House of Commons, 7 April 1905, Canadian Confederation with Alberta and Saskatchewan

House of Commons Debates



FRIDAY, April 7, 1905.

The SPEAKER took the Chair at Three o'clock.
Bill (No. 130), from the Senate, for the relief of Jane Marie Fitzsimmons.—Mr. Calvert.
Bill (No. 131) respecting the Vancouver and Coast Kootenay Railway Company.— Mr. Macpherson.
Mr. T. GREENWAY (Lisgar) moved:
That the second report of the select standing committee on Agriculture and Colonization be concurred in.
He said: The committee has thought it desirable that a good deal of the evidence given before it, and which is of a most important character, should be printed as soon as possible and distributed in the agricultural districts. The report recommends that 20,000 copies of the evidence of J. A. Ruddick, Dairy Commissioner, be printed in pamphlet form, 16,900 copies to be distributed to members of parliament. 3,000 copies to the Department of Agriculture for distribution, and 50 copies for the use of the committee. It also recommends that 20,000 copies of the evidence of Dr. William Saunders, Director of the Dominion Experimental Farm, be printed : that 20,000 copies of the evidence of each member of the official staff at the central experimental farm be printed, 19,400 copies of which shall go to members of parliament for distribution, 550 copies to each of the officials and 50 copies for the use of the committee, the proportion of French and English copies to be as usual. This was the unanimous report of the committee, in which I agree, and I trust the House will adopt the report.
Mr. D. HENDERSON. I do not rise to object to the motion, because it is highly desirable, in my opinion, that the evidence given before the Committee on Agriculture should have as Wide distribution as possible throughout the country. However, I find that instead of having this evidence promptly printed and distributed, the greater part of the reports of last year's committee are still lying within the precincts or this House. An effort should be made to have these reports distributed more expeditiously, for if they are not put in the hands of members before the end of the session the facilities for distributing them will not be so great, and there is danger that the distribution will be neglected. I ask that the chairman should use his best endeavours with those in authority to have the reports printed as soon as possible and given to the members before the end of the session.
Motion agreed to.


On the Orders of the Day being called,
Mr. W. J. ROCHE (Marquette). I wish to draw the attention of the First Minister to a matter referred to by him in his speeches of yesterday and the day before, and in reference to which his statement was, unfortunately, inaccurate. I refer to the following words used by the Prime Minister, ' Hansard,' page 3839 of April 5th :
Mr. Rogers says that the ablegate made this remark:
This invitation was accepted and His Excellency then presented the following memorandum, remarking that if we would place this on the statute-book of our province it would greatly facilitate an early settlement of our mission, the fixing of our boundaries, which would be extended to the shores of Hudson bay.
As to that, I have no reason to make any comment, because that is a thing as to which I know nothing. Then Mr. Rogers goes on to say:
His Excellency further added that our failure to act in the past had prejudiced our claim for extension westward.
Well, Sir. I cannot conceive how the Papal ablegate, or anybody else, could have stated that the failure of the province of Manitoba to amend the School Act prevented the ex— tension ot its boundaries westward, and that if such had been done it would have facilitated this extension. I cannot conceive how it is possible that such a. statement could have been made, considering the fact that since the month of July, 1896, when we came into office, up to the month of January, 1905, we never received from the government of Manitoba a communication asking for the extension of the boundaries of that province. There may have been resolutions passed by the legislature, asking for the extension, of their boundaries; I do not know. I am told there have 4083 COMMONS been, and I have seen in the press that resolutions were passed in 1901, that resolutions were passed also, as I understand, in 1902, and resolutions were passed, I know, in 1905.
The right hon. gentleman conveyed the impression that there had been no application made on behalf of the legislature of Manitoba to this government for an extension of the boundaries of that province, and that the only information he had gleaned in reference to the resolutions passed by the legislature of Manitoba was gleaned from the public press, or that he was told that such resolutions had been passed. He followed that up in yesterday's speech, in referring to the interview which was said to have taken place with Monseigneur Sbarretti, by saying:
In that interview Monseigneur Sbarretti was reported to have said that it would facilitate matters if these gentlemen would consent to the restoration of separate schools in Manitoba, and that if that had been done before it would have facilitated the extension of their boundaries towards the west. Well, Sir, I stated that I could hardly believe that His Excellency could have used such language, because then and there Mr. Rogers would have answered—
I may say that Mr. Rogers did not meet the Papal ablegate and never claimed to have met him—
—and could have answered the Apostolic delegate that there never had been by the government of Manitoba any demand upon this government to extend their boundaries prior to the month of January last, and therefore Monseigneur Sbarretti could not, in my judgment, have used such language in the presence of Mr. Rogers.
It will be seen that the right hon. gentleman tried to cast an aspersion upon the accuracy of the statement of Mr. Rogers in reference to the extension of the boundaries stating that no application had been made to this government from 1896 up to January, 1905. When the right hon. gentleman made that remark, I had some faint recollection of having myself presented some petition or memorial on behalf of the legislature of Manitoba to this House, and I took the trouble of looking up the journals of the House of Commons. I find in volume xxxvi., of the Journals for 1901, under date of Friday, 26th April, 1901, at page 223, the following:
The following petition was brought up and laid on the table :
By Mr. Roche (Marquette) the petition of the legislative assembly of the province of Manitoba.
Then, at page 226, under date of Monday, 29th April, 1901, I find the following:
Pursuant to the order of the day, the following petitions were read and received:
Of the legislative assembly of the province of Manitoba, complaining of the present scant area of said province, and praying the House to enact such legislation as will so extend its 4083 4084 boundaries as to include portions of the adjacent districts.
I desire to draw this to the attention of the House to show that the right hon. gentleman is not possessed of that very good memory which a couple of days ago he prided himself on having; and, in view of what I have stated, he would probably have no objection to bringing down this memorial and having it printed with the rest of the correspondence.
Sir WILFRID LAURIER. I do not know that my memory is at fault, even after the statement of my hon. friend. I stated the other day that I understood that petitions and resolutions had been passed by the legislative assembly of Manitoba, but I am not aware that those resolutions had been followed by any executive action.
Mr. R. L. BORDEN. Or brought to the attention of the government?
Sir WILFRID LAURIER. It appears that my hon. friend laid that memorial on the table of this House, but we know that many memorials and petitions are brought here and very little attention is paid to them. When I read the statement of Mr. Rogers, I had no recollection that this matter had been brought to the attention of this government by the government of Manitoba. I inquired of my colleagues, and they were of the same opinion as myself. To make sure, I asked the clerk of the Privy Council if any petition had been received from the government of Manitoba, and he gave me this memorandum:
From June, 1896, to January, 1905, there is no record in the Privy Council office of a claim advanced by the province of Manitoba for the extension of its boundaries. In May, 1902, there was a protest from the Northwest Territories against the extension of the boundaries of the province of Manitoba.
What my hon. friend shows to-day is that a petition was passed by the legislature of Manitoba and was presented at this table by my hon. friend. But I have no recollection of it, and I cannot bring it down, because it is not in the archives of the government, but is already in the archives of the House of Commons. Therefore, my hon. friend will see that after all I was not inaccurate.
Mr. R. L. BORDEN. I am not quite so sure of that. It is rather a small matter perhaps, but I would be inclined to think that the right hon. gentleman is rather inaccurate. It is quite true, as he says, that the resolutions of the Manitoba legislature were not followed by executive action in one sense; but he said something else. He said :
Neither in 1901 nor in 1902 were these resolutions passed by the legislature of Manitoba followed by executive action or called to the attention of the government of Canada.
4085 APRIL 7, 1905
When a petition of the legislature of a province is laid on the table of the House by a member of this House, I would think that was a very distinct calling of the attention of the government to that petition. The right hon. gentleman is leader of the government, but he is also leader of this House. We always refer to him in that way ; and when a petition for aid or a petition for extension of boundaries is laid upon the table of the House of Commons, I would very respectfully submit that it is called to the attention of the government just as effectively as if a copy were sent to the government direct. I do not know of what use it would otherwise be to present such a petition to parliament. All of us know that legislation of that kind could only be initiated by the government, and it is idle to present any such petition to parliament unless it is intended by so doing to bring it to the attention of the government in order that they may initiate the legislation necessary to carry out the request. I think my right hon. friend, on looking carefully over that portion of his remarks to which attention has been called, will see that the impression it left upon our minds, certainly the impression left upon my own mind, was that he had no knowledge whatever of the resolutions of the Manitoba legislature except what he had derived from the public press of the country. I have no doubt that the right hon. gentleman made that statement in the most perfect good faith, but at the same time it was hardly accurate under the circumstances.
Sir WILFRID LAURIER. If I may be permitted, Mr. Speaker, to reply to my hon. friend, I must say that when I spoke I had no knowledge of those resolutions except what I had derived from the press of the country. It turns out now that a petition was laid on the table of this House. I have no recollection of that and I doubt if any one else has any recollection of it or took much interest in it ; because dozens of petitions are presented to the House to which very little attention is paid, and unless my attention were specially called to it, I would probably know nothing about it. But the executive government of Manitoba never took any action on this matter until the month of January, 1905.


Report of the Inland Revenue Department on the Adulteration of Food, part 3.— Hon. L. P. Brodeur.


Mr. R. L. BORDEN. Before the Orders of the Day are called, I would like to ask the Prime Minister whether or not he has now any information to give to the House 4085 4086 with regard to the filling of the vacant portfolio of the Interior ? It is not my purpose to discuss that to-day and I simply rise for the purpose of obtaining information. I do so particularly in view of certain observations of the Minister of Customs last evening which I interpreted as an intimation to the House that it is the intention of the government in the immediate future to open a constituency in Manitoba or the Northwest in connection with the filling of that portfolio.
Sir WILFRID LAURIER. I have no information to give my hon. friend to-day, but if he will renew his question at an early date perhaps I can satisfy him.
Mr. R. L. BORDEN. Perhaps it might ease the situation a little if my right hon. friend (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) would regard me as repeating this question every day and give an answer every day just as if I had asked the question.
Sir WILFRID LAURIER. This is a world of trouble.


House resumed adjourned debate on the proposed motion of Sir Wilfrid Laurier for the second reading of Bill (No. 69) to establish and provide for the government of the province of Alberta, and the amendment of Mr. R. L. Borden, thereto.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY (North Simcoe). Mr. Speaker, in resuming this debate I wish to say that the tenor of my remarks has been somewhat altered from what it would otherwise have been owing to certain remarks which were made yesterday and also to certain remarks that have fallen from the lips of the leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden) and the member for Beauharnois (Mr. Bergeron) during this debate. It I understood the leader of the opposition aright he stated that the late hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. Dalton McCarthy) had been 'established' in the province of Ontario by the right hon. the Prime Minister for the purpose of denouncing the Conservative government in their policy of the coercion of Manitoba. Then the hon. member for Beauharnois, from his place in the House spoke as follows :
Our friend Mr. Dalton McCarthy had gone on a tour through the province of Manitoba. He was dissatisfied because Sir John Thompson had been chosen as Minister of Justice. He had hopes of being offered that position, although he might have refused it, and he went to Manitoba and inflamed the passions of the people, He told them that something should be done to deliver them from the influence of the hierarchy. It was there that he commenced his strife against the hierarchy, and questions of that sort will always greatly inflame public opinion.
I had thought that such statements as those were things of the past and would not be repeated. I had thought that the action of this country in 1896 had well answered these questions, but apparently they live to be repeated by hon. gentlemen in this House, and just so long as I have the honour of having a seat in the House I shall be prepared on every occasion to refute such charges. So far as my own position is concerned I feel that no remarks which I make to-day will lead any hon. gentleman to place the charge at my door that I am seeking political preferment from the leader of either political party, because, Sir, I am forced to the conclusion— and I speak most diffidently and respectfully, because I recognize tile position of these two hon. gentlemen in the country—but I am forced to differ from them both in the conclusion to which I have come. The reason why I differ from them both is that I make bold to say that the policy of the leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden) if carried to its ultimate conclusion will be found to be practically in accord with the policy of the leader of the government. It is perhaps difficult at present to realize that, but I hope before I conclude to be able to demonstrate it. I do hope, and I say it with all sincerity, that no remarks which I make on this occasion will have the effect of inflaming an already too much inflamed country upon this question which can surely be discussed without a display of passion, and without a raising of sectarian cries. It ought to be, in my humble judgment, a question of policy ; policies should be enunciated by the two parties in this House, but apparently it is being dealt with in quite a different way. Charges are thrown across the House of inflaming public opinion and raising cries of race and religion. It is impossible to prevent that so long as hon. gentlemen behave as they are doing and as they have done in the past.
By reason of the remarks to which I have referred, it becomes necessary—at least I deem it necessary and incumbent upon me in the discharge of my duty—to review briefly the past history of the political parties on this and similar questions. In the first place we have the British North America Act passed by the Imperial House in 1867. Although that Act has been quoted many times I am going to again read section 93 :—
In and for each province the legislature may exclusively make laws in relation to education, subject and according to the following provision :—
1. Nothing in any such law shall prejudicially affect any right or privilege with respect to denominational schools which any class or persons have by law in the province at the union.
The enactment of that provision was preceded by what is alleged to be a compact 4087 4088 founded upon resolutions passed at conferences which took place at Quebec and elsewhere. It was passed by the assent and with the consent of all parties, of all creeds and of all nationalities in the country at that time. The compact has been referred to very many times in this debate. It also was referred to very many times during the discussion on the Manitoba school question. In order that the hon. gentleman may see how difficult it is to rely upon the construction of such a contract, and in order to show the elasticity of that compact I desire to quote the words of the hon. member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster) when speaking as Minister of Finance in 1896 in regard to that contract and again when speaking in 1905. In 1896 he spoke as follows :
Arising out of long years of sectarian and religious strife under United Canada, opinions and convictions in reference to this matter became gradually modified, and when the representatives of the four provinces came together at Quebec to take up, discuss and settle articles of confederation these convictions rapidly and definitely revolved themselves into the determination that it should be laid down in the constitution of the country that whatever rights and privileges religious minorities had in the provinces at the time of confederation should maintain their status quo and should not be changed, and so the first paragraph of the educational clauses of the confederation resolutions gave by general consent to the provinces the power to deal with respect to education.
Saving rights and privileges which Catholic or Protestant minorities in both Canadas may possess as to their denominational schools at the time when the union goes into operation.
These are the words I particularly emphasize :
The only change that took place in that clause was this, that instead of its being confined to both Canadas, it was brought into to include the provinces which entered confederation.
In other words at that time the hon. member for North Toronto contended that the compact applied to all the provinces. He spoke nine years later, almost to the day, and, describing the compact, he used these words:
But those wise men sitting there in Quebec city said: Here is Ontario and here is Quebec: we have separate schools for Catholics in Ontario and for Protestants in Quebec, and the suggestion was made by Mr. McGee to this effect: Yes, we will do that but we will simply put this rider on it, save and except as to the interests of the two Canadas. That is all that was done at Quebec. That is all to the very letter, and that was passed by the legislature of Upper and Lower Canada. There were present representatives from the maritime provinces and also the representatives from these two provinces of Upper and Lower Canada. That was their compact, and that was all of it. But that gave no right for anybody to say that because they saved by that compact the rights of the minorities in those 4089 APRIL 7, 1905 two provinces, when forty or fifty years later you make provinces out of the Northwest Territories, you are, on account of that compact, to establish separate schools for the minorities in those provinces.
Now, hon. gentlemen will see how elastic a compact this is when it can be construed in 1896 to apply to all the provinces, and can be construed by the same hon. gentleman in 1905 to apply to only two of them. It is quite evident that what occurred in 1867—and there is no dispute about it— was a compromise. This compact was made applicable, it is alleged by some, to only two provinces, and applicable, as alleged by others, to all the provinces. The language of the British North America Act, I would submit, clearly applies to all those entering the union. So, there was no difference between the parties at that time, nor any difference between the creeds. In 1870, Sir John Macdonald and his government created the province of Manitoba. There is no doubt that at that time, the hon. gentleman sought to place upon that province the separate school and the dual language system. That was acquiesced in by the Liberals. In 1875, a Liberal administration was in power. They introduced a Bill for the better government of the Northwest Territories, providing—not as originally brought down, but as subsequently amended in committee —for separate schools under what is now clause 14 of that Act, and likewise providing for the dual language system. I desire to read clause 14, because I shall have to refer to it later on:
14. The Lieutenant Governor in Council shall pass all necessary ordinances in respect to education; but it shall therein always be provided, that a majority of the ratepayers of any district or portion of the territories, or of any less portion or subdivision thereof, by whatever name the same is known, may establish such schools therein as they think fit, and make the necessary assessment and collection of rates therefor; and also that the minority of the ratepayers therein, whether Protestant or Roman Catholic, may establish separate schools therein,—and in such case, the ratepayers establishing such Protestant or Roman Catholic separate schools shall be, liable only to assessment of such rates as they impose upon themselves in respect thereof.
2. The power to pass ordinances, conferred upon the Lieutenant Governor by this section is hereby declared to have been vested in him from the seventh day of May, 1888.
That clause, was acquiesced in by the Conservative party. The only objection raised to it at all was in the Senate, by the hon. George Brown, who warned this country and warned this parliament that if this legislation was enacted it would give foundation for a claim such as that which is now being urged. So, at this time we have both political parties practically at agreement on this subject. In 1880, this parliament again dealt with the North 4089 4090 west Territories in a point directing to another branch of my argument. In that year a portion of the district of Keewatin was added to the province of Manitoba. And parliament added that territory to Manitoba without any restriction ; it took away whatever rights Keewatin had and placed the territory on the same basis as the rest of Manitoba. So, that portion added to Manitoba in 1880 was made subject to the Manitoba charter, and released entirely by this parliament from any laws, rights or privileges which it had up to 1880. The point I make is that we have on this occasion equal freedom to deal with these new provinces, and to give them a charter such as we deem in their best interest. In 1889 or 1890 this question was mooted in this country. Notwithstanding the disparagaing remarks made by the hon. member for East Simcoe (Mr. Bennett) to the effect that I showed too much pride in my ancestors and in my family, I can only say that if I did so it is because I cannot help it. And I am not ashamed of it, but proud of it, and care not who knows it. In 1889, Mr. Dalton McCarthy pointed out to this House certain things ; he pointed out to this country certain things. He said in that year that the separate schools system of Manitoba was not a wise system; he said that the dual language system imposed upon Manitoba was not a wise system. He said also that the dual language and the separate school systems of the Northwest Territories were not wise. Hon. gentlemen who were in the House at that time will remember the motions made and the discussions that took place. It was only after many defeats, many rebuffs, that the first sign of success on his part was seen. Sir John Thompson agreed to the passing of a motion which relegated to the Territorial government of the Northwest Territories the right to deal with the language question. It is worthy of note that at that time Sir John Thompson made a clear distinction between the language question and the school question. He gave in on the language question, but on the school question he refused to give in, as hon. gentlemen who were here at the time will remember. This happened in the session of 1892. Both parties acquiesced in that, I believe, though there may have been some dissentient voices—I am not sure about that. But, in the December following, Sir John Thompson being then premier, saw fit to read out of the Conservative party Mr. Dalton McCarthy because that gentleman dared to give utterance to views which hon. gentleman opposite are expressing today. There were only two questions on which he was giving expression to opinions not acceptable to the government of that day, and they were the separate school question of Manitoba and the separate school question of the Northwest Territories. As a matter of fact, the language question had 4091 COMMONS been settled so far as Mr. Dalton McCarthy was concerned, having been relegated to the Territorial goverment to deal with as they saw fit. Mr. Dalton McCarthy did not seek to raise the race or religious cry, but simply said : Let us hand over this matter to the local authorities to deal with exclusively, and you will have peace and harmony ; you will not have constant friction arising in this House and in the country. However, Sir John Thompson would not acquiesce in the demands made to relegate either to the province of Manitoba or to the government of the Territories the right to deal with their educational questions. Therefore. in 1894, a Bill was introduced in this House by Mr. Dalton McCarthy to repeal the separate school clauses of the Northwest Territories Act, section 14 being the section I have quoted. Quite a long debate took place on that motion ; and according to my way of thinking that debate is the pivot upon which the discussion of this question almost wholly turns. That debate was so important, it had so much to do with the question now before us, that I am amazed that hon. gentlemen opposite have not devoted more time and attention to it, because their leader at that time made the situation clear and plain. In that year, Sir John Thompson speaking in answer to Mr. Dalton McCarthy, said, as will be found at page 6127 of 'Hansard' of that year :
One other important characteristic was to be considered in regard to the Territories while they were to remain in the Territorial condition, and that was in view of the peculiar circumstances of the Territories, the fact that we were inviting all races, creeds and denominations, there was to be the widest toleration while the Territories existed.
That was the corner stone of the whole ; the corner stone which the hon. member for Simcoe (Mr. McCarthy) proposes to remove, on the ground that there can be no good reason given for its existence. As the hon. leader of the opposition has said to-night, no man knew better than those who were engaged in framing the Act of 1875, the difficulties which sectarian disputes might create in that new country. No one realized better the fact, that in so far as the population was to be gathered into the Territories from the older provinces, it was to be gathered from different races, and from amongst men who had strong lines of difference as regards religious belief. While the population should be going in there, and while the Territories should remain under our control at least, there was to be the broadest toleration for every belief, and for the races, as regards worship, and as regards language, and as regards instruction in the schools.
Then further he says :
It is just as much a matter of sound policy now as it was in 1875, that toleration should exist there, and that we should extend the broadest invitation to the people of different races and religions to come and settle there with a perfect sense of toleration ; and it matters not how many people in the past have availed themselves of our invitation. The bad 4091 4092 faith this parliament would show in repealing a provision of that kind, while the territorial system existed at least, would be just as great as if the population who availed themselves of our pledge and relied on that system to-day, were only thirteen instead of 13,000.
Then further he says :
We claim therefore that the constitutional system which was established with regard to schools and with regard to language in 1875 ought to be maintained for the same reasons as those which dictated its creation, and that this condition of affairs should last, at least, while the affairs of the Territories are under control of this parliament. What the constitution of the future provinces should be, in view of the pledges which have been referred to, or in view of any other set of circumstances, will be for parliament to decide when it decides to create those provinces. I hope, therefore, that the House will be careful to-day not to disturb the arrangement so wisely made in 1875, and which is as useful to the Territories now as it was then.
These are the words of Sir John Thompson, then the leader of the Conservative party, and Attorney General of Canada. In reply to him, Mr. McCarthy sounded a note of warning in these words :
Then if we do not give them power to choose, if we deny them the right to select for themselves, then, when the day comes, as it must before long, when some part of the Territories will ask for admission and be entitled by their population and position to have this clause enacted, then this parliament would be bound to repeal the law, otherwise we should be, as I say, riveting the system of separate schools upon them. This point I think a most important one.
Then the hon. member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule), who has always been sincere on this question, likewise sounded a note of warning :
I agree with the assumption advanced that if we allow usages to grow up for a length of time, in proportion to their duration they will be difficult to remove. They were given by the Act of 1875 the right to establish separate schools there. It might happen. atterwards, when we establish a province there and give the legislature the full autonomy of a provincial legislature, that we could not do away with the order of things then existing.
Then, Sir, Mr. McCarthy was not satisfied with what the hon. leader of the government had said: he, Sir John Thompson having made it plain, if I read his language aright, that if he Sir John Thompson were sitting here to-day he would be in favour of fastening the separate school system upon the Northwest provinces, taking the ground that if the reasons which had prevailed in 1875 were good reasons in 1894 I do not see how he could come to any other conclusion than that they were'good reasons in 1905. Mr. McCarthy said that Sir John Thompson was ambiguous in his statement as to what would happen when the time came for granting autonomy. Sir John 4093 APRIL 7, 1905 Thompson then made what I consider a solemn declaration, which I charge hon. gentlemen opposite with not living up to on this occasion.
I appealed to the House to continue the present system while the territorial system continued, and I declared that in my opinion the whole subject would be open and free to parliament as to what constitution we would give to the provinces when the provinces were created.
