Mr. MACKENZIE KING:
That is a very
bright interruption. I have already answered that question but my hon. friend was asleep. He has only just wakened up. It was only when I began to say a word about the humble poor and their circumstances that hon. gentlemen opposite began to hoot and to laugh. That roused him. I tell them, and I tell them quite frankly-I understand this measure is going to be challenged-that if the basis of challenge is going to be on the question of how money is used by people in humble circumstances, as against how money is used by those who are. fortunate enough to have exemptions on their income tax as allowances for children we shall have it out to a finish on that very subject.
^There is no instinct of man or beast stronger than the parental instinct. All nature tells us that animal life seeks to cherish and protect its own. Nothing is truer of human v>
beings than that mothers and fathers think first of their children and how they can give their children opportunities in life better than they themselves have had.//Yn support of what I have just said may I point to the motive that has brought to this country a large proportion of those who have come from other lands. They have nearly all come not so much because they wished merely to better their own conditions but in order that their children might have a better chance in life than they have had. They have been, most of them, in very humble circumstances, but they have been pleased to come to a land where there was opportunity to give their children chances they themselves never had. Many of them came from the countries of Europe to get away from the perpetual fear of war. Many of them have come from the British isles to get away from class distinctions,
and the bar to improved conditions that so often goes with them. A great many have had in their breasts something of the sentiment cherished so strongly by Robert Burns when he wrote "a man's a man for a' that." It ill becomes anyone in this day to question how people, simply because they are in humble circumstances, are likely to discharge the greatest responsibility of their lives, namely that of looking after their own children. We are told, "Oh, we want to look after the children, but we would like to do it some other way." In other words, they would like to continue the old-fashioned method of seeing that something is done for others rather than permitting others to do things for themselves. That ia a paternalistic attitude which is also contrary to the spirit of the present time. It savour of charity, and charity has become a nause-'ating thing to many who have had to submit to it in order to eke out an existence. The new order is not going to have things done as charity. What is to be done will be done as a matter of right. There will always be a place for charity; there will always be an opportunity and the necessity to help one's neighbour, but when it comes to these great social questions under a condition of society which dooms large numbers of people to a lifetime of penury, at the same time enabling others vastly to increase their incomes, then a searching analysis of the causes of differences becomes necessary.
Everyone knows that conditions of society to-day are such as to permit those who already have great possessions to become possessors of much more, while they serve to take away from those who have very little even that which they have. I have heard men boast about the positions they have achieved in industry and affairs. They may be justified in so doing in so far as what they have obtained has been the result of their own exceptional abilities, but I would ask all such how any man to-day could achieve anything in the way of great increase of wealth were it not for what the state itself does to make that possible. The state, by maintaining law and order, by its assistance to invention, by the facilities it provides in the way of transportation, communication, markets; by the community values it creates, the unearned increments it makes possible, all these and much more tend to help those1 who already possess much to acquire more, and at the same time take away something of what is possessed in very small measure by other members of society. More and more it is being recognized that present conditions; enable some persons to make great fortunes and prevent others from gaining even a fair
Subtopic: PROVISION FOR PAYMENTS IN RESPECT OF CHILDREN UNDER SIXTEEN