June 16, 1948 (20th Parliament, 4th Session)


Joseph Miville Dechene


Mr. J. M. DECHENE (Athabaska):

Mr. Speaker, may I rise to a question of privilege? I shall be as brief as possible. I do not think anyone can accuse me of ever taking up the time of the house, or of the committees. uselessly. That may be because I have reached the age where I realize the value of time and the reasons for not wasting it. Therefore I shall not encroach on it now, nor shall I encroach on eternity, as is sometimes done in this house.
What I am going to speak about is some thing that has just come to my knowledge, although it happened several weeks ago. A friend of mine in Athabaska sent me a copy of the Edmonton Bulletin of February 26, 1948, on the front page of which appears in big block letters, "Fear of Reds silences M.P. in sabotage plot." That refers to me. Underneath the headlines the article appears. I have never been afraid of anybody, neither reds, this man, nor the group he represents. This article is an entire fabrication. I have only one word to describe it, and what it did to me. The man who wrote this is a liar. I hate to use that language. I shall not lose my temper, Mr. Speaker, but in the last election in Athabaska a communist candidate ran. He received more votes than the Conservatives did in Athabaska in 1945. While I abhor communism and everything it stands for, I have many good friends among these people in Athabaska, whom I consider to be more reliable and more dependable than the man who wrote that article without any basis of truth in it. Unless it is corrected, the man who wrote the article should be called before the bar of the house. The paper which published the article should retract it with the same prominence as to heading and type that was used when it was published.
The man who wrote this article asked me for an interview, which I refused. I told him I had nothing more to say. I asked him to look up Hansard, and if he had anything to say about what I had said he could use
Hansard as the basis for his remarks. In spite of my refusal to grant an interview this article was published. That is my point.

Full View