House of Commons, 18 February 1890, Canadian Confederation with Alberta and Saskatchewan

815 [COMMONS] 816
[...]inaccurate; that the matter has been relegated by Her Majesty's Government to be treated at Washington, and at Washington exclusively. Now we are really at the threshold of these discussions and negotiations.
Mr. MITCHELL. I am glad to hear that the question is not settled, as I supposed it was.


Mr. CHARLTON. I wish to ask the Minister of the Interior whether his Department has any information as to the white girl held captive by the Blackfeet Indians? An hon. member laughs. This is a matter which may be of small importance to him, but there are people who will consider it a matter of very great importance. I call the attention of the Minister to an article in the MacLeod Gazette, which reads as follows:—
"Last week the Gazette referred to the fact that a white girl was a captive among the Blackfeet Indians. We mentioned the age of the girl as being about five or six years. We have since learned that she is quite nine years old. Some doubt has been expressed in several quarters as to the truth of the story told in the Gazette last week. There is not the slightest doubt that it is true in every particular. Winnipeg Jack, whose captive the girl is, is an Indian. He can speak English, an since Lord Stanlely's visit to the reserve he has been made an interpreter. The story, as told by the Indians, is that the child was captured in a raid made by the Indians on the other side of the line, in which her father, an American officer was killed. Now that the Government are aware of the facts for if they are not they should be, it will be their sacre duty to take immediate and prompt action to rescue this girl even if it brings every Indian in the North-West Territories about their ears. There is no time to be lost. The girl is said to be nine years old, and if she is to be save from the horrible fate that is surely in store for her, should she remain where she is, there must he no delay, but prompt action. There should be no parleying."
I think this may be information which is not in the possession of the Government, and now that it is made public, prompt action should be taken by the head of the Department in regard to this matter. I feel it to be my duty to ask the hon. gentleman whether his Department has any information in regard to it, and, if it has not, I desire to bring it to his attention?
Mr. DEWDNEY. If the hon. gentleman had given me notice that he proposed to make this enquiry to-day, I would have brought the papers in connection with the subject. It was during last summer that the matter was first brought to the attention of the Government. An enquiry was made, and we hold the correspondence in the Department, which correspondence I shall be happy to grin down, or show to the hon. gentleman if he should inclined to see it. Upon enquiry made, and from information obtained from the Indians on the reserve where the white child is supposed to be, it appears that the child is the daughter of the woman with Whom she is now living. When the matter was brought to my attention, I remembered that I had seen the child myself, and while she appears to have white blood in her veins, it never struck me that she was a white child. The woman has another child, about three years of age, who is as light in color as the girl who is supposed to be the den hter of the American officer. I do not believe she is a white child, but we are making full enquiries, and we propose to follow them up in order to ascertain whether the assertion I have heard made is correct or not. I think it is not.


House resumed adjourned debate on the proposed motion of Mr. McCarthy for second reading of Bill (No. 10) to further amend the Revise Statutes of Canada, chapter 50, respecting the North-West Territories; the motion of Mr. Davin in amendment thereto, and the motion of Mr. Beausoleil in amendment to the amendment.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. Mr. Speaker, I am sure the sentiment will be re-echoed by many of us, when I say that it was not without a deep feeling of anxiety that I heard the beginning of this debate. I am still surer to respond to the feelings of all in expressing the sincere hope that, after all, it will be for the better that the debate had taken place, as it will dispel every suspicion and prevent any misunderstanding; and in that respect I cannot refrain from thanking the hon. gentlemen opposite, for their moderation, their sincerity and their patriotic stand, in discussing this delicate, this dangerous question. Let us hope that the debate will continue in the same spirit. The sensation- mongers who expected to see the parliamentary arena transformed into a regular battlefield will be disappointed, but the good name of the Canadian representatives, the good credit of the country will gain in value all that our detractors will lose in their expectations. It was thought, nay, it was predicted, that the inflammable materials which enter into the composition of all societies would be set on fire, and that our fine Dominion would soon be all in a blaze; let us hope— and it looks so, fortunately—let us hope that those inflammable elements, suspicion, prejudice and rivalry, will all be consumed and nothing will be left but the fine, solid, sterling gold frame of our young Confederation, more solid and brighter than ever, inviting the admiration of the world as it invites the covetous eye of our powerful neighbor. Were it not for that hope, were it not for the appy turn that the discussion has taken, I'would say that it is with a sense of deep regret that I have seen the Bill placed before the House by the hon. member for North Simcoe. I thought, and I had hoped the day had gone by when we would be called upon to discuss questions conducive to no public good, irritating in their nature and unjust in their object. It was to be expected that in the latter end of the nineteenth century, ideas which savor of what are considered by many as dark ages, would not be advocated in a British Canadian Parliament, advocated by one of the most eminent members of a profession where forbearance, liberality and good fellowship are so universally ractised. The hon. member for Simcoe has argued very strongly against the propriety of enacting the right to dual language in the North-West from the fact that, at the time of the cession of Canada, no such clause was inserted in the Articles of Capitulation, in the Treaty of Paris, in the Quebec Act of 1774, and in the Act of 1791. Discouragingly blind in the perception of historical facts, in the appreciation of significant events, the hon. member has not seen that the law of nations secured that right to a people who had against them the fate of war, but who were not conquered, in the strict sense of the word, since the last regular engagement of that war, the battle at Ste. Foye, was a brilliant victory for the French; 817 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 818 and if the hon. member had only taken some of the first official documents under the military regime which followed the Cession, he would have found that the British generals, still smarting under the irritation of a long and obstinate struggle, were more generous to their foes of yesterday than is my hon. friend for the inoffensive descendants of the discoverers and first settlers of the Hudson's Bay and Rupert's Land. It is a fact worthy of consideration, a fact which should not be overlooked, that, acting according to his instructions, or applying simply the general laws which govern the relations between the conquerors and the vanquished, General Murray, the first Governor of Quebec, used the French language in all his dealings with the King's new subjects. I hold in my hand his proclamation, dated 1764, which enacts in what manner his future proclamations shall be published, and it is in French. General Carleton, afterwards Lord Dorchester, issued a proclamation in 1770, before the "Quebec Act," in which he states that proclamations shall be made in English and in French. All the ordinances of the Quebec Gazette, which is made up chiefly of official documents, are printed in English and in French, from the date of its first issue in 1764. Have I not reason to wonder, Mr. Speaker, that over one century ago we can find such liberal ideas prevailing, in comparison with those of self-styled high-toned and high-minded gentlemen of this enlightened age? Taking at a glance a general view of the policy of the British Government in this country, I am glad to say that I find that it has always been most intelligent, most liberal, except for some period when the home Government was inspired by the misrepresentations of some of their friends in Canada. I regret also that the hon. member should have thought fit to bring in this Bill—which, according to the plan of campaign expounded in the press and in the public meetings of the Equal Righters, is the first practical step in the hostile movement directed against, a people whose loyalty to the Crown and British institutions is above suspicion. I say that this is the first step, because we all know that what is asked for in this Bill is only a small portion of what is desired. Judging from the utterances of the hon. member, outside of Parliament, we must expect blows to be directed at the Catholic minority of Ontario, of Manitoba, of the North-West Territories; it is hoped for that the day will soon come when the Catholics and the French, if they wish to have schools of their own, will have to support them and also the public schools of those portions of the country. This Bill, therefore, is the initial step in a direction leading to all sorts of strife, is the first step in the reversal of a generous licy which all classes of the population of Canada have approved of for upwards of fifty years. This enlightened pohcy has given us prosperity, good feeling among the different races, good fellowship among public men. We have been taught to esteem each other, in working to ether for the common good of the country, sinking down all race and creed prejudices, agreeing to disagree on several subjects, but all agreeing to push the country forward in the path of material prosperity. We are asked to-day, to reverse that policy, to go back to the days of strife, of bitter feeing, out of which no good can come. It behooves men that value the peace and prosperity of the country, to stamp out this dangerous agitation, to discourage it at the outset and let well alone. Many right-meaning men do not see the ultimate result of this first move, because if they understood it I am sure it would receive condemnation at their hands. The legislation which we are asked to place in our statutes, not only savors of persecution, but is also retrograde. I take it for granted that the quality of British citizenship is not incompatible with a foreign origin, that a British subject may be of French origin and a Roman Catholic. If you admit of this double proposition, which I claim to be a fair and just one, which I have never heard contested, I do not see how any one can countenance the Bill now before this House. If you admit my proposition, if we of the Province of Quebec are British subjects enjoying all the privileges and rights which this quality confers, I cannot understand how the member for North Simcoe can ask the House to accept his Bill, in the light of what has been done in the Province of Quebec to satisfy the claims, the just claims of the Protestant minority. This extraordinary war, declared on the minority of the western part of the Country cannot be looked upon otherwise than as cruel and uncalled- for by every inhabitant of the Province of Quebec. The different sections of the population have managed to work in harmony, presenting the pleasing spectacle of a people divided by nationalities and religion, but united for all other purposes. Does the promoter of the Bill now before the House know how the minority there have been treated? Does he know that when Confederation took place, it was agreed between the leaders of Quebec that the limits of twelve counties of Quebec Province, in which the English element predominated at that time, would never be changed without the consent of the representatives of those counties? Does the hon. gentleman ignore that the Protestant minority have practically a Council of public instruction of their own, which has complete control of educational matters? Does he know that in the smallest municipalities of the Province of Quebec this control exists? Surely he must be aware that every request of the minority in Quebec has always been granted by the majority? A few years ago it was suggested that a separate gaol be set apart for the Protestants, and this suggestion was acted upon and has now become a fact. Later on it was likewise suggested that a special lunatic asylum should be constructed for Protestant patients, and the scheme is now bein carried out. The Protestants of Quebec are satisfied; but, strange to say, they are taken to task by men like the promoter of the coercive legislation now proposed to this House, and are blamed for their being satisfied. People have been speaking of the power of the Catholic Church. Power from whom? My English Protestant friends, I suppose, do not pretend that the Roman Catholic Church extends its power over them; what, then, their grievances are, I am at a loss to know. But I would read here the opinion of a man who has been living all his lifetime in the Province of Quebec, of a man whose liters merit is onl equalled by the keen perception of an unprejudiced and thoroughly informed observer as set forth in an article published in one at the periodicals of Toronto, which must have 819 [COMMONS] 820 attracted considerable public attention. It is an article written by Mr. S. E. Dawson, of Montreal, and I will quote a few sentences from it just to show what is the true feeling of the Protestant minority in the Province of Quebec in regard to those pretended grievances:
"The English Protestant minority in the Province of Quebec ought to be very unhappy, if for no other reason, because so many estimable people in the sister Provinces and in the United States seem to be distressed on their account. It is not pleasant to be the object of so much solicitude, Besides, it is too late. The doctrine of 'States' rights' has been so persistently maintained by the other Provinces, especially by New Brunswick and Ontario, that it is imposslble to deny to the French in Quebec those powers which the English majorities in the other Provinces have successfully asserted. What assistance, then the other Provinces can afford to the minority of Quebec does not clearly appear, even if that minority shared generally in the gloomy apprehensions felt elsewhere on their account.
"The English minority ought also to be unhappy because of the civil and religious disadvantages which it would appear from outside sources that they are obliged to endure. And, then, if perchance any one of the minority faintly suggests that he cannot perceive anything unusually hard in his lot—anything beyond what falls to minorities elsewhere—me is chidden by 'superior persons' for not realising his abject condition. So that he becomes discouraged because he is not unhappy enough to please his neighbors.
"For, after all, in real deed, the most of us who have long resided in this Province do not find it in the least disagreeable. Unless the Anglo-Saxon mind is at an early age familiarised with other races and religions, it is apt to form fixed ideas. And so it often happens that the rench Roman Catholic, as imagined by our outside friends, is different from the person we come in daily contact with. An Englishman may dwell a life-time in peace in the heart of French Canada. Nobody will leave tracts at his door or give them to his children. He may be on excellent terms, and even exchange hospitalities, with the curé; but if that reverend gentleman should feel any doubts about his host's future state, he will never be disagreeable enough to express them."
Yes, Mr. Speaker, this is, unfortunately, the position of affairs in the Province of Quebec since the beginning of this agitation. Nobody knows where the evil is. The evil does not exist; but our Protestant friends in the Province of Quebec, who have not complained, are taken to task and are lectured because they do not understand that they are unhappy, even if they do not see it or feel it. Mr. Speaker, what is the principle, or rather the negation of principle, at the bottom of the Bill presented by my hon. friend from Simcoe? It is coercion in a matter where coercion cannot exist. Coercion has been tried in several countries in matters of language and religion, and everywhere it has been tried the result has been contrary not only to expectations, but in a large measure contrary to the wish of those who have employed such means. Now, it is a very sad thing to see how the lessons of history are lost for our Equal Rights people, and how much, by neglecting this part of their education, they are drifting into a channel of narrow ideas. During the early part of the British regime in Canada, compulsion and coercion was trio with a view of welding together the different elements of population, so as to form a homogeneous nation, and it was always found that this coercion had a result quite contrary to what was expected. The most enlightened of our governors have declared time and again that the only way to strengthen British rule in Canada was to conciliate the King's new subjects. Such was the opinion of General Murray, of Lord Derchester, of Sir J. Provost, and of many others, including and foremost amongst them, Lord Elgin. The Equal Righters, who are also, most of them, Imperial Federationists, think differently; but I may tell them that if their aim is to perpetuate British institutions in America by sowing the seed of dissatisfaction, they are wide of the mark. There is one consideration which naturally springs from what I have just said. It is this: That they appear to have lost sight of the broad policy inaugurated by the English Government years ago, but they should not overlook the fact that if they can boast to-day of the title of British citizens, which they profess to value so much, they owe it to the ancestors of the very people they seem to hate and despise. What would have become of the British rule in the wars of Independence and of 1812, if French Canada,—instead, I do not say of fighting, but of being loyal, had simply remained neutral. None but stone- blind men would say that this Canada of ours would still be a British country. It is a matter of history that the Governors of Canada in olden times would arrive here imbued with prejudices against the "Canadians," and that, after studying the country, these prejudices would make way for sounder notions leading to a change of policy. Immediately after the conquest, General Murray wrote to the Home Government in praise of the King's new subjects. Lieutenant-General Carleton, who, during the war of Independence, was saved from falling into the hands of American soldiers in his fight from Montreal to Quebec by a Canadian Officer—General Carleton was a fast friend of the people he was expected by some newly—landed emigrant to crush out of existence. I could lengthen this list until your patience would be exhausted; but I must turn to things of the day, and say, that I am amazed to see men, very few I hope, brought up in contact with us, having for years professed the greatest friendship, accepted the hand extended to them, suddenly turn around on the Government to persecute and hound down the men they were so friendly to some months ago. I am amazed to find men of the day, aspiring to be the leaders of the people, reversing the policy inaugurated by men whose position placed them above the passions of the moment. When I see that the first Governors under the British rule, before the Quebec Act of 1874, and even during the military rule, condescended to publish the laws and the ordinances in French, I have a right to express my surprise that this meagre measure of justice appears in the eyes of certain gentlemen to be too large for the French population of the western Territories. French was used, more than a century ago, to bring the ordinances before the people, and that, after a terrible war, when vanquished and conquerors were face to face; and now, after a union of over one century, this simple act of justice, of international courtesy, which costs the country the enormous sum of five hundred dollars a year, is considered out of place and too generous. If you expect to make a great country with such ideas you are sadly mistaken. Sir Henry Summer Maine and Sir Alfred Lyell have claimed as one of the brightest titles of Great Britain to the admiration of the civilised world that, following the example of Rome, which left the conquered people their customs and institutions, England, in its acquisitions of territory, anted to the Crown's new subjects their former we and customs. If we look at the British Empire we find it carrying into eflect this generous 821 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 822 principle of international law. The Equal Righters seem to think that the use of the French language is a monstrous privilege, something unheard of in other countries. They would not have to travel out of the British Empire to find out that we are not a privileged class, and that in many British colonies several other languages are spoken besides the idiom of Shakespeare. In the Windward Islands they will find the French laws and the French language accepted and used. In Mauritius French is spoken in the Legislative Council, and last year a proposition was made to introduce it in the law courts, and no one opposed it. I may here quote a remark which was made in that Assembly, and which will receive its application in the North- West, if the Equal Righters have their own way. One of the speakers in the Mauritius Assembly said that a man coming out of court had remarked: "I have been accused and condemned, and I do not know what for." Coming back to the British colonies I find also that French was introduced in the Seychelles Islands. Let us come nearer England. The Education Commission of 1886-7-8, in their final report, say, in regard to the demands from Wales, that the Welsh language should be used in the schools of Wales:
"It is felt that they should be allowed to take up Welsh as a specific subject recognised in the code; to adopt an optional scheme for English as a class subject suitable to the special needs of Welsh districts, such scheme being founded on the principle of substituting a graduate system of translation from Welsh to English for the resent requirements in English grammar; to teach Welsh along with English as a class subject; and to include Welsh among the languages in whic candidates for Queen's scholarships and or certificates of merit may be examined."
With reference to Scotland, the same Commissioners say:
"In districts where Gaelic is spoken the intelligence of the children examined under any paragraph of this article may be tested by requiring them to explain in Gaelic the meaning of any passages read or recited."
In India, according to the Progress Report, India, 1882-3, the native laws and language are recognised as follows:—
"1. Law—The natives of India, Hindu, Mohammedan or other, are amenable, so far as regards succession, inheritance, marriage, caste, or religious usages, each class to their own law, except when modified by express enactment. (Progress Rep. (India) 1882-3, p. 40.)
"2. Language in the Courts—In the Punjab, Urdu and Hindustani are the official languages of the courts. (Progress Rep., 1882-3, p. 322 )
In the native minor courts the native languages are spoken.
"3. Schools—In the Government schools of the Punjab, Urdu and Hindustani are the languages in which the instruction is given.
"4. Literature—In 1886 the register of publications for British India showed 8,877 books and magazines published within the year; of these more than nine-tenths were in vernacular languages."
In Heligoland education is compulsory. The children, mostly of Frisian origin and speaking their own language, are taught English and German in addition to the English. In Malta Italian is the official language of courts and documents. In the Cape of Good Hope, in the Session of 1888, it was resolved that the notices of motion and orders of the day and all bills submitted to the Council be printed in the Dutch as well as the English language, and this resolution was carried by twelve to seven, and the Finance Gommittee asked to have a sum of money placed in the Estimates for this Purpose, which was done. And in 1884 an Act was passed under which judges may, and other judicial officers shall, allow the use of either the Dutch or the English language in courts of justice, and divisional councils of a certain number of voters could ask to have summonses and notices issued in Dutch. I shall have occasion to put before the House, in a moment, the opinion of a gentleman who visited Canada not long ago, one of the most prominent men of England, and a well-known writer, who drew a comparison then between the Cape of Good Hope and Canada, which he concluded by saying that the people of these two colonies are the last and best specimens of British conservatism which still exists, and that these colonies were kept true to England by the generous and liberal treatment which they received at the hands of the Imperial Government. I refer to Sir Charles Dilke. The debate on this subject has considerably widened. My hon. friend who proposed this measure, and those who support it, felt themselves compelled to seek other reasons beyond the practical question to which they would like to reduce it; and in their search for reasons they went to foreign countries. But in their search they were equally unfortunate. For what do we find? Take Austro—Hungary, we find that Louis Leger, in his history of Austro-Hungary, says:
"The Universities of Vienna. Gratz Innsbruck and Gernovic teach in German. The Chekh Universities teach in Chockh The Cracow University teaches in Polish. The Universities of Livow in Polish and Ruthenian. The Universities of Buda—Pesth and Rolosovar teach in Magyar. The University of Zagreb teaches in Croatian.
"The University of Prague, which was first Latin and then German, has recently been divided into two universities, one teaching in German.the other in Chekh,the Hungarian tongue."
Article 19 of the Fundamental Law promulgated in 1867 under the authority of Count Beust, is as follows:—
"All the races of the Empire are on a footing of equality and each one of the nations severally has aright that the inviolability of its nationality and its language shall be secured. The equality of all languages used in the Empire for the purposes of administration or schools, and for public life, is recognised by the State."
Vambery, in his History of Austria, says:
"In 1859 a most important concession was made by the- Imperial Government to the spirit of nationality. By a ministerial order, the language used in the higher schools was, for the future, to be regulated according to the circumstances of nationality, the predominance of German being thereby abolished. In the same year was issued what was known as the Protestant Patent, which granted to the communes the free administratibn of their own educational and religious matters."
