THE FIRST VICE-PRESIDENT, Mr. Wilkinson, introduced Rabbi Brickner, who was received with loud applause.
RABBI BARNETT R. BRICKNER.
Mr: Chairman, Honoured Guests, and Gentlemen,--It is a real privilege indeed, and one that I thoroughly appreciate, to be able to come back again, for that is a genuine sign of hospitality, and I have developed a real affection for the kind of hospitality that Toronto has shown me. It has not always been possible to reciprocate the splendid hospitality and kindness which have been shown to me by the citizens of this city, but my heart is with them in 411 the great undertakings that will make this in every sense the Queen City of Canada.
It is exceedingly good of you to permit me, an immigrant, to speak on the question of immigration. All the other addresses that have been delivered on this question in this city and throughout Canada have very largely been delivered by native-born Canadians of the second and third generations; but the immigrant's point of view has not come to bear on this great and important national question.
Rabbi Brickner is a graduate of Columbia University. In Cincinnati he won fame for himself and rendered great service to that city by his efforts on behalf of social service as a way to social progress. He came to Toronto in 1920 to the Holy Blossom Synagogue and has proved himself a source of strength to the social, moral and religious life of the city.
I chose for the text my address a little verse in Proverbs, "Where there is no vision, there a people perish." No truer words were ever spoken by any prophet or seer or sage at any time in the history of the world. "Where there is no vision everything perisheth. "
Immigration is a question that should be fraught with vision, because it is the national, the most important, the burning question before Canada. I want to postulate as my thesis this afternoon that Canada needs the immigrant even as the immigrant needs Canada.
Why does Canada need immigration? Canada, with nine millions of people, is labouring under a tremendous war debt, heavier per capita than any of the allied nations engaged in the last war. Canada has, per population, more railroad facilities than any other similar nation. We have 39,000 miles of railroad stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific. The tremendous pity of it is that as you travel over the roads stretching in two great parallel systems you find that for thousands of miles there are no real settlements of human beings; and then we ask--why don't the railways pay? If Eaton's were located away out on the prairies, with nobody within 100 miles of the place of business, we would not ask why does not that business pay? We would close the place, and bring it somewhere else, or bring people around it so that it could pay.
Then there are the tremendous natural resources of Canada. I hear it said on all sides that Canada is an agricultural nation, and the inference is that it must remain so. Those people are untrue to the tremendous resources in mines and in forests and in fisheries which this country possesses. We have gifts of God here that very few nations on the face of the earth can boast of, and Canada is destined to be more than an agricultural nation. Canada is destined to be an industrial as well as agricultural nation. (Applause) It would be a pity, a real pity, to limit ourselves to any one particular branch when God has so liberally endowed us.
We are passing through, and have for many years been passing through, the real process of reconstruction. Our whole national life, our finances, our industries, our agricultural bases, our government, our whole mental attitude, everything is in the process of flux, and we are changing and reconstructing the very basis of our national existence. Wise statesmanship demands the formulation of a vision, of a constructive, comprehensive policy on immigration.
The past policies of immigration of this country and of our neighbour to the south have not been characterized by either vision or constructiveness of thought. When we look into the policies that have motivated immigration in this country and in the United States we find that instead of constructive thought there has been a confusion of thought. We find that political exigencies and political promises have motivated the immigration policies. We find dogmatism and good-natured, brazen ignorance of the third-rate diplomatist governing the greatest policy of a nation, its growth, immigration.