Now, Sir, I only remark in passing, that it is not a declaration. Let the constitution take its course; that is not a declaration that the constitution applies automatically. It is a declaration to this parliament, and to those men who were endeavouring to get rid of that clause to prevent any such argument being used as is now used. Keep quiet, be still, because when the time comes—as if has come now—you will be free to act as you see fit. Mr. McCarthy replied to him in these words:
I am very glad that the right hon. gentleman has explained it in that way, and perhaps I was wrong in my understanding or his remarks. Of course it is an important declaration from the First Minister. Now, the House will have to use its own judgment on this question. What I say is this : that it this question of separate schools is to remain in its present position until we grant provincial autonomy to any portion of the Northwest. it will be practically impossible, unless there is an enormous change in public opinion, to deny them what every other province that has joined the confederation has been entitled to, what Manitoba was entitled to, and what I submit under the circumstances every province would be entitled to. Now, let me draw attention to the constitution conferred upon Manitoba in that regard. I have not got it under my hand, but it will be found on consulting it that when we conferred autonomy upon the province of Manitoba we did it by reference to the British North America. Act. What we declared was, that where not otherwise provided for in the Act, all the provisions of the British North America Act should apply to the province of Manitoba, and I think the very same words were contained in the resolutions which were passed at the time British Columbia and the province of Prince Edward Island came into the union. So that we have got that precedent before us; that was the promise upon which we admitted Manitoba, and looking at the character or the legislation, I do not think there can be any doubt that the same rule must apply when we admit the provinces to be created out of the Northwest Territories.
Now, Sir, what happened? There are many hon. gentlemen sitting opposite who were present on that occasion. The hon. member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule), I think, is the only gentleman in this House on that side who is consistent to-day. He said: You should not give them a chance, or let them have an argument that they can use for fastening separate schools on the new provinces under the constitution. But of course he might have justified himself in voting with the then premier by saying:
4093 4094
When the time comes we will be free—as the then premier said. But they were warned that when this time did come that would happen which is happening to-day. Again, what happened? The vote was taken, and 114 members to 21 maintained that clause on the statute-book, notwithstanding the warnings which were then given, and we are now face to face with the position that was then foreseen. Now, Sir, up to that point which brings us to 1894, there cannot be any cavilling, there cannot be any quibbling over the statement that from the standpoint of policy both political parties were of the same mind. There were independent men who broke away from party lines on that question and who chose to think for themselves as I do. First, there was George Brown. Then later there were my revered uncle, Dalton McCarthy, the member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule), Col. O'Brien, the Hon. Clarke Wallace, Clifford Sifton, Joseph Martin, John Charlton, and several others—there are men who have always spoken their minds freely and from conviction. Then we come to 1895, when the agitation began with reference to the Manitoba schools. We then had, as you will remember, a fight in Haldimand. The Hon. Mr. Montague sought re-election after the remedial order was passed; we faced him in Haldimand and we were defeated. We fought the question over again in Cardwell and we won. As to what took place in Cardwell, I will have more to say, because upon that occasion a gentleman who has grown very eloquent in this House, spent a considerable time in that riding. A platform, upon which Mr. Stubbs, the McCarthy candidate was elected, was formulated, and the third plank in that platform was as follows:
To insist in the matter of education, so far as the subject is within the control of the parliament of Canada, that the provinces shall have exclusive authority, that no sectarian system shall be forced upon the provinces by Dominion legislation, and to further insist upon the abolition of the provision requiring the establishment of separate schools in the Territories.
Now, Sir, upon that we fought Cardwell, upon that we won Cardwell, and, as I say, the hon. gentleman who was the Finance Minister in that administration, the hon. gentleman who now represents North Toronto, made a great many speeches, of which I have extracts. Speaking on the 17th December, at Gamilla, he said:
He showed how separate schools had originated at desire and the protection of Protestant minority in Quebec. This guarantee had been incorporated in the constitution at the time or confederation to protect the rights of minorities of all provinces.
At Alton he said:
He thought the narrow sectarian platform or Mr. McCarthy was not broad enough for the intelligent electors of Cardwell. The principle 4095 COMMONS or lack of principle of stamping out the French language and race he ventured to say would never be carried into effect. The McCarthy party so far had developed into a head and a tail—he did not know that they were going to attain any more than at present.
Then he said:
They could not go down in a better cause than that of an attempt to preserve the contracts between the minorities and majorities and to maintain the sacred compact of the constitution.
He went down six months afterwards upon that, and we will hear later how he let go of that which he went down on. On December 18, speaking at Caledon East, he said :
Mr. McCarthy had said parliament was not bound to redress the grievance. The parliament of Canada had power to refuse to remedy the grievance, but there was a deeper question than that. Nothing could be superior to the parliament technically speaking, but there was a higher power than the legislative body of Canada—that eternal sense of justice and right which a parliament might, but which no British parliament ought to outrage.
Speaking at Charleston, on December 19, he said :
After pointing out in strong terms the weakness of Mr. McCarthy, and how impossible it was for him to accomplish anything—he said: 'Put in Mr. Stubbs if you like, and how many will there be ? Three. How many members are there in parliament? Two hundred and fifteen. It is not often the tail wags the dog, but in this instance that tail will not be even the tail of the dog.
Those are the speeches of the hon. gentleman. Those are the methods by which he opposed us when we were asking Cardwell to endorse that plank in the platform which I have read. Then follows the meeting of this House. I do not need to dwell upon what occurred then when that hon. gentleman and some of his followers bolted in and out of the government. Suffice it to know that we have heard in another chamber the history of that disgraceful event. We know that Sir Mackenzie Bowell says that the hon. member for North Toronto was the chief of the nest of traitors, and, Sir, I think that in so saying he rightly described him. I do not want to use language which I might be sorry for, but this is a certain justification for me, when I know what occurred in 1895, and when I have had to read, as I have read and reread, the bitter, venomous attacks the hon. member for North Toronto saw fit to make upon my respected uncle.
Mr. BARR. Oh, oh.
Mr. L. G. MCCARTHY. The hon. member for Dufferin (Mr. Barr) laughs. Let him take that back to Dufferin. He should remember that Cardwell is a part of Dufferin still .
Mr. BARR. Let the hon. Gentleman go to Dufferin
4095 4096
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. I have been there before.
Mr. BARR. You did not make much progress.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. Well, we won on two occasions; not a bad record. Then parliament met. Sir Charles Tupper was the Prime Minister; he formed his cabinet and attempted to push the Coercion Bill through, and from that time on a great many speeches were made in the House. The position of the hon. member for North Toronto was well defined. That brings us down to 1896. The government went to the country, and the country refused to endorse the coercion policy. In that election we certainly were, in the province of Ontario, denouncing the government because of its coercion policy. The Liberals, on the other hand, were saying: Return us to power, and by methods of conciliation we will settle this question. The Conservatives made it clear that they intended, if returned, to pass the Remedial Bill. The country returned the Liberals, and some kind of a settlement was made which was placed on the statute-book of Manitoba in evidence of its being a settlement. To my amazement, I heard things yesterday that I had never heard before or dreamed of. It appears that there are some difficulties and disputes yet in regard to this question. There seem to be difficulties among the members of the church in the province of Quebec which I never knew of until yesterday. But I do not think that any hon. gentleman will seriously say that the school question has formed a controversial question in politics from 1897 down to 1905.
On the 21st February last the Bill which is now before the House was introduced. It contained clause 16. It contained a clause which did effectually fasten upon the new provinces, in my opinion, separate schools. The right hon. leader of the government (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) introduced it in a very eloquent speech. He justified it upon grounds that I cannot agree with. He maintained that the constitution required him to do it, but nevertheless be justified it on grounds of policy; he said he was in favour of separate schools, that the minority were entitled to them, and it was in the best interests of the country that this clause should be enacted. He made that very plain. Nobody can doubt or dispute that. My hon. friend the leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden), true to the traditions of his party, spoke on that occasion, and I call the attention of the House to these words, in view of what has been said in respect to the immoderate language which it is alleged was heard upon that occasion. The hon. leader of the opposition said :
The subject which the right hon. gentleman mentioned last, on which he spoke with great eloquence, and in a spirit of forbearance and moderation, will undoubtedly invite discussion.
4097 APRIL 7, 1905
I do not propose to discuss it this afternoon. There is just one thing, however. that I would like to say about it, and that is that I understand that up to the present time there has been really no school question, to use the common expression, in the Northwest Territories of Canada; and I sincerely trust that on both sides of the House we will not seek to make this a political question in any sense.
From my point of view I was very much disgusted with that declaration. I was here prepared to oppose legislation of this kind and I think there were several other hon. members—perhaps not very many— who were prepared to do the same thing. Then the hon. ex-Minister of the Interior (Mr. Sitton) returned and resigned saying that he could not accept the principles of clause 16. For one month we were delayed, nothing was done and I think it may fairly be said that the right hon. leader of the government was sparring for wind. Everybody was wondering what was going to be done by the hon. leader of the opposition. Everybody wanted to know what the great Conservative party was going to do upon this question. We had to wait a month during which time there were petitions filed and meetings of protest held. There were meetings of protest held which hon. gentlemen opposite did not attend. The hon. member for Lennox (Mr. U. Wilson) rather jeered and sneered at my daring to attend a meeting of protest, but I will cast back the sneer and the jeer. I ask : Where were the hon. members from Toronto when a meeting was held in that constituency to protest against the passing of any such legislation ? They were not present and yet they are influential members of the party and men of prominence in the country. A Compromise was effected and the Bill was brought down for the second reading on the 22nd March. I am not able myself to accept the compromise. I am not able to agree with it. I am going to oppose it. But, I do not think that the hon. leader of: the opposition has spoken as he ought to have spoken upon this question. I reiterate and I repeat that when the predecessor of the leader of a party, who also occupied the position of the leader of the government and of attorney general of the Dominion of Canada, I refer to Sir John Thompson, makes a declaration that when this important juncture arrived we shall be free to act as we see fit, that that declaration ought to be binding on the party of which he was the leader. Now, Sir. what do we find ? That the leader of the opposition does not apparently agree with me in that opinion, nevertheless I do put it forward as my idea of the duty of the leader of a great party. The leader of the opposition preferred to take a different course. He made a very eloquent speech, his diction was of the best; but, I cannot pronounce the same encomium upon him when he came to announce his 4097 4098 policy. He said: The constitution applies automatically ; let the constitution take its course. Let me ask him if that is in consonance with the declaration which his predecessor Sir John Thompson, made in 1894.
Mr. LENNOX. Will the hon. gentleman mention Where the leader of the opposition said the constitution would apply automatically ?
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. I have the impression that he made the statement.
Mr. LENNOX. When that statement was made in the House on a previous occasion, I heard the leader of the opposition deny it and the hon. gentleman who made the statement had to take it back. If the hon. gentleman knows where that statement is contained in the speech of the leader of the opposition, well and good, but if not he should not make the observation.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. I have no desire to misrepresent anybody but I have not heard the denial of the leader of the opposition. It the leader of the opposition did not make the statement, then I am not able to arrive at a conclusion as to what his speech meant, because he did say: let the constitution take its course.
Mr. LENNOX. No doubt of that.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. And he did argue that the British North America Act applied ipso facto to these provinces, whether you legislate here that it should do so or not.
Mr. LENNOX. I am not able to contradict the assertion that the leader of the opposition did argue that the British North America Act would apply ipso facto, but I heard the leader of the opposition declare that he did not state that it would apply automatically.
Mr. L. G. MCCARTHY. I do not Wish to get into an acrimonious controversy on that point with my hon. friend.
Mr. LENNOX. That is not my intention either.
Mr. L. G. MCCARTHY. The leader of the opposition may not have used the word ' automatically,' but will the hon. gentleman (Mr. Lennox) not admit that if the leader of the opposition declared the British North America Act would apply ipso facto to these provinces, then, it must apply automatically ? The hon. gentleman (Mr. Len« nox) is, I understand going to follow me. and I leave that nut with him to crack. The leader of the opposition made a four hour speech in which he argued along the lines that the British North America Act would apply to these new provinces ipso facto or in other words 'automatically' and I ask any hon. gentleman in this House whether it is not a fact that the leader of the opposi 4099 COMMONS tion made no declaration of policy in the course of his whole speech. His words were:
I argue not for separate schools: not against separate schools: let the constitution take its course.
Sir, as I conceive the responsibility which rests upon the leader of the Conservative party, owing to the declaration which Sir John Thompson made in 1894, the leader of the opposition in arguing thus did not discharge his duty. And as to this argument of the leader of the opposition I differ just as strongly with it, as I am opposed to the contention of the Prime Minister that the constitution required him to pass this legislation. I quite conceive that the declaration of the Prime Minister was based upon, not only the legal obligation, but upon the moral obligation as well, yet even so I cannot agree with him. I venture respectfully to say, that the conclusion that one must come to is, that if we are to dispose of this question properly and to accept our responsibilities, in the true spirit, there should be a declaration from both parties as to their policy on this question. There should be a declaration as to whether you are prepared to say: As a matter of policy, as a matter of fairness, as a matter of justice, these provinces should be deprived of the exclusive right to manage their own educational system, or, if you are not prepared to say that or to controvert it, then, you are not discharging the responsibilities which rest upon you. It is very easy for the leader of the opposition to say : Let the constitution take its course. That standard is broad enough to cover every member of this House. I hope there are none here who are not prepared to abide by the law and the constitution, but at all events the Conservative party in this country cannot get united under that banner, and cannot subscribe to the device written on it. We have heard from three or four of the gentlemen opposite that they are not prepared to come under that standard. The hon. member for Beauharnois (Mr. Bergeron), the hon. member for Jacques Cartier (Mr. Monk), two of the Conservative leaders from the province of Quebec, have told us that they are going to support the government on this issue and that they will not subscribe to the splendid device: let the constitution take its course. Far be it from me to suggest that these gentlemen are not loyal ; I would rather say, that it makes one hesitate as to whether that device so applied is not a sham. Is it a device that conveys a meaning which is hidden, or is it written so that the leader of the opposition and his friends may seek shelter under it, and so that they may not have to declare their policy upon this question, but rest content with saying, in the words of their leader:
4099 4100
I argue not for separate schools ; I argue not against separate schools.
I have great respect for the leader of the opposition and especially have I respect for his legal opinion.
Mr. BOYCE. I am glad the hon. gentleman has respect for the Conservative leader.
Mr. L. G. MCCARTHY. I am sorry that the hon. gentleman (Mr. Boyce) thinks himself so important as to imagine that we are very much concerned as to whether he is glad or not, notwithstanding the gratuitous kindness of the hon. gentleman (Mr. Boyce) I repeat that I have a great respect for the legal opinions of the leader of the opposition. But, in the whole course of his four hours speech, I failed to find that the leader of the opposition expressed a legal opinion as to what would be the effect in this case of letting the constitution take its course. After the leader of the opposition, we had a very eloquent speech from an old champion and who, notwithstanding that he is an old champion, was playing a new role. After twenty years-in this House the member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster) branches out upon a new line which is diametrically opposed to his past record. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Foster), I do not say it offensively, absolutely swallowed every principle he once cherished upon this question. Speaking in Toronto recently at McMaster University, he said:
Sterling integrity is the third quality that an aspirant for political honours should carry with him; it did not pay to be dishonest; your sins will soon find you out; in other words the public will get on to you.
Now, Sir, this is the language of the hon. gentleman (Mr. Foster) who in the years between 1882 and 1896 supported the Jesuits Estate Bill—a Bill which recognized if any Bill ever did, the Papal power in this country, and which conveyed over $1,000,000 to be disposed of under the dictation of the Papal ppwer. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Foster), also supported the official use of the dual language in the Northwest Territories, and he endeavoured to coerce Manitoba into accepting separate schools. He also refused in 1894 to strike out this very 'clause, which is the cause of all the difficulty, and he got behind Sir John Thompson when he said, in 1894:
The reasons for passing that separate school legislation in 1875 are as good to-day as they were then.
Is that a declaration of principle ? Is that not a record that ought to bind any public man, whether for his good or ill in public life ?
Then, Sir, I call your attention to this fact, that this hon. gentleman, who made that speech yesterday, could not abide Dal 4101 APRIL 7, 1905 ton McCarthy in the ranks of the Conservative party. The hon. gentleman was the Finance Minister under Sir John Thompson when Dalton McCarthy was driven out of their ranks because he dared to express independent views with reference to the French language in the Territories, and separate schools in Manitoba and the Northwest. There ought to be some regard for consistency, for what has gone before. The hon. gentleman has talked about the consistency of other men on one side or the other. I think he had better begin at home to make himself consistent before he criticises anybody else in that regard. Now, the hon. gentleman made a speech in 1896, which was an admirable speech, and I desire to place on record some of the remarks he then made, because they are important:
Sir, the question whether separate schools should, or should not, be established is one which might well have been debated in 1863 when that system was adopted for the province of Ontario; it is one which might well have been debated upon principle in 1867 and 1870 when these schools were being perpetuated under the Confederation Acts. But it is not a principle which is at stake to-day in the least degree ; and, for my own part, I believe that I have no right to take my preference on that principle into consideration in the least on this occasion, but that I am now called upon to deal with the question of a clause of the constitution, and a case which arises out of it. in which that principle was settled once and for all in regard to the minority's right by the fathers of confederation and embodied in the constitution itself.
That has reference to Manitoba, which was not in the confederation at that time, but which entered afterwards:
The third point of view, and which seems to me to be the only practical point of view, is to discuss it in the light of a clause in the constitution which is binding, and which, taking all the circumstances of this country into account, is not only binding, but is a. wise provision of the constitution as well... Great Britain is a nation which has been distinguished by the tenacity with which she held to every compact and every agreement. She has been distinguished no less by that spirit of generous and broad toleration with which she has treated every religion, every class of nationality which form the components of her great empire. Now, Sir, these two principles of good faith and toleration are the very principles which underlie our constitution, and especially those clauses of the constitution under which the present question arises, and which have to do with the educational rights of minorities in the different provinces of the Dominion.
Remember, he is speaking about Manitoba, and he is applying these words to the different provinces of the Dominion. I do not agree with him, but I would like a little consistency :
Above the compelling powers of the courts or law, and above the compelling powers of superior parliaments, there is a sentiment of justice and fair-play which compels where there 4101 4102 is no legal instrument—which compels by the very force of the appeal which that sentiment carries to the heart and the conscience of a parliament to do justice and to exercise that unrestrained and unrestricted freedom in the interests of a minority or of any class of people plainly aggrieved and asking redress.
Then we had a brilliant peroration :
After six years, sir, we stand here under circumstances such as I have detailed. What is it, then, for this parliament to do? On the one hand, there is a. well-founded repugnance to interfere and do what, even though clearly within our right to do, the province can do more easily and far better than ourselves. There is along with that a number of subordinate reasons arising, either from considerations of principle or of personal concern, or of party interest, that tend to induce some to vote against this Bill and against remedial legislation.
On the other hand, what is there ? There is the genius and spirit of the constitutional compacts of this country. There is the splendid lesson of tolreration and of compromise which has been read to you in that constitution, and which has been evidenced in its harmonious workings, for nearly thirty years. There is the cry of the minority, small in the area of those who directly suffer, but large, let me tell you, in the area of those who sympathize with it in this country from one end to the other. There are the minorities in other provinces demanding of you where they shall stand, and how they shall be treated, if in future years their time of trial comes, and they will have to appeal to this same high court of parliament, and invoke this same jurisdiction. There is this parliament, Sir, invested, knowingly, definitely, positively invested by the fathers of confederation in the constitution with the jurisdiction to maintain these rights and to restore them if they are taken away. This parliament is appealed to. It is watched by Canada, it is watched by the world. On grounds of courage, on grounds of justice, on grounds of good faith, make your answer to those who appeal, make your answer to Canada which is watching you, and to the world which will judge of your actions.
History, Sir, is making itself these eventful days. Shall the chapter be a record of nobleness and adequacy, or a record of weakness and inefficiency ? Shall we stamp ourselves as petty and provincial, or shall we be recorded to future ages as magnanimous and imperial ? Let us plant our feet in the firm path of constitutional compact and agreement, of good faith, and of honest, fair dealing. Let us take and pass on that gleaming torch of prudent compromise under whose kindly light the fathers of confederation marched safely through In times far more troublous and far less advanced than ours, into an era of harmony and continued peace.
Let us do justice to a weak and patient minority, and thus settle for ever the question of the sufficiency of the guarantees of confederation. Let us follow with cheerful emulation the shining example of our great mother country, whose foundations were laid on the solid granite of good faith; and whose worldwide and wondrous superstructure has been joined together with the cement of a strong and generous toleration.
Let us prove ourselves now, in the thirtieth year of our existence, as in the stress of our natal days, a people fit for empire, and worthy to rank amongst the best and greatest of nations.
These, Mr. Speaker, are the words of the hon. member for North Toronto. He was here in 1896, after the election, and after the government of which he had been a member was defeated. The hon. member for Beauharnois (Mr. Bergeron) stated last night that Sir Charles Tupper, the then leader of that party, at that time in opposition, with the hon. member North Toronto sitting at his side, declared that he was still prepared to pass a remedial Bill, and called on this government to pass one, The Hon. George Eulas Foster sat at his side and endorsed that declaration, so that he had not then experienced a change of heart, and, so far as that parliament was concerned, I suppose he was bound by those speeches. Now, what does the hon. gentleman say in 1905? Here are his words:
I regret in no single jot or tittle my act in 1896. Under similar circumstances, I would do the same thing, but I do not at all say that I will ever do the same thing under the circumstances that may arise after this. Why? Because there is a power which after all is mightier than the constitution. We invoked the constitution in 1896. We tried to give it its full force in a clear case and we were prevented by the leader of a great party. After we were prevented, that leader and his party went to the people in 1896, 1900 and 1904, and the people declared that they did not want remedial legislation. In the interests or the 41 per cent which has been talked about in this House, in the interests of the province of Quebec which was specially interested, we on this side tried to get for the minority their rights in the only way we possibly could under the constitution. We were prevented from doing it by the Liberal party, and during three successive elections the Liberal party have endorsed the policy; we want no hands laid on any province even though it deprives the minority or that province of the rights guaranteed it under the constitution. And I make bold to say that as long as grass grows and water runs, I do not feel disposed to go against that will three times expressed of the people of this country.
Mr. Speaker, the hon. member for North Toronto asked the hon. member for Ottawa (Mr. Belcourt) to withdraw the statement when he said that the hon. gentleman had changed his views because it did not pay. I am sorry that the hon. member for North Toronto is not here, because I would like to ask him two questions. He says that on three successive occasions the Conservative party endeavoured to sustain remedial legislation, that in 1896 they were defeated, that in 1900 they were defeated, and that in 1904 they were defeated. I do not know anything about the hon. gentleman's election of 1900, but I will ask him to say whether in the constituency of North Toronto in 1904 he ran on the coercion plat 4103 4104 form that he occupied in 1896. Does he say that he asked the electors of North Toronto to support his coercion policy of 1896 ? He dare not make such a statement. It is a mere method which he takes to crawl out of the principles he then enunciated. I do not know what the hon. gentleman may hope for, but I do not think the public will be blind to what he has said. In one of his speeches the hon. gentleman remarked : ' You have to be honest or the public will get on to you.' Well, he must think that they are a pretty blind public it they do not get on to him on this question.