These examples show that the countries which have been wisely guided by the necessities of the different nationalities comprising them are those whose vitality is the most pronounced. If, in order to make a nation great, its people should speak but the one language, could it not be argued that there should be in the whole world but one language in order to make it perfect. If there is to assimilation, let there be assimilation all over the world; let there be but one language all over the world. If that is necessary for one nation, it is equally necessary for the whole world. That is the view held by Socialists. They say there should be no differences, no classes, that every citizen in the world should be treated as his neighbor is, and that Christian fraternity should be put in practice, in politics and in the administration of the material and moral affairs of the 823 [COMMONS] 824 people. They hold that all men should be equal in rank, in privileges, in right, and in every possible way. This is communism, radicalism and demagogism. (I must say that in its logical consequences the Bill we discuss has that tendency.) The hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) has argued against the propriety of allowing the French language to be used in the North-West, on the ground that at the time of the cession of Canada no such law was inserted in the articles of capitulation, that it was not inserted in the Treaty of 1763, and that it was not in the Quebec Act of 1774, or in the Act giving constitutional government to Canada in 1791. I say that is no argument. If it was not then enacted, the reason is this: there was a tacit understanding that the right of the people to their language should be respected. But my hon. friend has gone further, and has said: Oh, in a new country, where people are beginning to colonise and settle, it is wrong in principle and it is a wrong policy to permit differences of language. But there is no difference between the two cases. In the one case, you find the people in a conquered country attached to their own language, and you all allow them to speak it; in the other case, you are asking people to come from all parts of the world to settle in your country; is it not a wise policy to assure them that when they arrive here, they will find the laws of the country promulgated at least in a language they can understand. This has been the wise policy followed in England. It is true, however, the Equal Righters in this country have had ancestors in England. The Solicitor General in England, in the debate on the Act of 1774, speaks of a Canadian Grand Jury who some years before had returned an indictment against all the Roman Catholics of the country. But Sir, I repeat, it here: the British statesmen have framed a generous and liberal policy for the early government of this country, a policy which has saved this colony for England instead of sending it over to the "Stars and Stripes," or of creating a sort of Ireland here in America. In presence of the noble conduct of these statesmen I say that the policy to foster religious strife or race animosities, whether coming from a Quebec "Nationalist" or a Toronto "Equal Righter" is the greatest enemy of British rule in Canada. More than one hundred years ago, when the English Parliament was meting out its first measure of justice to the French Canadians, in 1774, an English statesman, defending the Quebec Act, said that no address or eloquence:
"Will succeed in inducing a polished assembly of men to adopt the barbarous principle that the moment a conquest is obtained, it consists with humanity, it consists with wisdom, it consists with common honesty to take away all the laws of the conquered country, and more especially that portion of the laws which regulated the proceedings of the inhabitants in civil matters. Speaking of the rights of conquest. Grotius has these words: Cum omne imperium victis) eripitur relinqui illis possunt circa res privatae et publicae, suae leges, cuique mores et magistratus. Since all authority is snatched from the conquered, leave to them their own laws, their own customs and magistrates which are of advantage regarding private and public matters."
These are the moderated ideas of conquest. Such has been the practice of nations tween one another. Is it not extraordinary that, after one hundred years, that celebrated debate can be quoted in a Canadian Assembly in a most appropriate manner. Prejudices from past ages still linger free land of America, but I hope that the vast majority of the citizens of Canada will stamp them out, will prefer peace and prosperity to religious and race strife, will leave to time the settlement of passing difficulties. I confess that the fate of the French language is in your hands; you can crush it out of official life, but I am sure that if the people of Canada rise, through their representatives, in their power and strength, it will be to assert, after the British Parliament, that right stands in their estimation far above might. How differently inspired was Lord Dufferin when he had occasion to mention the French Canadian race and its language. Speaking, at the time of his administration in Canada, at the Canadian Club in London, in 1875, that distinguished Governor General said:
"I may be permitted to remark on the extraordinary ability and intelligence with which the French portion of Her Majesty's subjects in Canada join with their British fellow-countrymen in working and developing the constitutional privileges with which (thanks to the initiative they were the first to take) their country has been endowed. Our French fellow-countrymen are, in fact, more parliamentary than the English themselves, and in the various fortunes of the colony, there have never been wanting French statesmen of eminence to claim an equal share with their British colleagues in shaping the history of the Dominion. Whatever may be the case elsewhere, in Canada, at all events, the French race has learned the golden rule and the necessity of arriving at practical results by the occasional sacrifice of logical symmetry and to the settlement of disputes, in the spirit of a genemus compromise. The spectacle of two peoples, formed from nationalities so diverse, putting forth all their strength, in generous rivalry of each other, to prove their loyalty to their Queen and to the Government, and laboring with concerted action and in perfect harmony for the weal of their common country, wil1 remain one of the most remarkable and pleasing facts in the history of the world, while also it will testify to the political wisdom and the magnanimous sentiments which pervade all the members of the great Canadian family."
And in Montreal in 1872, at the inauguration of the Queen's statue, on Victoria Square, Lord Dufferin, speaking of the minority in this Dominion, said:
"Brave and noble race, which was the first to afford Europe the means of bringing civilisation to the Continent of America, race valorous and hardy, whose pioneers, in the interior of this continent, gave scope to the industry of Europe to take root not only on the banks of the St. Lawrence, but also in the fertile valleys of the Ohio and of the Mississippi."
I could continue these quotations, but I will not take up the time of the House further by reading them. Sir, I ask myself, what credit, what glory does the hon. gentleman think he will get in erasing from the pages of the Statute three inoffensive lines which, when erased, will not add an iota to the power, the success, the supremacy of his race in the North-West, whilst, as he well knows, it will he considered as an unprovoked insult, as an attempt at oppression by those against whom his action is directed. No, Sir, the great legislators of the world—and my hon. and learned friend is well gifted enough to justify his ambition to be one of them—the great legislators of the world have not gained their fame by such narrow legislation. They have added to the code of humanity enactments in the sense of protection for the weak, of peaceful progress, enlarged civilisation—in a word, they have added to the true "unity and comity" of nations.
"A wise prince," says Burke, " should study the genius of the nation he is called to rule; he must not contradict them in their custom nor take away their privileges, but 825 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 826 he must actaccording to the circumstances in which he finds the existing Government. It is less by terror than by love and confidence, says Montesquieu, that men are governed, and if absolute perfection in matter of Government is a myth, it is a fact that the best is the Government which adapts itself most closely to the climate, to the character, the usages, the habits, the prejudices even of the country."
The indisputable evidence of past history has long demonstrated the truth of those old but wise aphorisms. An hon. member—I think the hon. member for North Norfolk (Mr. Charltony—has quoted the example of Rome, but, if we go back to ancient history, what do we see? We see two great powers—according to the books of the colleges, which I suppose every one of you has read and translated—two great nations warfaring one against the other for the supremacy of the world— Carthage and Rome. If we look at the policy of those two great cities which founded two great nations, we find that the ruin of Carthage was brought about in great measure by the hostility which it developed to the nations it had subdued by its armies. In Sicily, where important Greek settlements had fallen into its power, a regular persecution was organised against the language, the customs, the opinions of the conquered. It succeeded in making of them irreconcilable enemies who rose against it at the hour of danger. Rome, on the contrary, courted the sympathies of the Greeks whom she had conquered. She encouraged the study of their language; she preserved their laws, respected their customs, their religion, their schools. The result of the two policies is written in history. Carthage was destroyed, when everything seemed to promise her success and domination. Rome gave to her citizens the freedom of the world and to her name an everlasting glory. What Carthage did, the Normans attempted in England after the conquest. There again the persecution saw the victims victorious in the long struggle, and England was founded, to continue the traditions, the success and the glory of the Roman Empire. If the proud and magic "Civis Sum Romanus" has had a rival in the talismanic "I am a British subject," it is due, in a great measure, to the liberal and generous policy of England, more than to the fear of her military power. The founder of the German Empire, Frederick the Great, understood the advantages which the conservative principles of the Catholic religion could give him in the Catholic provinces which he had subdued. He protected his new subjects in spite of the narrow-minded advisers who predicted that the court of Vienna would be served, in its intrigues, by the protection given to the Catholics of Silesia. The great emperor took no heed of those short-sighted counsels. In one of his letters I read these memorable words: "Emperor Joseph continues his work of secularisation without interruption. Here everybody remains as he was. I respect the rights of possession, upon which society is founded." And his Catholic provinces of Silesia remained faithful to him. Examples of the same kind are to be found in the history of all the great nations of Europe, where union began under the warm and beneficial influence of generosity and forbearance, leaving to the action of time the work of blending together nationalities and languages in the direction of perfect homogeneity. The great masters in political science, the founders of vast and permanent empires, were above the prejudices of class, creed or race. Their wisdom enacted the great Jus Gentium, which is so, as Montesquieu observes, that "victory leaves to the conquered nations, besides life, those great things, liberty, laws, property, and religion always, when one is not blind, voluntarily." I might quote again, if I did not fear to weary the patience of the House, the same authority that I quoted a moment ago, to confirm my assertion, that Great Britain acted wisely in granting those liberties and privileges to Canada, and that Canadians merited such a liberal treatment at the hands of the mother country. Lord Dufferin, in his reception at Windsor, Ontario, on the 19th August, 1874, spoke as follows:—
"But it is not merely on this ground that we are under obligation to the French Canadian race. It must not be forgotten that it is to its loftiness of spirit to its love of liberty, and to its just appreciation of the civil rights contained in germ in the constitution originally granted by England to Canada, that we owe the development of this parliamentary autonomy of which the nation is so justly proud; and I can assure you that, in the eyes of an Englishman, there are few things more delightful to observe than the dignity the moderation, and the political capability, with which the French statesmen of Canada aid their English colleagues in applying and in putting into active operation these grand principles of law and of constitutional practice, which are the foundation of the free government of this country."
After such high tributes given to our nationality I was surprised, Mr. Speaker, and I was shocked when I heard the hon. member for North Norfolk (Mr. Charlton) using the following language:—
"As to the loyalty of the Canadian bishops in refusing the offer of the Americans to join in the insurrection against England, I have my doubts about it; I am disposed to believe that they then obeyed the dictations of their own interests, to the interests of their church, more than to the true impulse of patriotism and loyalty."
The member for Norfolk will allow me to tell him he must have read in very strange books the history of our country, or he must have drank at empoisoned sources his inspirations, with regard to the great factors of our nationality, to have been guilty of such a cruel anachronism. Why, Mr. Speaker, leaving the largest possible margin for the shortcomings, nay, the faults of a part of our clergy—and I am ready to admit that such amargin can be made use of—I affirm, without fear of contradiction, that no more admirable and uninterrupted succession and tradition of loyalty and devotion to the British Crown can be traced than to the history of the Roman Catholic Episcopacy of Lower Canada. I say, hoping that my words are not unparliamentary, that no more undeserved, no more unwarranted slander was ever written than the page of our Hansard where those unfortunate utterances of the hon. member for Norfolk are recorded. Disloyal and selfish, the bishops of Quebec! Who refused and repudiated the tempting offers, not of the Americans alone, but of the French generals whom the Catholic King of France had sent to assist the thirteen colonies in their rebellion against England? Was he disloyal, Mr. Speaker, the eminent Metropolitan of Quebec, who ordered a Thanksgiving day to be observed, a solemn Te Deum to be sung in honor of the victory of Trafalgar, won by Nelson over the French forces, and who, in his pastoral letter, speaking of the reverse of the French arms, said this:
"What calamities would have ha. pened to us if they (the Frenchmen) had seized His jesty's possessions 827 [COMMONS] 828 abroad, ruined his commerce, shut the gates to his wealth, and so diminished the means to check their rapacity and their spirit of domination."
Was he disloyal when he ordered his priests to teach their parishioners gratitude and fidelity to the Crown. Was he disloyal and selfish the noble priest who preached the sermon on the Thanksgiving Day appointed by the bishop, and who chose for his text the significant words "Dextera tua Domine percussit inimicum." "It is thy hand, O Lord, that struck the enemy." Adding these words:
"Does it not seem to you a cruel thing to call 'an enemy' a country to which this colony owes its origin, a nation which was so long united to us by the strong ties of race, of friendship, of language, of religion; a country that has given us fathers, protectors, pastors, models of all virtues, beloved sovereigns, whose wise and moderate government made us happy, whilst they deserved our affections and gratitude."
Who, after mentioning the generosity of the King, of England adds:
"What return must you give for so many favors? A deep feeling of thankfulness towards Great Britain, a sincere desire to remain under that protection, a full conviction that our interests are dependent of the mother country, and that our happiness is interwoven with that of the Empire."
Are these the words of disloyal men? And can a man in his senses find an excuse for saying that those loyal appeals were not sincere? That noble priest, Mr. Speaker, became, very soon after, a prelate of our church, Bishop Plessis, one of the most eloquent, one of the most illustrious, one of the most loyal bishops of the Province of Quebec, who fought for the rights and liberties of his countrymen, and who was afterwards favored with the friendship of the first statesman in England, and who received from the British Crown an acknowledgment of the services that he had rendered, both to his fellow-countrymen and to the British Empire. Wrongly informed by the books he read, the hon. member for North Simcoe said that the insurrection in 1837 was a war of races and not the result of misgovernment. I am at a loss to know in what book the hon. gentleman has read the history of Canada. First, he forgets that the insurrection was not limited to Lower Canada, that Upper Canada had its share of it; then, that several prominent Englishmen of the Province of Quebec took part in the Rebellion. Does he not know also that the principles upon which the constitutional battle was fought from 1791 to 1837 were those for which the English had been fighting for more than a century—in fact, for the articles of the Magna Charta—for the pure, prompt and impartial administration of justice, for the control by the people of the expenditure of public money, for the redress of abuses and shocking favoritism from the personal and tyrannical chief of the Executive. The hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) and his friends—for, after all, we must take them together, because they have a plan of campaign, they have entered upon an agitation which has been carried throughout the country—these gentlemen submit three reasons in support of the Bill now before the House. These are: First, that the North-West has been rapidly filled by Anglo-Saxon immigration, and that the number of people speaking the French language is so small in the Territories that the expenditure involved in the use of a second language in official proceedings is a waste of money. econd, a dual language is a source of contention and division, and should never be allowed in the framing of the constitution of a new country. Third, the use of the French language was not allowed to the first inhabitants of the country after it fell into British hands; that it has always been a source of division and discord in this country, that it is inconsistent with true British loyalty; and that the sooner it disappears the better. I have endeavored to give answers to the two last reasons. But let us face squarely the argument with regard to the Territories themselves. What is the reason given for objecting to the dual language in the North-West Territories? The hon. gentleman has said that the Act amending the first North-West Territories Act was passed at a time when there were no people in the Territories to assent or consent to it. But the hon. gentleman should remember that there was a population there at that time; and they were people who, with their ancestors, had occupied the country for nearly a century. The North Saskatchewan, Lac a la Fourche, Prince Albert, Edmonton and Battleford were settled. The Territories had a population in 1877, although it was not a teeming population. And why was it that the French language was allowed to those people? It was because at that time the great majority of the people of those Territories was French. Time has passed, and the country has been conquered peacefully by another race. Do hon. gentlemen imagine that we French Canadians of another Province find fault with that result? No; I speak here the sentiments of my fellow-countrymen when I say that the greater the Anglo-Saxon immigration is into those Territories the better for the Territories and for the country at large. They have put their money and their energies into that country. They have shown themselves good settlers, and they are now a large majority in these Territories. I am not sorry of it. I speak of it without any feeling or without any prejudice. As I have stated on many occasions, I have invited English to be spoken in my home, and the peace of that home has not been disturbed by the difference of language in our prayers to the Almighty. I do not envy my neighbor because he succeeds in the path of life, with another language, another creed than mine. The sun shines for all, and I leave him his right as I want him to leave me mine. We find from the census returns, which no one will controvert, that the French and French half-breed population in the Territories is in the proportion of 13 per cent. —that is to say, that one-seventh, or a little more, of the population, is French, as to the language, in the North-West Territories. Now, in the Province of Quebec about one-sixth of the population is English, but nobody has ever dreamed of denying them the use of their language. My hon. friend may say you could not take from them the use of their language, because the constitution of the Province of Quebec would prevent you; nor could you do it, in view of the importance of the Anglo-Saxon race, their industry, their energy and the capital they have in the Province of Quebec. I will admit all that, but I say, and I speak for my countrymen when I say so, that, leaving those reasons aside, and considering only the paramount right of minorities, if a measure were proposed in the Province of Quebec to abolish the use of the English language, I would be the first to denounce it and am sure the immense majority of my fellow-countrymen would 829 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 830 do the same. My conservative instincts would prevent me from endorsing a proposition, which would be, in my estimation, unfair, unjust, demagogic in its tendencies as is the measure advocated by my hon. friend.
Mr. CHARLTON. I rise to a question of order. An expression was used by the hon. Minister, for which my hon. friend on my right (Sir Richard Cartwright) was ruled out of order on a former occasion. I do not know if it is proper that it should be allowed to be used on one side of the House and not on the other.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. I am ready to withdraw it for the hon. gentleman, although I must say I was not thinking of him at the time.
Mr. MCCARTHY. He was addressing it with regard to me, and I prefer that the word should not be withdrawn.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. I was referring to the member for North Simcoe when the member for North Norfolk (Mr. Charlton) called me to order, and I was calling this measure of the member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) a revolutionary measure, a demagogic measure and I do not think the expression unparliamentary. I say, that if such a measure were proposed in the Province of Quebec, even though the English race occupied only the same position with regard to the French as the French do with regard to the English in the North- West Territories, I would say "no" to such a proposition. I would declare that no offensive predominance should be given to the majority in a country where both races should be united. I ask myself what is the object to be gained by the measure proposed by my hon. friend? Is it to make the members of the Legislature of the North-West speak English? That cannot be the object, because they all speak English now, and I understand there is not a single elected man who is French. Is it his object to prevent the votes and deliberations of the North-West Assembly being printed in French? That cannot be, for I believe they are, in fact, only printed in the English language now, for the obvious reason that the members are all English.
Mr. DAVIN. They never have been printed in French.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. My hon. friend tells me, as a matter of fact, they never have been printed in French, and there is, therefore, no reason to make a law that they shall not be printed in that language. In the Privy Council at Ottawa our proceedings are all in English, and there is no necessity for having them printed in French, not by law, but for the mere convenience of the case, and nobody complains. So it would be in the North-West Assembly. But, as regards the promulgation of the laws, I appeal to the hon. member for Simcoe if it is not necessary that a large portion of that population, who understands only the French language, are entitled to know what laws they should obey and to have them printed in their own language? The French Canadians can lay claim to the title of being the first settlers of that country, and there is some value in that title. That title has been acknowledged to the Indians, even by the American Government, at a time when their policy towards the Indians was— I will not say barbarous—but most severe, and in the North-West the first settlers were French, and the Hudson Bay Company respected their language and their customs. Why should we not treat them as well as they were treated when there was no regular government in those Territories? I say that if the measure of my hon. friend became law, a large portion of the population would be without knowledge of the laws they are supposed to obey. And as the Legislature has in its hands the whole of the municipal government of the country, the injustice would be more cruel. If he had only said: it is useless that the Legislature of the North-West should have French in their proceedings, the answer would be the sentimental one that they have, as an important minority composed of the first settlers of the land, a right to speak French in that Legislature. But against that I would have said: Wait for the sub-division of the country, when there will likely be three or four French- speaking members elected to that body; then we would not have to pass Draconian laws here to prevent them having French, because they would have it. The English-speaking people of the North-West would be as courteous to them as the French-speaking majority in the Province of Quebec have been to the English-speaking minority in that Province; and we know very well that if there were French members in the North-West Council it would be allowed to them to speak French. There will soon be a very large German immigration into that country—and I hope there will be, the Germans make very good settlers—and suppose three or four members elected for the Legislature were German; if they wanted to speak German, they would have a right to do so. Sir, if you do not respect the covenants which have been entered into between the two important races in the Dominion, to the extent of permitting the laws of the land to be published in the language of the minority, you are committing a cruel injustice, and retarding the progress of the country. Why, Sir, we spend thousands of dollars every year to publish pamphlets for distribution in France, Switzerland, Alsace-Lorraine and elsewhere—for what purpose? To bring French immigration to Canada, to say to those people that when they arrive here they will find the ordinances of the country and many of those ordinances refer mainly to local interests and objects—and its laws printed in their own language. To deprive them of this privilege would be a gross injustice. But my hon. friend knew this very well; he knew that if he could prevent the promulgation and publication of the laws and ordinances of the North-West in French, he would prevent French immigration into that country. He knew it, and he did it with that object in view; he had the courage to acknowledge it. I am sorry to say that the Equal Righters who are acting with the hon. member for North Simcoe are to blame if a war of races is the result of their agitation; but I hope I am not mistaken in believing that many hon. gentlemen, whose names have been connected with those of the hon. member for North Simcoe and the hon. member for North Norfolk, do not carry their feelings to that extent. I know that amongst them there are men who do not wish anything of that kind to happen. It is very 831 [COMMONS] 832 easy to set fire to this very inflammable piece of timber, a race agitation, and take that agitation as a means to achieve success; but I must say that if there is a glow for the ambition of a public man, it should not be a glow coming from the fires of prejudice and passion which he himself has kindled. The hon. gentleman has taken charge of a measure which the people of the North-West would have confided to any of the members representing them here if a real grievance had existed. Who has moved him to introduce this Bill? Has he done it of his own motion or had he a mandate for doing it? He went up to the North-West on a mission, and he has accomplished it; but I hope and believe that he will accomplish nothing by his measure. This question should have been settled quietly among the people of the North-West as a local question, to be determined between them and the Federal Government, from whom the legislative power of the territories emanates. But the promoters of this measure do not think of making it a local question. Leave the question to the people to settle, and you may be sure that probably in two years hence there will be nothing left of the little fire which has been raised by the hon. member for North Simcoe. Has not the North-West disinterested members enough in this House to take charge of such a measure? Is it not an insult to them that a member from an eastern Province should take upon himself to put it forward and advocate it? It shall not pass here, because on every side of the House people are alarmed, if not disgusted, by the way in which it has been taken up and agitated. We might very well agree among ourselves to leave to the North- West Legislature the settlement of this question. We would say to them: You have not been elected in the North-West to settle that question; it relates to one of the organic articles of the constitution of those Territories, which only the Parliament of Canada has a right to change; but we will be a paternal Parliament to you, and we will say to you, consult the people, and let the people of the. North-West say whether there is any use of your speaking French when you sit around the table of the Legislature. The elections would come, and after those elections they may come back and say: If we are to have a useful representation in that assembly, if we are to have a population in those Territories, who will live harmoniously with their neighbors. we must not repeat the mistake of hurting the feelings of those with whom we are in partnership for the building up of this country. I say that to try to prevent those people publishing their laws in the language of the population, either in the French language or the English, would be an atrocity, a cruel measure, and a measure which would not induce immigrants or settlers to go into that country. There is one thing which I eel bound to say to correct a wrong impression, unjust to the hon. gentleman. My hon. friend from North Simcoe has been taken to task as being a Tory. I do not attach much importance to that little digression of my hon. friend, the leader of the Opposition. That is an eye—catching color which he puts in his political paintings when before an election audience; the " Tory " is always brought into the back ground so as to bring out in greater contrast the great displa of the liberal principles which it is the hon. gentleman's wont to picture to his hearers. But in the subject under discussion there should be no question of party politics. The right hon. the leader of the Government answered my hon. friend from Quebec East (Mr. Laurier), by showing that the Tories have been at times the best protectors of our French Canadian nationality in this country. But in calling this Bill a Tory measure, my hon. friend wanted to make out that it was an arbitrary, a retrograde measure.