The King Government at present is sending out feelers all over the country with a view of taking stock of what is in the minds of people on this question of immigration. And it is very important that this should be done. It reminds me of an old story of one of my own people who made quite a success in business (laughter)--unusual--and decided to send his son to college, for he had been deprived of a commercial and sound education, and he felt that if his son was to carry on he would take him into the business, for what else was he going to do with him? He would send him to a business college, and have him come back and build up the concern. Jakey went away to college. Jakey came back after four years, and entered the business, and after he was with his father for a short while he laid down the condition that the concern would have to take stock. For thirty years Goldstein had gone on without taking stock; he seemed to make a success of it; his notes were honoured in the bank; he was a business man of standing, but he had never taken stock; and Jakey comes back with new ideas from college and insists that stock be taken. The old man reasons with his young son and says, "Now, please, Jakey, for my sake, for the sake of the business, what's the use of disturbing it? Don't take stock; go right in and do what your father did." But no, Jakey was stubborn about that; that was one of the sound principles that he had learned in college. It got to the point where Jakey laid down the ultimatum to his father that unless he took stock he would quit and go with somebody else-and the old man did not want to be disgraced by seeing his son make a failure with somebody else (laughter); and so he consented, and they took stock. The auditors came in, and the clerks got to work, and two weeks elapsed, and the balance sheet was produced; and when Jakey saw the balance sheet he was amazed. Instead of the concern being solvent, instead of the assets side of the ledger showing away over the liabilities side, it was the other way around. He came to his father and said, "See, for thirty years you have been conducting business like that, and you say you have made money. Why, look at it; your liabilities are away over your assets, and you are insolvent." The father looked at him with a quissical smile and said, "Jakey, Jakey, I told you not to take stock!" (Great Laughter)
Much of the advice that I hear, and see given to the King Government on the question of immigration, is of that same stock-taking character. If we continue to give the King Government the same kind of advice it is like the old Mr. Goldstein in business-not taking stock. But it is necessary that we should find out what is the constructive policy for immigration in this country.
In the past there have been some policies. For example, there has been the policy of the economist, who said that the immigrant comes here to better his condition, and that coming here he lowers the standard of living, he undersells the native-born merchant and worker, he underbids labour, he is not an assets to the country, and economically we should not have him. On the other hand, it is interesting to note that everybody admits that it was the immigrant that built up the country; for if you scratch the native-born Canadian, if he be not of Indian stock he is of immigrant stock. It is the immigrant that has built up every country on this continent, and to talk of the immigrant as an economic liability is to read only one side of the ledger.
In ten years, from 1880 to 1890 alone, our neighbour to the south absorbed 5,500,000 immigrants. There is the sociologist's position. He talks about the newer immigrants of inferior racial stock. The older immigrants who came from the Baltic and Anglo-Saxon nations were of superior racial stock, it is maintained, and those who come from Central and Eastern Europe are of inferior racial stock, and the sociologist throws up his hands in fear and cries, "If we don't stop those hordes of inferiors coming into our land, in a short time, through intermarriage and fusion, we will have produced a lower grade of human beings." They forget that, after all is said and done, one human being is not racially inferior to another human being; for, after all, what counts is not race so much as environment. Ninety-five percent of what we are is due to the opportunities that we had to become what we are.
The only views, both of the sociologist and of economist, are static views; they look merely at one side of the coin, and they forget to see that every proposition has two sides. Their views are static. Their views do not regard the evolutionary and changing character of society under all forms and. conditions of life. We have got no further with those extreme views.
In my judgment an intelligent policy of immigration must be based on three fundamentals. It must be based, first of all, on a policy of selection; secondly, a policy of distribution; thirdly, a policy of incorporation.
What do I mean by these terms? In the past we imagined that we had a selective policy of immigration. What we really had was not selection at all; by which I mean a policy of deliberately choosing those people who, if they came here, would be an asset to the building up of this country. The policy that we did have, under the guise of selection, was really a policy of exclusion and a policy of rejection. There is a real and fundamental difference between these two policies. When you select your immigrant you are thinking of the future of your country; you are thinking of it in terms of ten and twenty and fifty and a hundred years; you are not thinking merely of today and of tomorrow; you are not thinking in terms of prejudices, and in terms of small towns and cities; you are not provincial, but national, when you think in terms of true selection. But when you are thinking in terms of rejection and exclusion you are thinking only of the situation and the exigency of the moment; you are thinking in terms of your prejudices; you are not thinking in the terms that will build up your nation.