I do not believe—and I am a constituent of the hon. gentleman, I live in North Toronto—that North Toronto will think the better of him for what he has done. The people of that constituency may feel that on their altar he is prepared to sacrifice all his past principles and all his past record, but whether North Toronto will feel that by that sacrifice they have been compensated for providing 'him with a haven of rest after his wanderings in this cold, cold political world for four years, I leave them to say, as possibly they may have another chance to say. Probably it has been evident from the way I have discussed this question that there is to-day a certain feeling of triumph in my breast for having lived to see the hon. member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster) and the colleagues who were here with him prior to 1896, who denounced Dalton McCarthy for expressing these views, to-day standing up enunciating and supporting them. There is but this one question left: On the language question, the views of Mr. Dalton McCarthy have been adopted, and so have his views on the school question in Manitoba. We have just this one question left, and if we do not prevail to-day we have the pleasure of knowing that those who most loudly denounced him are now enunciating the same views as he enunciated. I make no apology for speaking thus in regard to the hon. member for North Toronto. I believe I am justified in doing so, and I say further that so far as this speech discloses hypocrisy and apostasy, it can do no harm. I had expected to see the hon. member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule) at the conclusion of the speech of the hon. member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster) rise and congratulate him and accept him as an acquisition. He did not do it, although he was kind enough to do that when I pronounced myself. I did see, or I imagined I saw, rather a smile of satisfaction flit across the face of that hon. gentleman (Mr. Sproule). He went through it in 1896, he was jeered at, he was sneered at, he was almost read out of his party because he dared to enunciate these same views, and he was silently able to look at the member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster). squirming in his endeavor to rid himself 4105 APRIL 7, 1905 from his part and I could almost imagine I heard him thump the gavel upon the desk and tell that hon. gentleman to come to heel as he had meekly done. Such is the situation that is presented to this country today. I do not think that those who feel as I do upon this question have much to hope for when they rely upon the leaders of the respective political parties. I say this sincerely, and I do not say it offensively: it seems to have been the policy of both parties ; it is therefore necessary for us in these days when there is so much inflammatory matter about to fully realize and appreciate these things. It is not fair, not right, to consider them without looking from every point of view. I have no hesitation in bringing these views before the attention of the House. I have done it because the leader of the opposition insinuated that Mr. Dalton McCarthy was 'established,' I think he put it, by the Prime Minister in Ontario. I have shown that Mr. Dalton McCarthy held these views long before 1896. I did not require to show you, at all events, I will not endeavour to do so, for I think that this country is now well satisfied, that the convictions of Mr. Dalton McCarthy then were honest convictions, and that the insinuations of the hon. member for Beauharnois (Mr. Bergeron) that he acted out of pique or disappointment because he was not made Minister of Justice, does not require refuting in Ontario, nor do I believe, in the whole broad Dominion of Canada. From what I have said, it seems clear that we must approach this question with a knowledge of what has gone before. I announced myself at the outset when I spoke on the first possible occasion as unalterably opposed to the educational clauses in the Bill, and I will go further and say that I am unalterably opposed to this parliament legislating in any restrictive way in regard to the matter of education as against these provinces which are about to be formed. I am prepared to go further than that, and I think I can demonstrate that it is necessary to put a clause in this Bill stating that fact; otherwise you will find that separate schools will be there whether you will or not. This is why I argue that there must be a definite announcement of policy. Now, Sir, many views have been propounded in reference to this. The Prime Minister has made it perfectly plain that as a matter of policy and as a matter of law, he thinks that this legislation is justified. The leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden), I repeat again, has not said anything about the question of policy; he does not argue for or against separate schools. He says : Let the constitution take its course.
Mr. LENNOX. The hon. gentleman has said that a great many times. I do not know if it is significant or not—
4105 4106
Mr. L. G. MCCARTHY. I understand the hon. member is going to reply. I can obviate that—
Mr. LENNOX. It has been repeated a good many times that the leader of the opposition said ' Let the constitution take its course.' I do not recall any such expression being used by the leader of the opposition.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. I may have misconceived the leader of the opposition, but I understood that to be his whole argument. He stood upon the rock of the constitution also. The Prime Minister also stood upon that rock, and my difliculty is that I cannot find room on the Prime Minister's rock or the leader of the opposition's rock, or the rock on which the hon. member for Jacques Cartier (Mr. Monk) stood. Three different constitutional views were expressed by these three gentlemen. In my opinion, we have plenary power to deal with this matter as we see fit, and according to the expediency and the justice of the case. In this regard, I agree with the ex- Minister of the Interior (Mr. Sifton), and I also invoke the declaration of Sir John Thompson in support of that view. Attorney General and great lawyer as he was, he pronounced his opinion to be that at this time we would be free to do as we thought expedient, and best. This, Sir, is my opinion, and I am prepared to stand by it. The power under which we are proceeding is the British North America Act of 1871, which is commonly known as the doubt-removing Act. That Act enacted that
The parliament of Canada may from time to time establish new provinces in any territories forming for the time being part of the Dominion of Canada, but not included in any province thereof, and may, at the time of such establishment, make provision for the constitution and administration of any such province, and for the passing of laws for the peace, order, and good government of such province, and for its representation in the said parliament.
There are no restricting words there. We are told we may give them practically a free charter in such terms and on such conditions as we think fit. I cite also the opinion of Mr. Dalton McCarthy, expressed, it is true, in an off-hand way in the debate in 1891. I wish hon. gentlemen to understand in this connection that in drawing an Act of parliament it is generally expedient to follow some precedent and form. As Mr. Dalton McCarthy said, the natural precedent and form to be followed is in so far as practicable the terms of the British North America Act. But he went further and said that in fairness and in justice to these new provinces you should do for them what you did for the others. Not only do I invoke those whom I have cited but I invoke the Prime Minister of the Northwest Territories.
I invoke the Manitoba Act ; I invoke the Prince Edward Island resolution ; I invoke the British Columbia resolution. The hon. Prime Minister of the Northwest Territories prepared a draft Act in 1903, clause 27 of which reads as follows. In the clause the name of the province is left blank, but I will fill it up with the name 'Alberta' :
On and after the said first day of January, 1903, the provisions of the British North America Act, 1867, except those parts thereof which are in terms made or by reasonable intendment may be held to be, specially applicable to or to affect only one or more but not the whole of the provinces under that Act composing the Dominion, and except so far as the same may be varied by this Act, shall be applicable to the province of Alberta in the same way and to the same extent as they apply to the several provinces of Canada and as if the province of Alberta had been one of the provinces originally united by the said Act.
Then he adds this note :
This is the provision adopted at confederation and on which all the provinces have since joined the union.
I submit to you, Mr. Speaker, and to the hon. members of this House that the last three lines of that clause do away with all argument as to the question of 'territory' or 'province,' and all question as to the date of the admission to the union. If the province of Alberta had been a province which had been originally united with confederation in 1867, is there any hon. gentleman in this House who will say that the provision of section 93 of the British North America Act would not apply ? I cannot conceive of any answer to the argument, that if you apply this draft clause to these provinces, you apply to them section 93 of the British North America Act, unless, in some other part of the enactment, you specifically take it away. That is my argument. I say that if you give them that clause which, in all fairness and justice, you must, following the precedent of Manitoba, Prince Edward Island and British Columbia, you do away with any argument as to whether it was a province or a territory, and also with any argument about the date of admission to the union. Is there anybody who will say that they have not now by law these rights and privileges ? Admit these two points, and you admit the whole of my argument—the conclusion seems to me to be absolutely inevitable. But what I say further is that you have a little phrase in that clause that does protect you, if you admit the first part of my argument, which is that we have plenary power, as we have, I think, under the British North America Act of 1871, that phrase says 'as varied by this Act' ; and you must vary this Act if you want to get away from section 93 of the British North America Act of 1867. I say, and say it without fear, without antagonism to any hon. gentleman in this House, without any desire to raise a sectarian cry or to foment 4107 4108 religious struggles, I honestly believe that if you have one national school system it is in the best interest of the country. I would be disposed to recognize all conscientious beliefs. But coming to this question as I do, I cannot reach any conclusion but that it is best that there should be one school system. Therefore, I hold that parliament should vary by this Act the application to these provinces of the British North America Act. And I am prepared to support a clause to that effect. I regret that the leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden) is not present that I might ask if he is prepared to support, or whether he intends to propose, or will propose, as a matter of policy, the inclusion in this Bill a little clause to this effect :
The province of Alberta shall, unconditionally, have the exclusive right to legislate in regard to matters of education.
There is a straight issue of policy. The Prime Minister has announced his policy that he believes in separate schools and that the minority has rights which should be protected. The leader of the opposition has yet to make an announcement on that point. He declares that he does not argue for separate schools or against them. But I think we are entitled to an announcement by him on the question of policy. Now, I cannot see why there should be any inflammatory disposition on the part of any hon. gentleman in discussing the question whether we should have a national school system or a divided school system. I do not want to be a bigot ; I try not to be a bigot. I am sure that even if you do give the power to the province, in all probability you will have some kind of a separate school system. But what harm would there be in leaving it to them? If you adopt the clause I suggest you are not legislating to take away separate schools; you leave it beyond the shadow of a doubt to them to do as they please about separate schools. You make your legislation clear and you avoid litigation.
If that argument is not logical, I am far astray. The only answer to it that I can see is the argument of policy, the argument of toleration and moderation that was made in 1896. I am prepared to admit that my hon. friends who argue in favour of this clause as it is now amended are honest in their conviction that it is in the best interest of the country to try to quiet matters. But, on the other hand, I do not think that quiet would result from the legislation they suggest. I am one of those who think that if you follow the course here proposed you are more likely to stir up strife than if you do what I suggest. I had a Scotch grandmother, though I have an Irish name, and I can well believe that this is a case in which, if you are to grasp the thistle, it is best to grasp it firmly. If, in dealing with this matter as the Prime Minister proposes, we do not promote moderation and tolera 4109 APRIL 7, 1905 tion, then I am right and he is wrong. But if his legislation shall create a feeling of safety and promote a spirit or toleration and moderation, then the right hon. gentleman and his supporters are right and I am entirely wrong.
Now, as to whether or not we have a right to legislate—an absolute, plenary right —or not, let me ask one question. And now I regret especially that the hon. leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden) is not here. But I would ask my hon. friend from South Simcoe (Mr. Lennox), who is a lawyer to give me an answer to this question when he replies. If we have not plenary power under the British North America Act of 1871, why were these words put in clause six of that Act ?
It shall not be competent for the parliament of Canada to alter the provisions of any Act hereinafter establishing new provinces in the Dominion.
That tells you that if you create a province you shall not alter that legislation afterwards, you shall not repeal it, you shall not do anything with it. If the British North America Act applies, ipso facto, automatically, or however you choose to phrase it, then the only thing you can do is simply to let it apply, for everybody knows that you cannot repeal or alter the British North America Act. Then, what in the name of common sense could the Imperial House mean by legislating that you should not amend the law after you have once created a province, if the amending of that law is clearly and admittedly beyond our power? Does that appeal to the legal minds of hon. gentlemen? It seems to me absolutely conclusive. If this is not the conclusion, then it seems to me you can give no affect to the words. But if you were going simply to apply the British North America Act, that would be absolutely worthless and of no avail.
Now, Sir, upon this legal proposition I do ask some consideration at the hands of my hon. friends. If I am right, as I think I am, I cannot endorse the view of the leader of the government, nor can I endorse the view of the leader of the opposition, because I think that in the event of there being litigation over this Bill, it will be found that if you leave clause 2 in there as it stands—and they are certainly entitled to something like that—if you do not vary it, you will have a system of separate schools imposed upon these provinces, a more effective system, in the interest of the supporters of separate schools, than the present clause 16. In that respect I agree with the hon. member for Beauharnois (Mr. Berger on), who made the suggestion last night that such would be the result. Now, if that is so, I ask again for protection in that regard for those who think as I do upon this question. It is necessary to vary this Act if you want to get rid of the effect of clause 4109 4110 93 of the British North America Act, and to do that you will have to insert in this Bill some such clause as that the provinces shall have unconditionally the exclusive right to legislate on educational matters. If you do not do that, then I say that the constitution will- take its course, and the courts will decide that clause 93 shall apply, and the difference will be what is in clause 16 now and what clause 93 would give them.
Mr. BARKER. Has the hon. gentleman read the amendment of the leader of the opposition?
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. Yes.
Mr. BARKER. It is simply a declaration that we should leave them what you say you want to give them.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. Now, Sir, I am very much relieved, because the closest lieutenant of the leader of the opposition has spoken, he says that the policy of the leader of the opposition is right along the line I am now speaking, upon, that is, we must pass legislation.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. Then the hon. gentleman is quibbling, the leader of the opposition is quibbling, they say: Let the constitution take its course. As I read the amendment it is simply an attempt to get a shelter behind which to shoot. Remember, the leader of the opposition says, I do not argue against separate schools; I do not argue for separate schools. Let the constitution take its course. I have discussed this with men who are high constitutional authorities who have told me that if this matter is to be fought out in the courts the conclusion will in their opinion be as I have submitted. Now, let us consider what the leader of the opposition said. He does not want this Bill to be read the second time, but he wants this:
Upon the establishment of a province in the Northwest Territories of Canada as proposed by Bill No. 69, the legislature of such province, subject to and in accordance with the provisions of the British North America Acts 1867 to 1886 is entitled to—
Now, that is one-half. I say that under that half, if you do nothing more than simply to declare this in that way, you are riveting separate schools upon these provinces.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. I am going to be fair. I think the hon. gentleman had a little to do with the preparation of this amendment. It seems to be his child, and he is inconsistent, as other hon. gentlemen are, on this question. I say if you go that far you rivet on these provinces, by the constitution, a system of separate schools. Then I read it again :
—Subject to and in accordance with the British North America Acts 1867 to 1886 is entitled to and should enjoy full powers of provincial self government—
Now, under that I say you will rivet upon these provinces a separate school system such as is given by the Northwest Territories Act, section 14. Now, you have got the last two lines, and I fancy these are the lines that the hon. member for Beauharnois cavils at.
—including power to exclusively make laws in relation to education.
Now, if the hon. gentleman will supplement that by an amendment to this Bill, then he accomplishes what I am arguing for. I am going to support this amendment, notwithstanding the fact that I think the first part and the last part are inconsistent. I support it with the reservation that I am supporting the last two lines of the amendment and not the first three, because I believe that at this juncture we have plenary power to do what we like, that we should not shoot from behind hedges, that we should be prepared to say that we believe it is in the interests of this country either that a national school system is the best or that a separate school system is the best. Unless you are men enough to say that, I do not think you are discharging the duties cast upon you as representatives of the people and as members of this House. My position is difficult. I realize that I am not in a position to lead a crusade, I have neither the intellectual power nor the financial means to undertake that. But I am prepared to stand by my past principles and upon my past record, and I will vote in support of that amendment owing to these last two lines that are in it. I do not think it is effective, I think it is a sham, and I think the result will be that if the courts have to decide that they will decide that the province must accept a system of separate schools given by clause 14, unless you amend this Act as it stands to-day. The clause I suggest is that the province of Alberta shall unconditionally have exclusive right to legislate in matters of education. Unless you adopt such an amendment, you do not accomplish the purpose of these last two lines. If hon. gentlemen are going to follow it up in committee, all right; then we will have a division, and possibly we will have a division on the third reading. But six weeks is a long time to wait, and we have not yet had an announcement from the hon. gentleman as to what his policy is in this regard.
Now, I do not think it can be said that I have argued to-day in an intolerant way. I do not desire to be intolerant, I do not desire to be classed as a bigot, I do not think I am. I ask that the provinces be given the right to establish the system of schools it thinks to be in the best interests of its people. But I do not argue that we are not 4111 4112 taking away separate schools. We do not have to go so far as that, nevertheless I think hon. gentlemen know pretty well where I stand. I have no hesitation in expressing my views, I do say that if you are going to legislate that they cannot do away with separate schools, then you are imposing separate schools upon these provinces. My belief is that you should not have Godless schools, and my belief is that you should not have dogma schools. We can have schools where prayers could be agreed upon. I would be well satisfied to use the words of an eminent divine : That if they are taught in these schools simply that it is better to be chaste than licentious, better to be true than false, better to be brave than cowardly—then we will accomplish something upon which we can build up a nation, we will be tending towards unity and not separation. If we build up a homogeneous people, we will have a much more solid foundation for this country, and the west will flourish much better, than if you establish such schools, and if you have separation. I may be right or I may be wrong, but such are my views. Without desiring to trample upon the rights of anybody, I have spoken out in the way I have done. Such are my views, and they are the views which I think should prevail if you desire to build up a united Canada.
Mr. HAUGHTON LENNOX (South Simcoe). I will not attempt to follow my hon. and eloquent friend (Mr. L. G. McCarthy) through all the legal arguments and difficulties which he undertook to deal with. The particular object that my hon. friend had in view, I must admit, is not very clear to my mind. He started out upon a discussion which I imagined would lead him somewhere, but he, like some hunters, came out just where he went in. I will do no discourtesy to my hon. friend if I decline to accept the invitation to discuss with him or with the House the particular legal propositions which he enunciated. I did venture to call his attention to the fact that he was not giving a fair version or interpretation of the very able argument presented by my hon. friend the leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden), but notwithstanding that he still followed in the error of his ways and persisted to the end in giving his own interpretation of it. Well, Sir, if his interpretation of the law is not more reliable than his interpretation of the speech of my hon. friend the leader of the opposition, I am afraid it is not such an interpretation as wise men would care to follow. I did notice that there was method—I will not say in his madness—but method in his argument to a certain extent and that was that he should tell us once again—and I hope this once again will be for the last time —the history of the McCarthy family. May 1 remind my hon. friend, and so as to do no injustice I except the vigorous living branch of the family of that gentleman who sits on 4113                  APRIL 7, 1905                           this side of the House,—that he is not the whole family and may I suggest to him that he should apply to his own branch of the family the same rule as that which applies to the potatoes—the best part of it is underground.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. Does that apply to the one on your side ?
Mr. LENNOX. No, the hon. gentleman cannot even now see the point. Probably the hon. gentleman has so habituated himself to thinking that the mantle of that very able man, Dalton McCarthy, descended— not upon his son, for he has a son in Toronto who is a very able lawyer, but upon this nephew of his, that he cannot think of anything else. Is he like the third Napoleon of whom it was said that the only good thing that could be said of him was that he was the nephew of his uncle ? It seems to me that this possibly applies to the hon. gentleman. There was a part of his speech which was exceedingly good. It was the part in which he read long extracts from the speeches of his uncle and from the even greater speeches of my hon. friend from North Toronto (Mr. Foster). The hon. gentleman told us that he changed his speech and that he changed it since yesterday. Does he want us to follow him ? He may change again to-morrow and very likely he will, but what struck me at the time was that if he had changed it more than he did it would have been a better speech. I do not exactly know what my hon. friend is aiming at. Surely it could not be that in objecting to the amendment of my hon. friend the leader of the opposition he poses as a greater man— that he has found out something that nobody else had found out, that he is going to enlighten the country, that both parties were wrong, the leader of the government and the leader of the opposition, in a sense, between the devil and the deep sea.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. Which is the devil and which the deep sea ?
Mr. LENNOX. My hon. leader is the deep sea.
Mr. L. G. McCARTHY. I think I must have been deep sea fishing then.
Mr. LENNOX. And so you were. I do not want to elevate. my hon. friend into the distinction by talking about. him. He may have a chance of fame if I talk about him for too long and I think I will leave him to his own meditation and his own speech. He spoke of shooting from behind hedges. Who has been shooting, on this side of the House from behind hedges ? He has been a long time on that side of the House, he sits behind a gentleman who skulks behind the lines of Torres Vedras, he has learned something about shooting from behind hedges and let me tell him that hon. mem 4113 4114 bers on this side of the House are generally in the habit of speaking their minds distinctly, of speaking what they think, that they have the courage of their convictions, that they are not afraid of speaking out on practical politics, but not upon these imaginary theories, which, as I say, enter nowhere and come out nowhere. What was the policy which my hon. friend throughout this discussion advanced in respect to Protestantism of which he is the champion ? To do something to prevent the imposition of separate schools upon the Northwest Territories ? I think that anybody who listened to the tirade of abuse from start to finish of my hon. friend's speech in reference to the hon. member for North Toronto, the hon. gentleman who represents the riding in which he lives, would come to the conclusion that from first to last his object was to apply names to the Conservative party and to heap abuse upon my hon. friend from North Toronto. I do not think that my hon. friend (Mr. Foster) will suffer much from the statement of the hon. member for North Simcoe. That hon. gentleman had a twinge of conscience when he was talking. What was he afraid of ? He threw up his hands and prayed to Heaven that he might not inflame the passions of the people of the country. Is there any danger of his inflaming the passions of the people of the country ? Is there any danger of many people reading his speech or taking cognizance of his doings ? He varies his speeches. He need not be afraid. He will never inflame the passions of anybody. But, what was the object of it all ?—the evident object was to do a party service for the right hon. gentleman whom he has served so faithfully during the whole period of this parliamentary career and a more truckling politician has never occupied a seat in this House than the hon. gentleman during the time he has been here. He reminded me of a gentleman, who, speaking to another, was advancing the theory that men are the opposite of their fathers, that they have the opposite traits, the opposite tendencies, peculiarities, &c., and after having enunciated that principle he said : You never met my father. He was a very clever, a very brilliant and a very fine man. And, the other replied : No, I never met your father, but on the principle of opposites, I can imagine that your father was all you describe. I am quite willing to concede to the late Dalton McCarthy all reasonable credit and I imagine that probably if the principle, of opposites, just referred to holds good, I need say nothing further in favour of the late Dalton McCarthy—hon. gentlemen will be prepared to imagine everything that is good of him, having my hon. friend, his nephew with us.
The hon. gentleman (Mr. L. G. McCarthy) began his career in this House by reading 4115 COMMONS lectures to both sides and he has followed it up to-day by trying to impress upon us that all wisdom is centered in him. However, we are here not to deal with his peculiar ideas, but to consider what is in the best interests of Canada having regard to the proposal made by the government for the second reading of this Bill, and the amendment proposed by the leader of the opposition. The amendment proposed by my leader may have been lost sight of in this protracted discussion, and so I shall recall it to the attention of the House.
That all the words ater the word 'that ' to the end of the question be left out and the following substituted therefor:
Upon the establishment of a province in the Northwest Territories of Canada as proposed by Bill (No. 69), the legislature of such province, subject to and in accordance with the provisions of the British North America Acts 1867 to 1886, is entitled to and should enjoy full powers of provincial self government, including power to exclusively make laws in relation to education.
Whatever may be the aspirations of the member for North Simcoe (Mr. L. G. McCarthy), if he is sincere in the desire announced by the ex-Minister of the Interior and by gentlemen of that school, he will be able to realize all his expectations and desires if he votes for this amendment. I notice that the hon. gentleman (Mr. L. G. MaCarthy) said, perhaps without suflicient thought, that the leader of the opposition proposed that the Bill should not have a second reading. That is not correct. The amendment is the enunciation of a sound principle, it will not defeat the Bill, and it will be followed up by proposals in committee which, if adopted, will make the Bill what it should be. In a word, this is a question of provincial autonomy in the proper sense ; it is a question whether we will carry out the well recognized principle that the various provinces should— subject to any conditions legally existing at the time of the union—have full authority to regulate their own school laws. The hon. gentleman (Mr. L. G. McCarthy) deplored that the leader of the opposition had not laid down a policy, and had not discussed the question whether separate schools were good or bad per se. Since the leader of the opposition introduced this amendment the debate has unfortunately drifted into a channel which justifies, if it does not necessitate, a discussion on the abstract question of separate schools. But, Sir, the statesmanship of the leader of the opposition and his wisdom in not dealing with the abstract question at that time, is evident to every man in this House, and in the country, who feels the responsibility of discussing the issue before us without inflaming unduly the passions of the people. It would be a matter for congratulation to us all, if, following the example of the leader of the opposition, and the example of gentle 4115 4116 men on this side of the House the question as to whether separate schools were right or wrong had been eliminated from this debate. Even the hon. member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule) following in the main the same general course as his leader, although he was baited and badgered in order to provoke him into an expression of an |opinion of general hostility to separate schools, he avoided any unnecessary discussion of that vexed question, and treated the real question at issue with moderation and patriotism. It is to be regretted that gentlemen on the other side of the House did not follow this example. The question as to whether separate schools are good or bad is a relative question ; if in Quebec and Ontario they are good, it is because they are guaranteed by the constitution of the country and it is the duty of all loyal men to stand by the constitution. But in these western Territories where there is a sparse population, where there is a difliculty in maintaining any schools at all, I have no hesitation in saying that personally I am opposed to separate schools. But aside from this I take the ground that the matter should be left entirely to the people of the west. There should be no interference from the people of Quebec or from the people of Ontario either ; the people of the west should be free to decide for themselves. We are now face to face with the question as to whether these new provinces shall, on the lst of July next, attain to sturdy autonomy, or cringing dependency ; whether they shall attain to the status of independent provinces, or become the colonies of a colony ; whether they shall take their place as equal partners among the sisterhood of provinces, or, be as bondsmen to the Dominion parliament and shackled for all time to come. I venture to say that the good judgment of the people of Canada to-day, is, that whether we like separate schools or whether we do not, the right policy and the wise policy is to leave to these provinces the management of their own affairs. The ex-Minister of the Interior has told us that the people of the west are as capable of managing their own affairs as are any people in the world, and we can quite believe it. Are you going to let this splendid people come in as equal partners in the confederation, or are you going to declare, that they shall be manacled and throttled at the beginning of their career ? What subtle influence is it which causes the government to say, that the new provinces shall have forced upon them onerous conditions from which the other provinces are free? In the last few days there has come to our knowledge certain things which cast a new light upon this discussion. Yesterday we had an interesting discussion upon certain matters that had arisen in connection with the extension of the boundaries of Manitoba. To 4117 APRIL 7, 1905 day we have new features affecting that question and so affecting the question which we are now discussing; and I will venture to refer to the statement of the Hon. Colin Campbell which appears in to-day's papers. Yesterday we had a number of ministers speaking, and the tone of their remarks was that although you could not depend upon the statement of the Hon. Mr. Rogers, you could depend upon that of the Hon. Mr. Campbell, but that he would not speak —he had too much discretion to speak. But he speaks, and speaks definitely to-day.