Sir JOHN A. MACDONALD. It was inflamma-tory
Mr. CHAPLEAU. No, it was that "or-a-tory" of my hon. friend that brought it out. My hon. friend wished to give a political meaning to this discussion. It has none, and I think it is but just to those who, on other occasions, have voted with the hon. member for North Simcoe, to say that the hon. gentleman himself had the courage —and it is not courage he wants — to say that on this occasion he had separated himself entirely from the Conservative party. My hon. friend, the leader of the Opposition, calls all the Conservatives Tories; and I know that whatever denial we may give to the expressibn, he is bound to call us Tories. If he enjoys in calling us by that name, let him be happy. The hon. member for North Simcoe has in this question completely disassociated himself from his party; he has declared that on this question he is not in harmony with his party, but he declared, and had a right to do so, that upon other questions he would follow those whom he had always followed, and would continue to vote as a conservative on such matters as, for instance, the National Policy. It would not be right to close the Conservative party against the hon. member for North Simcoe and those who hold his views. This Bill which he has introduced has nothing to do with that party; it is a Bill of his own, and I hope, before the debate is over, he will see that it is greatly restricted in his following. The hon. member for West Durham argued that the Federal Government should keep, in a certain measure at least, aportion of the power over the Territories. True, we have granted to the Territories a constitution; we have given them legislative power to some extent; but as we still have the administration of the Territories in our hands and to protect those whom we are inviting to come and settle there, this Government should keep a certain control over these Territories. We are bound to do that, as we are bound to give to the French population a free and easy access to the judicial tribunals we have established there. I do not believe that there are many in this House disposed to say that they are at heart in favor of the measure proposed. Its preamble is a provocation and a just cause of irritation to a large section of our people, and the principle of the Bil and its practical effect, if carried into a conclusion, would work injustice and bad feeling in the old Provinces as well as in the North-West Territories. There are amongst those who support the measure of the hon. member for North Simcoe men who, if they do not call themselves Equal Rights advocates, are Imperial Federalists. Many of them pose as the advocates of what they deem to be the grand and the loyal policy of Imperial Federation. Let me ask them how they expect to help on their cause by this unfair, unseemly, this persecuting agitation. The British Empire is composed of a eater variety of nations and creeds than was the Roman Empire. Do the Imperial Federalists think they are going to help 833 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 834 on their scheme by prosecuting a minority, even in such a remote territory as the North-West? We are not in the same condition of things in which we were some years ago. Modern science has given new wings to political thought; every incident that occurs in Canada, of any importance, is known tomorrow as far as Cape Colony and in the remote regions of India; and I appeal to Imperial Federalists, who might be tempted to support the Bill before the House, not to injure their own cause, and to remember that all men interested and responsible for the future of the Queen's dominion will condemn them for entering into an agitation which would tend to destroy the loyalty of a portion of Her Majesty's subjects. These gentlemen pose as the representatives of Ontario and pretend to speak the voice of Ontario in protest against the use of the French language in Canada. I venture to tell them that they do not represent Ontario in this matter, that they do not speak the voice of Ontario in this agitation. The true voice of Ontario may still be heard in the echoes of that splendid demonstration made in December, 1884, in Toronto, in honor of Sir John A. Macdonald. It was my good fortune to be present at that grand and imposing reunion of the forces of the great Conservative party. I shall never forget the ovation given to the Old Chief when he entered the hall where five thousand voices acclaimed him with enthusiastic cheers. I shall never forget the warm, the cordial reception given to my hon. friends the Minister of Public Works and the Minister of Militia, and to myself. It was my first visit to Toronto and the impression I received, an impression which will never be effaced from my memory, was that the bond of friendship, nay, the bond of affection, that linked together the two great races of this Confederation, would resist any attack which interest, jealousy or prejudice might direct against it. It was, it is true, a political demonstration, but it had a great character beyond that, which proved that different races, and different creeds, and different nationalities, might unite and work together in the best manner for the progress of our common country. This was the voice of Ontario, and I think it would be the voice of Ontario still. I say to the supporters, if there are any in Ontario, of the measure of the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy), that I believe the voice of Ontario would be still the same if the right hon. the leader of the House would appeal, on the same generous principles, to the same fair-minded population of Ontario to-day. Sir, I protest against that agitation, I protest against that plan of campaign as suggested in the speeches of the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy), and indicated here and outside by the speeches of the hon. member for North Norfolk (Mr. Charlton). I do not quote their expressions here. They are too ugly for me to quote them or, at all events, they are too provoking. It is not for us here to talk about opening a free road through the St. Lawrence for the Anglo-Saxon to pass to the conquest of the world. If that course is to be persisted in, Sir, I cannot qualify it in any other words, that if it is a political game it is a dangerous mistake, and if it is a determined and premeditated movement to be earnestly carried on, it is a criminal attack against the "peace, order and good government of the country." Sir, I hope that the hon. gentlemen will
27 pause before venturing any further in the dark and dangerous path they have entered into. They will look in the past and around them, and they will see written on the walls the fate which awaits them. All public men who have tried to build up a political platform of such materials as prejudices and fanaticism have found out that the beams and rafters of their building did not long resist the action of time and the pressure of common sense; they went down with the wreck, helpless and crippled, giving to the world a cruel lesson as to the inevitable fate of those who would attempt to imitate their example. Sir, I appeal to the higher instincts, to the nobler feelings of those who sincerely wish the consolidation of these British possessions, and whom the chances of politics do not affect. I ask them to think calmly of all this. They must know how dangerous are the elements which are brought into contact in the agitation which is carried on. They may be in earnest in believing that the strong currents thus put in motion will produce great and good results. Let them not forget that in dealing with these questions of race, nationality and religion they are dealing with the great electric currents of national life. Guide and govern these currents wisely, and you may draw from their united influences power and light and all the beneficent effects of the natural forces with which Providence has provided you. Misguide and misgovern them—use them with ignorance, recklessness, or malice, — and you may draw down on your heads unknown and uncounted disasters, ruin to individuals, confusion to communities, and disaster to the State. Sir, I agree with the hon. member for West Durham (Mr. Blake), I am not ready to accept the amendment proposed by the hon. memberfor Berthier (Mr. Beausoleil), although I am in accord with the principles of it, but I cannot find too strong language to express my repudiation of the principles, the form, the surroundings of the measure submitted. The Bill of the hon. member for North Simcoe is opposed to his own political record, principles and career. He supported with intelligence and vigor the policy of unity of action and harmony of thought of the different races which form this Dominion, irrespective of creed or language. He was present when the Acts giving a constitution to the North-West Territories were initiated, revised and passed, and he gave his acquiescence to that legislation. The Bill is opposed to the policy that has prevailed in Canada, of protecting the rights of minorities in the schools, in the Legislatures, in the Senate. It is opposed to the law of the land, which was approved by two Administrations and three Parliaments. It is opposed to the spirit of British legislation, which, in the case of Manitoba, provided a perpetual guarantee to the minority in regard to schools and language, and, in the case of any new Province hereafter created in the Territories, provided a guarantee of stability to the constitution given to it at the time of its creation. It is opposed to the general policy of the modern British Empire, which, in India, in Manitoba, in Cape Colony, respects the right of the people of different origin to have the legal and legislative use of their own language. It is opposed to the plainest facts of science, which prove that race is stronger than language, as may be seen in the case of the Irish and the Scotch, the German- 835 [COMMONS] 836 speaking Russians, the French, German and Italian- speaking Swiss, the Jews, the Spanish-speaking Mexicans, the German-speaking Alsacians. It is opposed to the true spirit of loyalty to the Crown, because no man, who is truly loyal to the Crown, would endeavor to stir up strife among the Queen's subjects by attempting to repeal, for the avowed purpose of persecution and extinction, laws which have had the sanction of the Crown in one form or another ever since the Cession of Canada. I wish to make one more remark as to the political record of the hon. member for North Simcoe. Let me refer to that great demonstration in Toronto, which showed so well the fraternity of the two races, and I wish that fraternity was more widely practised. I think that the public men of each Province ought to visit the other Provinces, and try to develop that good feeling which is so easily developed when we are better acquainted with one another. In that great demonstration in Toronto what do we find? An address was presented to Sir John A. Macdonald by the Liberal Conservative party of Ontario. My hon. friend from Simcoe knows something of that address. On that occasion the chairman was appointed on the motion of Mr. Dalton McCarthy, and when the meeting was organised the chairman read an elaborate, an eloquent address to Sir John Macdonald, two or three paragraphs of which I will read to this House, with as full an assurance of their being accepted here as they were accepted there:
"The happy results of British rule in North America begun when the policy of Pitt was accomplished by the valor of Wolfe, would have been imperfect, if not frustrated, but for the cordial relations which you have for nearly half a century maintained, in spite of unjust and unpatriotic criticism, with the great men who have been the chiefs of the loyal Canadians of Quebec; and on this occasion we would mingle with our felicitations to yourself a tribute of grateful remembrance of Cartier, whose statue rises in another city to bear witness to his public deeds and to keep his memory green. * * * In a Confederation in which the people are divided by a very earnest and sincere difference of opinion in race, religion and political sentiment, unity of action and harmony of thought have been maintained with striking success by the wisdom, tact and true liberality with which you have made alike the Cabinet, the Provincial Executives, the Bench, the Bar, and the Public Service, bear witness to your forethought and care for the interests of races, creeds and opinions, as part of the forces by which nations are governed, and by the wise conduct of which they grow strong, united and prosperous."
No better inspired, no better worded sentiments of true patriotism were ever recorded, and the hon. member for North Simcoe will derive more glory for the part he took in that demonstration than he will in the unchristian crusade he is now leading.
It being Six o'clock, the Speaker left the Chair.

After Recess.

Mr. CHAPLEAU. Before this House rose at six o'clock I had been showing that it would be an injustice to the population of the North-West Territories, who were the first settlers there, and who, surely, deserve our consideration, if we were to deprive them of the privilege of having the laws published in a language that they understand. What has been the cause of the large influx of Anglo-Saxon settlers into the North-West? It is the millions of money that the old Provinces have voted to build the Canadian Pacific Railway. We all agreed to that; we all applauded the enterprise and the energy of those who built that road. What, again, has brought that immigration into the Territory? It was the great, the richly subsidised colonisation societies which brought thousands of immigrants from Great Britain to take possession of the soil, and the railway companies who acquired large tracts of land as railway subsidies and have invested their capital there. All these newcomers were characterised by that spirit of enterprise which belongs to the English immigrants, and which leads them to take possession of the world wherever the world and its resources presents itself to them. We welcome those desirable immigrants, we help them in the full measure of a dutiful Government. But must we, for all that, despise and forget the first settlers of those remote regions, those who revealed to us the treasure we had there? Sir, will not my hon. friend from North Simcoe give to these old settlers of the North-West, at least, time to learn English? It has taken me a long time to learn to speak it, badly as I do. I think he ought to give them, at least, a few years to learn how to read the laws which will be enacted in those Territories. But there is something more. These people who live there, who are the owners of the soil, have disputes amongst themselves. The law must be obeyed, must be administered, and is he going to deny them the right of having justice administered to them in a language which they understand? He does deny them of that right; we must not be unjust as he wants us to be. I think that if this House comes to the conclusion that a certain measure of liberty to settle that question of language ought to be given to the Legislature of the North-West, we must in justice reserve to the old settlers, to that population which is now in the minority, the right to speak their language, to be heard in their language, as witnesses, jurors, and pleaders before the courts. I desire, in closing my remarks, to quote some observations from a powerful writer and a keen observer, who has visited this country, Sir Charles Dilke. How does he speak of the population, of whom the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) and the hon. member for North Norfolk (Mr. Charlton) spoke, I will not say with contempt, but with suspicion as to their loyalty and with fear as to the future of the country so far as they were concerned. Sir Charles Dilke referred to one of the most prominent statesmen who represented the French Canadians, Sir George Cartier. Speaking of Sir George Cartier, who was very often accused by his opponents in politics, of being too much of a Britisher in Canada, Sir Charles said this:
"Sir George Cartier, the Conservative statesman who led the French Canadians at the time of Confederation, had himself as a young man taken part in Papineau's rebellion, but there was never a stronger supporter of a United Empire than my host at Ottawa in the year of the passing of the Bill."
Drawing a comparison between the French in Lower Canada and the South African Dutch, the author said:
"In both cases we found the alien people in the land had dispossessed the mother country of the province. In each case they have clung to their language and institutions, and in each country the language of the non-English Calvinists may now be made use of in the legislature. Both races are filled with intense Conservatism, and the French of Canada and the Dutch of South Africa are now in fact the only surviving true Conservatives living under free institutions."
837 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890]. 838
This may not please the leader of the Opposition, but it could not but please an old Tory, like the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy). Speaking of the loyalty of the French Canadians at the time of the American Revolution, Sir Charles Dilke said:
"Curiously enough, the only moments at which we were ever popular in Lower Canada, until we gave her free institutions, were the moments when the Americans were trying to expel us."
These few lines must be significant to those who believe that because we speak a foreign language we cannot be loyal to the Crown and true supporters of the British nation. I will not say, true as it may be, that Canada would have been American except for the assistance given by the French Canadians at the time of the American Rebellion, but as a loyal Britisher, I would say, with Sir Charles Dilke: we have been able to preserve our supremacy in North America with the approval and assistance of the French Canadians, and "curiously enough the only moment at which we were ever popular in Lower Canada, until we gave her free institutions, were the moments when the Americans were trying to expel us." Mr. Speaker, I claim for our people, as I read it in the opuscules of a late friend, Oscar Dunn, that "the first man who spoke of responsible government in this country was a French Canadian, Pierre Bedard, and the one who contributed the most to establish it was another French Canadian, Lafontaine. Our nationality had the honor to furnish the statesman who introduced British liberties into this country. It was the only revenge we drew from our conquerors." I do not speak here as a French Canadian; I speak as a Canadian. The hon. member for North Simcoe has said, that, in order to judge of the nationality of a man, you must ascertain the language he speaks; that a German subject speaking another language can hardly be a full German; that a man who speaks French as his mother tongue, even if he knew and could speak English, cannot be really and truly a British subject. But we claim to be Canadians, and although we may speak in French or English we are really not English or French, but we are truly Canadians, and we intend to remain such. I heartily endorse the sentiments of that eloquent and fervent apostle of Canadian nationality, Principal Grant, when, speaking before St. Andrew's Society, in Montreal, he said:
"The Scotch are but one nationality in Canada, and not the first. That place belongs to the French Canadians: a sacred obli ation is imposed upon the Canadian race as upon ours. We ought to be, the one more than Scotch, and the other more than French, we ought to be Canadians. There can be but one Canadian nation, and all the races which have chosen the sky of Canada as their own ought to contribute to the building up and the consolidating of this nation. Every other dream is but a folly and every effort to realise it is but treason. And against treason all Canadians must unite, to combat and chastise it."
Sir, if the hon. gentleman intends to carry out his purpose, interpreted as it must be by the preamble of this Bill and by the speech which accompanied its first reading, if the hon. gentleman wants to go to the end of his programme, if he really intends to do as he has stated in this House and outside this House he intends to do, I can only tell him this, that if he wants to destroy and efface the French language from the Dominion of Canada he should begin higher up and remove its use from the highest order of chivalry in England; he should efface it from the arms of England; if he thinks in speaking French we are disloyal to our beloved Sovereign, Her Majesty the Queen, he must have forgotten the words "Honi soit qui mal y pense." If he wants to destroy French I answer him, in company with all my fellow-countrymen and all true British subjects in this Dominion: Sir, you shall not touch that language; you cannot efface it. We keep it with our religion, as a gift we owe to Divine Providence and to the kind liberality of Our beloved Sovereign. And whenever it is attempted to deprive us of that sacred deposit, we shall not despair as long as we read on the Royal Arms of England: "Dieu et mon Droit."
Sir RICHARD CARTWRIGHT. I would say to the hon. member for North Simcoe(Mr. McCarthy) that I interfere with him with very considerable reluctance, but it is necessary for me for certain reasons to speak to-night. I will speak briefly, but, as he must of necessity speak at very considerable length, I hope, therefore, that he will not consider that I am treating him with discourtesy. I will take care that it does not interfere with his prerogative in any respect.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Hear, hear.
Sir RICHARD CARTWRIGHT. I think, Mr. Speaker, that we all must agree. that this debate, even so far as it has already gone, has been one of a very remarkable character. It is a debate which is calculated to shed considerable light on divers dark places in our political firmament. It has at any rate one notable feature. The present debate, coupled with a debate which took place on another subject, within this chamber about a year ago, constitutes a very important new departure on the part of hon. gentlemen opposite—a very important new departure, indeed. It is perfectly wonderful to see the zeal which is now expressed by so many of these hon. gentlemen for provincial rights, and to remember that these same hon. gentlemen—not even the hon. member for North Simcoe excepted—only a little more than thirteen months ago, certainly within a period of two years, did not see their way to stand side by side with us in defending the clearest and best established rights of his and my native Province. We find now that the sacredness of provincial rights is clearly held by a great majority in this House, we find that it is becoming a fundamental article of faith, and by none more (although his conversion was very late in the day) than by the venerable and pious Premier, may I say, who gave such excellent advice to us last year, as well as on the present occasion, on the subject of provincial rights. I am an old enough member of Parliament to remember when the First Minister of this Dominion had very little faith indeed in Confederation; when he began by doubting and disbelieving the possibility of a federal union, and when in point of fact, as I remember and as the record shows, he only accepted the situation when he saw that it was his last chance of safety from political shipwreck. From that time, although I will not say that he has plotted steadily and persistently to undermine this same Confederation, I will say that for twenty years, to 839 [COMMONS] 840 all outward seeming, at any rate, the policy of that right hon. gentleman has been to belittle, in every possible way, the rights of the several Provinces, of which to-day he has blossomed out so strong and stout a champion. In the case of the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy), we can all remember that last year that hon. gentleman was not apparently disposed to pay any very great respect to the provincial rights of one of the oldest and most important Provinces of this Dominion, although now he is suddenly smitten with the most extraordinary regard for the declarations—not of a Provincial Assembly in the proper sense of the term—but of the representative council of a fledging territory of this Dominion. For my part, I much suspect the fervent zeal which new born converts evince on these occasions. I may say to this House, without respect to parties, that while we are here bound by every obligation to see that the rights of the Provinces are maintained, it may be as well for us to recollect that we are also here as Dominion representatives, and that the Dominion of Canada has its rights in this and other matters as well as the Provinces. This debate, as I have said, is one of a remarkable character, but I must add that I, for one, think that every true friend of Canada must regret that this subject has been forced upon us at this time. I say that no good has come of this Bill; I say that no good can come of it, and I am sorry to have to add that, in my judgment, speaking without prejudice or malice, I cannot but believe that no good was intended to come out of the proposal which we are now discussing. Whatever may be the motives which have caused the hon. gentleman (Mr. McCarthy) to assume the grave responsibility of throwing on the floor of this House What he well knew must be an apple of discord, calculated to set friend against friend, race against race, and religion against religion, I admit that this question having been raised, and the judgment of this House having been challenged, we are, in my opinion, bound to pass upon the question. Of all the faults and of all the follies which this House could commit in dealing with this question the worst, in my opinion, would be to leave it as a festering and ever-open sore. We are asked to decide on this question, and we should decide. In that I agree with the hon. gentleman and some of his friends. This House is called upon to pass judgment, and this House should pass such judgment as will set this question finally at rest, if such a thing can be. At all events, it should be set at rest so far as this branch of it is concerned. I believe that by this motion and by the agitation which has taken place throughout the length and breadth of the chief Provinces of Canada on the issues raised by the hon. gentleman and his friends, very considerable harm has been done. I do not think we can wholly undo that harm by anything we may accomplish here, at best I believe that all it is possible for us to do is to minimise the mischief which reckless hands have wrought. I will venture to suggest, before I sit down, certain consid erations which occur to me as best calculated to bring about that end. I shall now consider in rotation the several propositions at present before the House. First of all, I must take the Bill which the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) asks shall be read for the second time. I am sorry to have to say that I cannot but regret the language of the preamble of that Bill as being decidedly offensive, as being calculated to do grave harm in this community and as being calculated as I have said to set members of this House of different creeds and nationalities at issue to no good purpose. More than that, Sir, I take objection in the strongest possible manner with the preceding lines of this preamble:
"Whereas it is expedient in the interest ofthe national unity of the Dominion that there should be community of language among the people of Canada, and that the enactment in 'The North-West Territories Act' allowing the use of the French language should be expunged therefrom."
