May 3, 1950 (21st Parliament, 2nd Session)


Pierre Gauthier


Mr. Pierre Gauthier (Portneuf):

Mr. Speaker, I shall try to be as brief as possible. My stand on this very important question was taken long ago. I remember the first occasion, in 1937, when I spoke about communism in the House of Commons, and when I saw in front of me people smiling with incredulity because I was telling the house that communism was very dangerous and was on our threshold.
I believe it was the hon. member for Greenwood (Mr. Macdonnell) who said this afternoon that he did not understand clearly the statement of the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. Pearson) that what was to be feared most was Russian imperialism. 1 do not know if we must fear Russian Imperialism more than we fear communism. But there is one sure fact and it is this, that Russian imperialism is and for a hundred years has been existing in the minds of the Russian government.
I remember that when speaking in the house in 1946 I read a few excerpts from a book written by Henri Massis of the French Academy the title of which, I believe, was "Russia", in which he stated that Pierre le Grand, Peter the Great, had been the most imperialist of all the Russians. I remember that Henri Massis in his thesis made very clear something which should be made clear to every member in the house, that communist imperialism was not more dangerous than the imperialism sponsored by Peter the Great in that time.
I believe the Secretary of State for External Affairs was speaking truthfully when he said that we must fear Russian imperialism at the same time as we fear communist imperialism. I believe my stand in this matter has been made clear over a number of years in the house. I believe the situation was stated
correctly by the hon. member for Fort William (Mr. Mclvor) when, in his brief but interesting speech yesterday, he referred to the words uttered by the Prime Minister (Mr. St. Laurent) when speaking at Loyola college the other day: "We need faith by deeds; genuine brotherhood cannot be achieved without faith in God."
These words, sir, should stand as a beacon in a lighthouse to all the population of Canada. I believe we do not face communism in the way it should be faced. I realize I have been radical in the stand I have taken in the past. I thought the only way to stop communism from spreading in our country was to ban it. Now,- however, after having studied very carefully the writings of many noted authors, I believe that there are different ways of stopping the spread of communism. The banning of it may be one way of dealing with it; but it is not the only way, and it is a dangerous way.
I remember speaking in the house on April 16, 1948, when, as reported at page 3035 of Hansard, I said:
To hear some members in this debate one might think that a few of them-fortunately only a few- were ready to give equal freedom to evil and good.
I believe I was on very sound ground when I said that I was not prepared, and that the house ought not to be prepared, in its effort to give as great freedom as possible to our population, to give at the same time the same freedom to both evil and good. In giving that freedom we have made one of our mistakes-and this has been done not only in Canada but in the world at large. Then I continued on that occasion:
In my province we are not ready to give equal freedom to evil and good. It is all right to talk about civil rights and freedom, even for those who are organizing from central Europe in order that they may be ready to break our back when they judge the proper time has come. In this country it is useless to name those who are getting ready to break our back and to do it more rapidly than the house seems to think.
Then I continued:
That is why I would favour the passing of such a law-
I was then pretty radical.
-not because I believe that that is the only way to stop the spread of communism, Mr. Speaker; far from it. But if that is one of the weapons we need to stop the march of that evil theory to which some of us are ready to give freedom equal to what they give to the real democrats in this country, then we should use it.
I still repeat that if we think that is one of the ways to stop communism, we should take it. As I said before, however, I believe there are other ways. The words the Prime Minister (Mr. St. Laurent) uttered were the best possible to tell the population and those