Before I refer to that, however, I might refer to a matter that casts a light upon the extent of the privileges to be enjoyed by the minority in the Northwest in case this Act goes through in the form proposed. We have heard the statement constantly made, and it comes more particularly from the Minister of Finance, that as a matter of fact, when you analyze the Acts, there is really nothing objectionable in the kind of schools which the government are imposing upon the people of the Northwest— that there is only half an hour of religious instruction after the school is dismissed, and that the schools are only separate schools in name, but not in fact. Let us see whether or not that is the fact. In 1897 the leader of the government said :
The only thing I care for is that, whereas, under the Act, 1890, they had not the privilege of teaching their own religion in the schools, by the concessions which have been made, whether they are concessions or new rights or a restoration of old rights, they will have the right hereafter of teaching their own religion in the province of Manitoba.
Further on he said this :
Well, the moment I found that the people of Manitoba were ready to make concessions which practically restored to the Catholics the right of teaching the French language and of teaching their own religion in the schools, I submitted to my fellow countrymen in the province of Quebec that it was far better to obtain those concessions by negotiation than to endeavour to obtain them by means of coercion.
Further on he said :
And I venture at this moment to say that there is not a man in the province of Quebec, there is not a. man in this country, who, looking at the settlement unbiassed and unprejudiced, will not come to the conclusion that it was a happy solution of a very difficult situation indeed.
That is the statement of the premier, and it is to the effect, that he had carried on his negotiations in the west, and had obtained this concession, mainly that the minority would have the privilege of teaching their religion and the French language in the schools. Now, that seems to be all that the most extreme advocate of separate schools asks. Then. turning to the statement of the Papal ablegate, I find this :
I urged my request on the ground of fairness and justice and referring to his mission to 4117 4118 Ottawa I remarked that from the point of view or the Manitoba government some action on these lines would be politically expedient and tend to facilitate the accomplishment of his object, inasmuch as Catholics in any territory which might be annexed to Manitoba would naturally object to losing the right they had to separate schools and to be subjected to the educational conditions which existed in Manitoba.
Now, if you go back from that to the statement of the Prime Minister which I have just read, namely, that by his negotiations in 1896 he had secured for the minority of Manitoba separate schools, in the sense of having their religion taught in the schools and of having the enjoyment of the French language secured to them ; what is the result of taking these two matters together ? It is that you have religion taught in the schools, and in addition to that, you have some greater advantage in the west. According to the ablegate, there is a broad distinction between the west and Manitoba —distinction which is in his opinion sufficient to bar the way to an extension of territory for Manitoba on the ground that the people in the added territory would not enjoy equal privileges with those that they now enjoy. That lets in a pretty important side light as to the actual intention of this legislation. It shows that the government are not honest or fair, and that the statements of hon. gentlemen opposite are not correct when they say that this provision has been whittled down to almost nothing, and that under it there will be only separate schools in name but not in fact. Let me say, although I do not propose to-day to discuss the legal question, that it will be found, if the argument of the ex-Minister of the Interior is correct—and certainly he above all others should be in a position to judge of that matter, having, as he said, special means of studying the school question—that the ordinances do not pare down the rights of the minority in the west, and that the schools provided for in 1875 will be the class of schools that will be maintained under the Act now before the House. And there is good reason for that, although the Postmaster General has thrown out the suggestion that the government will dispute the law of the Minister of the Interior in that regard. If you turn to the Act now before the House, you will find that it embraces all the subsections of section 93 of the British North America Act with the exception of subsection 1. That subsection does not deal with separate schools, but with denominational schools, and therefore has no bearing in Canada, where we have not what are properly known as denominational schools. The substituted subsection is :
Nothing in any such law shall prejudicially affect any right or privilege with respect to separate schools—
Changing from denominational schools to separate schools.
—which any class of persons have at the date of the passing of this Act under the terms of chapters 29 and 30 of the Ordinances of the Northwest Territories passed in the year 1901.
Although this is put forward as an amendment to subsection 1 it is practically a new provision, because it provides for separate schools and for a state of things existing at the date of the passing of the Act, instead of ' at the union.' It is provided, however, that section 93 of the British North America Act shall apply and the first subsection of that section deals with questions of this kind, and thus we have introduced by the Act now before the House substantially all of section 93 of the British North America Act with a rider such as I have just quoted. If it is correct, as the ex-Minister of the Interior (Mr. Sifton) argues that the ordinances have no effect and that the law of 1875 is still in force in the Territories the result will be that by this Act and we will be imposing upon the Northwest Territories separate schools to the most extreme type to which they have attained at any time since 1875. The people of the Northwest Territories will have to accept this position at the instance of the minority whether they like it or not. We had yesterday produced in this House a statement made by the Hon. Mr. Rogers in reference to an interview with the Papal ablegate. Yesterday we had also read in the House the statement which the Papal ablegate gave to the press. In that statement we are told by the ablegate that the reason for the interview with Mr. Campbell—was that he had a previous acquaintance with Mr. Campbell. Now, no one pretends for an instant that there was anything wrong in the Papal ablegate having interviews with either of these gentlemen, Mr. Rogers or Mr. Campbell, if he sees fit. The question of significance yesterday was, and the question to-day is whether or not the representative of the Holy See was interfering unduly with the affairs of Canada and was endeavouring by means of certain propositions which he made to those representatives of Manitoba to bring about a state of things which he desired. Hon. gentlemen of the government yesterday sought to convey the impression that the Papal ablegate had no ulterior design of any kind and that it was only a private interview which the Papal ablegate had sought because he had had a previous acquaintance with Mr. Colin Campbell. I propose to read what Mr. Colin Campbell says in reference to that matter, and hon. gentlemen will recall how much credence was placed upon the word of Mr. Colin Campbell, everybody certified for him and everybody sneered at Hon. Mr. Rogers. I shall now quote from an interview which has been had with Mr. Campbell :
4119 4120
Have you anything to say as far as Monseigneur Sbarretti is concerned ? asked your correspondent.
' I think all essential facts have been brought out ' answered the Attorney General. I never met His Excellency prior to meeting him in Ottawa, nor did I ever have any communication with him, directly or indirectly. His Excellency is under misapprenhension in thinking he met me before. The communication and memorandum which I received from him I duly delivered and communicated as he requested me to do to my colleagues. I do not see that there is any conflict in statement made by his excellency and that of my colleague, Mr. Rogers.
The request of His Excellency was certainly to be conveyed to my colleagues, and it could not be considered in any way as private. The letter of invitation is as follows :
Apostolic Delegation, Ottawa, February 20, 1905.
Hon. Colin Campbell, Attorney General of Manitoba, Russell House, Otttawa.
Honourable Sir,—I am directed by His Excellency Monseigneur Sbarretti, Apostolic delegate to Canada, to write to you to say that he would be pleased to see you before your return to Manitoba. If you could find it convenient to come to the delegation, you will kindly let me know if you can come and when you will be pleased to do so.
I am yours very truly,
Now there are other aspects of the case which require attention to-day. We have this fact brought very painfully to our minds that not only has the First Minister developed lately a peculiarly tyrannical disposition, a desire for more power and a desire to manage the affairs of this country without seeking the constitutional advice of his associates something for which perhaps he may not be altogether accountable, but he has also developed a peculiar lack of memory, an unfortunate lack of memory, because, I can attribute some things he has said and done to nothing else. Nobody would question that the right hon. gentleman was perfectly honest in telling what occurred, I would not at all events, for I have too much respect for the fact that he was premier of the Dominion of Canada to say anything of that kind, but I do point out that there have been some fatal lapses of memory lately and many of them are brought forcibly to light in connection with this matter which is important in itself, involves as well the vital question of whether we shall have a proper system of government in this country or be controlled by outside influences, sinister and improper to the last degree. Now turning to the beginning of the statement of Mr. Campbell I read :
Your correspondent called upon Attorney General Campbell to-day and asked him whether he had any reply to make in reference to Sir Wilfrid Laurier's statement in the House.
4121 APRIL 7, 1905
Here first evidence of failing memory :
I regret to notice that evidently Sir Wilfrid's memory is failing him. I was in Toronto when Laurier made his speech on the Autonomy Bills.
I do not attach any great importance to that. I will not call that No. 1 of the evidences of failing memory. It is merely a casual thing and not a circumstance which would necessarily impress itself upon the right hon. Prime Minister's mind. But the next is a matter that did concern the people of Canada and is worthy of mention, and I will proceed with that :
What about his promise to meet you in three or four days and give you an answer?
I think hon. gentlemen will agree with me that that is a matter that no representative of the people could afford to forget, or, if it were arranged, could afford to ignore. And what did Hon. Mr. Campbell say ? He says :
I remember that very distinctly. It was when we were leaving and he requested that we should remain for three or four days and he would give us an answer. Mr. Rogers remained in Ottawa and I went to Toronto and returned especially for the purpose of keeping the appointment, and when the incident was fresh in our minds we sent the letter of February 23, in which we repeated the promise that Sir Wilfrid had given us February 17.
He says, in effect, that he has reason to remember, because he went to Toronto and returned especially to keep that appointment. And, while the thing was fresh in his memory, not Mr. Rogers alone or himself alone, but both drafted the letter and sent it. The letter was referred to by the right hon. gentleman with something of a sneer. It is not wise to sneer at the representative of a great province like Manitoba— not a very large one geographically, but a great one. That is not the first sneer of the right hon. gentleman. The first was when he told us of Mr. Haultain's position in the matter. Then too. there was a covert sneer at the position taken by the representative of the province, because, forsooth, he would not, on a casual reference to the school question, accept the school clause proposed, and bow his knee to this great government. Mr. Campbell says he came back and wrote this letter on the 17th. And he goes on :
And, in further confirmation of this, I had intended returning immediately to Winnipeg to attend a specially important meeting that I had arranged for before leaving, and on February 17 I wired Professor Hart, secretary of Manitoba College board, that I was unable to return owing to the further interview to be held with Sir Wilfrid Laurier.
Is there any doubt about the facts now ? Do you think this hon. gentleman could be mistaken? If he is not mistaken it comes to this, that the Prime Minister of this 4121 4122 Dominion has so poor a memory or is so worried by the internal dissentions in his own camp or by the applications and pressure from without that he actually forgot— for he must have forgotten—that he had promised them an answer. Yet, he was prepared, and his cabinet were prepared, and his followers were prepared to sneer, and did in fact, sneer, at this matter yesterday. I think we can count that lapse of memory number one. Then this interview goes on :
Sir Wilfrid says that I did not take much part in the discussion of the question on February 17th.
Is that a matter on which one would expect the Prime Minister to have a bad memory ? Well, Mr. Campbell says :
In this I think he is likewise mistaken as I took considerable part. I framed and moved the resolution of the legislature on which the memorial was based and was very much interested in its consideration. When we met Sir Wilfrid he asked who should speak first, and I suggested Rogers. Mr. Rogers left me to deal with the northern and eastern portion of the claim. Sir Wilfrid intimated that it was his intention to add all the territory lying immediately north of Manitoba now embraced in the Territories of Saskatchewan and Athabasca to the new province of Saskatchewan, in accordance with his agreement with the northwest representatives.
That is a matter about which there could not be any doubt. Whether that was discussed or was not discussed cannot be a subject for prolonged difference of opinion, even if it is necessary to have an investigation to ascertain the facts. It is a crucial point in determining whether Mr. Campbell is correct or not. He says further :
I pointed out to him that if the Territory lying immediately north of Manitoba, that is at the heads of Lake Winnipeg and Lake Winnipegosis, was embraced within the province of Saskatchewan that the Dominion would be powerless to give it to Manitoba, as no part of provincial territory could be taken away from a province without legislative action of the province itself.
Hon. Mr. Fitzpatrick agreed to this and I felt that we had secured an important concession from Sir Wilfrid in this respect, that he would not include the territory in the new province of Saskatchewan.
That is not a matter that the right hon. gentleman ought to forget. And yet there are peculiar discrepancies, unfortunately discrepancies between two or more great public men, the representatives of the province of Manitoba and the representatives of the Dominion. Let me here interject that the policy of secrecy, on which the right hon. gentleman seems to plume himself of late, deprives us of the opportunity to know what goes on in relation to public affairs. ' There was no shorthand reporter present, the communications were verbal, no record was kept,'—this is a policy fraught with great danger to the public ; and I venture to 4123 COMMONS suggest that it would be much better policy to keep a record of the proceedings. And, if the policy of secrecy were abandoned and a policy of communicating to the people what goes on from time to time adopted, it would be very much more in the public interest. This is the third error. Mr. Campbell goes on :
Upon the discussion of the territory to be added from the district of Keewatin both Mr. Rogers and myself were very much astonished when Sir Wilfrid made the suggestion of calling in Quebec and Ontario and I asked Sir Wilfrid if the government of Ontario had ever advanced any claim or suggested that they had any claim on the district of Keewatin, to which he replied that they had not.
That, I venture to say is an error too. I have looked at the returns brought down, I went to get them again to-day, but I understand they have gone to the printer. When the right hon. gentleman says—and I think the Postmaster General (Sir William Mulock) endeavoured the other day to substantiate it, that there had been no application or suggestion of claim from Ontario at that date, I venture to say that the records will prove otherwise. On page 15 of the records before the House there is a printed letter. That letter written on the 16th or the 6th,—if it was the 16th it shows the failure of memory to be all the worse— was written and, I think, signed by the Prime Minister, to Mr. Whitney saying : I inclose certain papers in reference to the application of the province of Manitoba for an extension of its boundaries. There is one other clause that I will read, and it is significant in many respects. It is the fourth evidence of a very decided lapse of memory.
At six o'clock, House took recess.

After Recess.

House resumed at eight o'clock.



House in committee on Bill (No. 45) respecting the Grand Trunk Railway Company of Canada.—Mr. Macdonald.
On the question: Shall the Bill be reported:
Mr. BARKER. I do not know whether the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Emmerson) is here, but if he is not this Bill should not proceed in his absence. It is a very important Bill, one of the most important private Bills that could be brought before this House, and I do think we ought to have the presence of the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals during its discussion. The hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald) is in charge of the interests of the railway company which is promoting the Bill, but I think the government should 4123 4124 be represented by the Minister of Railways and Canals in any discussion that occurs during its passage.
Mr. MACDONALD. I do not know whether the hon. member for Hamilton (Mr. Barker) was present on Wednesday night or not when the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Emmerson) was here, and when we had a very full discussion, not of the Bill before the House, but of another Bill which is now upon the order paper, relating to the government's policy, not in respect to anything contained in these particular Bills, but in respect to a totally different matter, not germane to anything contained in these Bills, but relating wholly to a proposition that the government should hereafter exercise certain rights in the way of users of this railway from Coteau to Parry Sound and on the Grand Trunk from Coteau to Montreal. The hon. gentleman will probably recall that the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals then stated that upon moving in the House the Bill which he proposes to introduce to amend the Government's Railway Act all the information relative to the purport of the Bill or to the question, which I presume my hon. friend is interested in, will be given by him to the House. I presume my hon. friend desires to direct the remarks, or the criticisms, if there are criticisms, not so much to anything contained in these particular measures, but to the governmental policy relating to the users of the railways affected by them in the future. Speaking on behalf of the company—not on behalf of the company any more than that the Bill has been entrusted to me—I would like to submit to the committee and to my hon. friend from Hamilton that the discussion, if there is to be one, or the suggestions, if there are any to be made, should be such as would be pertinent purely to the propositions contained in these measures. There is no matter of government policy connected with anything contained in these particular Bills and I submit that my hon. friend will have a full opportunity to discuss the proposition mentioned by the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals the other night when his Bill comes on.
Mr. BARKER. I, from no fault of my own, was unable to be present on the evening of the 5th when the discussion took place that the hon. gentleman has referred to. I do not claim any privilege on that account. I only explain I was unable to be present. I was not well. I did desire to be present on that evening, not for the purpose particularly of discussing this Bill as regards the company that is seeking legislation, but because of the application of the Bill to public interests. It relates to the acquisition of a railway which the country is interested in and for that reason I take the opportunity, Mr. Chairman, on this occasion of asking that the Bill should not be [...] 4135 COMMONS [...] judgement. These are the reasons why I think it is undesirable to proceed with the consideration of this Bill, at all events, to pass this Bill, until we really know what the Proposal of the government is. As the Minister of Railways and Canals has once more returned to the House, might I venture to inquire from him whether he thinks he will be able to make, on Monday, those explanations of the government measure which, on Wednesday last, he expected to make to-day.
Mr. EMMERSON. I expect to be able to introduce a Bill on Monday. I was unable to do so before, owing to a press of other matters. I would suggest that this Bill be allowed to go through the committee and stand for the third reading, and it may stand for the third reading until I have made my explanations. I am sure the situation could not be in any way affected by that course, and we will be expediting the business of the House. The company, of course, is not responsible for the action taken by the government, and I do not think that we should put any more obstacles in their way than is possible.
Mr. R. L. BORDEN. I do not want my hon. friend to think that I was putting any obstacles in the way while he was out of the House.
Mr. EMMERSON. I beg your pardon for having had to be out, it was a matter of urgency, and I am sorry I was not present to hear my hon. friend's remarks.
Mr. R. L. BORDEN. I will sum up in a few words what I said. I said that it had been the hon. gentleman's policy, and it had been the policy of prominent members of the Liberal party in the past to acquire the Canada Atlantic as an extension of the. Intercolonial to Georgian Bay. The hon. gentleman will remember that he advocated that three years ago, I think, in this House, other prominent members of his party have done the same thing, and we have advocated it on this side of the House. I pointed out to the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald) that the government might yet conclude that it is the best policy, and that it would be meaningless, absurd, and an inconceivable thing that they should pass this legislation and then in the same session and in the next breath pass an Act authorizing us to take over this railway, to acquire it absolutely as the property of the government. Therefore, it seemed to me to be only a reasonable thing that we should under these circumstances, hear the minister's explanation before passing this Bill. I would think that that view would commend itself to my hon. friend : because, although he has to bow, I suppose, to the opinion of the majority of the cabinet in this regard. I feel so fully convinced of the soundness of the judgment of my hon. friend on this matter, as announced in this House, that I 4135 4136 believe at the present moment, if he were able absolutely to mould the policy of the cabinet in this regard, he would tell my hon. friend from Pictou not to press this legislation, because he proposes to bring down a Bill authorizing this government to take over that railway from Montreal to Parry Sound and to operate it as a part of the Intercolonial. I am sure that I can rely sufficiently on the sincerity of my hon. friend to justify me in expecting that he will now stand up in this House and say that that is still his opinion and that if he could have his own way as to the policy of the government he would adopt that very policy which he so ably advocated about three years ago in this House.
Mr. EMMERSON. That is departing from the suggestion which I made. The Bill need not pass now, but it can go through committee, and thus expedite business and then stand for the third reading, before which time the government Bill will be before the House, and I will have made my explanations. I know my hon. friend is always very sincere, as I am.
Mr. R. L. BORDEN. My hon friend pays me a high compliment.
Mr. EMMERSON. I trust he cannot outmatch me in a matter of sincerity.
The hour for private Bills having expired, the Speaker took the chair.


House resumed consideration of the proposed motion of Sir Wilfrid Laurier, for the second reading of Bill (No. 69), to establish and provide for the government of the province of Alberta, and the amendment of Mr. R. L. Borden thereto.
Mr. HAUGHTON LENNOX (South Simcoe). Mr. Speaker, when you left the chair at six o'clock I was directing the attention of the House to an important statement made by the Hon. Colin Campbell, the attorney general of the province of Manitoba, and I was pointing out that an unfortunate state of things had arisen, namely, that the memory of the right hon. leader of the government conflicted with the memory of the two members of the cabinet of the province of Manitoba on several important matters. I was intending to pursue the matter a little further and to point out some other circumstances in the same line. But I have probably said enough to direct the attention of the House to the fact that it is not after all so much a question of defective memory, as of the fact that the government has so conducted this business, both in the House and out of it, that we have the spectacle to-day of a serious conflict, not only between the right hon. gentleman and the premier of the Northwest Territories, but with two mem 4137 APRIL 7, 1905 bers of the cabinet of Manitoba as well. Let me call attention to the position between the premier of the Northwest Territories and the government. It is admitted to be a vexed question as to what school system shall prevail in the Northwest Territories, and whether there shall be the vindications of the subversion of provincial rights. That matter was only referred to incidentally and not discussed at all the very day when the Bill was introduced with the original clause 16, which caused so much trouble, and which is causing so much trouble in the House to-day in its amended form. The right hon. Prime Minister thinks that he was perfectly justified in treating the premier of the Northwest Territories in a way that has been often described in this House, so much so that he cannot fail to realize that the people of the west are feeling that they have been slighted through their representative because of the manner in which he has been treated. Enough has probably been said about that, but new matters arise to-day in connection with the same kind of treatment meted out to the representatives of Manitoba. We have had a certain amount of quibbling by hon. members on the other side of the House as to whether or not the premier did or did not promise to give these gentlemen another interview. I do not care about that. From   the evidence I read this afternoon, from other evidence and from the intrinsic evidence of the case, I am convinced that the country is satisfied that there was an understanding at the time these gentlemen parted from the premier and we know the unfortunate position of the right hon. gentleman, putting it in the best way we can. When we go to the records, when we go to ' Hansard ' and take the language of the right hon. gentleman himself no more unfortunate condition, no more unfortunate position as regards the Dominion in relation to the provinces could possibly exist than that which is recorded at page 4110 of the unrevised ' Hansard ' in the language of the right hon. gentleman himself. It comes to this that he left these gentlemen upon the understanding and with the statement that he would let them know in a few days what his policy would be, and he never let them know until he introduced his Bill into the House on the 21st February. Is that the way to treat provinces ? It is a little province, it is true. It is said to have offended the government, but it is said to have pleased the masses of the people in this country. The right hon. gentleman said that it should have no extension of its boundaries. It is a discussable question, I admit, whether the boundaries shall be extended or not, but I claim that for the provinces that they must be treated as sovereignties even by the sovereign and federal parliament of Canada. When the right hon. gentleman said, as he told us, that he would let them know in a few days and when he came 4137 4138 before the House and announced his policy without letting them know he was not treating them as the representatives of that proince deserved to be treated. This is the language of the hon. gentleman :
What are the facts ? As stated yesterday, we received in the month of January, towards the end of it, the request of the Manitoba government for a conference. We agreed to that conference, and it took place on the 17th of February. There were present a subcommittee of council and the question was discussed.
Now we come to what the premier says he did.
We told the delegates that they should have an answer at an early date. That answer they had.
Where ?
That answer they had on the floor of this House four days later, on the 21st of February, when I introduced the Autonomy Bills, and in the course of my explanation stated our position with regard to the boundaries of Manitoba was clearly defined.
Now, Mr. Speaker, we have this state of things that the premier of the Dominion, having invited the representatives of Manitoba to a conference, having partially discussed the matter with them and not having determined his policy, tells these gentlemen that he will let them know in a few days, he determines his policy, he decides that he will not extend the boundaries of Manitoba to the west which they have asked him to do, and having determined that he does not think it worth while to let these gentlemen know, does not think it worth while to send a letter to them even to announce his decision, but allows them to get it with the body of the public through the newspapers when announcing his policy in connection with the Bills which he was introducing on the 21st of February.