Sir, that preamble is in no way necessary to the Bill, it should never have been there, and was intended to affront and offend my friends of the French nationality; and small blame to them if if they felt affronted and offended when asked to consider a Bill introduced by a preamble like that. But I have a more important objection to make to that preamble: I say that on the plainest grounds of common sense and common prudence, the assertion contained in it that the best way to produce unity among us is to do what is known to be affronting to one—third or one—fourth of the people of this Dominion is entirely false and incorrect. That is not the way to produce national unity among Canadians; it is not the way to build up a nation here. The way to make Canadians proud of their country is to say, clearly and distinctly, to every race in Canada, that they may expect fair play and honest dealings at the hands of their fellow-countrymen, whether they are English, French, Scotch, Irish, Canadian or any other nationality. Looking at this matter, Sir, as a practical man, as one who hopes to end his life in Canada, I say that the hon. gentleman, be his motives or intentions what they may, is attempting a downright impossibility, if he hopes by legislative enactment to wipe away the French language and to induce a million or a million and a-quarter of our people to abandon their mother tongue, solemnly guaranteed to them by treaty and in every possible way that a government or a nation can guarantee, that it shall be left undisturbed in their native Province or in the Dominion of Canada. I say it is absurd. It might have come to pass— though I do not know but the hon. gentleman and his friends have now rendered it impossible—not to-day or to-morrow, but in the course of a generation or two, that mutual convenience in communicating and dealing with each other in the prevailing tongue of North America might have induced the people of Quebec to adopt that language, as has been done in Ireland, where, in many places, a number of years ago, the bulk of the population spoke Irish and Irish alone, but where now the English tongue has practically superseded the Irish language. But I tell the hon. member for North Simcoe and other hon. gentlemen who think with him that there is no case in history, and I cannot conceive of a case, where such result has been brought about by legislative enactment. Persecute a religion, a race, or a language, and you enlist every worthy, manly and self-respecting sentiment in the minds of the men who profess that religion, belong to that race, or speak that language in maintaining it against all odds; and I do not think so meanly of my French fellow- countrymen as to wish or believe that they 841 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 842 will be dragooned out of rights which have been solemnly guaranteed to them. Sir, I do not know what visions of victory or what aspirations may float through the minds of the hon. member for Simcoe and his followers. Peradventure, as has been suggested, it has entered into the mind of the hon. member to play the part of an Ontario Parnell, and to return to this House with twenty or thirty stout Protestant Home Rulers like the hon. member for Muskoka (Mr. O'Brien), to hold the balance of power and to dictate terms—I was going to say to his adversary, but as I suppose I should say, his beloved Chieftain who sits opposite to me.
An hon. MEMBER. Who said so?
Sir RICHARD CARTWRIGHT. Why, the hon. member for Simcoe himself, and he ought to know. But if, as I have said, the language of the preamble of this unfortunate Act was needlessly afl'ronting and offensive to gentlemen of French nationality, what must I say of the speech in which, without provocation, in cold blood, the hon. member for Simcoe thought fit to introduce it? Sir, I regretted exceedingly to hear that speech, and most of all for this reason: I knew— my parliamentary experience taught me, as the parliamentary experience of any hon. gentleman who has sat for a few sessions in this House would teach him—that one such mischievous and injudicious speech was sure to be the parent of others equally mischievous and injudicious, which would go far to widen the breach and render the task of moderate and reasonable men in composing our differences more difficult than ever; and I am sorry to say that one member of the Government at least—I mean the hon. Minister of Public Works—was betrayed into following the evil example of the hon. member for Simcoe, and into delivering a speech which the hon. member: for Simcoe must have listened to with delight but which I am sure no considerate man on either side of the House could have regarded as other than injudicious and ill-timed. I am very sorry that an old parliamentary veteran like the hon. Minister of Public Works should have deliberately played the game of the hon. member for Simcoe, as he most undoubtedly did, when he delivered that speech, which will prove an arsenal from which the hon. member for Simcoe and those associated with him could saw barbed and poisoned arrows to disturb the sentiments and feelings of a great number of worthy people throughout this community. Sir, I wish I could confine my regret 1n that respect entirely to the hon. Minister of Public Works. I would have thought that the trap laid by the hon. member for Simcoe was perfectly transparent. I would have thought that any hon. member in this House who listened to his speech, who read his preamble, who considered what his whole course has been, must have seen that the object that hon. gentleman was driving at, the thing he wanted to bring about, was, if possible, to array in a solid mass, if that were possible, the members of the French nationality on the one side, and the members of the English nationality on the other side; or, what is worse still, to array the members of one religious persuasion on one side, and the members of other religious persuasions on the other side. I regret exceedingly that a gentleman for whom I entertain such high regard as I do for the hon. member for Berthier (Mr. Beauso leil) should have walked deliberately into such a trap, and should have brought forward a resolution which looks—though I acquit the hon. gentleman of any such intention—as if it were designed to play into the hands of the hon. member for Simcoe. I am very sorry for it. I admit that there were extenuating circumstances in the case of the hon. member for Berthier. I am sometimes myself accused, most unjustly, of having hasty blood in my veins, and I dare say I would have felt angry at the language used by the hon. member for Simcoe; but however angry I might have felt, I do not think I would have walked into the trap he set and supplied him with material for future mischievous operations. Now, as far as I am concerned, my own course in this matter is clear enough. Last year—and I ask my French compatriots to recollect the circumstance—last year, in common with the great mass of the Liberal party and the lonservative party in the Province of Ontario, I and they voted upon a certain question in a way which offended the prejudices of many of our constituents. I laid down then, as I am disposed to lay down to-night, the principle that in affairs of this kind, as in all affairs which properly belong to them, the Provincial Legislatures should have the sole right to legislate. The principle which I applied in favor of the Province of Quebec last year I am disposed to apply on the present occasion in favor of the North-West Territories. I ask now the same rights for our fellow-countrymen of the North-West Territories that I asked for our fellow-countrymen in the Province of Quebec last year. I am prepared to recognise their right, but I require that that right be properly asserted and clearly stated, and that I should be well assured, when I interfere in a matter of this kind, that I, in my place, and as far as I can, am giving assent to the deliberately expressed opinion and conviction of the people of those Territories. It may be asked why will I not acknowledge that the North-West Council, as at present constituted, do really represent the views and the wishes of the people of those territories? I am bound to recall to the attention of hon. members this plain fact. No doubt, to a a certain extent, these gentlemen may be said to represent the people of the North-West Territories, although they are not their only representatives; but they have not all the powers, and they were not elected to discharge all the duties of a Provincial Parliament or Assembly. I say, without any desire to belittle their important functions, that they are somewhat of a hybrid between a municipal council and a Provincial Parliament, and I cannot admit that they are entitled to speak with perfect authority on a question which was notoriously not before the people when the North-West Council were elected. More than that: I have another reason why I decline to accept what may, for ought I know, have been a hasty resolution passed by the North-West Council. So far as I am advised, there is every reason to believe that it was in no way the spontaneous declaration of the Council of the North-West, but was a suggestion from outside. Probably the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) knows best whence it came. It did not deal, in any proper sense of theterm, with a real substantial grievance underwhich those people groaned, and in voicing which the Council merely voiced 843 [COMMONS] 844 the true sentiments of their constituents. I am quite prepared, on proper opportunity being given me, to advocate provincial rights to the fullest extent; I am quite prepared to lay down the principle that the people of the North-West, when this matter has been fairly submitted to them, when they have passed upon it—if in two or three years hence they continue in the same mind— should be sustained by this Parliament; but beyond that I must decline to go. I admit that it was best for all parties that a decision should be come to on this subject; it will serve no good purpose that I can see to allow this matter to be kept open for debate and to continue to be made a cause of agitation between the conflicting races. I cannot however quite agree with the doctrine laid down by the hon. member for Berthier (Mr. Beausoleil) that a sort of vested right has been established by the mere fact of the concession which was made some ten or twelve years ago. I am prepared, as fully as any man, to maintain treaty rights formerly granted to our French brethren in the Province of Quebec, but I think that in all reason we ought to stop there. If the French settlers should become numerous in any Province of this Dominion, either near us or in the far West, and if they persuaded the Legislature, or the Legislature saw fit, for mutual convenience, for good fellowship or courtesy, to decree that the French language should be used in such Province, so let it be. No one on this side, I believe, would raise his voice or give his vote to prevent that extension of privileges; but, I say, in all conscience, that ought to be enough. I have no possible ground or pretence to dictate to my friends from Ontario what they should do in this matter. It is a matter in which they must judge for themselves, and no doubt they will be able to do that. But if they will allow me to make a suggestion to them, it will be this: I think they ought to oppose to the uttermost the passage of the Act introduced by the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. Mc Carthy)—and on these grounds: that the Act itself is mischievous, the language is offensive, and it deals with no real substantial grievance. Why, I am told that the whole cost of the evil which the hon. member for North Simcoe designs to remedy amounted in thirteen years to something like $20,000, about one-tenth or about one-twentieth of the cost which the blundering attempt to usurp the property and the rights of the Province of Ontario, made partly under the hon. gentleman's auspices, has already cost this country. Looking at this matter from a practical point of view, I think after the hon. gentleman's exhibition, after the speech he made, which showed his animus, which showed his design to make mischief, my hon. friends from Ontario need have no fear that any but a few bigots will condemn them for refusing to vote against this Bill. I may tell them they have lost those bigots' votes already. While that is true, it is equally true—and my hon. friends will pardon me for reminding them of it—that, besides the bigots who would dare to join so wicked an agitation for it is wicked (to stir up an anti-French crusade, considering the circumstances under which the hon. gentleman desires to initiate it) besides those there are, I must confess, men known to all of you, moderate and reasonable men, who, while they are well content to accept the grounds on which we voted last year, who, while they admit we did right, and, in fact, had no option but to vote as we did, would hold us to a strict account if we should now go back on our own record, and having a year ago voted to defend the rights of the Province of Quebec should now appear unwilling, on proper terms and conditions, to maintain the rights of our fellow-countrymen in the North-West. To my friends of the French nationality I speak with great diffidence; I admit that I think their anger very natural, I sympathise with their feelings, and I do not think they had any right to be addressed as they were on the door of this House. But is that a reason—and I speak now, not merely to my political friends on this side, but to my French compatriots on the other side —that they should deliberately allow themselves to De goaded and driven into playing the game of the hon. member for North Simcoe? I repeat there can be no possible step they will take that would serve the ends of that hon. gentleman better than if they would display here, what I would regret to see displayed, the spectacle of a solid French minority voting against a solid English majority. It would be a grave political mistake which would injure themselves, and—I was going to say for once in my life, but I think I have had occasion to do it once or twice before—I am disposed to agree in substance with the advice tendered to the House by the hon. the leader of this Government. I am bound to admit—and I make him a present of the fact—that, if he had not spoken as he did, and cut me out, I would probably have made a similar suggestion myself, and my hon. friends beside me know right well what my feelings have been on this subject since it was broached. What I would advise—speaking entirely from a non-party point—my French friends to do would be to drop this motion of my hon. friend from Berthier (Mr. Beausoleil), or, if it cannot be dropped, not to vote for it, but to consent to an amendment on the lines suggested by the hon. gentleman. That is to say, disclaiming, as we ought to disclaim, all intention or desire to interfere with the rights guaranteed to our French friends in Quebec, and in the Dominion, and we should disclaim that, and should disavow all complicity or agreement with the anti—French crusade which the hon. gentleman has been preaching; but, at the same time, and on the same ground as we defended the rights of Quebec last year, We must now feel it our duty to record our conviction that, when this matter has been put fairly and clearly before the people of the North-West, they in the last resort, must be the judges of it. I believe that nine-tenths or nineteen-twentieths of this House, if they were free on both sides to vote as they think, would accept the suggestion I have made, and which was made before by the right, hon. the First Minister, and I hope they will not allow themselves to be bulldozed into acting contrary to their convictions by a few fanatics in the House or outside of it. One word more, because, as I said, I am anxious not to delay the hon. gentleman opposite (Mr. McCarthy). I believe myself that, if time is given, if two years are allowed to elapse, if the right is conceded which the people of the North-West demand to regulate their own affairs, it is extremely probable that those people would be content with the knowledge that they had that right conceded, and would not. force that right to its extreme conclusion. For 845 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 846 myself, I would be glad it they could see their way to do that until such time as we saw whether or not there was going to be such a large immigration into that country as might affect the decision of this difficult and vexed question
Mr. MCCARTHY. I think it is not unreasonable that, at this hour, I should claim the indulgence of the House. The debate has lasted over five days, or nearly so, and during that time I have been subjected to as much abuse certainly as the rules of Parliament permit, and perhaps a little more than the rules would warrant. I look at my friends who are opposite to me and I find no sympathetic glances, and I have no reason to expect them. I look to the band of Nationalists who think I am assailing their race and nationality and language, and I do not find any and I do not expect any. And even when I look amongst those on this side who were once my friends and allies, I find, perhaps, more hostile glances than I do elsewhere. I am standing here alone, or almost alone, doing what I believe to be my duty, and, notwithstanding the sneers, and the taunts, and the insinuations that have been made, I propose to do my duty to the end, if I stand alone, or almost alone, on the floor of this House in the vote which is shortly to be taken. The hon. gentleman who has last spoken (Sir Richard Cartwright) has made not disguise of his feelings or his principles. He speaks not from the principle of statesmanship but from a purely partisan or party point of view. He argues with his friends behind him and his friends before him on that ground, and he appeals to them not to fall into the trap which I am accused of having laid and which some of those friends, he thinks, have already fallen into, but to reject the Bill which I have had the honor to introduce. He makes this appeal without one word of argument upon the merits of the Bill, without a word as to whether it is right or wrong in the interests of the people of the North-West, for whom we are here to judge and to legislate upon this question, but simply with a view to the effect it my have on the votes of the people whom he thinks he leads from the Province of Ontario. He warns them as to the results. He knows well enough that they have gone away from him never to return, but he tells them that they will have lost all if they support such a measure as this and had better return to their allegiance. I looked for better things from that hon. gentleman, but have looked in vain. His speech was a purely partisan speech, without one redeeming feature, without one thing to raise it above the level of the mere party machine. I welcome his statement even from a party point of view if from no other, because it leaves that hon. gentleman without a shred of reputation as a statesman, which he once pretended to be. But I have to address myself not only to the hon. gentleman from South Oxford (Sir Richard Cartwright). I have to speak of the attack which has been made upon the measure from other sources, and to endeavor to clear up, if I can, the accusations which have been made. The hon. members who have supported me are small in number, though they are as true as steel. They have been overborne in this debate by the power of numbers—not of argument; and I will endeavor to show that, amid the tissue of mis representation which has been poured out upon our devoted heads, hon. members will find that there has been no warrant for any part of it. I am accused of having got up this agitation, of having originated it not only on matters of race, but on matters of religion, and I am accused of doing that for selfish purposes and ends. I would like to know what end I had to serve in severing myself from the gentleman I have hitherto supported, and from those hon. gentlemen behind me, who, I have reason to believe, would not have been unwilling to see me advanced in the ranks of my party. What could have led me to take this course as it has been untruly represented to the House, and through the House to the country? My whole course in regard to this matter did not originate last July in my address to my constituents. But on the floor of this chamber, in the presence of hon. members who hear me now, I state that I had discovered—as, I am ashamed to say, I discovered for the first time—that the dual language clause was in the North-West Act. We then talked it over, and I appeak to the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin) if we did not call him across the floor and ask him how it was, as out attention had been called to the subject by a speech having been delivered by a Lieutenant Governor of the North-West Territories, for the first time, in French, in the preceding session. That is what aroused our attention to this fact, and, if I am not misinformed, that is what first drew attention to the fact in the North-West—that a French Governor who was sent up there to govern what was practically an English speaking people—true, Sir, to the policy of his race, true to the object which my hon. friends from Quebec have had in view from the very first day that this country was ceded to Great Britain, namely, to perpetuate their race; and they know full well, if other hon. members choose to disregard it, that the perpetuation of that race can only be by the perpetuation of their language—I say, knowing that the Lieutenant Governor of the North-West delivered there his speech in French and English, and imported into that Territory a secretary, in order that the laws might be translated into French and published in that language. This, Sir, it was, if I am not grossly misinformed, which raised the indignation of the members of the Legislative Assembly of the North-West so much that they threatened, if that occurred again, that they would withdraw in a body. Well, Sir, whether that be so or not, so far as I am concerned it was as I have stated. I consulted some of the hon. gentlemen who are sitting about me and we agreed—some of these hon gentlemen have been true to their pledges, but the voices of some others have been stifled because they feared to hurt their party—we then and there pledged ourselves that we would, at the earliest opportunity, bring to the notice of this House the iniquitous legislation which the hon. member for Bothwell (Mr. Mills) had fathered, which he pretended he had acquiesced in reluctantly, but, as it now appears, he had deliberately connived at its introduction into the Act of the North-West Territories in the year 1878. That was the beginning of it, and I notified my leader at an early day that I would take this course. I had nothing to do with the agitation in connection with it. The agitation which has been spoken of with regard to the Equal Rights Association got 847 [COMMONS] 848 no strength from my connection with it. I had never even attended the convention which assembled at Toronto; all I had to do with it was to send a telegram of regret that I was unable to attend, being otherwise engaged in professional duties, and that I sympathised with the motives and the objects which had brought together the great band of people from all parts of Ontario to take such measures that for the future, at all events, their voice should be heard on the floor of this Parliament. When it became my duty to visit my constituents, as I did upon the 12th July—the first time, I may state, that I ever addressed a body of my constituents on that day, or made any political utterance on the 12th July—I then announced publicly, that I would take the earliest opportunity of asking this Parliament to undo what, according to the records—I will not use the word "surreptitiously"—but what, according to the records, had been stolen through in the dying hours of the Session of 1878, under the charge of the hon. member for Bothwell. Was that an agitation of which any man need be ashamed? Was that pandering to the already aroused passions? What followed? It is said that I have undertaken to act for the people of the North-West Territories; that no mission has been given me so to act for them, and that I am an intruder. Sir, when it became known that I purposed to take my holidays in the North-West, I was invited to address meetings throughout the Province of Manitoba. I had to decline to do so, except at one place, which, ultimately, was fixed for me, at Portage la Prairie.
Mr. WATSON. A Conservative centre.
Mr. MCCARTHY. When I got to Portage la Prairie, and was on my way up to the North- West, it was not that I was seeking to intrude myself upon the domain of the North-West, but my difficult was to deny myself to those who desire that I should address them and in the end I merely addressed one meeting, and that was at Calgary. I refused to make addresses in British Columbia, only to find on the next morning that the newspapers abused me for passing them by. I refused to address a meeting at Winnipeg, only to find that I was subject to castigation for passing by the important centre of that Province. The hon. member says I spoke at a Conservative centre. He knows pretty well, I think, he will be honest enough to admit, that the choice of place for holding the meeting, which happened to be at Portage la Prairie, was not my choice; but when I stated, as I did state, that I would only deliver one address in the North- West, and those who invited me fixed on Portage la Prairie as the place of the meeting, and I had no choice in the matter, one way or the other. I know the charge was made that it was chosen, because it was in a constituency represented by the hon. member who has just made the interruption, but I think that hon. member will do me the justice to say that, at all events, that charge was not founded so far as I am concerned. The charge has also been made that I was playing the game of the First Minister, that I was a mere tool in his hands, that I was going through this country without being sincere in my pledges, that in what I stated I was carrying on an agitation in collusion with him. Sir, I do not think that charge was even worthy of contradiction, as it ought to be denounced, but it is a charge which I now take the opportunity, in the presence of the First Minister, to say, as every hon. member on the floor of this House must realise, was certainly wanting in a tittle of foundation. I did what I thought was honorable and fair by this hon. gentleman whom I have hitherto followed. I have been careful to hold no intercourse with my former leader, my still leader in all questions affecting the general policy of the country.
Some hon. MEMBERS. Oh, Oh. Hear, hear.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Yes; I am not ashamed to announce this fact. There is no reason why I should cross the floor of this House, for there is, in my judgment, on that side an inability and an unwillingness to grapple with the questions which are looming up, and which call for settlement, and I find a bigotry still more profound upon the other side, a still greater truckling to that which, as every man from the Province of Ontario knows, I propose to devote the rest of my political life to denounce, and, if possible, to overturn. Therefore, why should I cross the floor of the House and follow the banner of hon. gentlemen opposite? I took an opportunity long ago of stating exactly where I stood; I spoke in the Opera House in this city—I do not know whether the First Minister took the trouble of reading it, but it was there for him to read—I stated then exactly where I stood. I stated that when these questions came up, if my party differed from the view which ought to be taken, I must stand alone, and I must follow these questions to their end. On other questions I stated there, as I have stated elsewhere, that as I was elected a supporter of the general policy of the Government, I was still a supporter of, and still a believer in that policy. If my connection with the party that I have hitherto supported is an injury to that party, as I think perhaps it is, if the gentlemen who sit behind me do not want me here, I am willing to go here or there, I care not where. I think I . can find a seat in this House, and I can still voice the opinions of my own constituency, and a large proportion of the people of Ontario, whether I am turned out of this party or not, and Whether I am accepted in that party or not. Such has been my course, and I am not ashamed of it. I denounce that man as a traitor to his country, I care not who he may be, who endeavors to arouse political passions and race passions by misrepresenting my views; he is the man who is doing the wrong, he is the man who is endeavoring in this Parliament and in this country to set race against race and religion against religion, because if my views are fairly looked at, if my statements are fairly examined, if my speeches are fairly read, I think no taint of bitterness will be found, because no taint of bitterness exists, towards my French Canadian fellow-citizens.
An hon. MEMBER. Oh, oh.
Mr. MCCARTHY. The hon. gentleman may laugh, but he must know that I have a perfect . right to the opinion which I entertain, that the best interests of this country are to be subserved by a unity of language, that the future of this great Dominion, with which this Parliament is charged, will be best worked out by the people of this country coming together and speaking the 849 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 850 language of the majority, the tongue that ultimately must be spoken on all this continent of North America. And, if I am right in that, I do no injustice to my Canadian fellow-subjects; I do only what is my right and my duty, if among those hon. gentlemen and their constituents I endeavor to propagate my views and to support those views by arguments. I frankly admit, I do not deny it, that to many of these hon. gentlemen these are unpalatable views; but is that any good reason why, if I do think, and there are many who think with me, I should hesitate upon the floor of Parliament in temperate language, and my language was temperate, to express these views.