Let me give you an instance of some selection regulations which we have on the statute books in Canada today. We have several orders-in-council which are nightmares to our immigrants, for example, an order-in-council known as "P.C. 23." This P.C. 23 was originally put on the statute books to operate against the Hindoos, to keep the Hindoos out of Canada. Friends, when I talk on the question of immigration today I am talking of immigration in terms of the white races of the world, not in terms of the yellow or the black or the brown, that is an entirely different question, and ought not to come under the policy of immigration at all. Now, this P.C. 23 was originally put on the statute books against Hindoos. It says that the immigrant coming into Canada must come over a continuous passage from the point where he leaves his native country to the time when he lands in Halifax or Quebec or Victoria. Until he lands here there must be no break in his journey. See how it is operating today, not against Hindoos at all. A man leaves Warsaw with his family; he sells all of his earthly possessions, and gets to Antwerp, and his wife or his children get sick. He stops for a period of a few weeks until they are well again to travel. They land in Halifax, and that father and immigrant cannot convince the immigration officials that he has come over a continuous passage; and, due to an order-in-council filled with red tape, that immigrant and his family are rejected and sent back. Is that selection, or is that exclusion? It is not a question of whether this man can be an asset to the country; it is not a question of whether he can build up himself on the farm or in an industry; but, has he or has he not complied with the order-in-council? He has not, and he goes back.
There was another order-in-council, saying that a man coming here must have $250, in show-money. If he has not got $250, and he lands in Quebec or Halifax, he goes back. He may have relatives here who are very wealthy, who are perfectly willing to give bonds to any amount that that man will not become a charge on the community. It does not matter; unless he has that show-money he goes back. Again, it is not a question of examining that man, finding out what his capacities are, finding out what he can do. Has he the show-money? If he has not, then he is through.
There is another order-in-council of a similar nature. It is working tremendous hardships on my own people. They don't have any difficulty with the show-money. They have a little difficulty with P.C. 23; but the real difficulty comes in this instance. A good many of my people live at present in places in Europe where there are no stable governments, for example, the Ukraine, where several millions of my people live, and only recently the Red Cross reported that over 300,000 of them were slaughtered in cold blood since 1919--over 300,000 Jews programmed for no other reason than that they were regarded as counter-revolutionaries, as opposed to Bolshevism-massacred by both sides. Those who are fighting the Bolsheviks contend that the Jews are Bolsheviks; and the Bolsheviks, when they drive the other gangs out of power, maintain that the Jews are counterBolsheviks; and between the devil and the deep blue sea 300,000 have been massacred in cold blood, and not a word from the world. Is the conscience of the world dead? A man escapes with his family out the Ukraine and gets into Poland; and he escapes from the Ukraine, why? because he will not live under radical socialism and under Bolshevism; he is a conservative and a moderate man, unused to that kind of radical communism; and he gets into Poland. Poland will give him merely a passport-rather, a vise permitting him to pass through that country and to come to Canada. He has sold everything he had for passage. He gets to Halifax or to Quebec or to Montreal, and there is an order-in-council, P.C. 2669, which says that unless that man can show a passport from the country of his nativity he will not be admitted to this land.
There is no stable government in the Ukraine; he cannot get a passport from anybody. Poland merely gives them permission to pass through the country, and when he is rejected because, perforce, he cannot fulfill this order-in-council, he has only one place to return to with his family, and that is to the bottom of the ocean, for Poland won't receive him, and he cannot go back to the Ukraine. Now, that is the sort of selective immigration we have on the statute books in Canada.