Now, I come to the main point to which I shall direct my attention this evening and which, will, I think, stamp it indelibly upon the minds of the people, at all events upon the minds of the members of the House is that it is no accidental condition that we are dealing with to-day : that the manner in which the whole Autonomy question has been conducted and the whole line of policy pursued by the premier are the result of a deliberate scheme, of a deliberate plan by which the Territories were to be deceived upon this school question. We know very well with what unseemly haste, in so far as the premier of the Northwest Territories is concerned, the right hon. gentleman introduced the Bill, and with what unfortunate haste as regards the then absent members of his government. There is no evidence even that the Bill, after having been prepared by the sub-committee, was submitted to the Council before it was introduced into the House. I take the responsibility of the statement that there was a plan 4139 COMMONS formed to deceive the Northwest Territories into the belief that the school question was settled and settled in the manner proclaimed from 1896 as the policy of the west ; that is a free national school. I will not depend upon assertion for that. I will refer to the documents of the House and the testimony of a gentleman whom, I think, the government will not be in a position to question. In 1902 in this House we were discussing in committee the question of the grant to the Northwest Territories for the purposes of government and the Minister of the Interior was asked to make a statement in reference to the question of autonomy. Without referring to a great many of the statements that were made in connection with the discussion I may say that Mr. Boyd, then a member of this House, called the attention of the hon. gentleman to the question of public schools in a very pointed way. He said as recorded in 'Hansard ' at page 3085.
The government might just as well admit that the delay is caused by the question of the schools, and the question of the language, and don't think for a moment that the people in the Northwest are not pretty well aware of that.
We have the challenge of Mr. Boyd, and I will read to you the reply of the Minister of the Interior at that time in reference to the position in which the schools stood. The minister said :
I think they will admit that rash haste with regard to a question of such vast importance— a question which must be satisfactorily settled if settled at all—rash haste would not at all be conducive to a settlement which would be satisfactory in the long run to the people of the Territories. I would not feel that I was taking an unreasonable position before this House if I said : that if the people of the Northwest Territories get a reasonable and satisfactory settlement, a settlement that the people of Canada and the people of the Territories particularly will regard as a good settlement ; a fair and reasonable settlement promising permanency ; promising lack of agitation, and difficulties and applications for reopening of the case in future years—if they get such a settlement within three or four years I should feel very well satisfied indeed, and I should feel that we have accomplished that result in a comparatively short time.
Then Mr. Sifton points out that we have a draft Bill furnished by Mr. Haultain, the provisions of which, he says, will require consideration and, after discussing the financial aspect, the question of the lands and minerals, he comes to the school question, and he says :
I know of no political game that can be played, and so far as the separate schools are concerned, my own view is that the school question is settled so far as the Northwest Territories is concerned. I understand that the settlement at which they have arrived—and I am very happy to be able to express that opinion—is a satisfactory settlement, and that the Roman Catholic people on the one hand and 4139 4140 the Protestant people on the other, feel that they have a satisfactory compromise, and that there is no necessity for difficulty or agitation upon the question.
The leader of the opposition especially refers to the statement of the Minister of the Interior, that the people of the Northwest had come to a satisfactory settlement of the school question and that there would be no possibility of any trouble in reference to that in the future, as the policy of provincial rights had been recognized, and says (' Hansard, ' page 3113) :
I am glad to know that my hon. friend regards the school question in that country as satisfactorily settled, and I trust it is so.
We therefore have the announcement of the Minister of the Interior that the people of the west had settled the school question, and that to the people of the west it would be left. We also had his statement—and in the light of after events it is rather interesting—that it would take three or four years' of negotiation, conferences and general consideration and one year's solid work, to determine the financial and other questions and clauses. That announcement is in strange contrast with the way this legislation was rushed down to the House this session after a few days' preparation, and in the absence of the Minister of the Interior himself. I submit that this was not accidental, but that the evidence shows that there was a desire to stifle an expression of opinion by the people of the west, and to prevent them presenting their case before the government of Canada. The draft Bill submitted by Mr. Haultain deals with financial questions and general constitutional questions alone, and there was an absolute omission from it of any reference to the school question. Did the government point out to him that there was this omission, and did they tell him that they were going to deal with the question themselves ? Nothing of the kind. The right hon. gentleman did everything he possibly could to stave off public discussion, and through the Minister of the Interior announced that it would be a matter of conference and discussion between the two high contracting parties but when it came to the crux he stifled discussion. When the Prime Minister wrote to Mr. Haultain on the eve of last election, did he tell Mr. Haultain that he had changed his idea with regard to the school question, and that he intended to bring it into the arena of Dominion politics ? Not a bit of it. On the contrary, he wrote to Mr. Haultain that he would have on the floor of parliament a larger number of representatives from the west, and that the other questions involved would be considered. The right hon. gentleman is very fond of boasting that he has a mandate from the people, on this question, a question which, above all others, requires that the voice of the elec 4141 APRIL 7, 1905 torate should be distinctly heard on it ? In the late elections, throughout the whole west, there was no announcement by the government that the new provinces would be deprived of their control of education. When the Minister of the Interior was asked to speak upon the question of education, he told the people, forsooth, that the matter could not be discussed except at a full cabinet meeting, and yet in his absence, and in the absence of the Minister of Finance, the question is dealt with and the people of the west kept in the dark. The people of the west were told that the ministers from the Northwest Territories would have the fullest opportunity to consult the Dominion cabinet assembled in force, but the fact is that the representatives of the Territories were not summoned to Ottawa until after the departure of the Minister of Finance and Interior had departed, and this session of parliament was in progress. That may have been a clever thing for the government to do, but it is not new. They did the same thing with regard to the Transcontinental Railway, which was not discussed until the House was in session, introduced in a hurried way into parliament, and with regard to which the announcement was made that powerful interests could not wait. I wonder what interests cannot wait now. The people of Canada are asking what these interests are, and the people are bound to find out. The Minister of the Interior told us that this matter would require the greatest consideration, and that for years he had pondered anxiously over the various clauses of the Bill, but not over the educational clauses. Is not that proof that the government intended the people to understand—and it may be possible that the Minister of the Interior also understood—that this question was settled by the people of the west in a way satisfactory to themselves, and that whatever rights were established under the British North America Act would be the rights which would govern the people of that free province, and not that the parliament of Canada would endeavour to gag the people of the Territories and make them vassals of the federal power. The ex-Minister of the Interior says that before his departure in January last, he made out a memorandum for his colleagues in the cabinet, but not with reference to the educational clause. He says that he was favoiired with correspondence from the right hon. gentleman who leads the government, but not in reference to the educational clause. He says that there were conferences in which this measure was discussed with members of the government, but there was no discussion as to the educational clause. We come down then to the fact that when the Bill was prepared and submitted to the representatives of the west for their consideration, strange to say, every feature of the Bill was set out 4141 4142 in black and white except the educational clause, and there was not one word about that. I appeal to you, Mr. Speaker, if this does not show, in the most conclusive manner, that there was a deliberate intention to spring this measure and to take advantage of the people at the last moment. Is it not true that until the last moment the ex-minister of the Interior and the cabinet of which he was one of the most prominent members, understood or pretended that the measure was out of the arena of discussion, that it had been settled by the representatives of the west, and that the people of the west were to have their rights ? But, in some way which we cannot fathom, but which we will get at in time, some silent pressure was brought to bear upon the First Minister three or four days before the Bill was introduced, and at the time when there was a question about extending the boundaries of Manitoba, this fatally dangerous question is revived, and the representatives of Manitoba are told : If you want your boundaries extended, you had better improve your school policy. And told by whom? By the members of the cabinet ? By the representatives of the people of Canada? No, not by them, but by the representative of the Holy See, who, he tells us, invited these gentlemen to meet him. Of course, we are bound to accept his statement, that it was without any sinister motive, and only casually, that he discussed the matter, but still with the object of advancing what he believed and properly believed, to be the interests of his church. I am not going to ascribe motives, but it will be for the people to say just what all this means. I am going to call the attention of the people to what I believe it means. I believe it means that a deliberate plan was formed in 1897 to work silently and in the dark, and to throw the people down on this question when the proper hour would arrive. What evidence have I of this? I am glad to see the Minister of Justice in his place, and therefore I have no hesitation in referring to the eloquent way in which a few years ago he referred to a matter which is pertinent to the subject I am now dealing with. That hon. gentleman proclaimed the other night in this House that there could be no peace in this country until the minority had received their rights, and in 1896-97 this country was ringing with the same statement that there would be no peace until the minority had their rights. But in the interval, between 1897 and 1905, we had almost silence on that question ; we had a lull in the storm. Now, the people are asking what it all means and what is the impelling cause, of the very peculiar and very striking conduct of the First Minister in introducing this Bill—introducing it at this particular time, immediately after an elec, tion. and after falling to submit the question during the election, which, according 4143                                                   COMMONS                                                                         to constitutional practice, he should have done ? Was it that he had one of those peremptory mandates from the people which he is so fond of talking about? Why, during the election hon. gentlemen opposite were dumb on the school question. Not only that, but in 1901 the Minister of the Interior told this House that one of the reasons why the question of the Northwest autonomy could not be taken up at the time was this, that in the absence of the Minister of Finance, they could not consider it, they could not think about it. We know what happened afterwards. The Speaker objected the other night when an hon. member intimated that the premier was paying his political debts. I will not say it in an offensive way ; but I will say that the indications are that the premier renewed his promises of 1895 and 1896-renewed the promise which he made to the hierarchy or to the supporters of separate schools in 1896 and again in 1897, and that the new watchword then was : instead of making an agitation throughout the country, keep quiet, work silently and make the proper preparations, and when the time comes for giving autonomy to the west, that vast and fertile region, perhaps the greatest agricultural field in the world, I will be true to you, and will redeem the pledges I made to the House and the country during the debates of 1896. What reason have I for saying that ? Well, there is a good deal of reason all along the way. In 1896, we had the various statements made by the right hon. gentleman in moving the six months' hoist. You know the position he took as to that. The position was this : I heard the Conservative party make certain propositions to you; they proposed to pass a remedial law, which will be practically useless in face of the fact that there is no means of supplementing it by a money grant in support of the schools; I will move the six months' hoist, because I want my people to get something substantial, and not a shadowy justice. That was the position the right hon. gentleman took at that time; and he got in by that policy, and by vilifying the honest policy of the Conservatives of that day-their honest desire to carry out the constitutional rights of this country. The hon. member for North Simcoe taunted me yesterday about having lost my deposit in 1896 in running against his uncle, the late Dalton McCarthy. I did lose my deposit in a triangular fight, but I got the votes of the best men of the Conservative party in that fight, and I fought for what I believed to be the constitutional rights of the people of Canada.
I do not like separate schools but once it had become the duty of the government to give separate schools I for one was not disposed to turn my back upon the constitutional burden of the Dominion 4143 4144 government in that regard. I fought that fight through and I got a good big threshin but I received the support of the best men in North Simcoe at that time. And my hon. friend the late Dalton McCarthy what did he get. He was a clever man but the people recognized that he was not altogether right on that question, that at all events it was a debatable question. That being the case and the fight coming on with a reformer in the field and Reformers said :
We can do better than vote for our candidate. Mr. McCarthy it is true lost nearly one half of his Conservative following but he got nearly half of the Reform following because they said that he could battle against the Conservative government better than their own candidate possibly could. The right hon. gentleman having announced his policy, having gone to the people and having won at the polls found that he was unable to carry out his promise and there was a clamor in Quebec and the hierarchy were as clamorous as any people at that time. There was a general dissatisfaction and you will remember that certain representatives were sent to Rome. I do not mean the Minister of Justice who subsequently represented The Forty Associates, but I mean an earlier mission to Rome who paved the way and who represented there that although great concessions were not being obtained they were better than what a Conservative government would give. That mission failed, as has been pointed out in this debate, and there was still dissatisfaction. The premier, as you will remember, went to Quebec and the Minister of Justice went to Toronto and they both received a good hearing. The Minister of Justice explained to the people at Toronto- and one thing for which I give him credit is that he generally speaks out in a manly way-that although they had not got all they were entitled to, they had got an instalment and they would get more. The premier in Quebec explained that they had only got an instalment and they would get more and as Mr. Russell explained in his letter it was the beginning of justice. This brings us to the turning point, to the height of land, because up to that time we cannot say-although I have great doubts myself-whether the premier was honest or sincere or whether he was playing a game, but from that time on, he was climbing down, he was beginning to work on the plan of doing things in the dark, of deceiving people for the time being, as in getting the elections over and introducing this Bill. Something had to be done and I have no doubt the Minister of Justice came to the rescue and it was found necessary for home to go on a mission to Rome. One of the greatest religious institutions the world has ever seen is the Roman Catholic church. Whenever I speak of that great church I want to speak 4145 APRIL 7, 1905 with the utmost respect ; I have the utmost respect for the opinions of the other people and I claim to be entitled to the same respect for my own opinions and for my own religious beliefs. It is admitted by all people that the Roman Catholic church embraces in its membership a vast multitude of the brightest intellects, of the most cultivated men, men of great reasoning power, great ability and of the greatest diplomacy. It is in a word one of the greatest powers the world has ever seen. Now if we come to the conclusion that we are in any way coping with that power to-day, with that church working for what it believes to be absolutely right and its duty, while we believe on the other hand that the true interests of Canada are not bound up in the aims of the Roman Catholic church, then it becomes our duty to be on the alert and to set mind against mind, reason against reason—but not passion against passion. Mind against mind and reason against reason in order to secure for Canada those rights which we believe are in the interests of the people as a whole. Let me refer for a moment to the description of the church of Rome in the language of the-Minister of Justice, then the Solicitor General. The Solicltor General says, referring to his trip to Rome, at page 193 of the ' Hansard ' of 1897:
And I came back, and after I came back somebody else came. But, Sir, speaking seriously—
Some hon. MEMBERS. Hear, hear.
The SOLICITOR GENERAL. I went to Rome, not on behalf of the government of the Dominion of Canada, not in the interest of the government of the Dominion of Canada. Perhaps I have said it too often already, and I hope my remarks will not be considered too much of a personal character, and that hon. gentlemen will not believe I am continually talking about myself, I went to Rome, as I have already stated, as a Roman Catholic to bring a grievance that I felt I had in common with other Roman Catholics, before the head of my church. I will say this, that it is to me, and I believe to many others, a source of comfort, a source of gratification, to feel that while we belong to a religious body in which there are over 240,000,000 of subjects, any one, however humble he may be, can go to Rome, and within two days after he reaches there, can go to the head of the church and tell him the grievance, and he will be listened to and heard. That is what I did and that is what I boast of. I say that any man who belongs to a church that can accomplish such a thing as that has something to boast of.
I am quite willing to concede that whether it is a matter of boast or not it is a matter in which a devout member of that church has reason to feel the greatest gratification, and it certaianly challenges the admiration of people who do not belong to that communion to see the wonderful manner in which the affairs of that great church, which to-day I believe has Within its fold not 240,000,000 but 300,000,000 people are administered, the marvellous skill with which 4145 4146 every detail of the system of the Roman Catholic church is carried out.
There are few people perhaps to realize what the Pope's influence is. Men talk about the British empire, about Russia, Germany and France, and imagine that he has spoken of all the power there is on earth when he speaks of the Queen of England or the Emperor of Russia or the Emporer of Germany.
All that influence is nothing compared with the influence wielded by him who presides at the Vatican. If the House will bear with me, I will read one or two words written by Justin McCarthy, the historian, on this subject.
Mr. IVES. Any relation of Dalton ?
The SOLICITOR GENERAL. I am sure he would be proud to claim acquaintance with and relation to the historian because it would be something to be proud of.
I admit that, too :
Justin McCarthy says:
The Pope is understood to have an influence and right of intervention so far as advice goes in every country of the world. . .  .  . The Vatican is compelled to have its eyes and its intellect and its heart fixed on every nook and corner of the world. There is no administrative power on earth which has anything like the same widespread and watchful and neccessary superintendence. The network of the Papal authority has a mesh wherever men are living. The Vatican is in this sense the centre of the earth.
And there is more of it. Now, I am not questioning one word of it. I am not referring to it in any sneering way. I think it is a matter of great gratification to those who belong to that communion. But I believe in the church to which I belong and I respectfully submit that in this country of sparse population where we must work unitedly to advance the interests of the country, that the time has not yet come when we should cause a re-union of church and state. Having determined that question at the time of secularization of the clergy reserves, and the subject having been discussed on many hustings and settled, as we believed, for all time by the wise action of that day, there is nothing in the circumstances of the country to indicate that we should endeavour to create a union between church and state again. Now, what was the result of the mission ? The hon. gentleman tells us that somebody came back. And we know who came back. The result of the mission was that the clamour that was about the ears of the Prime Minister ceased, that an understanding was to come to ? Was that it ? Or was it that he was released from his obligation. Was it that he was told: We will not exact a fulfilment of your promise ; we will let you off ? I do not think so. Because the Minister of Justice, and the Prime Minister as well, said : It is only an instalment of justice that we have given, it is only the beginning of justice in Manitoba. And the Minister of Justice in this same volume that I have been quoting from, pointed out that it was the duty of his co-religion 4147 COMMONS ists in the west to agitate and agitate till they should get the full measure of justice to which they thought they were entitled. And the Minister of Justice does not make any bones about what that is. The Prime Minister does not hesitate to say what that is ? No hon. gentleman of the Roman Catholic faith who has spoken in behalf of the government hesitates to tell us what it is;— and it is that side by side in the schools, as you impart secular education and you shall impart religious education and training as well and you shall pay for them both out of the same fund. I do not say that they are wrong in entertaining that opinion. But I say it is a discussable question in this country ; and, if it is contended that the minority have a right to discuss it, then the majority have a right to take part in that discussion in a moderate and proper way,— and I will not say a word offensive or inflammatory ; I would rather discuss the legal aspect of the case, but I think this is not the best time for that, and besides that phase of it has been so well discussed by my hon. friend the leader of the opposition ; in committee I may have a word or two to say on that phase of the matter. I say that, if the minority are free to discuss this matter, then, the majority certainly have a right to present their views without being denounced from day to day by the government party as trying to raise an agitation, to inflame the minds of the people by appealing to their prejudices. I, for one, repel such an insinuation. I make no such appeals. But I say distinctly that I do want to see the people aroused to the fact that we are, probably for the last time, dealing with a great question affecting the greater portion of the Dominion. I want the people to realize that this is a question which may determine the permanency of the British institutions on this part of the continent. I do not wish to say anything extravagant. But look at the condition. People are pouring in there from the United States—it is the boast of hon. gentlemen opposite that thousands of them are coming in. They are people who have not been accustomed to a system of separate schools and who will not willingly submit to separate schools. We have people coming in from all other quarters of the earth as well. Many of them have been oppressed in their own country and have had grievances not unlike to this. They have come to what they have regarded as a free country. They have come to a country in which, they were told by the literature given them by the Minister of Interior, that they would have free national schools. These people are living alongside the United States. And the United States is watching every movement in Canada. They know and realize, as fully as Canadians do, the vast possibilities that exist in the west, and they are waiting to see if there shall arise an opportunity to annex that great and fertile territory to the United States. If we crowd these people of 4147 4148 ours too far ; if we make them restless ; if we show them that when their representatives come to Ottawa those representatives are regarded as of no account, that they are to be told : We will see you again, and then not see them again, but proceed to introduce legislation affecting them without hearing what they have to say about it,—if this is our treatment of them, what may we exepect ? I do not say it will happen, but I want you to be careful that it does not happen—careful that some morning, when the prosperity of Canada appears to be great, when the population of that territory is large and growing, these provinces west of the Great Lakes and reaching to the foot of the mountains may not be found contemplating throwing in their lot with the United States between them and whom are no geographical barriers, no great range of mountains or other obstacle to communication, and that we may not find out, too late, that all the power of Great Britain cannot prevent those people becoming part and parcel of the United States. It is a serious question ; there never was so serious a question in the history, of Canada, to my mind.
Now, as the question has come up, I intend to consider whether or not the Catholic church exerts a political influence—a political and sometimes a controlling political influence. I have prepared authorities and I have them here. Testimony is given both ways. An hon. gentleman on this side of the House for whom I have the greatest respect, both as regards his opinions and as regards his candour, in expressing those opinions, has pointed out that the Roman Catholic clergy do not exert political influence. I have the testimony of the hon. member for North Simcoe last night, but I could not subscribe to his statement, that the clergy would go to the extent of excommunicating people for their political opinions or connections. I do not believe anything of the kind. But I will refer to authorities that will not be disputed. First, I may be permitted to give the testimony of the Prime Minister. The premier speaking in the debate on the motion for the six months hoist, recorded in ' Hansard,' on page 2758, said :
I cannot forget at this moment that the policy which I have advocated and maintained all along has not been favourably received in all quarters. Not many weeks ago I was told from high quarters in the church to which I belong, that unless I supported the School Bill which was then being prepared by the government, and which we have now before us, I would incur the hostility ot a great and powerful body. Sir, this is too grave a phase or this question for me to pass by in silence. I have only this to say : even though I have threats held over me coming, as I am told, from high dignitaries in the church to which I belong, no word of bitterness shall ever pass my lips as against that church.
Now, I will take the liberty, because it involves another point as well, of referring 4149 APRIL 7, 1905 also to the remarks of the Minister of Justice, 'Hansard' of 1897, page 182-3 :
On the eve of the last general election a pastoral letter, signed by all the bishops of the province of Quebec, was issued and read in all the Roman Catholic pulpits of that province, in which pastoral letter was to be found this paragraph :
Therefore, my dearly beloved brethren, all Catholics shall abstain from giving their assistance or their votes to candidates who shall not bind themselves formally and solemnly to vote in parliament in favour of legislation restoring to the Catholic minority in Manitoba the school rights guaranteed to them by the judgment of the Privy Council.
Now I have many other authorities. The Minister of Agriculture last night referred to the same matter. I refer to it for the purpose of showing that these gentlemen have exercised influence in the past, and if they have exercised political influence in the past it is important to know it, because they may exercise it in the future and they may be at work now. The Minister of Justice, after quoting from the pastoral, says :
Now, those who are familiar with the conditions existing in our province, those who know something of the workings of the Roman Catholic church, to which I belong, those who know something of the influence which that church possesses in the province of Quebec, will readily realize what that pastoral letter meant. And let it now, be understood that, as far as I am concerned, I do not in the least object to the interference of the Roman Catholic church in elections, but I do object to their interfering in mere party politics. I hold that there are times when they not only have the right to interfere, but should interfere, and I am far from taking the position that this case was not one in which they should interfere.
Now the hon. gentleman says further :
Was such the case ?
After saying that he expected they would be entirely neutral in election matters.
Was such the case ? No. The result was— and it is well known by those who invoke those pledges to-day, and who now taunt us with having given them—that those pledges were of no avail, but that—openly and in such a manner as amounted almost to intimidation-the cause of the other side was espoused, and these pledges were set at nought and dealt with by the other side as though they had never been given at all.
Now it is not necessary to refer further to that matter. You may perhaps say that no man of any political standing would give those pledges, and you would say that the deliberations of this free parliament would not be in any way influenced by the fact of the bishops of the church of Rome having required those pledges from candidates seeking election. But that is not the case. The greatest, the brightest minds on the list of liberal candidates for election at that time, including the Minister of Justice, 4149 4150 were of those who with a religious fervour that does them credit (as churchmen), accepted these pledges, and signed them, and gave their adhesion to what was required by that pastoral letter, namely, that the desire and aspirations of the bishops should be consulted, and that men should pledge themselves in advance, before they entered the House of Commons, that they would not only vote for the restoration of the rights of the minority in the province of Manitoba, but that they would conform - to the wishes of the prelates to whom they bound themselves. I am not arguing whether that condition of things is right or wrong—I am directing attention to the fact that we were confronted with that condition of things in 1896, that of the candidates who were supporters of the right hon. gentleman, a fulfilment of those pledges as demanded in 1896-7, that a great clamour existed for the fulfilment of those promises; and that by reason of the mission of the Minister of Justice to Rome, a gentleman came out, and his power was substituted for the power of the clergymen of the Roman Catholic church as regards a matter which affected the political interests of the minority in this country. Now it is a logical conclusion or is it not? If we find that in 1896 the Roman Catholic church was exercising a direct influence upon the people of Canada in that regard, that it had been exerted long before 1896, is it not prudent that we should ask ourselves to-day whether, having regard to all the circumstances presented to us in such lurid light within the last few days, that influence by the hand of an eminent gentleman, His Excellency the Papal delegate, is being exerted to-day ?