Some hon. MEMBERS. Hear, hear.
Mr. MCCARTHY. My language, I re-assert, Was temperate, and I will refer to it to support these views. My language was temperate wherever I spoke, and it was more especially temperate on the cor of Parliament, as an hon. gentleman's language ought to be temperate here. No such words escaped my lips as those which the Secretary of State used towards me here to-day; no language of that kind has ever escaped my lips in this debate, and I trust, notwithstanding the provocation of the Minister of Public Works, notwithstanding the provocation I received from the Secretary of State, who denounced me in language not fit for this Assembly, I trust no word will escape my lips which will resemble those used in the course they have pursued towards me. My arguments may tend to a certain conclusion, but my tone was temperate, and I venture to say that my argument was fairly drawn. Now, what was it? I ventured, in the first place, to give a short account of the history of this legislation. I ventured, in the second place, to demonstrate, what I am glad to know I did succeed in demonstrating beyond the region of contradiction, that the French language was not, according to any treaty rights, to be given, if you choose to call it so, to be made a part of the system in the North-West Territory. For that purpose it was necessary that I should trace the history of the cession. I was sorry I introduced even the word conquest, if it was offensive to any hon. gentleman, and I am quite willing to put the fact in any words, although most men will admit that the words make very little difference when the history is known to us all. I said, tracing that history step by step from the cession of 1763 to the passage of the British North America Act in 1867, that no word was to be found in all that history to show why that Act was passed, for which the hon. member for Bothwell (Mr. Mills) is responsible, which was represented in that day to the House, but which I am sorry to say was not fairly or correctly represented to the House at that time, by the hon. gentleman, as a piece of legislation warranted upon a ground of that kind. My next argument, and I think it was a not unreasonable one, was this.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). The hon. gentleman was himself a member of the House.
Mr. MCCARTHY. I am not at all unaware of that fact. What I repeat is, that the matter was misrepresented to this House.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). In what way?
Mr. MCCARTHY. By the hon. member for Bothwell.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). I deny it.
Mr. MCCARTHY. I will tell the hon. gentleman in what way. That legislation was introduced into the Senate upon the suggestion of Mr. Girard, the Senator for Manitoba, but it was placed there by the member of the Government leading the Senate, Hon. Mr. Scott.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). I do not believe it.
Mr. MCCARTHY. I have better information than the hon. gentleman, and, therefore, I shall not withdraw my statement. I speak by the book; I speak on the authority of a gentleman who was present; I speak in a way I can prove. I can prove that Senator Girard merely asked that some provision should be made by which the French half- breeds would have the right to speak in their own language in the courts; and the matter was taken into consideration by Hon. Mr. Scott.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. That is not the only thing that was asked.
Mr. MCCARTHY. That is correct according to my information, and it is probably quite as good as that possessed by the Secretary of State.
Some hon. MEMBERS. Oh, oh.
Mr. MCCARTHY. I have sat for five days in this House listening to this debate. I have been abused by almost every hon. gentleman who has spoken, but I have made no interruption. It is strange that if with ten to one against me they cannot give me even free speech.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. You stated as a fact that which was not correct.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Whether correct or not, the hon. gentleman knows the rules of debate. Sir, I am speaking by the book of what I know from information on the very highest authority. The leader of the Senate then stated that during the recess he would consult his colleagues, and after recess he came down and put the clause, which is now clause 110, into the hands of Mr. Girard, who moved it, and it was carried in the Senate. If that be so—and we had no clear explanation about it, although I threw out the challenge in my opening remarks—then the responsibility for this trouble rests not upon my shoulders but upon the shoulders of the hon. member for Bothwell and his friends in the Government at that time. Those are the men who are responsible for the trouble, and it became my duty to bring it forward. I do not say I have not failed in my duty heretofore; I failed in my duty probably in not being present when that was done, but I do not suppose that a young member, for I was then only in my second year of my parliamentary life, would have ventured to interpose at that stage of the Session. That I have failed in my duty since I do not pretend to deny, but when I did ascertain the facts I would have been wanting in my duty, feeling and believing as I do feel and believe with respect to this matter, if I had not brought it to the attention of the country in the first place, and, in the second place, to the attention of this House. With respect to other matters on which I desire to speak before I deal with the question itself: It is true I ad dressed a meeting in Montreal; it is true I addressed a meeting in this city of Ottawa, but those who know the facts must know that those meetings which I have had the honor to address were not of my seeking. I have a list of places and a bundle of papers which would satisfy hon. gentlemen that 851 [COMMONS] 852 I, at all events, was not seeking to force myself upon the public, but my attendance was demanded by the great city of Montreal and by the city of Ottawa, and it was only in answer to repeated calls that I went to those different cities. So much with respect to what has been said in regard to this agitation. If hon. gentlemen will deal with the matter fairly, they will see that there was no other course open to me, feeling as I feel, and realising my responsibility as a member of this House, but to take the action I have pursued. But exception has been taken to some of my language. I had the misfortune to miss the speech of the hon. leader of the Opposition, and I have not yet had time, having only received Hansard this evening, to peruse his speech throughout; but I am told the hon. gentleman assailed my speech on the ground that I had used harsh expressions with regard to his nationality. If the hon. gentleman understood my remarks were with respect to his nationality and his race, then I do not wonder at the hon. gentleman's indignation. If the hon. gentleman supposes that I was capable of speaking of any people of this Dominion, or any section of the people of this Dominion in these terms, he was perfectly within his duty in calling attention to the language and denouncing it in the most vigorous terms. But that was not the meaning of my words, and I think my hon. friend, a master as he is of our own tongue, perfectly well realised that was not the meaning. I spoke of the national cry and the national party that he among others has been establishing and fomenting in one of the Provinces of this Dominion, and I denounced that nationality, or rather that pretending nationality as a bastard nationality. I again denounce it here on the floor of Parliament as such. I say that the legitimate nationality, and there is but one, is the nationality common to us all, the nationality that spreads from ocean to ocean and embraces all races and peoples within this great Dominion. I say that if any one in any portion or corner of this Dominion gathers a party together, whether English, Irish, Scotch or French, and endeavors to rise a cry on the nationality of that particular race, there is no word that describes it other than the word that I used, and to which the hon. gentleman called attention. Although the hon. gentleman thought I dare not, I have no hesitation of repeating that statement on the floor of this House, and there is no hon. member understanding the sense in which I stated it before, and in which I repeat it now, who can deny that the expression used was applicable.
Mr. LAURIER. The expression was unfortunate.
Mr. MCCARTHY. The hon. gentleman may say so, but I do not know how else he could put it. In justice to him I will say that he quoted my words fairly, or otherwise I would have quoted them myself. There is but one nationality that I, at all events, am willing to recognise in this country. I do not speak of our loyalty to the Throne; I do not speak of our allegiance to the mother country; I speak of that higher nationality of Canadians to Canada. I speak not of one nationality, not of one race, but of all Canada and all Canadians joined together as we should be joined and proud to acknowledge our allegiance. I regret that so much time has been taken up by a somewhat per sonal explanation, but, perhaps, if I was to do the subject justice with which I propose to deal, it was necessary that I should clear away from the discussion those extraneous matters which those opposed to me have thought well to introduce. We perfectly well understand the arts of the politician. We do not always spread it so exactly or plainly to the public as the innocent member for South Oxford (Sir Richard Cartwright); we do not always exactly announce that we are giving party instructions when we speak on the floor of Parliament as that hon. gentleman has thought fit to do, but it has been perfectly plain and perfectly clear to the vision of the most uninitiated among, us that the object here has been not to discuss this matter on its merits, not to deal with this question, as it ought to be dealt with, as to wether it should or not become law, but by abusing the plaintiff's attorney—the unfortunate promoter of the Bill—and by raising clouds of race prejudices and religious prejudices as well, to have this Bill rejected because of matters which ought not to have been mentioned in connection with it. What is the proposition we are dealing with here? It is a simple one. It is said that it is the entering of the thin end of the wedge; it is said that I have commenced a crusade, and that this is the first thing I have attempted and that my success in this will mean success later on in other matters. Even if that were so, and if the continuance of the present condition of things is an injury to the people of the North- West—if this is calculated to do that great portion of our Dominion an injustice, are the people of the North-West to suffer under this grievance because of the unfortunate language—if it be unfortunate— because of the unfortunate terms—if they be unfortunate—in which the Bill was presented to the House of Commons. I do not think the practical people of this country will accept any such excuse. I will just add as a rider to the advice of the hon. member for South Oxford (Sir Richard Cartwright): "Do not I beseech you hon. members who sit behind him allow yourselves to be carried away with such ill advice as that." This Bill and this only must be dealt with on its merits. It is not for the speech of the member who introduced it you are going to vote, it is not for his speech in the Opera House at Ottawa you are going to vote, but you must vote "yea" or "nay" upon the Bill itself which is now before you. If that Bill is one which in the interests of our common country should be passed, I do not think that excuses such as are presented here will save hon. gentlemen from the just indignation of their constituents. Again, there has been a very great misrepresentation of what I stated in my speech. My argument upon the question of language is to be found in these words:
"Now I venture to think I have to advance some explanation of the proposition which I am dealing with— that is, that language is of great importance, that it is of vital consequence to the nation, that the language s oken by its people should be common to them all, an that they should not at all events be encouraged and trained in speaking different languages."
Is there anything revolutionary in that? Is this the language of the incendiary? Is there anything here that ought not to have been uttered on the floor of Parliament. You can look throughout the speech and you will find nothing more radical than that. I gave my reasons and I cited What my hon. friend from West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin) was 853 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 854 good enough to sneer at as my "authorities." We are not all, like the hon. member for Assiniboia, versed in literature, history, philology, ethnology and in all the other subjects he is so well acquainted with, nor is the country so learned as that hon. gentleman; and I thought in justice to my position that I should quote my authorities. This subject is a comparatively new one to most of us, and I do not repent of it in the slightest degree that in the introduction of this Bill I stated my reasons and gave my authorities, which have been open to the criticisms of hon. members who did me the honor to listen to my address or who read my observations. After all the impassioned language we have heard, after all the abuse that has been heaped upon my devoted head, I ask: Do not those words of mine stand unrefuted and incapable of refutation? The hon. member for Bothwell (Mr. Mills) and the hon. member for North York (Mr. Mulock)— the loyal embryo knight from that constituency— have first set up a man of straw and then attacked him. The hon. member for Bothwell contended that I had not gone far enough—that I ought to have struck at the language here in this chamber and in the Province of Quebec— that I ought to have prevented its use in the pulpit, on the platform, in the schools, and so on. Why, Sir, we have nothing to do with these matters; we have no call to meddle with them; but I am glad to be able to inform the hon. gentleman that the North-West Legislative Assembly are themselves dealing with this matter of the schools, which is, perhaps, the most important of all. They, discovering as they did lately, just as we have discovered lately, what was going on in the so-called Separate schools in the French settlements, have already, in advance of the Province of Ontario, put an end to that, and the teaching is now in the English tongue. What I have sought for here is that which is in our power. We have this enormous territory yet to be peopled by millions, and do we want to have repeated there the spectacle which is presented on the floor of this House, or the spectacle, still more deplorable from a patriotic point of view, which is depicted in the Legislative Chamber of the Province of Quebec? Do you want that, Sir? It would be better that we all spoke French than that half of us should speak French and half of us English.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. Hear, hear.
Mr. MCCARTHY. The hon. gentleman says "hear, hear," and he is quite right. I do not pretend to know the glories of the French language, but I do know enough from what I have been told to believe that it is a beautiful tongue. But that is not the question we are dealing with. We know that the French language is not and never can be the language of British North America and we ought to realise—more especially ought the French Canadians of this country to realise— that their true interest, as our true interest, is at as early a day as possible to have but the one language spoken in this country. Well, of course, I do not expect, and it would be hardly reasonable to expect, that those hon. gentlemen who agree with me that we should all be better speaking French will go the other step with me and agree that we should be all the better speaking English, though the hon. leader of the Opposition I am told—for I had not the honor of hearing him—rather leaned to that view. Now, I am not going to follow the hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House in their excursions into Switzerland, Austria, Hungary, Cape Colony, Mauritius, and other places which have been brought to our notice. I have stated before, and I repeat, that these cases are not the rule, but the exception; and while I quite admit that the Province of Quebec is also an exceptional case, the legislation proposed here has no reference to that Province; it has no reference even to this Parliament; it is with regard to the great territories of the North-West, which have always belonged to the Crown of England, which never belonged to the French in any sense, notwithstanding the statement of the bishop which is in our Votes and Proceedings. History tells us that north of the Height of Land and from there to the Pacific Ocean the Frenchman, although he went there. went there as a trespasser, and was expelled as a trespasser. I see a smile on the face of the philosopher from Bothwell, who endeavored to prove that the French territory extended as far as the Rocky Mountains.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). So it did.
Mr. MCCARTHY. But that was settled by the boundary decision. Those who represented the Province of Ontario in that dispute, before the Privy Council, put forward that pretension, and the hon. gentleman sat there with his wig on his head ready to argue, if he were only allowed, in favor of it, but it was better argued by his seniors. But the Privy Council rejected his contention, and the boundary was placed where we now have it.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). Not at all; it was on the ground of acquiescence that they decided.
Mr. MCCARTHY. The hon. gentleman is, of course, wiser than the rest of us. As the Privy Council gave no reason for their judgment, but simply reported to Her Majesty where the boundary was, I do not know where he got that information.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). During the argument.
Mr. MCCARTHY. There was not one word during the argument, which I took part in, which would lead to that conclusion. At all events, the observation of a judge during an argument is not a decision.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell) The observation of Lord Selborne—
Mr. MCCARTHY. If the hon. gentleman will keep his soul in patience we shall get on more easily with this debate. That being so, on what pretense, I want to know, did that hon. gentleman's Government introduce this clause into the North-West Territories Act? I am not now discussing the Province of Manitoba; but with regard to the North-West Territories, is there a shadow of reason for this provision? If so, it has not yet been given to show why the dual language should be imposed on the people of the North-West Territories. If there be no answer, as no answer there can be, then I want to know what is the duty of this Parliament? Is the duty of this Parliament to leave it there? In that respect I understand that the politician of the party, the hon. member for South Oxford (Sir Richard Cartwright) differs from the hon. member for West Durham, and he is wise to difl'er with him and withdraw himself from his protection. The proposition of the hon. member 855 [COMMONS] 856 for West Durham, the most monstrous ever submitted to any assembly, is to keep the language as an encouragement to the French to emigrate to the North-West, and to settle this question, by-and- bye, after they get there. If they go in masses, says the hon. member, I shall much regret it; but if they do go there in masses—and we perfectly well know that they do not go in any other way— then, he said, something will have to be done. If I might appeal to the reason of the House without prejudice, I would say, let us look at the position of the North-West to-day. We are told, and the census confirms it, that in 1885 there were but 1,500 French Canadians in the North-West. If you add the number of the half-breeds of French descent, the number will still be less than 5,000. I have got the exact figures here. We know that at the time to which I refer, there were in the three districts 23,285 English-speaking people; I am leaving the Indians out of consideration. The ratio is therefore 83 to 17 per cent., and if our records are correct that disproportion has been vastly increased, and it is not too much to say that there are not today in the North-West one-tenth of the people who speak the French language to the nine-tenths who speak the English language. And moreover, when we look at the record we find that these French are scattered.
Mr. MILLS (Bothwell). Then they are not in the mass?
Mr. MCCARTHY. "Then they are not in the mass" is the very erudite observation made by the hon. member for Bothwell (Mr. Mills). They are here, there and everywhere, in small bands and surrounded by a large population of English- speaking people That being so, can there be any better time for settling this question than the present? Should there be an immigration in the North-West, in the near future of the French Canadians, should they go in there induced by the speech of the hon. member for West Durham (Mr. Blake), or should this House be insane enough to adopt the proposed resolution of that hon. gentleman, I do not know, in common justice, how it would be possible to say, by-and-bye, to those who had immigrated upon the faith of such resolution, that this dual language should be done away with. Therefore, this is the time to deal with the question, and I venture to say that this is the place. The hon. member for South Oxford threw another insinuation, and it certainly would be more satisfactory, if instead of insinuating, he would make his statements so clear that they could be understood. He said that the North-West Council had been moved to present the petition I spoke of by some outside influence, about which he indicated I knew something. What did the hon. gentleman mean? Has the hon. gentleman ever been in the North-West? Has he ever seen the members of the Council or of the Assembly? Does he know the character of the men there? My whole connection with the North-West Assembly commenced with stopping over at Calgary and then passing on; and I had only one communication with one of the members of that Council after this matter was dealt with by the Council, and that was with reference to the form in which the petition ought to be presented to this House. But to suppose that the North-West Council, composed of 22 members, representing three districts, which are in a much less degree represented in this House, were not competent to deal with this question; to suppose that their opinion is to have no weight with us, but it is to be set at naught; to suppose that the great doctrine of provincial rights in the case of the North- West Council is not to have even the support of hon. gentlemen opposite, is a very extraordinary, conclusion to arrive at. Now, what is the position? The North-VVest Council, by a petition Which is practically unanimous—carried by 20 to 2—and which has been laid on the Table, asks for the passage of a measure such as the one I have introduced. Hearing that petitions were being presented here from certain settlements, there was at once—and without the slightest communication, so far as I know, with any member of this House; without any communication at all events with me —a burst of indignation at what appeared to these men to be the imposition which was being practised upon this House. The petitions which the hon. members presented, and which aroused this indignation, were couched as follows:—
"The petition of the undersigned humbly expose that at a public meeting of the ratepayers of Lethbridge, District of Alberta, N. W. T., held this second day of January, A. D. 1890, they have been respectively appointed chairman and secretary, and that the following resolution has been unanimoasly adopted:
"Whereas, the French language is, under the constitution and the laws, one of the two official languages of the Dominion; and
"Whereas, under the 'North-West Territories Act' the French is, equally with the English, an official language, the suppression of its use, as such, in the North- West Territories, would beat flagrant injustice towards the settlers of French origin, who were the pioneers of this country. and towards those of the same race, who, upon the faith of the constitution and existing laws, came and established themselves in the North-West, and have contributed, with other citizens of other nationalities, to the development of the resources of the country;
"Be it resolved:
"That a petition containing the resolution that has just been passed be signed by the chairman and the secretary of this meeting and be addressed to the House of Commons, asking that no law be passed affecting the rights of the population with regard to the official use of the French language, as guaranteed by the constitution and the 'North-West Territories Act.'"
No sooner did the news reach the North-West than petitions such as this were being circulated; than an indignation meeting was called at Lethbridge. What was the result of that meeting? I have a telegram which was sent to me, and which reads as follows:—
"At a meeting of the Board of Trade of Lethbridge, thirty-five members present, the following resolution was passed:—
"'Moved by J. D. Higginbotham, seconded by C. C. McCaul, that whereas it appears from reports in the public press that a petition purporting to be from the ratepayers of Lethbridge, against the proposal to abolish the dual language system, has been presented to Parliament, this Board of Trade emphatically protest against such petition being accepted as the views of the ratepayers or inhabitants of Lethbridge. because no such public meeting was ever held in Lethbridge, and the said petition was secretly prepared and forwarded, and the ratepayers of Lethbridge never had any opportunity of voting thereon, and that a copy of this resolution be telegraphed to Mr. Dalton McCarthy, and a copy forwarded by mail to the public press. Please let D. W. Davis, M.P., have copy of this telegram.
"Secretary Board of Trade."
Mr. CHAPLEAU. And the Privy Council has a communication which shows what the meeting was and the number of people present, and which exposes the falsity of that telegram.
857 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 858
Mr. MCCARTHY. I am very sorry the hon. gentleman did not think fit to lay it upon the Table.
Mr. CHAPLEAU. It is before the Privy Council, and the names can be given and the papers produced at any time my hon. friend wants them.
Mr. MCCARTHY. I do not think any statement of that kind would convince me, and I will tell the hon. gentleman the reason why. I have a letter from a gentleman, who has given me the liberty to read it—a gentleman well known to the right hon. the First Minister, and who is as incapable of telling an untruth as is the hon. the Provincial Secretary himself.
"February 5th, 1890.
"DEAR MR. MCCARTHY,—The Empire publishes certain resolutions in regard to the dual language question, purporting to have been passed at a public meeting of ratepayers at Lethbridge. The 'public meeting' must have been very privately called, as none of the ratepayers to the public school ever heard of it. It was in fact a meeting of the Roman Catholic supporters of the separate school, a very small minority—and they were very careful not to let the general public get any inkling of their proceedings.  
"You can rely on it that the general feeling of Lethbridge and this district, is entirely in favor of your motion.
"Yours faithfully,
"You are at liberty to make any use of this letter that you see fit."
That is not the only communication I got. I got a letter from Banff from a gentleman perfectly well known to the right hon. the First Minister, Mr. Frederick J. Boswell:
"MY DEAR MCCARTHY,—I noticed in the Toronto Globe the announcement that Davls, M. P. for Alberta, has presented to the House of Commons from Banff, Anthracite Canmore, &c., a resolution asking the Parliament not to do away with the French language in the Territories; " that the said resolutions were passed at public meeting held in the above named places; I can most positively assure you that no such meetings were held either at Banff, Anthracite or Canmore, the only meetings that have been held were two, in reference to the regulations and leases in the townsite of Banff.
