Henri Sévérin BÉLAND

BÉLAND, The Hon. Henri Sévérin, P.C.

Personal Data

Party
Liberal
Constituency
Beauce (Quebec)
Birth Date
October 11, 1869
Deceased Date
April 22, 1935
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henri_Sévérin_Béland
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=50634114-351e-4c08-8b61-8698a41f8814&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
physician

Parliamentary Career

January 8, 1902 - September 29, 1904
LIB
  Beauce (Quebec)
November 3, 1904 - September 17, 1908
LIB
  Beauce (Quebec)
October 26, 1908 - July 29, 1911
LIB
  Beauce (Quebec)
September 21, 1911 - October 6, 1917
LIB
  Beauce (Quebec)
  • Postmaster General (August 19, 1911 - October 6, 1911)
December 17, 1917 - October 4, 1921
L LIB
  Beauce (Quebec)
December 6, 1921 - December 29, 1921
LIB
  Beauce (Quebec)
January 19, 1922 - September 5, 1925
LIB
  Beauce (Quebec)
  • Minister presiding over the Department of Health (December 29, 1921 - April 14, 1926)
  • Minister of Soldiers' Civil Re-establishment (December 29, 1921 - April 14, 1926)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 625 of 629)


April 5, 1905

Mr. BELAND.

Yes, Represented by Mr. Ames, and I can still call him my good friend 1 hope. In Montreal, St. Antoine, the Protestant population is 22,000 and the Catholic population is 24,000. The county of Chateauguay, represented here by my good friend Mr. Brown, has a Rro-testant population of 3,000 and a Catholic population of 12,500. The county of Compton, represented here by my good

friend Mr. Hunt, has a Protestant population of 10.500 and a Catholic population of 15,000. The county of Huntingdon, the very county iu which that newspaper which has been quoted by my hon. friend from East Grey is published, has a Protestant population of 6,620. and a Catholic population of 7,200. and the Catholic majority sends a Protestant representative to this House in the person of my hon. friend Mr. Walsh. But this is not all. I want to make the proof of our toleration so convincing that my hon. friend will feel obliged to stand up and admit it if he wants to be fair. The county of Miss-isquoi, with a Protestant population of 8,000 and a Catholic population of 10,000, sends

as its representative to this House, our good friend Mr. Meigs. Montreal, St. Lawrence division, which is represented by my good friend Mr. Bickerdike, has a Protestant population of 10,000 and a Catholic population of 30,000. The county of Pontiac, which is represented by Mr. Brabazon, has a Protestant population of 6,400 and a Catholic population of 16,000. Sherbrooke, which is represented here by my good friend Dr. Worthington, has a Protestant population of

7,000 and a Catholic populaton of 11,000. Stanstead, which is represented by Mr. Lovell, has a Protestant population of 9,000 and a Catholic population of 9,500. Shef-ford, which is represented by our eminent friend Mr. Parmelee, has a Protestant population of 5,000 and a Catholic population of IS,000, and I do not blame them at all for electing that gentleman.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT IN THE NORTHWEST.
Full View Permalink

April 5, 1905

Mr. BELAND.

It did settle it to a certain extent which appears to be satisfactory to the minority. It may not be satisfactory to my hon. friend, who is known to be an ardent and devoted supporter of the Catholic church. But to my mind, and as a means establishing peace and harmony in this country between the different elements, it is satisfactory.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT IN THE NORTHWEST.
Full View Permalink

April 5, 1905

Mr. BELAND.

I am not concerned with . that at all. They may vote as they please, and I am sure the French Canadian people will never go back on them on that account. Out. of the twelve counties in the province of Quebec which are represented in this House by Protestants, there is only one county where the majority is Protestant, and that is the county of Brome, represented here by my hon. friend, the Minister of Agriculture (Hon. Mr. Fisher).

Now, this may not he exactly fair; it may indicate that we are more tolerant than we are in reality. I will take another point of view-that of the whole population of the province. According to the whole population of the province of Quebec, the Protestants would be entitled in this parliament to eight representatives ; but they have twelve. What does my hon. frie'nd from East Grey think of that ? The ' Evening Telegram,' of Toronto, which makes a specialty of dealing with the question of the tolerance of the provinces of Ontario and Quebec, has the following :

Ontario's tolerance is illustrated in the tendency of every Roman Catholic who represents a Protestant constituency to vote as a liegeman of his church rather than as the citizen of his - country, upon questions affecting the aims of the church.

The intolerance of Quebec is illustrated in the spectacle of every ProtestaDt representative voting with an eye to the race and creed prejudices of Quebec, and with vision blinded to the principles of his own race and creed.

Ontario's treatment of the minority that is over-represented in the government, over-represented in the legislature, is not equalled by the treatment which the minority receives in auy other commonwealth on earth.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT IN THE NORTHWEST.
Full View Permalink

April 5, 1905

Mr. BELAND.