who are fighting communism that they should start clearing away the dust that has gathered in their minds because of this evil philosophy.
I remember I took another stand when we were debating a bill that gave certain privileges to United States soldiers while in Canada. I remember that some of our C.C.F. friends did not like that bill and opposed it.
I recall that one Conservative member opposed it, I am not just sure which one, and I remember also that the hon. member for York West (Mr. Adamson) made a good speech against communism. At that time I said:
The hon. member for Vancouver North stated that it would be foolish to ask this government and this parliament to extend to the U.S.S.R., Yugoslavia and Hungary the same privileges being extended to the United States, a great, powerful and friendly nation. We cannot compare the friendship of Russian toward Canada with the friendship of the United States toward our country.
The member for Vancouver North at that time is now the hon. member for Coast-Capilano (Mr. Sinclair). I went on to say that you could not overlook the dangerous infiltration of communism into the United States and Canada. While that debate was going on Reuters sent out the following report from London:
Moscow radio said in a news broadcast today that Canadians were getting "more and more uneasy" about impending "infiltration" of United States troops, consequent upon plans for United States-Canadian defence co-operation.
"In this draft", the broadcast said, "United States troops are given such privileges that have never before been given to foreign troops on territories of other countries in peacetime."
"Several articles of the Canadian Criminal Code will not be applied to the United States troops. Military and other United States authorities are granted full rights on the Canadian territory, providing only that they do not interfere with the local Canadian ones."
It is not enough to fight communism and to say that we are against communism; the fight should be intelligently conducted. At that time we gave to a friendly nation privileges that were necessary in order that they might help us if the time came when we would be needing help, and I am afraid that that day will come.
There are many things that should be corrected. A couple of weeks ago I spoke in this house about divorce and I hope I am not referring too much to a previous debate. One way that communism can enter our homes is through the disruption of family life. I think we all believe that the family is the basic cell of our society and we should do our utmost to see that it is not disrupted. I was reading about the new constitution proposed for Japan by General MacArthur. I realize that General MacArthur is doing his utmost
Communist Activities in Canada to fight communism, but I do not think he should give communists a chance to enter the social life of that country. Article XXII of that new constitution states:
Laws shall be enacted considering choice of spouse, property rights, inheritance, choice of domicile, divorce-
If you accept divorce in any declaration of human rights, you accept the possibility of the destruction of family life. You accept also the possibility of destroying that authority which we need so much, the authority of the father and mother over the family. In article 16 of the universal declaration of human rights of the United Nations it is stated:
Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.
Marriage cannot be dissolved; marriage is for life. If that article has remained in that declaration it is in absolute contradiction of good sense and common sense. It is stated in that declaration that the family is the natural and fundamental unit of society and is entitled to protection by the state. If we want to fight communism we must protect the basic cell of our society and not include in any declaration of human rights, whether it be Canadian, Japanese or otherwise, such declarations.
Karl Marx was quite unscrupulous when he spoke about religion, because among other# things he said that religion was:
The opium of the people.
An intoxicating poison.
Brain stuffing.
A capitalistic stimulant.
A bourgeois cure.
A seducing idea to stupify the people.
A repulsive ghost.
I think it is right to say that Marxism, and especially communism, is a religion. It is more than a philosophy, it is a religion. If you look closely at the organization in Russia you see that Stalin is set up as a god and they have the twelve apostles in the politburo. Images of these apostles and this god are distributed widely in schools and public places throughout Russia. They are trying to tear Christianity apart with their organization. They are trying to destroy God.
They know perfectly well that God cannot be destroyed but, at the same time, as was said yesterday by the leader of the opposition (Mr. Drew), they are anti-God. I have no doubt they realize that they have a hard job to perform, but they do it just the same. They are keeping the people of Russia firmly in their grip. That is the only way to keep twenty million people in servitude in the concentration camps. It is anti-God when the
Communist Activities in Canada clergy of any religion can be thrown out of the churches. Those who have been permitted to come back may enter their pulpits on the condition that they advocate communism and the policies of the Kremlin as being the best in the world, something that should be followed in Russia and throughout the world. Nobody can deny that, but sometimes Russia gives us a good lesson. I was speaking about divorce a moment ago. In article 122 of the Russian constitution I find the following:
Women in the U.S.S.R. are accorded equal rights with men in all spheres of economic, state, cultural, social and political life.
To hear that, one would think that women in Russia are free to do what women can do in our country, work when they feel like working outside their homes, remain at home when their families are large in order to take care of them in the proper way. The article continues:
The possibility of exercising these rights is ensured to women by granting them an equal right with men to work-
In giving women equal rights with men to work they do not say that their government very often forces women to go to work in whatever place the government thinks best in order to further the aims of the communist organization or communist country. The article goes on:
[DOT]-payment for work, rest and leisure, social insurance and education, by state protection of the " interests of mother and child, by state aid to mothers of large families and unmarried mothers...
They believe in that now because of the costly experiences they have had as a result of their laxity with regard to divorce. I think I am in order in speaking that way because I want to prove that a weak spot of our democracy is the disruption of families through too easy divorce.
I think that there is another angle from which we can look at the amendment presently before the house. I refer to the constitutional side of the question which I believe was stated very plainly yesterday by the Prime Minister (Mr. St. Laurent) when he took part in the debate. I have a newspaper clipping from the Montreal Gazette dealing with a forum in which the hon. member for Lake Centre (Mr. Diefen-baker), Mr. Paul Sauriol of Montreal, editorial staff member of the Montreal French daily newspaper Le Devoir, and others took part. The newspaper article refers to Mr. Sauriol's part in the discussion as follows:
Mr. Sauriol argued that eleven bills of rights would be needed if all personal rights were to be covered. He was against amending the Canadian constitution to give jurisdiction to the federal government in the field of human rights. Such an amendment would be "contrary not only to the