"I think it right to let you know this, as I am with you in re your dual language Bill and am at work getting a petition signed by all inhabitants of this place backing you up. Dr. Brett, our member of the Legislative Assembly, is strongly in your favor, and you may depend that if it is referred to the Assembly he Will do his utmost to carry it.
"I think it very unjust of Davis to misrepresent us.
"Wishing you and your Bill every success.
"I remain, "Yours very Sincerely,
I have also a telegram, which I believe was also sent to the hon. member who represents Alberta in this House (Mr. Davis), in these words:
"At a mass meeting in Calgary to-night, Mayor Lafferty, chairman, the following resolutions passed by 250 to 7:—
"'No. 1. That the use of a dual language in oflicial proceedings in the North-West Territories is unnecessary, expensive and calculated to prevent the complete union of the several nationalities who reslde in the Territories. and that to bring about a united Canadian people in this part of the Dominion, the English language alone should be legalised in the proceedings of the Legislative Assembly, the courts, and all other official bodies.
"'No. 2. That this meeting heartily endorses the action of the Legislative Assembly at Regina, in reference to the dual language, and requests that the petition presented to the Dominion Government in pursuance of such action be granted.
"'No. 3. That a copy of the above resolutions be forwarded to D. W. Davis, M.P., D'Alton McCarthy, M.P., the Hon. James Lougheed and the Dominion Parliament, and that D. W. Davis, M.P., be requested to forward in every way the movement for the abolition of French as an official language in the Territories.'"
Now, let us see where we stand in regard to this question, considered as a local one. The members of the North-West Council were elected two years ago, if my memory serves me, since the members of this House who sit for that district were elected. They are twenty-two in number. They are spread, of course, and come much more in contact with the people of their respective territories than do the members who sit here, whose districts are so much larger. They have unanimously, or with practical unanimity, petitioned this House to abolish this clause in the North-West Territories Act. On the motion being made here, and the matter being brought before Parliament, and it appearing that certain cut-and-dried petitions were presented here from certain places in that Territory, the people there at once set about getting up counter-petitions which I have had the honor to present to the House. They are not petitions purporting to be signed by the chairmen and secretaries of public meetings, which may conceal the fact that no such meetings were held, but they are signed by the leading men in the places from which they come. For instance, in Calgary, the petition was signed by the mayor at the head, by two ex-mayors and over 500 others; and, in another place, the petition is signed by a French Catholic gentleman, who, I think must be the gentleman who grows coffee, to whom the member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin) referred to the other night, though of that I am not quite sure. Then we have a public meeting at which a vote of 250 to 7 was recorded in favor of this change; and yet we are told that we do not know what the feelings of the people of the North- West are in regard to this question, and that we ought to give them time for consideration, and to allow the members of the Assembly there another opportunity of appealing to their constituents. There are many other questions which come before this House with which, if that argument is to prevail, we would find it difficult to deal at all. But I do not conceal the fact that I do not look upon this matter as a local question. When I addressed the people of Calgary, and they were good enough to say that they understood I was to take a part in the movement to abolish the separate school system and the dual language in the North-West, I said, as to the dual language I shall move in Parliament, Whether you petition or not; I look upon that question as a matter of national importance, as a matter affecting the whole Dominion, as a matter which is proper to be dealt with in Parliament and not by a Local Legislature. I found at the same time, in the organ of the hon. gentleman which is published in the city of Toronto, a statement that if the people in the North-West signified their desire to abolish the use of that language officially, effect would be given to their wish. When the Assembly met, almost their earliest act—and I think not their least important act—was to adopt this petition, which placed on two grounds their desire to abolish the use of that language: one, that it was not required in the interest of the country; and the other, that it was contrary to sound public policy that two languages should prevail. Follow that up by the petitions I have had the honor to present, and by the report which I have read from my place in Parliament, and then, if the House is not seized of 859 [COMMONS] 860 the opinions of the North-West in regard to this matter, I fail to see how we will ever be able to obtain the views of that people on the subject. Do not let us exaggerate, I have no desire at all to exaggerate the importance of this question of language. I admit as freely as it can be admitted that there are cases—and the case of Switzerland is one—where, under peculiar circumstances, people speaking different languages, those languages being officially there three instead of two, have enjoyed a certain amount of prosperity, or very great prosperity if you like. But do hon. gentlemen see any analogy between Switzerland and Canada? The cantons of Switzerland came together as independent bodies under bargains and terms and conditions to which everyone of them had to agree, and that possesses nothing of an analogy to the case of our own North-West. But, if we look at the history of the Swiss Confederation, what do we find? I hardly expected from the historian of the House, the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin), that so much stress would be laid upon the case of Switzerland. Let us look at this case of Switzerland for a few moments, while I give a short statement of its history. It is quite true that Switzerland is composed of 22 cantons, it is quite true that there are three official languages there, it is equally true that there is a fourth language which is not recognised. But the history of the Swiss constitution may briefly be summarised thus: Between 1291 and 1874, the confederation has passed through no less than seven phases, of which, since 1798, there have been four —one in 1798, one in 1803, another in 1815, another 1848, and a revision in 1874. Is that the evidence of a stable constitution? Is that the kind of constitution that the hon. member would like to have fastened upon the people of his beloved North- West? Just let us see:
"The third phase lasted till 1798 "—
I am reading from the best work, I believe, on the subject, the work of Sir F. O. Adams—
—" without modification, and was marked by internal discord, religious wars, and revolts of peasants."
That is the first beautiful picture we have of the Confederation of Switzerland. This phase lasted from 1815 to 1848:
"Then came an epoch of agitation and of discord.
"The Confederation suffered from a fundamental vice, i. e., the powerlessness of the central authority. The Cantons had become too independent, and gave to their deputies instructions differing Widely from each other."
Now, here is what we find happening in 1847:
"On the 4th November, 1847, after the deputies of the Sonderbond had left the Diet, this league was declared to be dissolved,and hostilities broke out between the two contending parties. A short and demsxve campaign of twenty- five days ensued; Frelburg was taken by the Federal troops under General Dufour, later Luzern opened its gates, the small cantons and the Valais capitulated, and the strife came to an end."
Now, let me give you a comment upon this from a paper which, perhaps, will not command the attention of the members of this House, the Edinburgh Review which, so late, as the month of January last, spoke of the Swiss Executive in these words:
"It (the Swiss Executive) guides the policy of a state eternally menaced by foreign complications; it reserves harmony throughout a confederacy made up of twenty- two cantons, each jealous of one another an sympathising only in common jealousy of the Federal power."
I do not think that any of us would like to plant in the virgin soil of the North-West, a constitution such as the Swiss constitution, with the results which have attended its use, and, therefore, the illustration is very far fetched. Take another illustration which we have had, take Cape Colony; I dare say some hon. gentleman know more about Cape Colony than I do, possibly some members of this House may have visited it; but is it not a fact that the Dutch Boers, as they are called, have rebelled and have left the English colony and have formed an independent republic on its borders? Have not, within recent times, the British arms suffered a defeat at their hands, and today is there not very great trouble between the Dutch who remain in the English colony? Certainly, it is the last example I would expect to be given by any persons, cognisant with the facts in support of a duality of language in any country. But need we go so far afield? Let me give one more instance, wearisome as these instances may be. I cannot forbear quoting to the House the striking example of Bohemia. Bohemia, we all know, is inhabited by two nationalities, the Germans, and the Zechs, speaking each their language. We know an attempt was made, not long ago, to put down one of these languages, and how has a settlement been arrived at? What has been the only possible solution? Under the influence of the Emperor Francis Joseph, who is beloved by his subjects, and who has great influence among them, they have resolved to settle the difficulty in this extraordinary fashion: the Diet is informally divided into two Curiae, one German and the other Zech, which sit and debate together, although each possesses the full power of a separate and co-ordinate House. That is the only solution for a duality of language which could be found in Bohemia, and it was found necessary to resort to that in order to prevent these people from flying at one another's throats, it was found necessary to resort to that to prevent the Germans from deserting to Bismark. Now, what is the position here?—because, it is useless for us to go further than our own country. If this language is not designedly perpetuated with the view of keeping up the French nationality—which the hon. leader of the Opposition has been the only French Canadian on the floor of Parliament to denounce, or to say that he does not sympathise with it.
Mr. LAURIER. What?
Mr. MCCARTHY. A French nationality.
Mr. LAURIER. What did you say?
Mr. MCCARTHY. I say you denounced it; I say that the leader of the Opposition is the only gentleman of that nationality who denounced it.
Mr. LAURIER. Denounce what, my nationality?'
Mr. MCCARTHY. No, not your nationality; but the formation of a French nation upon this continent.
Mr. MCCARTHY. I ask, what is the ultimate result of the system that is being pursued in regard to the French language throughout this Dominion? Is there any other result, except the one which is pointed out to us in newspapers in the Province of Quebec? Is that not the logical outcome of the views which were enunciate so freely by La Véfité which I read to this House 861 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 862 when I had the honor to introduce this Bill? I know no other. But I deny the right of any gentleman in this House to repudiate the language of the mountebank, as the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin) calls him, the "mountebank Premier" of the Province of Quebec. The language is not mine. I differ from Mr. Mercier as much as it is possible to differ from any public man, but yet I have too great a respect for my French Canadian fellow-subjects to speak of their First Minister in the language which was used by the champion of their cause on the floor of this Parliament; for I recognise in him, whatever his other faults may be, one of the greatest men which his nationality has produced in Canada. We know that although it may suit the purposes of the leader of the Opposition to say that he does not sympathise with these aspirations, his words are not uttered in the Province of Quebec. We know that the hon. gentleman is going hand in hand with the Premier of the Province of Quebec in all his local contests, in all his endeavors to fasten what he calls the Nationalist Party upon that Province, and in which, up to this time, he has been successful. We know, Sir, that the hon. gentleman was present at a great public meeting at which the Premier of Quebec announced the aspirations of the French Canadian people to be the formation of a great French nationality, not under the glorious Union Jack, of which we hear so much in this House from some hon. gentlemen who do not say so much about it in the Province of Quebec, but under the Tricolor, and he advised the members of both parties to join under the Tricolor of France, the flag of France, not that they wished to unite with France; I quite agree that is not their aspiration; the Republic of France does not suit the French Canadians of that view in the Province of Quebec; but that they did announce that their nationality was typified by the French flag, the Tricolor of France. That that language was uttered at a great meeting of their fellow-countrymen, that that language was uttered by the Premier of Quebec in the presence of the leader of the Opposition in this House, without demur, without contradiction, without remonstrance, and without reproach, goes without saying.
Mr. LAURIER. Would the hon. gentleman permit me to interrupt him? On the occasion to which he alludes I spoke after Mr. Mercier, and I spoke afterwards in Toronto, quoting word for word the language I had used in Quebec.
Mr. MCCARTHY. The hon. gentleman is perfectly right, and yet my statement remains uncontradicted. The hon. gentleman did speak in honeyed words, first of his love for his own nationality, and secondly of his love for the other nationalities of the Dominion. What I am complaining of is this: if that was not the view of the hon. gentleman, then and there, before the thousands who were assembled, before the great body of his fellow-countrymen, was the time for prompt repudiation and not here. But no repudiation came. Is it possible under these conditions for us to stand still? Have we no other evidence of the aspirations of the hon. gentleman's party, because he is reaping the benefit of that party, that party which is is strength in the Province of Quebec? It is only a few days ago, certainly only a few weeks ago, since the hon. gentleman wrote an open letter calling upon his people, notwithstanding the rebellion of the old Liberal Party of which he was at one time a member, when they rebelled against this new proposed national cry of the Premier of the Province of Quebec; the hon. gentleman instead of joining with his own confrères, wrote to the constituency or a prominent member in it, urging their support to the new party formed by the Premier of Quebec.
Mr. LAURIER. Against the Tories.
Mr. MCCARTHY. He had been a Tory or a Bleu, and he became a convert to the Nationalist cry and went over to the Nationalist Party against the reinonstrances of the old Liberal Party of the Province. The hon. gentleman thought fit to interpose and interfere. Is that all? When the hon. gentleman joined in the agitation with respect to Riel, I wonder did he ever think that he would be denouncing a member of this House for incendiarism? I wonder did he ever think he would be denouncing a brother member for raising a cry and appealing to the passions of the people? Does the hon. gentleman remember his course upon that occasion? Sir, does he remember that when Riel, after a fair trial, after being ably defended and impartially tried, was justly executed.
Some hon. MEMBERS. Oh, Oh.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Justly executed—yes. At a meeting in Montreal, led by the lieutenant of the hon. member for West Durham (Mr. Blake) who sits here for western Ontario — influenced by purely patriotic considerations for the good of the country—this extraordinary language was used by the present leader of the Opposition at that excited time, when a statesman would have naturally used a language tending to quiet and subdue the disturbed passions of the multitude. And what were the words?
"If he (Laurier) had been on the banks of the Saskatchewan when the rebellion broke out, he would have taken up arms against the Government."
He further said:
"It must be well understood by all that this was not a war of races, but rather a vindication of the rights of one race that claimed for the French that which is granted to all other nationalities. The crime of Regina would still be avenged, not only by the French, but by all other races. They were asking for no favor, but they only wanted common justice pure and Simple. They were as jealous of the liberties of others as of their own; and if injustice was done one class, injustice might be done to others."
He further said:
"They cannot bring Riel back to life, but by patriotically uniting together they can drive from power the wretches who had so pitilessly put him to death." * *
"Sir John had not had the courage of dealing leniently by a man who represented a cause which he had not treated fairly and justly." * * *
"This was a free country and not even the Government had the right of committing judicial murder."
This was the language of the hon. gentleman, who has had the hardihood to speak of my moderate terms as being calculated to arouse angry passions, race difficulties and troubles. Does the hon. gentleman repent of those words? No. His benches are filled by his fellow-countrymen by reason of those words, and although some of them sit there to-day not following or supporting him, it is simply by reason of the accident that he did not secure a majority. The hon. gentleman profits by that language, and he has no reason to regret it. We recognize that by means of this cry the then 863 [COMMONS] 864 Government of the Province of Quebec, the best Government the Province has had since Confederation was ejected from office. Why? Because they declined to vote censure upon the Administration at Ottawa. Mr. Mercier, taking advantage of the excited feeling of the Province, gathered together the Nationalist Party, nationalist in the narrow sense to which I have referred, and, joining hands with the hon. gentleman here, brought about a result which deprived this House of many supporters from the French Province for hon. gentlemen on this side of the House, and brought strength to hon. gentlemen opposite. People might not consider the words of politicians of such serious moment, but we cannot disregard what we see going on before our eyes. The other day a young lady, Miss Maybee, was sent down to the Post Office Department in Quebec. She had the misfortune to speak English and to come from Ontario; and will it be believed, and yet we know it perfectly well to be the case, that those supporting the hon. gentleman opposite at once denounced the Government and the Postmaster General for making the appointment.
Mr. LAURIER. And the Ministerial papers, too.
Mr. McCARTHY. I am astounded at it. I did not think that matters had gone to that length; I have not seen the references, and I will be delighted if the hon. gentleman will furnish them to me. So it now happens, if the hon. gentleman's statement is correct, and he would not make a statement if it was not correct, that both French parties in Quebec object to an English speaking lady.
Some hon. MEMBERS. No, no.
Mr. McCARTHY. The hon. gentleman admits it. I repeat that they object to an English lady being sent down there. I have the words in some of the newspapers if the hon. gentleman wishes them. The howl was raised, and it was successful I am sorry to say. I am sorry to know that the old politeness of the French race seems to have departed, for I thought a young lady would have been favorably received; but objection was made by L'Electeur and another paper. Here are the words:
"L'Evénement joins us in protesting against the nomination of Miss Maybee to the Post Office Inspector's Office. The rumor going round, according to what l'Evénement says, is that we are going to give employment in the Civil Service at Quebec to a lady of Ontario. As the occupation of this lady would simply be to run a typewriter in the post office, we don't see why we should go so far to get a typewriter that we could find so easily at home.
"It is not in our knowledge, and it is not in the knowledge, of any person, that they would think for a moment of ringing a French Canadian girl from Quebec or Montreal to occupy a position of any kind of employment in Ontario. Are we supposed to be more generous, more agreable, than our neighbors, especially when we have persons who are qualified to do the work in question?"
I can assure the hon. gentleman that if a young lady is sent to Ontario or Toronto she will not be denounced in the public press, but she will be received with kindness, courtesy and consideration. Another article follows, which I need not trouble the House by reading. That is another result of these race troubles and race difficulties. But it is not the most serious in my humble judgment that we have to deal with. I find in a French publication of recent date, M. Tardivel, under the heading "Anglicism—Behold the Enemy," writes:
"Reflecting a little upon the situation I saw a great danger for the future of the French Canadian race. Language is the soul of a nation. If the Basques have been able so long to preserve intact their ancient institutions amidst the revolutions and the wars which have convulsed France and Spain; if the Bretons and the Welsh have remained distinct from the races which surround them, they have their language to thank for it. If Ireland struggles in vain to regain her independence, it is because she no longer speaks the language of her old kings. Do you wish to cause a people to disappear? Destroy its language. It is because they comprehend this truth that Russia shows herself so inexorable towards the Polish language, and that Germany seeks to prescribe the French language of Alsace-Lorraine. It is then important for a people, especially a conquered people, to preserve its language."
The same writer again says:
"I stop here. I make no claim to have exhausted the subject, far from it. I have simply desired to utter this note of alarm; 'Fight the anglification of the French language,' and at the same time to we some proofs that this enemy is really to be feared. Let others with more authority than I possess continue the combat; and if one day those who love the French language decide to make a grand assault, all along the line, he assured that I shall not fail to respond to the appeal."
Mr. LAURIER. What paper is that from?
Mr. McCARTHY. It is not a paper at all.
Mr. GIROUARD. Surely we are entitled to know what the hon. gentleman is reading from.
Mr. FISET. May I ask the hon. gentleman from what journal he is reading? I do not understand that he has told us from what paper he is quoting.
Mr. McCARTHY. It is a pamphlet by Tardivel. Then another writer, Mr. Manseau, in a book published in 1881, writes:
"The dictionary gives the technical definition of Anglicism. Here follows, in our opinion, a definition from the heart. It is a spot of blood that shows us through what place the claws of the British lion have passed, and these claws (who is there that knows it not) torture and flag our language until they kill it."
I will not trouble the House with more extracts of this description, but I will draw the attention of my hon. friends on both sides to the instruction given in the French schools, and if there is then an hon. member who thinks that children so taught or instructed with regard to this history of our country can grow up as British citizens, or British subjects, or as loyal except to their own French Canadian nationality, or that anything can be expected from them except the language of La Vérité and the language of the Premier of the Province of Quebec; then I think that hon. gentlemen will be incapable of reasoning. In this history I find the following:
"1774. England, fearful of losing Canada, in view of the menacing attitude of the United States, made haste to grant a new constitution more favorable to the Catholics."
Mr. AMYOT. Hear, hear.
Mr. McCARTHY. The hon. gentleman says "Hear, hear." There is not a shadow of doubt that this is the teachings in the schools. Every concession that has been obtained is always pictured to the people of the Province of Quebec as having been wrung from tyrants and despots and not granted by the free-will of the people.
Mr. AMYOT. You are a tyrant to us.
Some hon. MEMBERS. Order.
Mr. McCARTHY. I quote also another selec tion from one of these histories:
"The material forces of New France had to succumb in the end, but the providential forces still do their work in 865 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 866 the colony, which is probably destined to play on this continent the part which old France has played on the Continent of Europe."
