What will Canada’s future look like if we maintain the status quo (i.e. government promotion of multiculturalism, low birthrates, and high immigration from non-European countries)? Will Canada become a ‘post-national’ state known for its global perspective, tolerance, and acceptance of people of all races and backgrounds? It is difficult to answer this question as multiculturalism is still, to some degree, an experiment in how to organize a country.
Based on the experience to date and our knowledge of human nature, we would offer the following predictions:
1. As a nation, Canada will become increasingly “hollowed out” with no common identity, core/dominant culture or connection with its past. Tolerance and other “generic” virtues will be the only virtues held in common. People will shift their allegiance from the country as a whole to their own ethnic or identity group. Politics will focus on pandering to different ethnic/identity groups for votes. The relationship of each group to the country as a whole will be very much like the current relationship between Quebec and the rest of Canada.
2. Geographically, people will continue to group themselves into enclaves based on their ethnic or other identities. Non-Europeans will continue to migrate to larger cities. There will be greater divisions between Eastern and Western Canada and between urban and rural areas. With their more traditional outlook and stronger ties to their local communities, the rural areas will likely become the last bastions of our fading Euro-Canadian culture.
3. Rather than be subject to the Canadian legal system and other administrative structures, the more aggressive ethnic/identity groups will lobby for their own systems and structures that better meet the requirements and practises of their own religions and cultures. The first of these “parallel” systems will likely be Sharia-compliant Islamic courts.
4. If the proportion of Canadians of English and French extraction continues to decline, what will happen to our two official languages? Will their diminished influence lead Quebecers to reconsider separating from Canada?
3 February 2018
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