Now, some one has been referring to the palladium of liberty, to the bulwark of liberty and so on . What is the palladium of liberty, or the bulwark of liberty as regards the Bill? We have the Hon. Sir William Mulock, the Postmaster General, and we have the court appointed to investigate into this matter. We have four judges to stand between the people and any attacks that may be made upon their liberties. When I say an attack upon their liberties I do not mean a vicious attack, an absolutely unjustifiable attack ; I mean that when the advance guard of a great body comes forward to assist what they believe to be right in the interests of their church, but which we do not believe to be in the best interests of Canada, we have as the palladium of Canadian liberty the hon. gentleman who is sleeping in his seat tonight and we have three more. I, as a Protestant—and I do not think I am saying anything offensive in saying that—rest my case mainly with him. The others may be prejudiced, they may be carried away with their religious zeal, but the champion of civil and religious liberty, the gentleman 4151 COMMONS who stood so staunchly for provincial rights, the hon. Postmaster General, who stood as the valiant defender of provincial rights in 1896—surely we can depend upon him now if he would awake out of slumber. Any way we have four. We have the premier, who has declared himself, and it was not necessary that he should do so, as a gentleman who is a confirmed and staunch believer in separate schools. We have another gentleman, the Hon. Secretary of State. Some one has said that he is a Roman Catholic. That does not matter at all, but we have the hon. the Secretary of State. He is a Roman Catholic. We have this gentleman whose history is written in one long agitation for separate schools in this country, a gentleman, who, while discharging semi- judicial duties, was issuing a pamphlet for the guidance of the electors and the members of the House of Commons coloured to suit the case which we are opposing. We have then the Minister of Justice (Mr. Fitzpatrick) and in that hon. gentleman we have one who has declared himself honestly and fairly, as to the view he takes of this matter. It is, however, important, that, in considering the position of this question, in considering the attitude that the hon. Minister of Justice is likely to take on this matter, we should also consider the position that he stands in in regard to his pledge because he was one of those who did give a pledge in 1896. This is the pledge that the Minister gave and has more than once admitted frankly that he gave this pledge. He has told the House that he will stand by the pledge and that if he is called upon to redeem it, he will redeem it. I submit for your consideration, Mr. Speaker, if the time has not arrived by all indications that we see around us to-day in the city of Ottawa, both inside and outside this House, when the redemption of that pledge is being asked. It reads :
Being sincerely disposed to put aside all party spirit and all questions of men, in order to secure the triumph of the Catholic cause in Manitoba, I, the undersigned, promise, if elected, to conform myself to the bishops' mandement in all points and to vote for a measure according to the Catholics of Manitoba that justice to which they have a right by virtue of I the judgment of the Privy Council, provided   that the measure be approved of by my bishop. If Mr. Laurier reaches power and does not set-   tle the question at the first session, in accordance with the terms of the mandement, I promise either to withdraw my support or resign.
Mr. SAM. HUGHES. Who signed that?
Mr. LENNOX. The hon. the Minister of Justice. The Minister of Justice has explained the position of the matter ; he states that he is prepared to resign whenever the time comes, whenever the crucial period comes, when the premier denies or refuses to accord to the west the right to separate schools. It may be said perhaps 4151 4152 that that referred to Manitoba. It does not refer to anything of the kind. The undertaking was otherwise. Here is one from Dr. Godbout :
I further promise to see that the same justice is rendered to the Catholics of the Northwest. Whatever government is in power, if the law which is introduced is accepted by the bishops, I promise to support it.
So that it was to apply to the west and to Manitoba as well, but the desire which seems to animate the premier to-day is to hedge around little Manitoba, circumscribe its boundaries, not to enlarge the area of national schools but to contract and circumscribe the area and extend the area of separate schools the position of which in the Territories is so much in advance of the privileges enjoyed by the province of Manitoba, that, as His Excellency, the Papal ablegate, points out, that unless the people of Manitoba will agree to amend their school law they cannot include in Manitoba those who enjoy a higher class of religious liberty under the aegis of the Roman Catholic church than that which the people of Manitoba are enjoying.
I have spoken of the hon. the Postmaster General. I see he is awake. It is for the country to consider, notwithstanding the attitude of the Postmaster General and his well known championship of provincial rights, whether there may be any temptation on his part to surrender the citadel. The matter was well timed for that. It has been a government notorious for 'supplanters.' The extent to which dissensions have imperilled the administration has been a disgrace to the government and when Esau, the hon. Minister of Finance was absent it was a good time, perhaps, to apply to the Postmaster General and without saying anything improper to impress upon his mind the grandeur and nobility of having a great mind such as his at the head of the affairs of Canada, and to point out that, after all it might be better that the Postmaster General should represent the Dominion of Canada in succession to Sir Wilfrid Laurier, than his rival the Minister of Finance who has evidently been aspiring to the position. Well! A vacancy was approaching, the plums were hanging above the head of the Postmaster General, his mouth was open and watering for them, and Jacob—the Postmaster General figuratively speaking—was willing in the absence of Esau to take the position, and so he capitulated to the seductive influences that surrounded him. Was that it? Or may it have been that the Postmaster General was actuated by a more noble ambition. and that he was anxious to secure the leadership of his party so that he might put an end to the iniquitous infringements of the independence of Parliament Act which we see occurring day after day. Or may it have been 4153 APRIL 7, 1905 that in the hands of the Minister of Justice and the Prime Minister, these two great potters so to speak, the Postmaster General was as clay and that they moulded him to their desires. When the Bill was introduced in the first instance $5,000,000 worth of property was set apart for public schools was contrary to all principles of the separation of church and state of which the Postmaster General must be an advocate if he wishes to represent North York—made to contribute for all time to come to the support of the education system of the Roman Catholics of the new provinces. The Bill with a provision having this was presented to this House and applauded by the Postmaster General, so that one must conclude that he was but as clay in the hands of the skilful Minister of Justice. The Postmaster General will have to fight that out with the people of his own riding it he ever faces them again; he will have to explain to them why he so cheerfully surrendered all his old principles. And, it he can satisfy the electors of North York, and if the Liberal party can satisfy the people of Canada—I do not think they will—then possibly the Postmaster Gcneral may realize that ambition to attain which he surrendered the rights of the people of the new provinces which ought to have been safe in his keeping. The hon. member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster) said yesterday that the poeple are thinking and I repeat, Sir, that the people of Canada are thinking. When this question was launched a few weeks ago it assumed great importance, but since then a further and still more important issue has been forcibly presented, that is, that undue influences are at work controlling and guiding the administration in a manner which should not be possible in a free British country. There is the fact—and the Prime Minister has not dared to deny it—that he has had conference after conference with the Papal ablegate, not only as to clause 16 of the original Bill but as to the amended educational clause which was substituted for it. This latter clause was brought in to quiet the rebellion in the Liberal camp, but so far as the vital principle is concerned as to whether or not the rights of the provinces shall be respected, there is not one tittle of difference between the new clause and the old. It is time for the people of Canada to think and they are doing their own thinking and don't you forget it. If the gentlemen on the government benches would leave the sinister influences which surround them in the city of Ottawa and go out into the country, they would find what the prevailing state of public opinion is. They would find that the people are clamouring against this Bill, and Sir, the people would clamour still more if they knew that the measure is to be rushed through this House by the force of numbers and numbers alone, to be 4153 4154 come at all events nominally the law of the land. I have met in the town of Barrie a great many Liberals—but I have not met one who has not condemned the action of the government. They are not saying much; they did not say much previous to the Ontario elections last January, but they spoke by their ballots as they dropped them into honest boxes, and they will do so again. I can tell these gentlemen opposite that they need not imagine for one moment that they are going to foist this measure upon the west in defiance of the constitutional rights of these two provinces. With Manitoba alarmed, excited, and in arms as it is against the treatment which it has received from the government, a crisis had been brought about in the affairs of Canada. That crisis is the result of the government's studied silence, of its system of misleading the people, of its system of working in the dark, of its system of retiring behind the lines of Torres Vedras before the election, and rushing out after the election, to steal away the rights of the people. Don't imagine that you can coerce the people of the west. Don't imagine that you can permanently secure even the best interests of the Roman Catholic church in this way. As the Minister of Finance said, if you treated the people of the west in a generous way, if you approached them in a fair spirit, the minority would get all the concessions they needed as is the case in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick where the Minister of Finance told us they have not separate school laws, but where the Roman Catholics enjoy vastly greater privileges than as he would have us understand it—this legislation gives the Roman Catholics of the west. I shall say no more. This is an important question ; it is fraught with immense consequences for the people of Canada; it is a question upon which the people are thinking and it is a question which will not die. Had this measure been introduced in a more moderate manner and in a constitutional way it might be that we would hear no more of it at the next election. But, introduced as it was, in the absence of the constitutional advisers of the Crown, the people of the west lulled into fancied security as they were, the haste with which the leader of the government introduced it in the absence of the ministers, the language, the violent language, with which the right hon. gentleman introduced it, the statements which he made, the events which have occurred since involving the discussion of the influence exercised by the Papal ablegate over the Prime Minister of this country, the manner in which the representatives of the West have been treated, the manner too in which the land question and the question of timber, minerals, &c., have been dealt with—all these are questions which will live in the memory 4155 COMMONS of the people, and will not die out. I hope they will die out some time, but I hope they will not die out until this peril shall have been averted, and until the people of this country have been so aroused to place in power a wise administration which will give to the majority as well as to the minority as their constitutional right, what is in the interest of the majority and in the interest of the minority alike, bona fide provincial autonomy.
Mr. O. TURGEON (Gloucester). Mr. Speaker, at this late hour of the evening, in the closing hours of a long week's labour, and at this advanced stage of this most important debate which has brought forth elo» quence seldom heard within the walls of this House, I would certainly not rise at all but that the noble sentiments that have been expressed on both sides of this House, notwithstanding occasional divergences, have recalled some other sentiments, the sentiment of gratitude and others, which one entertains according to his own particular experiences in life. I wish to say, Mr. Speaker, that born under the heavens of French Quebec, carried away in my early years to other shores in search of brothers lost, whom I knew merely by the history of their heroes and martyrs, I heard my name graced with kindly expressions of sympathy and best wishes from the Scotch people, the English people and the Irish people happily settled in various districts of the extensive county of Gloucester, which I now have the honour to represent. I at once was struck by the vivid expressions of sympathy and the exuberance of the cordial feelings of these peoples, who were the first to inspire my political ambition, who left their homes, their fields, their fishing boats to go to the polls to vote for me when my own kindred people had not yet thought proper to do so. This, Mr. Speaker, was at a time when the echoes of the patriotic eloquence of Joseph Howe were still vibrating through the hills and valleys of New Brunswick and the Metapedia, on the onward wave towards the western provinces which were soon to be united with the rest of Canada by ties stronger than the iron rails and bridges of the great national highway which Nova Scotia's patriot had so happily dreamed of —the more lasting the nobler ties of fraternity, equality, justice and charity. It was only a few years afterwards that the fathers of confederation, representing the different provinces of British North America, met together. May I name some of them whose names are still perhaps more familiar than others to the people at large ? Sir John A. Macdonald, Sir George E. Cartier, D'Arcy McGee, Oliver Mowat, George Brown, Sir Charles Tupper, Sir Leonard Tilley. Sitting at an international council, as I may call it, these men undertook a task of great difficulty—to lay the foundations of a new nation—a nation formed of various races and creeds. Mingling their patriotic breath 4155 4156 in one common aspiration they framed for the different provinces of British North America a constitution, an immutable constitution which would stand for the protection of the weak as well as for the welfare of the strong. That new nation, Mr. Speaker, born with the many virtues of its many races, has made good progress in the development of the resources which nature has lavished upon her until Canada is certain to be one of the great nations of the twentieth century, and, according to the creed of my faith, the greatest Christian nation of the world. Not half a century has yet elapsed since those days, and we see all the progress which Canada has made, incomparable to that of any other nation. The United States has had its time of great progress, but its growth in moral as well as material progress is not to be compared with that of Canada during the last eight or ten years. We have had the advantage of bringing Prince Edward Island into the union; we have had the advantage of bringing in British Columbia, which, with its immense resources, in lumber, in gold, in lands, in fisheries, is sure to become an immense factor in the development of Canada. We have added the great Northwest, to which the attention of the nations of the world has lately been directed by a progressive policy of immigration which has never been equalled by any other nation, not even by the United States; and today we are called upon to give to that territory all the rights and liberties and privileges which the constitution permits us to give, commensurate with its importance, with the requirements of its progress, both moral and material, and with the immense resources which that portion of Canada contains in greater quantity than any other— resources of land, resources of forest in most districts, minerals of all kinds—resources which have been lying there undeveloped for centuries, which are appealing to human intelligence and to human activity for their development in the interest of the Canadian people; where millions will certainly live in the years to come, and will work together in unity, like the people of the older provinces; where the French, the English, the Scotch, the Irish and the Germans will all seek to give the country the benefit of their labours and of their intelligence in order to bring the Norhwest Territories to the head of this great nation, which are certainly capable of raising sufficient wheat to supply all the breadstuffs required by the British people in the cities of England or Scotland. In those provinces, by the interchange of trade and commerce, not only the true Canadian sentiment but the true British sentiment will be kept up, for these people will settle there, they will grow their wheat and they will know that that wheat will go especially to the great cities of the British empire and as trade and commercial relations create sentimental relations these 4157 APRIL 7, 1905 sentimental relations will be favourable to Canada and to the British empire. We have heard a great deal of imperalism in this country. Not long ago noble sentiments were expressed by the hon. member for Victoria and Haliburton (Mr. Sam. Hughes), and certainly there is something which appeals to the intelligence of every Canadian in the word 'imperalism' owing to the debt of gratitude we owe and of the continued gratitude which we expect to entertain for the British empire. I believe that for many years to come, for the present at least in my judgment, the best imperialism which we can offer to the British empire would be for the Canadians to produce all the wheat and all the breadstuffs which her millions of artisans in the cities of London, Liverpool and Manchester require and which they have neither the means, the time nor the land to produce, and to have those immense quantities of wheat and breadstuffs transported through Canadian channels and Canadian ports to the ports of England, Scotland and Ireland.
The prospects of those new provinces are certainly brilliant and it became no doubt a hard task for this government and for the right hon. gentleman who leads the government (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) to raise the foundation upon which these two provinces will be best able to work out their destiny and the fullest development of their progress, moral and material. Our constitution gives the government of this country many powers in the making of new provinces, and no doubt when a portion of country comes and calls at the door of this parliament asking for provincial rights, the people of that portion of the Dominion naturally expect all the freedom and opportunities possible under the constitution. It becomes then the duty of the government and of the Prime Minister to allow such rights as may be commensurate with their future happiness and prosperity. The government has to give them that right of going to seek for their future prosperity that a father gives to his child, whom he sees going from him. While the father gives his son a portion at his territory, he shows still greater attention and greater parental sentiment, when he says : My child, I give you a certain domain, but I shall not leave you all alone, I shall continue to help you with my credit and my means in order to allow you to develop that domain as rapidly as possible without encumbrance upon yourself. When this question arose the question of land was no doubt one that first attracted the attention of the right hon. the premier and his government. No doubt a certain class of people in those Territories, at first sight, may have thought, and thought properly in their judgmentm that they should have a claim to the lands, to the vast prairies, to the millions of acres which are still unsettled, and the development of which will require millions of 4157 4158 dollars in order to be able to bring immigration sufficient for the development of those lands, and to maintain the credit of those provinces by keeping up a steady flow of immigration. Let us for a moment consider the position of the people of those provinces in reference to the possession of those lands. The moment those lands are transferred to them the people of these provinces would have to meet the expenses of that immigration of which I have spoken, they would have to continue the immense payments for immigration agents in the different countries, they would have to pay the expenses of their land agents, and we know what a risk there is of a province under her own credit, and with her own single resources, no matter how wealthy that province may be, falling into some bad policy which would be sufficient to at once arrest the tide of immigration and divert it to some other country. If, therefore, we compare the difference in the monetary terms granted to the people of these provinces, Saskatchewan and Alberta, as they are now, and as they would be if the government had given the public lands to the provinces, we find that if they had the lands they would then not only have to meet the expenses of immigration, but they would have no compensation for the lands. Now, when they do not get the title to the lands, they receive compensation instead, and therefore instead of paying large sums of money, which will continue to be paid by this government, they will have the benefit of the credit of the government, of the credit of the nation, and I claim this evening, Mr. Speaker, that if the government of Canada, if the nation of Canada were to withdraw her credit as well as her means from the facilities for immigration to these provinces, that might be sufficient to divert the current of immigration again to the country to the south of us, and therefore expose our provinces to the loss of innumerable immigrants. Section 19 reads thus :
Inasmuch as the public lands in the said province are to remain the property of Canada, there shall be paid by Canada to the said province annually by way of compensation therefor a sum based upon the estimated value of such lands, namely, $37,500,000, the said lands being assumed to be of an area of 25,000,000 acres and to be of the value of $1.50 per acre, and upon the population of the said province, as from time to time ascertained by the quinquennial census thereof, such sum to he arrived at as follows:
The population of the said province being assumed to be at present 250,000, the sum payable until such population reaches 400,000 is to be one per cent on such estimated value, or $375,000.
The people of the province of Alberta or Saskatchewan will receive annually at first a sum of $375,000 to provide for their local   needs, having the benefit, at the same time 4159 COMMONS of all that the government of Canada can do with its wealth anl its credit to send immigrants to fill up their vacant lands. And when the population reaches a larger number this annual payment increases. This alone, in my judgment, is enough to prove to the people of the Territories that the government has been most careful and paternal in retaining the lands and undertaking the expenditure on immigration, and placing more money at their disposal for the first years—and this is most important —to be spent in meeting provincial requirements. Then we have heard a great deal lately about the boundaries established for these provinces, and the government has been taken to task for not having extended the boundaries of Manitoba westward, thus taking from the new provinces a portion of their lands and a portion of their population. I would like to ask some of the residents of the province of Saskatchewan, especially some of the people who live on the borders of Manitoba, and who, as is now proposed, will belong to the new provinces that have no liabilities, whether it would be more in their interest that they should remain in the new province or should join the province of Manitoba and share its liabilities, its financial endorsements and financial responsibilities. I have no doubt that the people of Saskatchewan have been strongly and urgently representing to the government of Canada that they should be allowed to remain within the limits of the new province. The new provinces are going into the union without any debt, and they are to receive from the government of Canada half-yearly in advance interest at the rate of 5 per cent on the sum of $8,107,500, or a total of $405,170 each. The people that would be taken away from the province of Saskatchewan and added to the province of Manitoba would be deprived of the benefit of that payment, and, moreover, they would be shackled by the participation in the liabilities of Manitoba. I do not wonder that every member from the Northwest Territories on this side of the House has been so decided and so urgent in his expressions of opinion on behalf of the people. It has been my good fortune lately to visit the district of Saskatchewan and to hear the expressions of opinion by the people, in the trains and hotels and also in their homes, and I have found them practically unanimous in the desire to be by themselves ; and they want to have two provinces, or even three provinces established. lest there should be any risk of their being joined to Manitoba. The people of the Northwest Territories are a business people, and they look at the question of provincial rights and opportunities from a business standpoint. It is not the course of a man of the Northwest to neglect any possible advantage, for he knows that in these days he must progress rapidly if he wants to progress at all. The people there understand 4159 4160 the future and know the vast possiblities of their resources of land, forest and mines. The virtues of all nationalities can he usefully combined to make that new country prosperous. I will not undertake to discuss from the legal point of view the rights of the Crown within the province or within the Dominion government. I am not gifted with the legal training or knowledge required to do so. But speaking from a common sense point of view, I believe that every man in the Northwest, as well as every man in the east, will admit that the Dominion government has bought and paid for the lands of the Northwest. And now, when the parliament of Canada is called upon to give provincial rights and privileges to the people of the two new provinces, it is our duty to give them the best we know and can give in order to ensure their development and future stability and prosperity. We are legislating for the happiness and proseprity of millions of Christian and British families that will be there at the end of the century, all united in a true Canadian sentiment, and, as I have said, at the same time in a true British sentiment, which will be to our advantage. In this country we do not look forward to independence, and much less to annexation ; we look for continued relations with the mother country, and relations which will grow closer all the time. As I said, give us prosperity, give us trade, give us wheat, give us coal, give us gold, give us lumber in the west, and you will have a constantly growing sentiment of loyalty to the British empire all the time. We may expect to see, through a development of navigation in Hudson bay, a revolution in the trade and in the financial conditions of American and European countries.
It has been said that Manitoba should have at once an extension of territory, if not to the west, then to the north. Mr. Speaker, we have a valuable country, the immense wealth of which is not yet suspected. I suspect it, perhaps, because I have taken an interest in it all my lifetime and made a lengthy visit into that country. I know that the people of my county take a great interest in that country also. It is my practice at home. whenever I pass by a school house in the county of Gloucester to go in and give a few words of encouragement to the pupils, and I always make it a point to call their attention to the inconceivable possibilities of our extensive territory to the Northwest, and to inspire in their breasts an irresistible sentiment of patriotism and pride in the immense prospects which the development of navigation to the Hudson bay will open up to all the people of Canada. In regard to the extension of the boundaries of Manitoba, I think the government of this country has acted wisely and prudently, and that the people of the west will in future thank them for it, because that development requires further study. It is a question that affects not 4161 APRIL 7, 1905 only the people of Manitoba, not only the people of Saskatchewan, where my children are living, not only the future of Ontario, but it is a question affecting the whole Dominion. Therefore, every province is interested and has a right to be consulted in the question of the extension of the boundaries of Manitoba, inasmuch as every province has an interest in the opening up of a Hudson Bay route. As the eloquent member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald) pointed out last night, the people of the province of New Brunswick have, through their legislature, drawn attention to the immense accretions of territory that have been given to Ontario and Quebec, until we in the maritime provinces are beginning to fear for our future representation in this parliament. While we do not wish to ask for any infringement upon the clauses of the constitution, still it is nothing but natural that we should call the attention of parliament to the result which may come about through the great influx of population into the western provinces, inasmuch as that result may leave us in the future unrepresented or insuffciently represented in the parliament of Canada. Therefore, I think I am voicing not only my own sentiments but the sentiments of my fellow-citizens of New Brunswick; and I believe the minister of our province, the Minister of Railways and Canals, will bear me out in this declaration that it is only natural and right that the government of Canada, in its laudable desire to promote the prosperity of the people of the west, should not take a step of such vast importance without consulting the other provinces, which are all equally interested in our national development. I think, Mr. Speaker, my view is supported by the speech of the member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Scott), who says that the people of the eastern portion of Saskatchewan would have objected to being brought into the province of Manitoba because they would be deprived of the immense benefit which they will receive by remaining within the limits of Saskatchewan, and would be deprived in the very first year of the sum of $202,687, besides being exposed to share the debt and possibly the responsibilities of another province, which has made much progress, no doubt, but which is already calling for better terms. Therefore, Mr. Speaker, I regret to have heard this evening, and on former occasions, the statement that the non-extension of the boundaries of Manitoba was due to other reasons than the best interests of the people of the Northwest as a whole, and especially of the people of Saskatchewan.
But this question has another aspect. A great deal has been said about the school question. I will not attempt, Mr. Speaker, to make an appeal to your sentiment. We have heard very eloquent appeals in this 4161 4162 House made to sentiment. We have heard from the member for Labelle (Mr. Bourassa), from the Solicitor General (Mr. Lemieux), from the member for Jacques Cartier (Mr. Monk), not forgetting the junior member of this House, and from my hon. friend from Beauce (Mr. BĂ©land). These hon. gentlemen have certainly delighted and astonished this parliament as well as their constituents, by their eloquence and their lofty sentiments. I have not had the honour nor the advantage of remaining in my native province, but I have spent thirty-three years of my life in another province looking after the interests of a people to whom I always speak in the language of my heart. If the scene of my activity has been laid in another sphere my sentiments have perhaps become more expanded, and the result has been no detriment to my citizenship as a fellow-Canadian. Meanwhile I have never forgotten the province of my birth, and I certainly desire to pay my compliments to the orators from Quebec who have preceded me on this question. If I have mentioned more particularly my hon. friend from Labelle (Mr. Bourassa), my hon. friend the Solicitor General (Mr. Lemieux), and my hon. friend from Jacques Cartier (Mr. Monk), none of whom, I am sorry to say, is here at the present time, it is because these honourable gentlemen have been the guests of the people of my county, who have been particularly impressed with the eloquence and wisdom of their remarks, and I can assure them that all the classes of the people of the county of Gloucester, Scotch, Irish and French, still reflect upon what they have said, and still consider the counsels which have been so eloquently given them by these three honourable members. Meanwhile, as I have said, I have not forgotten my worship to my native province, nor have I forgotten the old-time loyalty and devotion of my fathers in the province of Quebec, loyalty and devotion spoken not merely by word of mouth in the parliament of Quebec or in the public meetings of the people, but spoken in the prayers of our mothers every evening, loyalty and devotion spoken at the altars of the Canadian people, in the prayer of the Catholic priest and bishop rising to heaven for the maintenance of the British flag in Canada, loyalty and devotion at the call of the British people in time of danger, whether it was a Fenian invasion or an American invasion in days gone by, but spoken more gloriously than ever on that memorable day, the 26th of October, 1813, on the border of Lake Champlain, when 300 French Canadians and 50 Scotchmen achieved the most heroic deed of modern ages, witnessed only by 7.000 American soldiers hastily retreating. and the heavens above rejoicing.