I think I have read of similar language in La Vérité. If this is the teaching of the schools, if these are the writings of the different writers, if this is the language of the Premier of the Province, if these are the utterances at the great public meetings held in that Province (and no man is bold enough to assert a single word of dissent to them) what possible outcome can there be except the natural outcome which is here announced on the floor of Parliament. If my ears did not deceive me I think I heard the Minister of Public Works speak of the autonomy of his race, and state that his nation would live in spite of all that might be done against it. We must remember that this has been a British colony for over a century and a quarter, and that within a very short period after the cession—I was nearly using the unfortunate word conquest—a distinguished French traveller passing through here was able to announce that the French Canadians were better treated under the English than they were under their own Kings. We must remember that from that time to this they have enjoyed a liberty which they could not possibly have enjoyed under the Crown of France yet; notwithstanding this, they are endeavoring to perpetuate this race and nation cry mainly by their language, which is the soul of the nation, as this writer says. If the language was permitted to die out, as it would naturally do, all this ambition, which must end in delusion, which can never end in anything but delusion and which can never lead to any accomplished fact, would soon disappear. We have no jealousy of the Germans, we have no jealousy of any other nationality,because we know that while they speak in their own tongue, and for years after they come here are not able to speak any other tongue, yet they do not propose to divide the people of this country by their race cries and race feelings. Now these are the problems we have to deal with. There is no use our going to Switzerland or to Austro-Hungary for examples. We have to deal with the question we have here at home; and the practical question is, whether, under these circumstances, we should permit this kind of thing to go on. Whatever I might do bye-and- by, no man is responsible for my acts. The gentlemen who vote with me now, and the gentlemen who disagree with me, are not responsible for what I may do bye-and—by. I may state— as these hon. gentlemen who have done me the honor of followin my utterances with so much care know well—that I have never pretended to believe or to say that it was possible to deal with the dual language in the Province of Quebec. I realise that that is beyond the hope of being dealt with by any possible legislation. I realise that that has been allowed to grow into such monstrous proportions that we can never hope to cope with it, except by natural ways and by natural causes which possiblymay work a cure. Not in our day, but within perhaps a time that one can imagine, it may work out its own cure. I look forward to the assimilation that is going on by reason of the travelling backwards and forwards between the French Canadians of Quebec and the Eastern States of the Union. Do what you will, the people do go and will go to the Eastern States. Do what you will, they will more or less imbibe the language of that great country and disseminate it amon st those whom they have left behind. From t is side we are taking care that the Province of Ontario will maintain its character as an English speaking Province. This process is going on, I have great hope, and it is a hope which does no injustice to my French Canadian fellow citizens, that bye-and-by the difficulty even in the Province of Quebec may vanish. So that I have never had the ambition, I have never dreamed of interfering. I do not say, Sir, that the time may not come when it will be proper to move— though in that I do not find much sympathy in this House—to do away with the dual language in this Chamber. The time has not come yet, that is quite certain. What we are dealing with now is this question in the North-West, and do not let us mix up questions that have nothing at all to do with it. One hon. gentleman said I had introduced even a religious cry. Why, Sir, is freedom of speech so gone in this country that I cannot express my dissent from the system of separate schools which exists in my own Province without being told that I am raising a religious cry? Is that a question of religion? Is not that a question of great state policy as to how our children shall be educated? And I do hope that before very long the delegation from the Province of Ontario will call on this House for its aid to blot out the Separate School clause from the British North America Act, which limits and fetters the people of that Province. That clause was carried by a majority of French Canadians, and was imposed upon the people of Ontario against their will; and I am sorry to differ from my hon. leader on that question. He tells us — aud I never feel more humiliated than when I hear him speak on that subject — that he participated in imposing that Separate School system upon us. But is it possible that the free people of Ontario are not to be placed in the same position as the people by the sea on both sides of them, in the Maritime Provinces and in British Columbia? If they could not ask this Parliament to aid in freeing them from the restrictions imposed upon them I would despair of the freedom of this country. But that has nothing to do with this question. All these are aside from it, and will be properly dealt with when they come up and not before. What we are dealing with now is the question whether this Bill for the repeal of the duallanguage in the North-West should or should not become law; that and that only is the question before us. I am sorry, Sir, that the hon. member for West Durham (Mr. Blake) has been compelled by the unfortunate event to which he alluded to absent himself from this discussion. It is not pleasant to speak of an hon. gentleman behind his back, for I cannot quite accept the theory put forward by the hon. member for East Simcoe (Mr. Cook), that that gives one a better privilege to abuse a man; but, perhaps, I may be allowed to say a few words about that hon. gentleman's proposition. You will remember, Sir, that he read us a lecture: he told us how we were not to disturb the harmony that at present existed; how we were to be careful of raising race cries; how he recognised that there was a mass of ignorance, prejudice and bigotry which only required the hand of an incendiary to inflame it, and he rather intimated that the hand of the incendiary had already been laid to that mass; and then he wound up with a fervent appeal that we should 867 [COMMONS] 868 never interfere with the covenant, as he called it, made at the time of Confederation. I felt that if that hon. gentleman had not already surrendered to French influences of the Province of Quebec he made his capitulation the other night. But his most extraordinary statement was that we were not informed of the opinion of the people of the North- West, that their representatives had no mandate from them to take up and deal with this question. Did that hon. gentleman remember that when in the Province of Ontario he agitated the country from end to end with regard to the murder of poor Thomas Scott, he sat in the Legislature of Ontario, where he had no mandate to deal with that question? Did the hon. gentleman remember that on one occasion he himself brought into this House a resolution which was offensive to a great many of us with regard to the Irish question, in order that he mi ht secure the Irish section of our population an draw them to his standard, although he had no mandate, and although this House had no authority to speak with regard to Imperial concerns? Did that hon. gentleman remember that on another occasion he voted for, if he did not move, a resolution on the subject of the disestablishment of the Irish Church? And yet he undertook to assert that the Legislature of the North-West had no right to petition this Parliament. We had a right to pass offensive resolutions and send them home to England, notwithstanding the rebuff we met with from the Imperial authorities; but the hon. gentleman ventured to assert that the representatives of the North-West had no right to petition or to express their wishes that this clause should be stricken out of the North-West Territories Act. I will say no more in the absence of that hon. gentleman. I now desire, before closing, to say a word or two on the merits of the various motions before the Chair. The amendment of the hon. member for Berthier (Mr. Beausoleil) has received but little favor from any of the English-speaking members. It is one,I think, impossible of acceptance. It announces that if we repeal a clause in the North-West Act, put in under the extraordinary circumstances to which reference has been made, and allowed to remain because attention has not been drawn to it, we shall be shaking the stability of our institutions and destroying the peace and progress of the North-West. The mere recital of that resolution carries its condemnation with it. The other amendment with which we have to deal, and which seems to find a good deal of favor, is the amendment of my hon. friend the member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin); and before I deal with that I have somewhat of an apology to make to that hon. gentleman and to this House. I am accused of interfering with the prerogatives of the members from the North-West. Surely, said the hon. Minister of Public Works, echoed by the hon. Secretary of State, there were members in this House representing the North-West whose duty it was to bring this question to the attention of this chamber, and there was rather an insinuation thrown out by the hon. member for Assiniboia himself in his very opening words that my action was an intrusion on his domain; and, if you will pardon me saying so, the bitterness—but that is too strong a word, for he could not be bitter if he tried, but the appearance of bitterness—which characterised his observation I thought had its origin somewhat in pique, that anyone except that hon. gentleman himself should venture to deal with questions affecting the people of the North- West. He and he alone is the guardian of their interests, the only member who has a right to speak on their behalf, and any one else who attempts to do so must expect to meet with the castigation administered to me in the opening of this debate.
Mr. DAVIN. I said you had a right.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Yes; but the very observation rather suggested an apology from me. This is my excuse, and the only excuse I give—I am reading from the Qu'Appelle Progress of 7th February inst.:—
"Dalton McCarthy introduced into the Dominion Parliament his Bill to abolish the official use of the French language in the North-West. He delivered a very temperate and dispassionate speech, full of facts and arguments."
That is not the way my feeble efforts were characterised in this House; but that seems to be the opinion of the outside world, at all events.
"The second reading is to take place on Wednesday next, when it is expected there will be a big fight. We are informed on good authority that all the North-West representatives will vote against it. If they do so, their constituents should call upon them to resign forthwith. We are also informed that Mr. N. F. Davin will speak against it. West Assiniboia is about the best mis-represented constituency in the North-West. This country is almost unanimous in favor of Mr. McCarthy's Bill, but its representatives all belong to the party machine and must represent the machine in preference to the country."
That, Mr. Speaker, is my apology for venturing to introduce this point to the notice of the House. Now, with regard to the amendment of that hon. gentleman: what is it? My motion is that the Bill be read the second time. Great fault is found with the preamble. The preamble is worse than the enacting clause; the enacting clause is harmless and the preamble is something fearful. Well, to the laymen of the House, perhaps, explanations are necessary about the preamble. To the lawyers of the House an explanation is not called for. It is quite certain, as every lawyer in this House knows, that the preamble neither adds to nor takes from the effect of the enacting clause. The preamble, in this case, I quite admit, was unnecessary. While I do not at all withdraw from the sentiment contained in that preamble, yet as an effective piece of legislation I am free to admit the Bill would be perfectly as good without as with the preamble. Now, if the hon. gentlemen in this House are sincere, and I am bound to believe in their sincerity; if they desire that this dual clause should be expunged or repealed—the hon. member for West Durham thought "expunge" was a very improper word to use; one has to be very careful of his language and must not use words, no matter how plain they may be, except with the greatest care— well, I will call it repeal, or anything you will. But, I say, if hon. gentlemen are sincere in their desire to repeal this clause, the way to do that is to pass the Bill to the second reading, and those who are opposed to the preamble can then have it struck out. The preamble of a private Bill is the all-essential portion; if the preamble be not carried, the Bill does not pass. The preamble of a public Bill is wholly unessential; its only possible use can be to make an ambiguous portion of the enacting clause plain, if ambiguity there be; and I say here that While I do not withdraw from that 869 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 870 preamble, while I think the statement in it is perfectly true, namely:
"Whereas it is expedient in the interest of the national unity of the Dominion that there should be community of language among the people of Canada."
Who will say nay to that? It may not be absolutely essential; that is not the proposition. I say, it is expedient, and every gentleman who has spoken on this question has admitted its expediency. Even the hon. member for West Durham said that if we were all of one race and one nationality, speaking one tongue, the task before us would be simpler and easier, and, therefore, the proposition before us is not incorrect and unfounded. But to any hon. gentleman who objects to it, all I can say is, when the Bill goes to Committee, should it pass the second reading, let him object to the preamble, and I shall be the first to withdraw it. I want the body of the Bill, and do not care for the preamble, and if there be a member of this House who desires the Bill and objects to the preamble, there shall be no opposition, as far as I am concerned, to this preamble being obliterated, or expunged, to use any term you please. I will say more. I did not in the least dream that the words should be taken up in an offensive sense, and I can only most heartily express my regret that any of my French Canadian friends should be offended by this clause in the Bill, or that I should have hurt the sentiments of French speaking members of this House, or the French Canadians throughout the country—for such was far from my intention. But what was the proposition of the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin)? It was that the Bill be not now read a second time. That is, he does not want the dual language expunged, nor does he want to give the power to the North-West Territories to expunge it.
Mr. DAVIN. I do.
Mr. McCARTHY. Then the hon. gentleman has not taken the proper course. If he wanted that, his proper course was to let the Bill be read a second time, and to move into Committee that clause 1 be struck out and the words of his amendment inserted in its stead:
"That the said Bill be not now read a second time, but that it be resolved,—That it is expedient that the Legislative Assembly of the North-West Territories be authorised to deal with the subject—matter of this Bill by Ordinance or enactment after the next general election for the said Territories."
But the effect of the hon. gentleman's amendment is to kill the Bill. Make no mistake about it. If the Bill is not read a second time, there it stops. Then what takes place? Hon. gentlemen say they want to repeal the dual language clause, but they want to do that with as much gentleness and consideration for the feelings and susceptibilities of the French-speaking people as possible. Then, the way to do that is to pass the Bill, rejecting the preamble, and inserting the clause of the hon. member for West Assiniboia as the substantial part of the Bill. But if you say that the Bill do not pass, but that it be resolved, &c., and make that resolution as long as you please, what follows? Who is to move? The Government cannot move, for they are at sixes and sevens on this subject. There is the resolution. I certainly would not move it, as I do not approve of it. The hon. member for Assiniboia would not move it, because he would offend the powers that be.
Mr. DAVIN. I would move it if necessary.
Mr. McCARTHY. Does the hon. gentleman doubt the necessity?
Mr. DAVIN. No.
Mr. McCARTHY. Then I think the hon. gentleman would have to move, and instead of being the admired of all his surroundings, he will occupy the position I do. He will be belated and berated, and will fall from the highest stage or pinnacle of greatness which he has occupied for the last few days. Do not now rush in where angels fear to tread; and I do not think the hon. gentleman will make any such mistake. Why, let us not deal with this subject in a simple way. Punish me if you will; expel me if you please; because I venture to put in this preamble, and to speak at the Opera House, and because I ventured to claim that the English language should rule in this country, but pass the Bill. The way to pass the Bill is to go to a second reading and then to expunge what is in the preamble. Do not pas the Bill, if it suits your pleasure, but vote the amendment of the hon. member for Berthier. That is honest and straightforward, and that, at all events, we can understand. We can understand the views and the policy of the hon. gentlemen who are absolutely opposed to any change. But hon. gentlemen who wish to get rid of this question by a side issue, who try to do and not to do it, will not, although they may deceive this country. That they may depend upon. I listened to the argument of the hon. member for Kent (Mr. Landry), and I listened to the argument of my hon. friend from Rouville (Mr. Gigault), and no more straightforward or honorable statement of the case was given on that side of the House. It contrasted greatly with the statement from the Treasury benches of its compatriots from Quebec; it was arguments, not abuse. It was a reason for us to pause in our course, and was not simply denunciation of those who differ from the views which those hon. gentlemen both take. But I say their view is the correct view. It is this Parliament, and it is this Parliament alone, which has the power to deal with this question. It is this Parliament which put that clause in, uninvited. It is this Parliament which has the authority to take that clause out. Why should we abnegate our duties or our functions on the ground of expediency or to get rid of a temporary difficulty? Will we, in the interest of our country, be doing a service? Will we not be keeping open that running sore of which the hon. gentleman from South Oxford (Sir Richard Cartwright) spoke? We put the trouble on the people of the North—West, but, although we should denude ourselves of our authority and endeavor to get rid of this question for the moment, it will remain a burning question in old Canada and in the new Provinces, more especially, if on postpone the decision of this question until after the next general elections. I am commissioned to read the opinion of a senator who once occupied a seat in this House, and whose voice is now unable to be heard here.
Mr. DAVIN. Name.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Senator Perley. His observations ought to have weight. Writing to me on the 12th February, he says:
"MY DEAR SIR, —Stand firm for your resolution re dual language in the North-West Territories. The North-West 871 [COMMONS] 872 is with you. I get letters by every mail strongly urging me to help you in this matter. Davin's amendment if carried might lead to serious results in some of the copstituencies, only paralleled by the Hull affair of last night. Particulary might this be the ease in those constituencies where it was stated by Mr. Bits, member of the Legislative Assembly, that so few of the people could read in any language and their prejudices so easily excited. I contend it is wrong to submit a question of such a character to the vote of the people. Discussion and electioneering talk on such an issue would tend to disturb the harmony and good-feeling that is fast being obtained between the people of different nationalities and creeds 1n the North-West Territories. I write this advisedly and with the full knowledge of the responsibility of a representative of the people in the North-West Territories from end to end.
"Yours, &c.,
Is not that reasonable? Is it reasonable, when we have this matter before us now—a matter which has excited, we are told, a great deal of feeling in this chamber, a matter which has excited at good deal of feeling out of doors, having opinions formed one way or the other about it, having a means of knowledge denied to the representatives of the North-West Territories, we, who have this great duty thrown upon us here, should refuse to discharge it and ask the unfortunate people of the North-West to have this bone of contention thrown upon them. That may be right from a party point of view; I venture to say it is not right from a statesman's point of view. This Bill may be wrong, it may be that the Bill ought to be rejected, but there can be no justification for sending it to the people of the North-West to be dealt with. I deny that I have gone back upon any views that I have advocated in regard to provincial rights. If the people of the North-West did not wish to have this measure passed, we might postpone it at the present time, but the people have shown that they are in favor of it, and every newspaper in the North-West—excepting always the Regina Leader —has spoken infavor 0f the abolition of the dual language. I cannot look upon the Regina Leader as an authoritative representative of public opinion in the North-West. We know that the Re ina Leader occupies a peculiar position in regard to the existing state of affairs in the North-West. I am told—I may be wrong—I do not connect it with any hon. member of this House, but I am told that it was owing to the fact that the Lieutenant Governor of the North-West insisted upon giving to the Regina Leader the printing of that Government at a higher rate than it could be done for elsewhere, that the deadlock was brought about in the North-West Council, that the Lieutenant Governor's advisers refused to agree to that, and then resigned. Of course, the longer the dual language is preserved, the better it is for the publisher of the Regina Leader, and, therefore, I do not think that the Regina Leader is to be quoted as an authority on this question. Putting the Regina Leader aside, we have the unanimous opinion of the press of the North-West, as we have the opinion of the people of the North-West, that they do not want the dual language. Why should we pause? Why should we hesitate? I have done. I have endeavored to make my case as plain as I possibly can. I have endeavored to show why this question should be dealt with at the earliest possible moment. I have endeavored to show that it ought to be dealt with here. I have endeavored to show that, if this resolution which has been moved by the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin) is passed, that is the end of the Bill, but the end is not accomplished. I have stated that I am prepared, if any hon. gentleman objects to the recital in this Bill, that it shall be stricken out, and every hon. gentleman in this House knows that, when the Bill reaches committee, it can then be debated whether it is for us here or for the North-West to deal with this question; but, if the amendment of the hon. gentleman is carried, it is away to do this little Bill to death, instead of its becoming the law of the land, which is the desire of the people in the North-West who have taken an interest in this matter, and I am sure is the desire of the great majority of the people of the country. The sooner this question is set at rest, the better. It is a question which is calculated to disturb us on a question of race cleavage. That alone should be a reason for dealing with the matter now. Does the House suppose that, if the Bill is defeated, whether upon the amendment of the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Davin) or upon the amendment of the hon. member for Berthier (Mr. Beausoleil), that would in any way end the question? Can any one imagine that, if I stand alone with my seconder in voting for this Bill, the same difficulties and troubles which certain hon. gentlemen profess to lament will not be brought up again? Is it not in the interest of the harmony and the good-will of the people of different nationalities that we should deal with this question here, this question which is now before us, and do they not suppose that we can deal with it in such a manner as to be as satisfactory to the people as if it were dealt with by the Council of the North-West? For myself, I may say that my political extinction has been prophesied by hon. gentlemen on both sides of the House. If that be my fate, in doing what I consider to be my duty, I shall cheerfully submit to it. I am acting simply according to my convictions, and not only as one hon. gentleman has suggested, because of the debate of the Jesuits' Estates Act. I wonder that that hon. gentleman should not have had better judgment than to introduce that question into this debate. I have nothing to be ashamed of, I have nothing to lament in regard to the vote which I gave on the Jesuits' Estates Act. I did not prosecute any agitation on that subject afterwards, because I realised that the vote of this House in regard to it was conclusive; but it is not conducive to harmony in the party to which I did belong and to which, to a certain extent, I still belong, that an hon. gentleman should taunt me for the fiasco which he says was the end of that matter. I have been taunted with the statement that I objected to the preamble of the Jesuits' Estates Act, and yet I was making nothing of the preamble to this Bill. There again the two matters are wholly and absolutely separate. In the Jesuits' Estates Act we had to take the Bill as it was, we had no power of amendment. It came to this House and it had either to be vetoed as it was, or allowed to go into operation as it was; whereas a Bill introduced into this House has to undergo the gauntlet of the first, second and third reings, of a consideration in committee, to be amended and improved to suit the opinions of the majority of the House. Therefore, there is nothing in common between the two cases. But, as I said before, those who voted with me on that question had nothing to regret, and I 873 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 874 can only say that if a similar occasion arose again, I should not hesitate to repeat my vote.
Mr. DAVIN. I wish to trouble the House for a few minutes, while I make one or two remarks; called for, I think, by the speech of my hon. and learned friend.
Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER. The hon. gentleman has already spoken.
Mr. DAVIN. I have not spoken on this amendment. Now, Sir, the hon. and learned gentleman read to us the authority of Senator Perley.
Mr. CHARLTON. I rise to a question of order. The hon. gentleman has spoken already on this question, and I ask the ruling of the Chair.
Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER. The hon. gentleman can speak upon the amendment.
Mr. DAVIN. I am glad my hon. friend from North Norfolk, whom I have met on other fields, is so anxious to observe the rules of the House and the decencies of debate. The hon. and learned gentleman, for he is entitled to be called the hon. and learned gentleman, has read to us a letter from Senator Perley. The hon. Senator has been a member of this Parliament; I have known him a long time; some of you have known him, and I need not say that I recognise him, as you do, as a great authority, this "guide, philosopher and friend" of the hon. and learned member for Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy). He appears in a character eminently suitable to himself, to his own views of what his duty to the public is, and I think he is eminently suitable as a guide to the hon. member from Simcoe. Sir, Senator Perley and the hon. member for Simcoe; the hon. member for Simcoe and Senator Perley. You will remember the line of Pope:
"And dunce the second follows dunce the first."
Now, I did not know the cause of the conversion of my hon. and learned friend from Simcoe. I had read a speech delivered by the hon. and learned member at Collingwood; I have it before me; it is reported in the Empire, and in this speech he declares to the people of Collingwood that he did not want this Parliament to deal with this question, but he wanted the people of the North-West to deal with it, the very thing that he denounces to-night. I will read to you his words:
"I want it understood that our great North-West Territories shall be left free to deal with certain matters which will affect them for all time to come."
He is speaking of the dual language.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Will the hon. member pardon me? I am sure he does not wish to misrepresent me.
Mr. DAVIN. Certainly not. Here is the paper.
Mr. MCCARTHY. The paper is perfectly correct, so far as it geos. My reference was to the question of separate schools in the North-West. I had already spoken about the dual language and my action in this House, and I was inviting the confidence of my constituents. I was then referring to the question of separate schools, which I understand they petitionned should not be dealt with here, but should be remitted to them to be dealt with. That is what I alluded to in the language my hon. friend is now reading.
