the State has put in their path, one after another. So much so that the scorn of the strike’s beginning has slowly transformed into pathetic begging.
From now on, students are essential political actors in Québécois society. For our leaders, they’re inspiring respect, or fear.
Isn’t that good news?
 Michelle Coudé-Lord, “Rozon discutera avec les leaders étudiants,” Journal de Montréal, Saturday, June 2, 2012.
 Yves-Thomas Dorval, “« L’arrêt des manifestations demandé », président du Conseil du patronat du Québec,” Le Devoir, p. A08, June 1, 2012.
 Interview with Anne-Marie Dussault on 24 h en soixante minutes, May 31, 2012 (French only) http://www6.radio-canada.ca/audio-video/pop.shtml#urlMedia=http://www.radio-canada.ca/Medianet/2012/RDI/2012-05-31_19_00_00_24h60m_934_800.asx
 Isabelle Porter, “Point chaud – « Le point limite est atteint », Le fondateur de Génération d’idées craint que le mouvement étudiant ne cède au « culte de la désobéissance civile »,” Le Devoir, 4 juin 2012 Québec
 On the relationship between the Grand Prix and the far right (French only): http://www.lemonde.fr/sport/article/2009/07/04/hitler-etait-efficace-selon-bernie-ecclestone-patron-de-la-formule-1_1215398_3242.html
Translated from the original French by Translating the printemps érable.
*Translating the printemps érable is a volunteer collective attempting to balance the English media’s extremely poor coverage of the student conflict in Québec by translating media that has been published in French into English. These are amateur translations; we have done our best to translate these pieces fairly and coherently, but the final texts may still leave something to be desired. If you find any important errors in any of these texts, we would be very grateful if you would share them with us at email@example.com. Please read and distribute these texts in the spirit in which they were intended; that of solidarity and the sharing of information.