This question of education certainly requires the greatest wisdom on the part of every Canadian, on the part of every mem 4163 COMMONS ber of this House, as it has required, no doubt, the greatest wisdom on the part of the government and on the part of the right hon. premier of this country. At the same time, what is there in it ?—a question of right and justice, a question settled long ago by the highest tribunals in the Dominion of Canada and the British empire, though a question of right, which may have been doubted in the early years of confederation when we first appealed for this right. It was doubted for a moment by ourselves in the province of New Brunswick in the early years of confederation because at that time, owing to the harmonious relations which have existed from time immemorial in the maritime provinces between Catholic and Protestant, Scotch, Irish and French Acadians, we were in the enjoyment of privileges the source of which we knew not. These privileges we had enjoyed through the generosity of the government, but who, not being compelled to think of the future, did not insert in the constitution of their province the word 'separate' or 'dissentient' or 'denominational' schools and we were in a moment surprised when we were deprived of those rights. We appealed to the constitution. Every hon. member of this House, every man in Canada knows of the resolution brought into this House in 1872 by my hon. friend the member for Victoria, N.B. (Mr. Costigan) who occupies a place near to me at the present moment. My hon. friend, who has given 38 years of usefulness to the people of Canada, is the most highly respected and esteemed senior member of this parliament. I might say en passant that while the little province of New Brunswick has given to this House its senior member in the representative of Victoria there is also, in the other division of this parliament, not only the senior member of the Senate, but the senior legislator in the world in the person of Senator Wark. I said a moment ago that this was simply a question of right and justice. When we look back to the discussion in the House of Lords at the time the provinces of Canada were united into the confederation we find there not only an expression of the sentiments of the fathers of confederation but we find there especially an example of that greater generosity and justice which have always been displayed in the parliament of Great Britain upon every occasion that the proper treatment of a great question required it. We find there the declaration that justice shall be given to the minority, not only to the Catholic minority but to the Protestant minority as well as the case may be. In this country where development is so rapid, where it is bound to be rapid in the future and which it is the duty of every Canadian to promote as much as possible, who will deny that perhaps in one of the provinces where to-day the majority is Protestant this condition 4163 4164 may not be reversed before the end of the twentieth century and that in that province the majority of to-day will become the minority at the end of the century? I say with deliberation that these things are possible and I need not go out of my own province to find an illustration of the truth of what I say. It is known that in the province of New Brunswick, for different reasons which I will not undertake to explain, the population has increased only, you might say, by the increased number of the Catholic people. Owing to different reasons the young men of English parentage, perhaps having more desire to see the greatness of the world and to seek advantages abroad, have gone in immense numbers to the New England States with the result that to-day we find more of the English sons of New Brunswick in the States of New England than we find in New Brunswick. The increase in population has been going on especially amongst the French and the Irish people who have kept their children at home. This, Sir, is a good lesson to the English people that the time is past when young Canadians require to go to a foreign country to seek fortune, because in the great Northwest Territories they now have a field for their enterprise and energy. If, for the next fifty years the conditions continue the same in New Brunswick as they have been for the past fifty years, then the Catholic people will be in the majority in that province and should that come to pass, would it not be wise and generous that we the Catholic people being in the majority should extend to the Protestant minority the same generosity and the same charity that they for years extended to us ? The words of Lord Carnarvon in the British House of Lords have already been quoted to this House, but I may be allowed to quote them again with the explanation that we in New Brunswick have learned to draw from them lessons of charity and lessons of justice. Let me say that if there ever was an occasion for the display of charity and justice, it is required just now in the discussion of this question. The Minister of Finance (Mr. Fielding) who has inherited the eloquent and noble sentiments of Joseph Howe, gave us the history of the settlement of religious differences in the maritime provinces ; although trouble did arise in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick it was soon allayed through the good sense and liberality of the people. When men of fortitude came to govern in New Brunswick the province was again clothed in its golden mantle of conciliation, and harmony has prevailed among the people ever since. To-day we see the Acadian children and the Irish Catholic children enjoying the advantages of a splendid secular and religious education. And, Sir, the Acadian people have the same hope in the future of this country and are actuated with the same desire to share in its progress and prosperity as are our 4165                       APRIL 7, 1905                           English fellow countrymen. Our Acadian people do not forget the memory of their ancestors, but to-day they know that the violated bell of Grand Pré will sound for ever throughout the world to perpetuate universal sympathy for a small people deceived —not by the King of England, I am glad to say, but by a military officer acting on his own counsel. To-day in Acadia you do not hear the lamentations of the past nor the sobs of the Acadian women bemoaning the deportation of their race ; no, Mr. Speaker, you hear the air resounding with the patriotic ejaculations of the Acadian people who are taking their place with their fellow countrymen of all races in this Canadian nation, working for its welfare and prosperity. Let me quote the words of Lord Carnarvon when he introduced the British North America Act in the House of Lords. He said :
In this Bill the division of powers has been mainly effected by a distinct classification. That classification is fourfold: First, those subjects of legislation which are attributed to the central parliament exclusively. Secondly, those which belong to the provincial legislature exclusively. Third, those which are the subject of concurrent legislation, and fourth, a particular clause which is dealt with exceptionally.
Lastly, in the 93rd clause which contains the exceptional provisions to which I refer, your lordships will observe some rather complicated arrangement in reference to education. I need hardly say that that great question gives rise to nearly as much earnestness and division of opinion on that as on this side of the Atlantic. This clause has been framed after long and anxious controversy in which all parties have been represented and on conditions to which all have given their consent. The object of the clause is to secure to the religious minority of one province the same rights, privileges and protection which the religious minority of another province may enjoy. The Roman Catholic minority of Upper Canada, the Protestant minority of Lower Canada, and the Roman Catholic minority of the maritime provinces will thus stand on a footing of entire equality.
On another occasion Lord Carnarvon in the House of Lords made this statement :
Hence the House will perceive that it is almost impossible for any injury to be done to the Protestant minority. The real question at issue between the Protestant and Roman Catholic community is the question of education, and the 93rd clause after a long controversy in which the views of all parties have been represented, has been framed. The object of that clause is to govern against the possibility of the members of the minority suffering from undue pressure by the majority. It has been framed to place all the minorities of whatever religion on the same footing, and that, whether the minorities are in in esse or in posse.
I call the attention of the House to these words ' in esse' and 'in posse ;' whether today it is a Catholic minority, or to-morrow a Protestant minority. We have the judg 4165 4166 ment of our courts to guide us in the solution of the meaning of the British North America Act, which seems to be so misunderstood by certain members of this House and by certain papers in Ontario. In the New Brunswick school case, the parliament of Canada refused to entertain the resolution brought by the hon. member for Victoria (Mr. Costigan) in 1872, requesting in the name of the Catholic minority of that province that the government of Canada should exercise their veto against the provincial Act passed in 1871 which took away from the Catholic minority these extensive privileges of which I have spoken. I must acknowledge that members on both sides of the House on that occasion expressed the greatest sympathy with the hon. member (Mr. Costigan) and with the Catholic minority in his province. But it was found on both sides of the House that under the clause relating to education in the constitution, the government of Canada had not the power to declare the New Brunswick law of 1871 ultra vires or not efficient. After the refusal of the parliament of Canada to interfere on the ground of the constitution, the Catholic minority appealed to the highest court of the province, the Supreme Court of New Brunswick, at that time the highest Canadian court for them, because the Supreme Court of Canada was not yet in existence. It may be necessary for me to give some preliminary explanation of the school laws of the province of New Brunswick, so that I may be better understood when I give the quotations from the judgment of the Supreme Court of New Brunswick on the question. I will only appeal to the calm facts of history which will show that that enlightened judgment has afforded lessons to the Catholic minority as well as to the Protestant majority of the province of New Brunswick, and will speak to the intelligence and heart of every member of this House and every Canadian.
It might be of interest that I should mention at once that previous to the time of confederation and after, and still at the time our appeals were under the consideration of the high tribunals, the province of New Brunswick had two classes of educational institutions, both administered under provincial statutes by the one board of education, inspected by the common provincial inspector, both receiving state aid or government subsidies for their maintenance and support. The general class of educational institutions was composed chiefly of rural districts, I may say, and of the population of the outskirts of a city, town or village. The more particular class of educational institutions was extended to the population of the cities, of the towns or large villages and to these particular schools greater privileges had been conferred, accordingly favourable to the religious conditions of the people for whose children these schools were particularly in 4167 COMMONS tended, and in which religious instruction was, by law, given according to the tenets of their faith. As I stated a while ago, the former class extended to the rural districts, it more particularly carried on the supervision of elementary education and was administered under an enactment of 1858 called the Parish School Act, which was superseded in 1871 by an Act called the Common Schools Act. It was against this new law that the Catholics appealed to the Supreme Court. Let me say also that it had been the expectation of the fathers of confederation and of the British parliament that the first clause upon education applied to all the schools, or classes of schools in New Brunswick, so strong, so general, was the prevailing opinon that the Catholic minority enjoyed denominational schools in every respect, an opinion created by the prevalent harmonious relations of the people of different races and creeds in the maritime provinces. But upon investigation by the courts it was found that the liberties enjoyed by the Catholics of New Brunswick were not granted by the said Parish School Act of 1858, but had come into existence owing to what may legally be termed irregularities, or laxities in the administration of the law. The decisions of the Privy Council and of the Supreme Court of New Brunswick maintained that the Parish School Act, 1858, did not refer to denominational schools, and therefore this Act being superseded by the Public Schools Act of 1871, no denominational rights could be affected so long as there were none in existence by law. These judgments were based on the assumption that denominational privileges or rights in existence before the union were inalienable. These tribunals searched in the Parish School Act of 1858 for the existence of such rights as claimed by the Catholics which might have been affected by the new Act of 1871, but failed to find them.
I wish to lay stress on this point that evidently the judges of the Supreme Court of New Brunswick before writing their decision had come to the unanimous conviction that the 1st section of clause 93 of the British North America Act did apply to any province in which a class of persons enjoyed denominational principles in the schools. I wish to lay stress on this point that the Supreme Court did search the existence of any such rights, under the common understanding that should any such rights be found to exist, the court was bound by the terms of the section to see them restored.
I wish to lay stress also upon this point that had an appeal been made at the time against principles enjoyed by different classes of persons in the schools of the other classification to which I referred, the Supreme Court expressed their readiness jealously to protect them.
4167 4168
For an illustration of this statement I wish to quote from the judgment of the Supreme Court of Canada, given in February, 1873, in the case of ex parte Renaud and others, as it is called. The judges, after having looked into the particulars of the case, said:
It is contended, that the rights and privileges of the Roman Catholic inhabitants of this province, as a class of persons, have been prejudicially affected by the Common Schools Act, 1871, contrary to the provisions of subsection 1 of section 93 of the British North America Act. We have now to determine whether any class of persons had, by law, in this province, any right or privilege with respect to denominational schools at the union, which are prejudicially affected by the Common Schools Act of 1871. This renders it ncessary that we should, with accuracy and precision, ascertain exactly what the state of the law was with reference to denominational schools, and the rights of classes of persons in respect thereto, at the union. At that time, what may fairly and legitimately be called the common school system of the province, was carried on under an Act passed in the 21st Vic., c. 9, intituled ' An Act relating to Parish Schools.' There were no doubt, at the same time in existence, in addition to the schools established under the Parish School Act, schools of an unquestionably denominational character, belonging to, and under the immediate government and control of particular denominations.
And in which, there can be no doubt, it may reasonably be inferred, the peculiar doctrines and tenets of the denominations to which they respectively belong were exclusively taught, and therefore had, what may rightly be esteemed, all the characteristics of denominational schools, pure and simple. We do not here refer to collegiate institutions, which it has been strongly, and with great force, urged were not within the contemplation of the imperial parliament, or intended to be affected by the British North America Act, 1867, but we refer to such schools as the Wesleyan Academy, Sackville, as incorporated by the 12th Victoria, chapter 65, amended by 19th Victoria, chapter 65, a corporation entirely distinct in law, as we presume also, in fact, from the college which the trustees of that academy are authorized to found and establish under the 21st Victoria, chapter 57, an institution entirely under the control of the Wesleyan denomination, and in which, or in any department thereof, or in any religious service held upon the said premises, it is enacted that no person shall teach, maintain, promulgate or enforce any religious doctrine or practice contrary to what is contained in certain notes on the New Testament, commonly reputed to be the notes of the Rev. John Wesley, A.M., and in the first four volumes of sermons, commonly reputed to have been written and published by him.
Then it goes on again :
The Varley school, . . . the Madras school, which by its charter is to be conducted according to the system called the Madras system, as improved by Dr. Bell, and in use and practice in the British National Educational Society, incorporated and established in England, 4169 APRIL 7, 1905 which National Society, established in 1811, was incorporated in 1817, for promoting the education of the poor in the principles of the established church throughout England and Wales ; the schools established by such society being purely denominational, in which the children are to be instructed in the Holy Scriptures and in the liturgy and catechism of the established church, and, with respect to such instruction the schools are to be subject to the superintendence of the parochial clergyman, and the masters and mistresses are to be members of the Church of England.
They have no objection to religious education. Then the judgment goes on :
And the Baptist Academy or Seminary—the Roman Catholic school established in the city of St. John—the Free school in Portland, under the Board of Commissioners of the Roman Catholic school in St. John—the Roman Catholic school in Fredericton—the Roman Catholic school in St. Stephen—the Roman Catholic school in St. Andrews—all of which are recognized by name by the legislature in various Acts, anterior to the 21st Victoria, chapter 9, and received specific annual grants from the public provincial funds, outside the Parish School Act.
It is seen by this statement, Mr. Speaker, that the Catholics of New Brunswick at that time were enjoying certain privileges but not under that school Act of 1871. The judgment goes on :
In the year 1857, and subsequently thereto, the money intended for educational purposes has been annually granted in a lump sum, viz., so much to provide for certain educational purposes, not specifying any particular school or purpose, as had been theretofore customary. But the estimates of the public expenditure, which appear in public journals, show that appropriations of a similar character have been since annually made. Thus in the year 1867, but before the let day of July (the day of the union), it will be seen by the Journals of the house of assembly, page 45, that in addition to the amount authorized by law, the following schools, among others, received special grants, viz. : The Madras School ; the Wesleyan Academy ; the Baptist Seminary ; the Roman Catholic School, Fredericton ; the Presbyterian School, St. Stephen ; the Roman Catholic School, St. John ; the Varley School, St. John ; the Roman Catholic School, Milltown; the Roman Catholic School, St. Andrews, male and female ; the Roman Catholic Schools, Carleton, Woodstock, Portland, and Bathurst ; the Presbyterian School, Chatham ; Roman Catholic School, Newcastle, and the Sackville Academy.
Further on the judgment says :
The Parish School Act clearly contemplated the establishment throughout the province of public common schools for the benefit of the inhabitants of the province generally, and it cannot, we think, be disputed, that the governing bodies under that Act were not in any one respect or particular 'denominational.'
The schools established under this Act were, then, public parish or district schools, not belonging to or under the control of any particular denomination ; neither had any class of 4169 4170 persons, nor any one denomination—whether Protestant or Catholic—any rights or privileges in the government or control of the lands, that did not belong to every other class or denomination, in fact, to every other inhabitant of the parish or district ; neither had any one class of persons or denomination nor any individual, any right or privilege to have any peculiar religious doctrines or tenets exclusively taught, or taught at all, in any such school.
Such was our condition then. Under the school system which the government repealed the minority did not enjoy privileges by law, but enjoyed them simply through the good-will of the board of education or the inspectors of the province owing to the harmonious feelings which were in existence in the provinces. The judgment goes on :
But it is contended that the 60th section declaring 'that all schools conducted under the provisions of this Act shall be non-sectarian,' prejudicially affects the rights and privileges which the Roman Catholics, as a class, had in the parish schools at the time of the union. It cannot be denied that to the provincial legislature is confided the exclusive right of making laws in relation to education ; and that they, and they only, have the right to establish a general system of education, applicable to the whole province, and all classes and denominations, provided always they have due regard to the rights and privileges protected by section 93 of the British North America Act, 1867.
The judges of the Supreme Court of Canada had decided that wherever a class of persons in any province or territory, a class of persons coming into the union with privileges granted by the law of their province or territory, granted by the law of the land from which they came—that class of persons must be preserved in their privileges. It is self-evident and I believe that the opinion I am now giving can be upheld—that even if they are coming from a state of the American union where they enjoyed privileges conferred by the' law on that class of persons in that portion of territory, that class of persons would be entitled to claim in Canada the privileges and the rights they had before. Therefore today, we the minority—and I speak for the Protestant minority, as I said before, as well as for the Catholic minority—we the minority coming in with school privileges in reference to separate schools or dissenting or denominational schools enjoy the privileges accorded to these minorities according to the British North America Act, as so nobly and richly and generously granted by the parliament of Great Britain, the parliament which as I say never grants half measures, when it grants a measure of justice. That parliament when, after years of consideration, it decided to grant emancipation to Ireland did not give a half measure, but extended emancipation to the Catholics not only of Ireland but of the whole empire, and, I might say, of all the world. and opened her ports 4171 COMMONS to all the Catholics of the whole universe to the great admiration of the Catholic world.
When England granted responsible government to the people of Canada, she granted it to the full extent with all its privileges, with full liberty, civil, political and religious. And what to-day is the brightest jewel in the flag of England—that England we admire so much and speak of with such enthusiasm ? Take from that flag the jewel of religious liberty and what is left in it more than in the similar emblem of any other nation. Religious liberty has been granted with full generosity by the British parliament and the British people. I refer not to men like the editors of the Toronto ' World ' and ' News.' I mean the British people ! That great people in giving religious liberty, did not take back with one hand what they granted with the other, but gave it with an open hand, with a generous heart and with best wishes for her subjects dispersed over the whole universe. Mr. Speaker, I claim that the question before us is merely a question of justice and right—undoubtedly right. And we know that the people in the minority in the districts of these new provinces, whether Catholic or Protestant, expect the same right and the same educational advantages as they possess to-day. We have there not only French Canadian Catholic people, but Scotch and Irish Catholics. We have also Germans of the Catholic faith who give good service to Canada and are equal to any other class of our people. We have the German Protestants, who are the equals of any other class in this country and who deserve to be protected in their rights. As I have said, we need in this country the virtues of every nation. We need in Canada, and particularly in the Northwest, a combination of the best people to build up that new country. To develop its resources the valour and activity of the Frenchman will not alone suffice. We require also the steady, dogged perseverance of the Scotchman who can follow his plough from sunrise to sunset, preparing the land for a crop which, repeated on thousands of farms, will make that vast country in fact the granary of the British empire. And these people coming to the Northwest will expect a continuance of the liberties and privileges which they find established there by law. I have spoken of the German people. I say that the German Protestant people are as jealous of their religious education and their separate schools as are the French or Irish or German Catholics. In the few weeks that I spent in the Northwest I devoted my time from morning till night to making myself acquainted with the people. I have met some of these Germans, both Protestants and Catholics, and that at a time when the discussion of this Bill was on the lip of every citizen of the Northwest 4171 4172 and these German people, both Protestants and Catholics, have said to me that they hoped that the new Bill would secure to them the separate schools which they have today in the Northwest. As I have said, the district in which the minority is Catholic to-day may have a Catholic majority in the future, or vice versa. My hon. friend from Beauharnois (Mr. Bergeron) whose countenance has drawn him towards me lately, has claimed that the educational clauses as they appear in this Bill do not give much to the Catholic minority of the new provinces.
I admit that if we were granted more we would not object to it. At the same time, I may tell my hon. friend that I am one of those who suffered for years in the struggle of the Catholic minority in New Brunswick to support separate schools. For a long time our schools were practically closed, and we were paying, not only our own school tax without enjoying schools at all, but we were paying the public school tax, the Catholic population, especially on the north shore of New Brunswick, being among the poorest class of the people. I may be permitted to say to the hon. member for Beauharnois that perhaps if he had gone through the same experience he would better appreciate the liberty and the rights which are granted by this very Act. It grants to the Catholic minority in any district the right to have their separate schools supported by public money as well as the public schools in the same district or in other districts. It gives them the right to engage a Catholic teacher ; it also gives them the right to require the teacher, during that half hour, to teach the catechism or to give religious instruction to the Catholic children. That is not all we want, but we have there both the right to separate schools and the means to support them ; and for my part, Mr. Speaker, I value highly the fact alone that we have the means to support a school. In the interest of my own Catholic people I do not want to see a school that is not efficient, and a school cannot be efficient unless you have the means to make it so. If you do not give them the money to support the school, what other privilege will be of any value to them ? I think any one who has given some attention to public instruction and to the education of his children will appreciate that fact. We want first of all the means. When the teacher has been engaged he is under a contract, and it is his duty to give to the children a religious education during that half hour. He has also the duty, during the rest of the day, of supervising the education of the Catholic children in the classes, and this is a point in which my hon. friend from Beauharnois is equally interested with myself. The influence of the teacher is there all day long, his guardianship is there all the time that the children are receiving education in other branches as well as in religion ; the child is receiving lessons 4173 APRIL 7, 1905 in geography, lessons in arithmetic, along with his catechism and his holy scripture. When we have the young well educated in Christian morals and doctrine, as well as in secular matters, we can rely on the future of the country. When the Catholic minority come to the parliament of Canada and ask them to favour the sacred traditions of the Catholic people for religious instruction to a certain extent, they ask for it in the name of their conscience, but they ask for it also for the benefit of Canadian society. The more religious instruction you give to the child the better citizen you make of him. And we want in this country good citizens, people who will not live in idleness ; we want the child, along with his secular education, to receive a good moral tuition and a good Christian tuition. As long as we ask for that in the name of conscience, why, in the name of the British flag, should you not give it to us ? We are asking nothing from the Protestant majority alongside of us, we are only asking for the right to use our own money in order to educate our own children, so that they may become true Canadian citizens. We know from experience that other denominations do not hold the same view with regard to the necessity of religious instruction in the schools, and we do not object to that. yet this Bill gives to the Protestant majority and the Protestant minority the same privilege of giving religious instruction to their children during the half hour. I know there is scarcely a Christian mother in the western provinces who does not wish her child to receive a Christian education. I met the Christian mother in the Northwest. She spoke to me her love of her children and her devotion to their welfare and happiness. She spoke to me of her attachment to the religious education of her children, and her desire that they should receive a good moral education at the same time, in order that they might grow up to be honest and useful citizens. We must remember that civilization carries with it some dangers which only a Christian education can counteract, and without such Christian education the result will be disastrous, not only to the family, but to society in Canada.