letter but to the spirit of our constitution, because the principal function of the provinces is to protect the personal rights of their citizens."
Our government did more than that. At the United Nations a firm stahd was taken by the Secretary of State for External Affairs as to the constitutional aspect of the question when he stated:
I wish to make it clear here, that in regard to any rights which are defined in this document, the federal government of Canada does not intend to invade other rights which are also important to the people of Canada. By this I mean the rights of the provinces under our federal constitution. We believe that the rights set forth in this declaration are operative and well protected in Canada. We shall continue to develop and maintain these rights, but we shall do so within the framework of our constitution which assigns jurisdiction in regard to a number of important questions to the legislatures of our provinces. Because of these various reservations on details in the draft declaration, the Canadian delegation abstained when the declaration as a whole was put to the vote in the committee.
It is plainly to be seen that the government has respected the constitutional side of the whole question. I said that the matter was very clearly put by the Prime Minister in the words he uttered at Loyola college the other day, and I repeat that everyone should keep those words in mind. We should be conscious of the constitutional situation in our minds, our hearts and our souls. I should like to read a few excerpts from a book by Monsignor Sheen, whom I have been following for many years and who is in my opinion a good author on this subject. The excerpt I am about to read will answer the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar (Mr. Coldwell) when he said that all churches had admitted that the cause of communism was the poor economic situation. Monsignor Sheen has this to say:
Neither is communism to be met altogether on the false assumption that if economic conditions were bettered we would do away with communism. Communism is not just an economic system: it is a philosophy of life. Conditions were very good in the garden of Eden, but Lucifer started his revolt there. Bad economic situations are only a condition but never a cause of communism.
Monsignor Sheen also said:
There is much misunderstanding concerning what a nation and a people should do to combat communism. Immediately there come to mind four ways in which it should not be done. Communism should not be met by vituperation, name-calling, and personal hate. Hate is like a seed-it grows. By hating communists we advance communism, for communism grows in discord just as disease thrives in dirt.
He also said:
Finally, we are not to think that we are called on to be God's agents to execute vindictive judgment on the communists, but to see the whole world as seated in sin. When a germ infects a body, it generally does not so localize itself that a surgeon can take out a quart of blood and liquidate the evil. The germs are so diffused through the body that the whole body must be saved. So, too, there is

Communist Activities in Canada
evil throughout the world; communism is one of its principal symptoms. The Christian point of view is to see ourselves as part of a guilty world. In fact, the more innocent we are, the more we are to feel that guilt, because then we better recognize our oneness with our fellow men. Our Lord was innocent, but He took on Himself the sins of the world.
I hope I am not tiring hon. members by these quotations. I think they are necessary. On education Monsignor Sheen has this to say:
Since communists infiltrate their philosophy through lies and myth9, it is imperative that people in a democracy be properly informed concerning not only the errors of its ideology, but also the great truths of human nature, history and religion. Schools are in operation only about six hours a day, most of them closing at three in the afternoon. It would seem in the present crisis advisable to use the later afternoon and evening hours for adult education.
If we want to fight communism we should do so intelligently. I hear some members of the opposition vituperating the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Claxton) when he does not want to give all the information they would like to have. Sometimes we should not ask for too much information, for the same thing could happen here that happened in the United States. I have here a clipping from the Toronto Daily Star, a very good newspaper, of March 2, 1950.

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