No, Mr. Speaker, I said that by some information he had gathered the hon. gentleman had been led into error when he stated that in France there was a large number of atheists. For my part, Mr. Speaker, lam not discussing this question from the point of view of an advocate of separate schools, nor from the point of view of an advocate of public schools. We are not called upon in this House to say whether we favour the one or the other. We are discussing a Bill which provides for religious instruction in the schools in the Northwest, a system which has been adopted by the Northwest and which is in force now. Our country is a British country, our institutions are modelled after the institutions of Great Britain, and I am very sorry, I deeply regret-I say it sincerely-that the great lines, the illuminated paths which have been set for us in the mother country, are in this debate willingly ignored. Unshakable attachment to all things British, be they military, be they political, be they social, has been boasted of here, especially by hon. gentlemen opposite. It is but a few days since the echoes of this chamber were disturbed by the imperialistic eloquence of my hon. friend from Victoria and Haliburton (Mr. Sam. Hughes). In his footsteps we have seen the hon. member from South York (Mr. W. F. Maclean) and the hon. member from East Grey (Mr. Sproule), earnestly and honestly, we believe, preaching the rapproachement, closer relations between England and Canada. It is their contention that British institutions are the climax of perfection for a constitutional country. Why in the name of common sense was the British school system not good enough for them ? The French Canadian is very devoted to British institutions, and I make bold to say here that if my countrymen, my compatriots in the province of Quebec, were offered to-day the opportunity to sever their connection Mr. BELAND.

from Great Britain, if they were offered independence, if they were offered annexation, if they were offered French allegiance, I have not the slightest hesitancy to say! they would squarely refuse and remain) faithful to Great Britain. And why, Mn Speaker ? Because as was said so elo-) quently by one of the hon. gentlemen opposite in a debate a few years ago, Great Brl-* tain has distinguished herself at home and abroad for that broad spirit of good faith and toleration, for those sacred principles of religious equality and self-government. In England an education Act was recently introduced providing for religious instruction in the schools, according to the wishes of the parents. By whom was it introduced ? By men like Chamberlain, by men like Balfour, and that legislation was assailed, and I think encountered as bitter an opposition as this legislation is encountering to-day. Ministers of the gospel went as far as to say that the state was in danger, that the primary and elementary rights were threatened, that the birth right of the British citizen was at stake, that it was a battle for life. The Solicitor General (Hon. Mr. Lemieux) the other night, in the course of a very able speech, read to this House quotations from speeches that have been delivered in England by Mr. Chamberlain and by Mr. Balfour. I shall not trouble the House by reading any more of those speeches. I think the House will permit me to make an allusion to a reverend gentleman in England, a minister of the Presbyterian denomination, Rev. Archibald La-mont, of St. Paul's Presbyterian Chapel. Here is what that gentleman said :

I have high hopes for education and for Presbyterianism and for future Christianity as the result of the advent of this imperfect, but substantially good, Education Bill, and, in spite of an unreasoning and undignified agitation against it, an agitation to which, as I deeply deplore, my own beloved church has thoughtlessly, but I hope temporarily, committed herself. I fear that in most of our Protestant churches, eloquence of speech is often more a hindrance than help to the practical solution of far-reaching and complex questions. It often puts men unwittingly in a false pre-eminence, so that the rank and file-the common people- are misled and become martyrs by mistake.

This should be read to some of the reverend gentlemen of Ottawa and Toronto who have thought it proper to speak from the pulpit against the educational clauses of this Bill. But, Mr. Speaker, this Bill has been adopted in England, and lias been in force for a couple of years, and it bas given entire satisfaction. The impression that must prevail in the end is that some people want more religious instruction and some people want less religions instruction than this Bill provides ; but, Mr. Speaker, standing here as a representative in parliament of a country of 43.005 souls, I think it is my duty to uphold the constitution, and by it to confirm the privileges, be they large or be they-

small, that the majority enjoy in the Northwest Territories. There are some hon. gentlemen on the other side of this House, the hon. member for East Grey (Mr. Sproule) the hon member for South York (Mr. W. F. Maclean) and the hon. member for Victoria and Haliburton (Mr. Sam. Hughes) who profess to believe that religious instruction should be done away with in the schools. But, Mr. Speaker, though I have great respect for their opinions, I must say without hesitation that if those three gentlemen were put on one side, and on the other side you were to show me statesmen like Mr. Chamberlain, like Mr. Gladstone, like Mr. Balfour, like Mr. Guizot. 1 would have to throw in my lot with the great Englishmen. Now. Sir, the claim has been made in this House and out of it that the Liberal party has trampled upon provincial rights and provincial autonomy, that it has abandoned its principles of 1896, and that now the Liberal party is invading provincial rights and provincial autonomy. Well, Mr. Speaker, let me refer for a moment to what took place in 1896. What was the position of the right hon, the Prime Minister in 1896, when he moved the six months hoist of the Remedial *Bill ? He said : This parliament has a right to interfere ; the remedy lies with us, but I think that remedy should not be applied until all conciliatory methods have been exhausted. Now, Sir, in 1896 we stood for conciliation. What are we doing today ? We are still standing for conciliation, we stand for compromise on an honourabe basis.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT IN THE NORTHWEST.
Full View Permalink

April 5, 1905

Mr. BELAND.

to-morrow ? There are to-day half a million people in the Northwest Territories ; how many will you find in twenty or thirty years from now ? Who can tell ? Perhaps two million, perhaps three million, perhaps five million, perhaps ten or twelve million ; and as we know that the largest foreign immigration to-day is from the United States, who can assure this House and this country that the control of the legislatures in the two new provinces thirty years from now will not be in the hands of people having a greater interest in the country to the south of the boundary line ? And, Mr. Speaker, we shall have, in the control of the lands and in the control of immigration, perhaps not a complete remedy, but certainly a palliative. Hon. gentlemen opposite say to us ; Hands off the twins ; let them enjoy the greatest liberty ; give them all their lands and the largest possible autonomy. Well, I can assure my hon. friend from East Grey (Mr. Sproule), whom I am glad to see in his seat, that in that future time, if he wishes, in order to maintain a loyal sentiment in the Northwest Territories, the services of that Roman Catholic clergy, whom he does not appear to like very much, they will be found as usual ready to support, day and night, through weeks and months and years, the British flag.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT IN THE NORTHWEST.
Full View Permalink