Now, Mr. Speaker, I think I have established in a most irrefutable manner that the people who go into the Northwest provinces have a right to enjoy the same privileges that they received at home. I regret as much as does the member for Beauharnois that our Catholic people are not accorded still greater privileges than will be given them under this law. But the constitution allows us to grant only what we now possess, and what we hold now we are bound to guarantee by this Autonomy Bill. It is not a question of political power for this parliament, it is a question of granting school privileges to the minority in the new provinces. In 1875, when the parliament of 4173 4174 Canada decided unanimously to give separate schools to the people of the Northwest, the parliament had power to make them lasting. In 1875, when the parliament of Canada gave to 'that class of persons,' to use the language of the judgment of the Supreme Court of New Brunswick, rights and privileges in regard to educational matters in the Northwest Territories, it gave them for ever. To-day this parliament is not confronted with a question of whether or not it has power to do a certain thing ; it is confronted with a simple duty to preserve the rights established by the Act of 1875. Parliament had the power at that time, as Mr. Blake plainly stated. Mr. Blake's language has already been quoted in this House, but I may be permitted to read it again :
The task which the ministry had set for itself was the most important it was possible to conceive. To found primary institutions under which we hope to see hundreds of thousands, and the more sanguine of us think, millions of. men and families settled and flourishing, was one of the noblest undertakings that could be entered upon by any legislative body, and it was no small indication of the power and true position of this Dominion that parliament should be engaged to-day in that important task. He agreed with the hon. member for Kingston (Sir John A. Macdonald) that the task was one that required time, consideration and deliberation, and they must take care that no false steps were made in such a work. He did not agree with that right hon. gentleman that the government ought to repeal his errors. The right hon. gentleman had tried the institutions for the Northwest Territories which he now asked the House to frame, and for the same reason as he had given to-day— that it would be better for the Dominion government to keep matters in their own hands and decide what was best for the future. He (Mr. Blake) believed that it was essential to our obtaining a large immigration to the Northwest that we should tell the people beforehand what those rights were to be in the country in which we invited them to settle.
He regarded it as essential, under the circumstances of the country, and in view or the deliberation during the last few days, that a general principle should be laid down in the Bill with respect to public instruction. He did believe that we ought not to introduce into that territory the heart burnings and difficulties with which certain other portions of the Dominion and other countries had been afflicted. It seemed to him, having regard to the fact that, as far as we could expect at present, the general character of that population would be somewhat analogous to the population of Ontario, that there should be some provision in the constitution by which they should have conferred upon them the same rights and privileges in regard to religious instruction as those possessed by the people of the province of Ontario. The principles of local self-government and the settling of the question of public instruction seemed to him ought to be the cardinal principles or the measure.
At that time it was within the power of the Dominion parliament to grant or not to 4175 COMMONS grant these privileges. But now, they have been granted, the people have had them in their possession and the people who are today looking towards the Northwest, towards these new provinces from Germany, as well as from Scotland, England and other countries expect to have the religious teaching which they desire. Therefore, this is not a mere question of power ; it is a matter of duty for us in this parliament to see that the minority coming to Canada shall have the institutions which they desire and to which they are entitled. We cannot afford to destroy the credit of Canada for the sake of half an hour's religious teaching in the schools of the Northwest. But, it is said that some people are opposed to it. Well, we can only call upon the people of difierent classes in this Dominion of ours with all its possibilities and with all its generosity to set an example in speech and in action to those few people who cannot possibly comprehend the reason why the Catholic people, as well as a great many Protestant people, are asking to have this privilege granted to the minorities in the western Territories. If I thought there were people in this Dominion who required any further persuason in order to induce them to take a broad and liberal view of this question I would perhaps recall the words of Joseph Howe. He described Nova Scotia as the frontage of the whole British North American continent whose harbours, citadel and arsenal were not made for Nova Scotia alone but were designed by nature for the common benefit of herself and of her sister provinces. I would ask my hon. friend the Minister of Finance (Mr. Fielding) to go down to Nova Scotia with his following and there call upon the generous people of that province to break open the gate of that arsenal where the sentiments of generosity, mutual forbearance and Christian charity have been stored since the days of Huntingdon, Uniacke, Young and Johnson, to be dispersed by the breezes and conveyed to those centres where the Toronto ' World ' or the ' News ' may yet have some influence.
It has been said that the Postmaster General (Sir William Mulock) and the hon. Minister of Customs (Mr. Paterson) will have to face their constituents in the future. It has been said that great excitement exists in the constituency of the Postmaster General, and that the same responsibility attaches to the Minister of Customs. For my part I would ask them to go before their constituents and ask them what crime they have committed in having been inspired and guided by that spirit of religious freedom that has spread over Ontario, Quebec and the other provinces. I would ask them to go and tell their constituents what they have done. But, Mr. Speaker, similar charges were made against the Liberal party not very long ago. It was said that when these same hon. gentlemen and their followers went before the people they would stay 4175 4176 at home, but they have gloriously come back and I believe they will again gloriously come back. It. has been said also that the venerated, esteemed, and beloved premier of this country will pay the penalty of his courage in extending the religious liberty which now prevails in other parts of Canada to the Northwest Territories. The same threat has been made before. Still men like Balfour and Joseph Chamberlain did listen and bow to the word of Mr. Laurier. These hon. gentlemen opposite may again make threats in this House and throughout this country. Still, Mr. Speaker, the shades of William Ewart Gladstone, Daniel O'Connell,' Edmund Burke, and Robert Peel awake to the name of Wilfrid Laurier, and with a fraternal smile invite him to share with them in history, a common glory acquired in the work of a common cause—the emancipation and the unity of races, the harmony of creeds, the blending of the noble sentiments of fraternity and charity on this continent of America, the greatest country of Christian civilization. The generations of the future which are coming in the immense chariot of commercial and industrial genius to settle along our national highways, to develop the abundant surrounding resources, when in contact with each other in that endless turmoil of business, as in New York, Buffalo and other industrial centres of the United States, will merely pause a moment in their felicity to proclaim aloud that this irresistible activity which carries them to and fro is the work of a Canadian whose name was Wilfrid Laurier ; and the Christian mothers of Alberta and Saskatchewan will bless the name of the man who has given them true British religious freedom for the education of their children.
Mr. PETER TALBOT (Strathcona). Mr. Speaker, I regret very much that it is considered necessary at this late hour to continue the debate, but I believe there are so many hon. members who will speak on this question that it is necessary to go on. The discussion of this Bill has already taken up considerable time, and I suppose almost every argument that could be used in favour of the Bill or in favour of the amendment moved by the leader of the opposition has already been advanced. As a resident of the Northwest Territories it has been very pleasing to me to notice that almost every hon. member who has spoken, has admitted that this Bill is a most important one, and that on this legislation will depend in a great measure not only the future prosperity of the new provinces but the prosperity of the whole Dominion. I maintain, Sir, that anything that tends to mar the harmony or interfere with the prosperity or check the development of these new provinces will be injurious to the whole of Canada.
Before dealing with the main features of the measure I shall touch briefly on a few 4177 APRIL 7, 1905 of the minor points. The government has been criticised in some quarters for proposing that there should be tw0 provinces instead of only one. As a resident of these Territories I admit that it would be very pleasant for us to feel that we had the banner province of the Dominion, that we overshadowed our lesser neighbours, and that the time would come when we would wield a tremendous influence in the affairs of the nation. But in the business things of life there is more to be considered than sentiment. I maintain that that immense territory would be too much for any single provincial government to handle. We know that when the premier of a province is forming his cabinet he takes his ministers from different, parts of the province, but in the case of such an immense area as that of the Northwest Territories this would be utterly impossible. It is quite true that for some years past we have had an honest and a fairly capable government in the Northwest Territories but settlement is increasing, the population is getting larger, and I venture to assert that there are portions of the Northwest Territories that for the last two or three years have not been quite satisfied. I am sure that the people of the Saskatchewan district and northern Alberta would have been better satisfied if they had had a representative in the cabinet. Then, again, some objection has been taken to the dividing line placing the fourth initial meridian as the boundary between the two provinces, but I believe that very good reasons can be given for the selection of that line. In the first place, it divides the Territories almost exactly in two, making the areas of the two provinces practically the same, and in the second place that line will be much more convenient in describing property, &c., as it is the beginning of a new range. To my mind the only objection that can be offered at all to selecting that line, is, that it divides the ranching country, but I maintain that no matter where the line is drawn between these two provinces it would interfere with some particular interest. Even if the dividing line were placed 60 miles further east it would still divide the ranching country. I anticipate very little trouble from the clashing of herd laws or the branding regulations. The stockmen of southern Alberta and of western Assiniboia will still have common interests, and even with the two provinces their associations will still continue to do the work they have been doing.
I have been pretty severely criticised myself in some quarters, because I favoured the selection of the city of Edmonton for the temporary capital of the province of Alberta. Now, Sir, I want to say that if I considered my personal interests in this matter I would have advocated the selection of the town near which I reside and in which my interest lies. But I knew that at least 75 per cent of the constituents whom I repre 4177 4178 sent were in favour of having Edmonton as the capital and considered its claims as the best, and I thought it my duty to advocate what they desire rather than to look for my own selfish interests.
Now, Mr. Speaker, we come to one of the most important features at this Bill, the one relating to the ownership of the lands. These residents of the proposed provinces who look on this question from a sentimental point of view only will no doubt favour provincial ownership, but I am convinced that the practical men who consider the future prosperity of not only the new provinces but of the Dominion as a whole, will be perfectly satisfied to have the land administered by the federal government. We in the west believe that the present remarkable prosperity of the west is due mainly to the tide of immigration that is flowing to that part of the country, and we further believe that the immigrants that are going to the west are induced to do so chiefly by the offer of free lands. What is the policy of the opposition with respect to immigration ? I suppose the member for Qu'Appelle (Mr. Lake) has given expression to that policy, and on page 3542 of ' Hansard ' he says :
If the new provinces were possessed of their own public lands, they would be the most interested of all in encouraging immigration to come within their bounds. We should have three local governments all hard at work trying to bring in immigration, and all competing with each other for immigration.
Now, Mr. Speaker, we would have not only three local governments competing for immigration ; we would have no less than six. We would have the province of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec. What would be the condition of things if we had six immigration departments each sending out literature describing its own particular advantages, and each sending its agents to different parts of the world ? It would not only be very expensive but it would be confusing, and you would have jealousy and quarreling amongst them, the effect of which would be to sever rather than to unite the different classes out of which we hope to make a united Canada. I am proud to be a resident of the proposed province of Alberta and I have unbounded faith in the future of that province, but at the same time I think it is best for Canada as a whole and best for Alberta, that the immigration literature should go out from the government of Canada, that our immigration agents in the different parts of the world should be Canadian agents, and that the immigrants who come to this country should be guided by Canadian officials. I would dislike very much to see any great change made in the immigration policy of the government. Those of us who lived in the west before that policy was inaugurated know only too well the condition of affairs at that time. 4179 COMMONS We have seen the settlers who were there load their few effects on prairie schooners and drive out to the country ; we have seen deserted homesteads by the score ; we have seen merchants close their doors and leave the country; we have seen settlers on the verge of starvation; we have seen honest, industrious men forced to appeal to the government for assistance and we have seen improved farms sold in that western country at from one dollar to three dollars per acre. No sooner was the present immigration policy adopted and the late Minister of the Interior (Mr. Sifton) placed in charge of immigration affairs than a change took place. Settlers began to flock into the country and to afford a market for what the earlier settlers had produced. Other markets were opened up. The merchants began to thrive. The price of land rose quickly from $3 to $4, from $4 to $5, from $5 to $6, &c., in many localities as high as $30 per acre has been paid.
I think the west is practically solid in requesting that no change be made in the immigration policy. I was pleased a few days ago to hear the hon. the Postmaster General pay a high compliment to the late Minister of the Interior, and I want to assure that hon. gentleman that he was only voicing the sentiments of the west when he said the resignation of the Minister of the Interior was little short of a national calamity.
There is another reason why it is best for the federal government to administer those lands. It may not be considered a good reason by some, but I think the experience of most of the other provinces will give some weight to it. It is this. We might at some future time have a careless or extravagant government in one or both of the new provinces. If such a thing did happen our resources would rapidly disappear and we might in a very few years be compelled to appeal to extensive direct taxation.
There is still another serious obstacle in the way of the provinces administering the land. Some years ago very extensive grants of those lands were made to various corporations, railway companies and colonization companies. Now it happens that when those corporations selected their lands they chose the greater portion of it in the proposed province of Alberta. So, if the provinces received the lands within their own borders, they would not receive equal shares and an injustice would be done to the province of Alberta.
Some hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House would like to make the public believe that all the lands in these vast areas are agricultural lands. Such is far from being the case. In fact only a small portion of those lands will ever be fit for agricultural purposes. Many millions of acres are under water. Millions more consist of muskeg and slough, while millions 4179 4180 more are sand hills and barren. There is no doubt there is an immense quantity of good agricultural land in the country but it is only a fraction of the whole.
Now, what does federal administration of these lands mean to the provinces ? In the first place, the provinces really get half the land, or all the even-numbered sections. These sections are reserved for free homesteads. Until entered for we have the use of them. Our stock will graze on those pastures. As soon as entered for, they become the property of our citizens who pay us taxes. And even with regard to the odd-numbered sections the same reasoning may apply because we hope that those may soon be thrown open for settlement at a low price. In the second place, we get this land administered for us free of charge. In the third place, we have an energetic immigration policy of a national character carried on for us without expense. In the fourth place, we get an annual subsidy, increasing as our population increases and sufficiently large to put us on a par fianancially with the most favoured of the other provinces. If all the members of the opposition would be as frank and as candid as the hon. member for Beauharnois, they would say with him, that as far as the financial terms are concerned, the government has treated the new provinces not only with fairness but with generosity.'
Now, Mr. Speaker, I want to dwell on the other very important question involved in this Bill. It is certainly quite true, that the education question is a dangerous one to deal with. This question nearly prevented coufederation. It caused the downfall of one federal government and our friends in the opposition fondly hope that it will cause the downfall of another in the not distant future. Nearly every province in the Dominion has experienced difficulty in dealing with this vexed question.
I will not attempt to deal with the constitutional question involved in this Bill. I have had no legal training and I frankly admit my inability to grapple with a question on which the best legal talent in Canada fail to agree. I want to say that in 1892 I gave this question a good deal of thought. I read over the British North America Act and the Northwest Territory Act of 1875. and I came to the conclusion that whatever privileges the minority had when we became a province these privileges would have to be continued. That conclusion may have been wrong, but I arrived at it notwithstanding the fact that I was then, as I am LOW, strongly opposed to separate schools in the usual sense of the term.
If I understand this Bill in its present form, it provides that the minority, either Protestant or Roman Catholic, shall continue to have the privileges they now have under the provisions of the Northwest Territories Ordinances of 1901.
4181 APRIL 7, 1905
Now, Sir, I maintain that before we undertake to pronounce judgment on this Bill we should have a fair understanding of the school system in use in the Northwest Territories under the provisions of those ordinances. It is only natural that when the people of Ontario hear the term 'separate schools' they should think of the separate schools as they exist in that province. When the people of Manitoba hear the expression 'separate schools' they think of the inefficient schools which they abolished in 1890. I feel sure that if the people of the other provinces understood our school system there would not be a great deal or opposition to the educational clause of this Bill in its present form. I believe the people of the west are willing to give to any minority any privilege to which they can show a claim, and they will give it the more cheerfully and criticise it the less closely because in this case it not only does not injure, but it increases the usefulness of our school system. Our schools are in truth national schools. No religious sect, no denomination, no association, no society has anything to do directly or indirectly with the secular education of the children attending any of our schools. They are completely and absolutely under the control of the government. In all our schools the same course of studies is followed. Practically the same text books are used. The teachers have to pass the same examinations and get the same training at the same normal school. All have the same holidays and vacations, and all undergo the same rigid inspection and the government grant is apportioned to all the same basis.
I desire to read a few short extracts from the School Ordinance that applies in this case. Section 4 reads as follows :
The department shall have the control and management of all kindergarten schools, public and separate schools, normal schools, teachers' institutes, and the education of deaf, deaf mute and blind persons.
Section 6 is as follows :
The commissioner with the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council shall have power :
1. To make regulations of the department—
(a) For the classification, organization, government, examination and inspection of all schools hereinbefore mentioned ;
(b) For the construction, furnishing and care of school buildings and the arrangement of school premises ;
(c) For the examination, licensing and grading of teachers and for the examination of persons who may desire to enter professions or who may wish certificates of having completed courses of study in any school ;
(d) For a teachers' reading course and teachers' institutes and conventions ;
2. To authorize text and reference books for the use of the pupils and teachers in all schools hereinbefore mentioned as well as such maps, globes, charts and other apparatus or equipment as may be required for giving proper instruction in such schools ; 4181 4182 3. To prepare a list of books suitable for school libraries and to make regulations for the management of such libraries ;
4. To make due provision for the training of teachers.
Then there is section 136 :
All schools shall be taught in the English language, but it shall be permissible for the board of any district to cause a. primary course to he taught in the French language ;
(2) The board of any district may subject to the regulations of the department employ one or more competent persons to give instruction in any language other than English in the school of the district to all pupils whose parents or guardians have signified a willingness that they should receive the same, but such course of instruction shall not supersede or in any way interfere with the instruction by the teacher in charge of the school as required by the regulations of the department and this ordinance ;
(3) The board shall have power to raise such sums of money as may be necessary to pay the salaries of such instructors and all costs, charges and expenses of such course of instruction shall be collected by the board by a special rate to be imposed upon the parents or guardians of such pupils as take advantage of the same. C.O., c. 75, s. 109.
Section 137 is as follows :
No religious instruction except as hereinafter provided shall be permitted in the school until one-half hour previous to its closing in the afternoon, after which time any such instruction permitted or desired by the board may be given.
(2) It shall, however, be permissible for the board of any district to direct that the school be opened by the recitation of the Lord's Prayer. C.O., c. 75. s. 110.
Now, these are the sections in the North west Territories Ordinances, 1901, that apply in this case. I am not going to enter into a discussion on the advisability of having religious instruction in schools, but it is a well—known fact that many Protestants as well as Roman Catholics desire to have some religious instruction given in the schools. Now, to meet the wishes of such people as these, we permit the giving of religious instruction in the schools from 3.30 to 4 o'clock in the afternoon. In this we treat all alike, all schools have the same privilege. Separate schools will not be formed unless the trustees of a public school try to deprive the minority of their right in this respect. Let us suppose a case. Suppose that in a certain district a majority of the people are Roman Catholics and Roman Catholic trustees are elected. They will, we suppose, engage a Roman Catholic teacher. They will request or instruct him to give religious instruction in that school after 3.30 o'clock. The Protestant children of course are allowed to go home. If the parents or trustees of these children desire that their children should have religious instruction in that school, they will no doubt appeal to the trustees and ask that they 4183 COMMONS be given a certain number of afternoons for that purpose. If the trustees refuse, then they will probably form a separate school. In practice, trouble never arises; we have no trouble in the west in that way, the trustees always agree and they have different days for giving religious instruction for the different denominations. The trustees have in all cases for years been able to come to an agreement. No separate schools, either Protestant or Roman Catholic, have been organized for the last three or four years, and even some that we had previous to 1901 have become disorganized. In 1901, there were 14 Roman Catholic separate schools In the Northwest Territories; to-day there are only 10. We in the west were boasting that we had solved this vexed problem. The Roman Catholic laity are perfectly satisfied, as far as I can learn, and there is no complaint from the Protestant majority. We are bringing together the Protestant and Roman Catholic children for the purpose of secular education to an extent never before known anywhere in Canada. Some ask the question: have you separate schools at all? To these I would say that as far as secular education is concerned, we have not, and for sectarian education we have. Now, I think that is right. It leaves the secular education with the state and the sectarian education, where it belongs, with the church and with the home. If this plan which has worked so successfully in the west for years be not adopted, what alternative have we ? We are asked by some to refer the matter to the courts and to allow them to decide what is the right of the minority. Now, it is just possible, in my mind, that the courts may decide that the minority are entitled to the rights which they had by the provisions of the Northwest Territories Act of 1875, and if that were the case, we would have saddled upon us a dual system of schools which would be as unsatisfactory to the Roman Catholic minority as it would be to the Protestant majority. Personally, I prefer to take no risks, especially since granting what is asked does not interfere with the usefulness of our present school system. Then we are asked by others to leave this question entirely with the new provinces. For my part, I would be quite willing to do this. I feel sure that the governments in the provinces would be sensible enough to continue the present system, in fact, I have heard nearly all the members of the present legislature of the Northwest Territories express themselves as opposed to making any change. The premier of the Northwest Territories quite recently said that if he had the power to-morrow he would not change the present system. But we all know how at any time an agitation may be started and how the minority might then be deprived of the privileges which they have. If that were the case, we would then be confronted by a serious evil. If 4183 4184 the Roman Catholic minority were deprived of the privileges they now have, what would they do ? They would do Just as they have done in hundreds of cases in the past. They would build, equip, and patronize church schools. These schools would have to be supported by them and they would also be compelled to pay their taxes to the public or common school. They would thus be paying double taxes, and in many cases that would be a hardship to them. But that is not the worst feature of the case to my mind. The worst feature is that since the government did not support or assist these church schools it would have no control over even the secular education given in them. Now I am so strongly in favour of the state having absolute control of the secular education of the children who are to become citizens of that state that I am willing to deprive the provinces of the power of making the mistake of totally abolishing separate schools. If separate schools were abolished in the new provinces by law we might have a condition of affairs similar to that which exists in the maritime provinces. We were told a few evenings ago by the Minister of Finance (Mr. Fielding) the condition that exists in those provinces. In localities where there is a considerable number of Roman Catholics separate schools do exist by practice if they do not by law. There you find Roman Catholic children in one school and Protestant children in another ; you find Roman Catholic teachers in one school and Protestant teachers in another ; you have in effect separate schools there by practice if not by law. Now to my way of thinking our system is far ahead of that. Some have compared the action of the federal government in this case to the action of the federal government in 1896. But I do not think the cases are at all similar. Then the federal government tried to force an obnoxious law upon an unwilling people ; now the federal government is merely asking the Northwest to continue a system that passed its legislature unanimously and was accepted by the people and has proved for years to be thoroughly efficient. And, further, it is a law which, we all admit, the people of the Northwest Territories would themselves adopt if it were left to their own free choice. I have no hesitation in saying—and I say it after an experience of twenty-five years teaching in the public schools of Ontario and the North- west—that we have a system of elementary education inferior to none in Canada. And I wish to say further that our system is more thoroughly a national system than even that of the United States. Our government has absolute control of the secular education of a larger percentage 01' the children than has the government of any state of the American union, where they boast of their national schools. Let me quote an extract from a standard work. 4185 APRIL 10, 1905 'Education in the United States; its history since the earliest settlements,' by Richard G. Boone, A.M., professor of pedagogy in Indiana University.
The twelve Catholic provinces—Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Milwaukee. New Orleans, New -York, Oregon, Philadelphia, St. Louis, San Francisco, and Santa Fé—are subdivided into seventy-nine dioceses. The latter average from thirty-five to forty parishes, each of which is supposed to have a school for the elementary training of their children. As a matter of fact, ninety-three per cent of them do maintain parochial schools, in which are educated, generally by the priesthood, rarely by laymen (except in the teaching congregations), the 511,063 pupils. In addition to these are 588 academies usually for girls, and 91 colleges.
So you have the elementary education of 511.063 pupils in this comparatively small portion of the United States being conducted in schools over the secular education given in which the government has no control. Then, I have heard the annual report of the commissioner of education of the United States, in which some interesting facts are given. This report says:
In 1872 the present limits of the Catholic diocese of Boston were fixed and Boston was, in 1875, made an archieplscopal see. These limits are the counties of Suffolk, Middlesex, Essex, Norfolk and Plymouth.
Now, we will hear something about the schools in these counties :—
In 1873, there were perhaps three or four fairly good school buildings in the thirteen parishes then having schools; to-day 62 parishes have schools in 74 buildings (not including basements of churches or convents), for the most part modern and well equipped; 42 of these buildings are brick. The valuation of school property, including all the convents, is not far from $4,500,000.
In 1873 there were 11 schools for girls and 2 for boys. To-day, there are 65 for girls and 61 for boys.
In 1873, there were not more than 6,000 pupils while to-day there are at least, 38,200 pupils according to the statistics of June, 1900. In July, 1901, the statistics show for parochial schools of the archdiocese of Boston, 40,273 pupils and 820 teachers.
In all New England, where in 1820, 1 Catholic school was opened, there are to-day about 325 schools and 122,000 pupils.
Now, Mr. Speaker, I think that speak: well for our system as compared with What they have. In the Northwest Territories to-day we have practically every child receiving his secular education under the control of the state. I doubt if any other country in the world can show such a good record. The system we have in force is giving satisfaction, and I believe it is the only practical solution of this question. I am supporting the Bill for that reason— not because I am a Liberal or because it was introduced by the right hon. Prime Minister (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) for whom I 4185 4186 have every admiration, but because I believe it to be in the best interests of the west.
Mr. PRINGLE moved the adjournment of the debate.
Motion agreed to.
On motion of Mr. Fielding, House adjourned at 12.55 a.m., Saturday.


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



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