May 7, 1918 (13th Parliament, 1st Session)


Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Hon. RODOLPHE LEMIEUX (Maison-neuve):

Mr. Speaker, I did not expect when speaking on the Budget that I would have to discuss the Orange Sentinel's orthodoxy, but the hon. gentleman (Mr. Hoeken) has chosen to deliver a lecture on the ideals of the Orange party and of the Sentinel, which he edits. I shall, therefore, for a few moments, reply as best I may to the very specious arguments brought into this discussion by that hon. gentleman.
I wish at once to correct one of the views to which lie gave expression. The hon. gentleman has been very kind-indeed, over-generous-to the French Canadians. He has conceded that the French Canadian is " potentially " as good a British subject as any British-bom or any Anglo-Canadian. Let me add a little rider to my hon. friend's definition. The French Canadian, I am proud to say, is not potentially but actually ,as good and as loyal a citizen as any British-born or any Anglo-Canadian in this free Canada of ours. It is because some people of my hon. friend's ilk choose to consider their fellow men as inferior beings that the other fellow-to use my hon. friend's word-resents such assumption on the part of an alleged superior race. My hon. friend aptly defined himself this afternoon-and" I must congratulate him for his sincerity-when he said, "I am an extremist; I represent

the extremist views of Ontario." Mr. Speaker, the bane of this country is the extremist. My hon. friend said a moment ago: I will tell you what we the people of Ontario-and this reminds me of the "three tailors of Tooley street" and the editors of the Orange Sentinel-expect from the province of Quebec; .and he then gave his charitable advice without charge. Will he allow me to retort what we, the "potentially" good citizens of Quebec, expect from the true Britishers of Ontario? We expect that the President of the C uncil, who specially represents Ontario in the Cabinet, will forthwith appoint a. special censor with a lucrative salary and locate him at the Sentinel office so that he may delete from that paper the incendiary articles which are being published every week with a view to inflame racial and religous passions.
My hon. friend says: But you do not know what are the aims and objects of the Orange Order. I do not care to know them. This is a free country; the Orange Order has been legalized by Act of Parliament, and I do not object to its existence. What I object to is that the Orange Order, through some of its members, should claim the monopoly of loyalty and fidelity to the British institutions. There is no such monopoly in Canada. There is as much loyalty ini the St. Jean Baptiste Society, the St. George's Society, the St. Andrew's Society, the St. Patrick's Society, the St. David Society, as there is in the Orange Order. The St. Jean Baptiste Society, referred to by my hon. friend, is a French Canadian national organization. It was founded in 1834 at Montreal. Its first celebration was held in the gardens of a Mr. Macdonald, a *good old Scotchman-the Scotch and the French never had any quarrels. The first president of the society was Mr. Duvernay, editor of La Minerve, and the song of French Canada-"O Canada, mon pays, mes amours"-.was heard for the first time at that meeting. It was composed and sung by a young student who later became the great leader of the Conservative party. Sir George Etienne Cartier. The St. Jean Baptiste Society has on its crest the words " Rendre le peuple meilleur " to improve the people -that is to say, to educate the people, to preserve their national traditions, to preserve their language, too-the language which has been so mercilessly assailed in Ontario through Regulation 17-

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