Mr. DAVIN. Well, separate schools are a matter that can beleft to the North-West, but the dual language cannot be left to the North-West; so I suppose he thinks the dual language is a matter of more importance than the separate schools. Now, I want to point out the want of logic of my hon. friend. He comes here and tells us that we ought to pass his Bill. Why? Because he has heard from the North-West. Why has he heard from the North-West? Because an assembly has been elected on an extended suffrage, and that' assembly has passed a resolution in a given direction. Why is that resolution of the least validity? Simply because these people represent the people of the North-West, and yet, forsooth, he tells us that the proposal to go to the source of power, to the source of authority, is a proposal that we ought not to entertain. He is just as illogical as the hon. and learned gentleman from West Durham (Mr. Blake) in his remarks the other night. I was delighted, of course, to hear his voice again in this House. I know very well of what importance it is to this House, and of what importance it is to the country at large, that we should have his great experience, his legal knowledge and his great parliamentary power; but when I heard a man who is president of a university, talk what —I say it without the least offence—was fallacious trash, I was perfectly amazed. Let me point out to you what the hon. and learned gentleman said. He said that he could not listen to the representation that was made—I am now making a point for the hon. and learned gentleman for Simcoe— that no message whatever had come from the people of the North-West. Why? Because this assembly had not got any authority from its creator to deal with this question. By dealing with this question he must mean to legislate on it; so he says that we cannot receive any representation from them because they had no power to legislate on it; but if they had any power to legislate on it, they would not require to make any representation at all. The point was taken up very properly by my hon. and learned friend that it was only three short years before that we heard the hon. and learned member for West Durham propose in this House a resolution with regard to Home Rule of which we were not in any wise seized; yet he asked us to pass a resolution, and showed that he thought our representation ought to have some effect, or might have some effect, on an assembly so closely connected with us as the assembly in the North-West. Now, I want to refer to a personal matter. I saw a criticism—I do not know whether it was correct or not —on a few remarks that I happened to make in reply to the speech of the hon. and learned member for Simcoe; and the critic said—I do not know whether that is correct or not, but I hope it was correct—he said that the weapons I used against the hon. and learned gentleman were the weapons of a gentleman. The hon. and learned gentleman comes here with an innuendo that is absolutely false, for which there is not atittle of foundation. He has listened—I do not know where, I am sure—probably in the vestibule of an hotel, to the gospel of some gobe mouche, and he comes here and makes a statement about a matter which has no truth whatever in it. Now he says that a paper called the Leader never advocated the abolition of the dual language. Why, I read the other night how the hon. and learned gentleman made a statement that that paper never referred to it. I then read an article 875 [COMMONS] 876 from that paper advocating the doing away with it, but without bitterness; it deprecated bitterness, it deprecated language that was calculated to inflame passions, and said, let us go and discuss this question calmly and practically. I may tell the hon. and learned member, who threw out the sneer, that it was a very good thing for newspapers, and the more French published the better, that most of the ordinances which were printed in French were not printed in the North-West, and that the company which publishes the Leader had no advantage from most of them. A few were printed there, but the great bulk were printed somewhere else. So the hon. and learned member, who occupies a high position in his profession, a profession to which gentlemen of the highest honor have been proud to belong, comes here and at the close of his speech throws out a sneer without the slightest foundation, and it was a vulgar sneer, even if there had been any foundation for it. I do not intend to make any reply to the hon. gentleman's speech, and I merely rose in regard to these matters to which I have alluded, but I want to point out that in the speech towhich we have listened the hon. gentleman has not touched the case I made against him; he has not touched a single point of it and it remains there unshaken. I showed that the hon. and learned gentleman had cited authorities that proved the very reverse of that which he said those authorities would prove, and I also showed that he came before the House and laid down two propositions that were utterly false. Switzerland has been referred to by one hon. gentleman after another. Hon. gentlemen do not seem to have seen the point of my reference to Switzerland. My sole object was to show that the two propositions which the hon. and learned gentleman was disseminating throughout the country were without any foundations, namely, that a single language necessarily made a nation, and that with diversity of languages you could not have a nation; for, of course, if these two propositions were true, then we never could have a nation here in Canada. I showed those propositions were untrue. I showed that his authorities instead of supporting his case proved the contrary, and the statements I made in that little speech remain unshaken, and the hon. gentleman has not attempted to reply to them. The only thing he did in the way of attempting to reply to my speech was to descend to sneers without foundation, to innuendoes that in an Assembly far inferior to this would be held to be unworthy, and he fell back on a flippant reference what was without any cogency whatever. The hon. and learned gentleman told us, and I heard it with some astonishment, that he had no desire to create bitterness, that he had no ill-feeling to the French race. This reminds me of what Thackeray said of an Englishman: that if an Englishman sees a stranger come into the country he looks at him as who should say: "Damn you, who are you?" Yet that Englishman might no doubt feel an universal benevolence. The hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) talks here as if he felt universal benevolence towards every citizen of this country, whether he talks French or not; but you have to observe the general tenor of his conduct and of this agitation, and the face may be Jacob's but the hands are the hands of Esau. The statement made in that letter of Senator Perley, that there would be a disturbance in case this question were referred to the constituencies, is absolutely without the least foundation. There will be no disturbance whatever. The hon. member for Alberta (Mr. Davis), if he is here, will tell you that the reference can be made without the least disturbance. Everything will go on as quietly as possible, and once the question has been referred to the people, and they have elected a new House, you can then feel you have given it to a tribunal to deal with that has authority from the real source of power.
House divided on amendment to amendment (Mr. Beausoleil):

. Yeas:


Amyot, Godbout,
Audet, Grandbois,
Bain (Soulanges), Guay,
Beausoleil, Holton,
BĂ©chard, Ives,
Bergeron, Joneas,
Bernier, Labrosse,
Boisvert, Landry,
Bourassa, Langelier (Montmorency),
Brien, Langevin (Sir Hector),
Casey, LaRiviére,
Casgrain, Laurier,
Cimon, LĂ©pine,
Cook, McGreevy,
Costigan, McMillan (Vaudreuil),
Coulombe, Massue,
Couture, Meigs,
Curran, Mitchell,
Daoust, Montplaisir,
Dawson, Neveu,
De St. Georges, Perry,
Desaulniers, Préfontaine,
Desjardins, Rinfret,
Dessaint, Riopel,
Doyon, Robillard,
Dupont, Ste. Marie,
Fiset, Thérien,
Flynn, Turcot,
Gauthier, Vanasse,
Geoffrion, Wilson (Argenteuil),
Gigault, Wright.—63.



Armstrong, Macdonald (Huron),
Barnard, Macdowall,
Barron, McCarthy,
Bell, McCulla,
Bergin, McDonald (Victoria),
Borden, McDougald (Pictou),
Bowell, McIntyre,
Bowman, McKay,
Boyle, McKeen,
Brown, McMillan (Huron),
Bryson, McMullen.
Burdett, McNeill,
Campbell, Madill,
Cargill, Mara,
Carling, Marshall,
Carpenter, Masson,
Cartwright (Sir Richard), Mills (Annapolis),
Chapleau, Mills (Bothwell),
Charlton, Moffat,
Cochrane, Moncrieff,
Cockburn, O'Brien,
Colby, Paterson (Brant),
Corby, Perley,
Coughlin, Platt,
Daly, Prior,
Davies, Putnam,
Davin, Robertson,
Davis, Roome,
Denison, Ross,
Dewdney, Rowand,
Dickinson, Scriver,
Earle, Semple,
Eisenhauer, Shanley,
Ellis, Skinner,
877 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 878
Ferguson (Leeds & Gren.), Small,
Ferguson (Renfrew), Smith (Ontario),
Ferguson (Welland), Somerville,
Fisher, Sproule,
Foster, Sutherland,
Gillmor, Taylor,
Gordon, Temple,
Guillet, Thompson (Sir John),
Haggart, Trow,
Hale, Tupper,
Hesson, Tyrwhitt,
Hickey, Wallace,
Hudspeth, Ward,
Innes, Watson,
Jamieson, Weldon (Albert),
Jones (Digby), Weldon (St. John),
Jones (Halifax), Welsh,
Kirk, White (Cardwell),
Kirkpatrick, White (Renfrew),
Landerkin, Wilmot,
Lang, Wilson (Elgin),
Lister, Wilson (Lennox),
Livingston, Wood (Brockville),
Lovitt, Wood (Westmoreland).—117.
Macdonald (Sir John),
Amendment to amendment negatived.
Mr. TAYLOR. The hon. member for Inverness has not voted.
Mr. CAMERON. I have paired with the hon. member for Queen's, NS. (Mr. Freeman). I would have voted for the amendment.
Mr. COOK. The hon. member for Montreal West (Sir Donald A. Smith) has not voted.
Sir DONALD A. SMITH. I was recorded as having been paired by the whip. I would have voted for the amendment.
Mr. MITCHELL. I will give way to the Minister, because he has always treated me in a pretty decent sort of way.
Sir JOHN THOMPSON. I am very much obliged to the hon. member for Northumberland, and I will endeavor to return the courtesy by making my observations so short as to leave ample opportunity for him to speak before the House is wearied of the debate to-night. Notwithstanding the great attention the House has given to this question, the fact that its discussion has occupied five days, and that wehave already reached midnight of the day preceding a statutory holiday, are reasons why, apart from the courtesy extended to me by the hon. member for Northumberland (Mr. Mitchell), I should detain the House for only a short while in offering the proposition which I am about to make in reference to the question under consideration. Before stating the view which I wish to present to the House as the decision which ought to be arrived at on this question, I may be permitted to make some observations with regard to certain arguments which have been put forward in defence of the preamble of this Bill. Some members have stated in the course of this debate that a different doctrine was laid down last Session in reference to another measure, from that which has been pronounced by those who have declared that the preamble of the Bill now before us is offensive to the good taste of the House and menaces the permanency of institutions established by law. They have stated that that doctrine is inconsistent with the doctrine laid down last Session, which my hon. friend from Toronto (Mr. Cockburn), by mistake, asserted to be a statement that the preamble was no part of the Act and had nothing to do with it. No statement of that kind, as a general proposition, was put before the House last Session. When I had the honor to address the House in regard to the Bill, then under discussion, I was speaking on a set of facts which were then before the House. I was speaking not of preambles in general, but of the preamble to a statute which was under our consideration; I was calling the attention of the House to the fact that the part of that preamble to which most exception had been taken was merely the recital of a correspondence which had taken place, and had no immediate connection with the enacting part of the Bill. More than that, when we come to consider the position in which we are now placed with regard to the preamble of the present Bill with the position which the House occupied last Session, voting yea or nay, on a motion to disallow the Act of another Legislature, because there was something in the recital offensive to the good taste of the House, there is this fundamental difference that, in voting for this Bill, we are not merely criticising the action of another Legislature, we are not criticising a preamble which might or might not have influenced the adoption of a statute in another Parliament, but we are now called on to vote, yea or nay, on this preamble which has been offered to us by the member for North Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy). I submit, therefore, that the comments made by some members, in regard to our action of last Session are not founded on reasons which apply to the present case, and that the objection taken to this preamble is not inconsistent with the observations made last Session by myself, or by any other person, who then took the view I had the honor to express. In hurrying forward so as to detain the House only for as short a time as possible let me call attention to a subject from which attention has somewhat wandered in the course of this heated debate. Let me ask the calm consideration of the House to the very few points which are involved in the section of the North-West Territories Act which it is proposed to repeal. Section 110 provides, in relation to four subjects. First of all as to the debates of the Legislative Assembly of the North-West Territories, and the provision in respect of these debates is that either the French or English language may be used. In the second place the provision relates to the records and Journals in that Assembly, and it is that the French and English languages must both be used in the records and Journals. We have first of all the provision that the use of either of the two languages is optional as regards the debates and compulsory as regards the printing and recording in the Journals of that Assembly. But we have in the next branch of this subject two other questions, both of which were touched upon by the Secretary of State this afternoon, and both of which, in my humble opinion—and I shall ask the opinion of the House upon it—are of far greater importance, as regards this question of language than the mere question of what language shall be used in the debates of the Assembly or the records or Journals of that body. As my hon. friend the Secretary of State says, it is a matter of little consequence what rule is applied as to the mode in which the debates shall be conducted in the Assembly. If the population in the North- West Territories of French origin and French speech is sufficiently numerous to send to that body intelligent and active men, capable of taking part 879 [COMMONS] 880 in the proceedings of that body they will assert their rights to speak their own language, which will be recognised, at least in courtesy, as it is recognised in every other Province of Canada where it is claimed upon the ground that a representative should speak in the tongue which suits him best. I have seen that right conceded frequently in the legislature of my own Province where there is no legislative guarantee on the subject, and the man who would object to an Acadian in Nova Scotia speaking his own tongue in the Legislature of his own Province would he laughed to scorn, as unworthy to sit in that Assembly. We can safely leave that subject to the Assembly, which I am sure, will be guided by as patriotic a feeling as actuates the other legislative bodies in Canada. I shall ask the House, in the proposition I am about to make, to give to the Assembly, in due time, the power to regulate its own debates, and to say in what manner, in what tongue, or in what mode its records and its Journals may be published from time to time. There are two subjects which remain and which, as I have already mentioned, stand upon a somewhat different footing. When we undertake to say that we shall expunge from the Statute-book a provision that justice shall be administered, or may be administered, in either of the two languages used in the North- West Territories, we are touching a subject far more important than the mere language of debate, and the mere language of the publication of the Journals of a legislative body. These, Sir, are our courts; these are the courts of the Dominion of Canada. In respect of the Provinces, power is given to the Provincial Legislatures, by the British North America Act, to establish the courts, and to regulate their organisation, their maintenance, and the extent of their jurisdiction. That power which rests on them, as regards the Provincial courts, rests directly on this Parliament as regards the courts of the North-West Territories. We have imposed upon us the duty, not only of creating those courts, but of breathing into them the breath of life by giving them the jurisdiction they exercise and the procedure by which that jurisdiction is to be carried on. Nay, more, it is our duty, just as it is the duty of a Provincial Assembly, to see that they are properly equipped to exercise their jurisdiction, in every detail, whether relating to mere procedure or to substantive enactment, so as to carry justice to every section of the people, in their homes in the wide territories where we have established them; and the proposal that this Parliament should on such short notice, without enquiry—for it is only within twelve months that we have heard of this agitation, or that the hon. member for North Simcoe discovered that such a provision existed on the Statute-book—expunge the provision that either language may be used in the courts of the country, seems to me to carry with it consequences more alarming than this House is prepared to risk. It is not mere fancy, but I am repeating what has been said to me, that in some distant sections of that country, if that provision be obliterated, we may have the misfortune of seeing men brought to the bar of justice in our own courts, tried before our own judges, convicted, condemned and sentenced in a language not one word of which they understand, and unable to offer a plea for justice or for mercy. Surely, Sir, it is unreasonable to say, in respect of property or civil rights, that the administration of justice must be carried on in one language only, or that we shall permit ourselves to say hastily that it shall be expunged from the Statute-book, and that the courts of the country shall be left without any provision at all for the case of people who cannot understand the English language, if that should be the language prescribed. If that would be the case with respect to new comers, aware that they were going to a country where English law and language alone prevail, the case is made ten times stronger when applied, as my hon. friend the Secretary of State said this evening, to those who were the first settlers in the country; and where the new comers, who have established the new laws and the new language, should surely be willing to incur the obligation of permitting the old inhabitants of the country to use, for a time at least, their own language in their own defense and in the assertion of their rights before our courts of justice. The remaining subject which is touched upon in this provision is the printing of the ordinances of the North-West Assembly in both languages. This is a matter on which we are not required to hear the Legislative Assembly; it is a duty which we have ourselves to discharge. True, the enactment makes necessary the printing in both languages; but it is a duty which this House has charged itself with from year to year. The ordinances have been printed in both languages not merely because section 110 of the North-West Territories Act so provides, but more especially because at our table the money has been voted at every session since that Act was passed, and probably long before, for that purpose. That matter may safely be left in the hands of this Parliament, where it has always been dealt with down to this moment; and if this Parliament should think fit from year to year to order that the ordinances of the North-West Territories should be printed in any language in which it should be necessary to print them, in order to make them fully known to the people of the North-West Territories who are to be affected by them, I should like to ask what interests in this country would be injured thereby, or why any legislator or any person in the North-West Territories should say that it is distasteful to him that any of the ordinances should be printed in any but his own tongue? Therefore, Sir, in regard to that question, as well as in regard to the use of the language in the courts, I shall ask this House to come to the decision that these two provisions of the Act should be maintained; but with respect to the records, the Journals, and the debates of the North-West Assembly, we may yield them the deference and the confidence of permitting them to regulate their own affairs to the fullest extent. As to the time when this shall be done, I propose that it shall be done after the next election to the Assembly of the North-West Territories, and for the obvious reason that until then there can be nobody in the Territories capable of representing to this Parliament the sentiments and wishes of the people of those Territories in a constitutional manner, and nobody in the Territories, as the hon. member for West Durham said, having the mandate of the people to deal with that subject. It is well known, Sir, that the constitution of the Legislative Assembly of the North-West is limited 881 [FEBRUARY 18, 1890.] 882 in many other particulars as well as in that; and in that particular, to say nothing of the others, the members of the Legislative Assembly were quite aware when they held their elections and passed the resolution which has been to some extent made the basis of this measure, that they were holding an election for a legislative body bound by the provisions of section 110 of the North- West Territories Act; and it will be fair that the electors of that territory should have an opportunity of instructing the representatives who will go to the future assembly as to their wishes in this regard. I cannot imagine any weaker reason against ascertaining in that way what the wishes of the people of the Territories are, than the letter which was read to influence the judgment of the House on this question to-night. I cannot imagine it being gravely asserted to this Legislature in one breath that the French people of the North-West Territories are numerically so insignificant that it is not worth while to use the French language in the Territories at all, and that its abolition is a matter of absolute certainty, and in the next breath that the French there are so strong and feel so keenly on this question that there will be bloodshed if they should be allowed to go to the polls upon it. I cannot understand how it can be urged that in a free country, or in a territory to which we have given the right, of self-government to any extent, we shall have a legislative assembly there, give a free and liberal franchise to the people, and then say to them, we are afraid we cannot trust you to go to the polls, and, therefore, we must govern you without hearing your voice on your own affairs. By all means let the constitutional rights of the people be respected; let the people speak through their representatives; let them vote, and let us see that the votes shall be counted, in order that we may ascertain which of the many conflicting statements made to this chamber as to the comparative numbers of the population of the Territories is the safer one to adopt. I have always been under the impression that we had equal rights in this country, but I should begin to doubt it if we were to say, with regard to any section of the country: we are afraid there will be riots if you go to the polls, and we will close the polls against you and legislate for you against your will. Therefore, I will propose to the House the amendment I am about to read. I shall make but one other observation, which I had forgotten to make in its proper place, as regards the preamble, because it is touched upon in the amendment I am about to move. The mover of the Bill cannot fail to admit that, while it is true the preamble may be eliminated from the Bill, in proposing the second reading he puts the preamble forward as the basis of the Bill, and the reason which is assigned on the face of the Bill as the reason why this House should pass it is that community of language is necessary to the unity of a country.
Mr. MCCARTHY. Expedient—not necessary.
Sir JOHN THOMPSON. The amendment which I propose is as follows, and it is seconded by the hon. Secretary of State:—
"That all the words after "resolved" be expunged and the followmg substituted:—
"That this House, having regard to the long continued use of the French language in old Canada, and to the cove nants on that subject embodied in the British North America. Act, cannot agree to the declaration contained in the said Bill as the basis thereof, namely, that it is expedient in the interest of the national unity of the Dominion that there should be community of language amongst the people of Canada. That, on the contrary,this House declares its adherence to the said covenants, and its determination to resist any attempt to impair the same. That, at the same time, this House deems it expedient and proper, and not inconsistent with those covenants, that the egislative Assembly ofthe North-West Territories should receive from the Parliament of Canada power to regulate, after the next general elections of the Assembly, the proceedings of the Assembly and the manner of recording and publishing such proceedings."
I need not hardly say to the House before closing— and it is the only other remark I have to make— that a portion of that resolution is taken from the one which was suggested by the hon. member for West Durham in his speech the other evening. The opinions he expressed with regard to the avowal this House ought to make, with regard to its adherence to those covenants and its future action upon questions of this kind, in so far as they touch the constitution of the country as established by the British North America Act I endorse almost entirely.
Mr. MITCHELL moved the adjournment of the debate.
Mr. MACDOWALL. The hon. the Minister of Justice said, before he moved his amendment, that the whole North-West should have fair representation in the Legislative Assembly before that question was dealt with by that assembly. I should like to ask him does the Government contemplate a redistribution of seats in the North-West Assembly? because otherwise the population of the North-West will not have the fair representation they are entitled to.
Sir JOHN THOMPSON. That is a matter which will have to be dealt with by Parliament, as the subject-matter of this resolution will be should it be adopted. The Government will consider that subject before bringing down a Bill.
Mr. MACDOWALL. I understand there will be a re-distribution of seats for the North-West Territories, and the French population will be given a representation before this question has to be dealt with.
Sir JOHN THOMPSON. The hon. gentleman will understand that if it is shown to the Government that there is not a fair representation in the present system of distribution this Parliament will beyond doubt remedy the evil.
Mr. MITCHELL moved the adjournment of the debate.
Mr. SPEAKER. Is the motion for the adjournment of the debate withdrawn?
Sir ADOLPHE CARON. Before the question is put, I should like to express my deep regret that I was away from the House when the motion of the hon. member for Berthier (Mr. Beausoleil) was voted upon. I do not like to sail under false colors, and if I had been here I should have voted for that motion. I was told that no vote would be taken to-night. I do not wish at all to blame the persons from whom I got that information, but I thought no vote would be taken to-night. Of course, it was my duty to be here, to be in my seat, but if I had been here, without going into any discussion of the question which has been occupying the attention 883 [COMMONS] 884 of the House for several days, I say I should have voted for the motion of the hon. member for Berthier (Mr. Beausoleil.)
Mr. MITCHELL. I do not think the request I have made is an unreasonable one. This is a very important subject, and I think it should not be hurried on at this late hour of the night.
Mr. SPEAKER. There is no seconder to the motion for adjournment.
Mr. COOK. I second the motion.
Some hon. MEMBERS. Call in the members.
Sir JOHN A. MACDONALD. I think, under the circumstances, and seeing the perseverance of my hon. friend from Northumberland (Mr. Mitchell), we must come down.
Mr. MITCHELL. I must make my acknowledgments for the courtesy of the right hon. gentleman in having gracefully come down.
Motion agreed to, and debate adjourned.
Sir JOHN A. MACDONALD moved that this question be made the first Order of the day on Thursday next.
Motion agreed to, and debate adjourned.
Sir JOHN A. MACDONALD moved the adjournment of the House.
Motion agreed to; and House adjourned at 12.35 a. m. (Wednesday).


Canada. House of Commons Debates, 1875-1949. Provided by the Library of Parliament.



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