I am not saying, as I stand here this afternoon pleading, that we shall drop all the barriers and that we shall open our flood-gates wide and say to the people in Europe, "Come here, anybody, everybody, the water is fine, all come in!" I am not advocating that kind of selection. Of course the mentally and the morally and the physically unfit should be kept out of the land. But if you are going to have a policy of proper selection, every man who is strong of body, sound of mind and willing to work, has a place in this great country of God. If your ancestors had to contend with the type of legislation on the books today, neither you nor I nor any of us would be here today, and this would not be Canada, it would be a wilderness, with Indian tribes roaming over it. (Applause)
You will say, Isn't that asking too much? Won't we be flooded if we permit to come in people who are strong of body and sound of mind and who are willing to work? Mind you, I would make that an absolute condition-being willing to work-for coming into this country. We will analyze that for a few minutes. I say that our selective policy should be described not as restriction on immigration, but as improving the type of immigration that comes here. In other words, the attitude should not be--"immigrant, when you come here, prove to us why we should admit you." Should not the tables be turned? Should not the immigration authorities be asked to prove before some sort of a court where the immigrant can have a hearing, why that immigrant should not be permitted the opportunities to help in developing Canada? The attitude of mind today is just the reverse; the immigrant at our gates must prove why he should be admitted here. He has no court of law, no court of jurisdiction of any kind to which he can appeal his case, and once an immigration official has said "No," then the whole story is ended and he must go back.
Let me give you a human case that happened to me only the other day. A young Jew and Jewess from the Ukraine came into this country a week ago Monday. They travelled with a brother and sister-in-law. The young man was an engineer in the Ukraine. Four of his brothers and the old father were killed cold-bloodedly, because they did not produce the money on the part of the community to the man who was leader of the gang who had come into their city. They were lined up and killed. This man was in line, and as the sword was working its way he put his hand up to his face, and four of his fingers were dropped off, and only the thumb remained. That man came to the doors of Canada. He is an engineer, a man of education and refinement. He was refused admission because he did not have a passport that would prove to the immigration officials that he had a continuous passage, and that that passport was signed by the Ukrainian official. Now, that is the sort of stupid legislation that is not going to get us anywhere, that is driving hundreds and hundreds of desirable immigrants to other parts of the world. I was told only the other day by some friends that there are hundreds and thousands of good Swiss immigrants who are leaving Switzerland and going to other parts of the great Empire, and refusing to come to Canada because the restrictive legislation here is the kind that they would not put up with.
Now, we are not getting anywhere by that kind of restriction. Restriction is based on fear. It is the old primitive fear of the stranger. Now, we regard ourselves as superiors, don't we? And yet we fear the immigrant. We have nothing to fear. We must have faith in our own possibilities to absorb the immigrant rather than to be absorbed by him. We are showing the old manifestations of primitive beliefs when we say that we are afraid. After all, the leaven of liberty and democracy can be trusted to assimilate the immigrant, and to bring him to the point of view that we desire to develop, rather than that we should fail.
It is contended that the only desirable and serviceable element that Canada needs today is the agriculturist, and that if we are not careful we will be swamped by industrials from Europe. You have heard that from very authoritative and learned speakers and writers. What are the facts? We hear a great deal about our overcrowded cities in Canada. Is Toronto overcrowded? Galt, Hamilton, Brantford, and all the cities in Ontario-are they overcrowded? Any place is overcrowded when there is unemployment; when there are more mouths to feed than food to feed them, a small household with three in it is overcrowded. The question of overcrowding relates to unemployment, but after all is said and done we are not succumbing to unemployment; we regard it as a temporary phenomenon in our national life. We would have to lie down and say die if we thought that unemployment was on us to stay; but we believe in our hearts and souls, and we begin to see, that unemployment is gradually breaking from us rather than gripping us faster. We know that unemployment comes in cycles. We can almost predict with accuracy--Babson can, and other economists--just when it is going to hit us. Now, we are overcrowded only during periods of unemployment; but we are not overcrowded, and our cities are not overcrowded; we can stand heaps of people in every one of the great and small cities of Canada, if we only think of this country in terms of twenty, fifty and a hundred years.
We want farmers; true; but where are we going to get them? Who is coming here to be a farmer? Is the man who has a farm in England, Wales, Scotland, Sweden, or Czecho-Slovakia, or Roumania, or Galicia, coming to Canada? Why should he come? He is the only man in Europe who is prosperous. He is the only man in Europe who has the goods of the world. In fact, the peasant and farming elements in Central Europe have got so strong that only recently I read of their organization of what they call the Green International, in opposition to the Red International. We have heard of many cases of Roumanians and Czecho-Slovakians leaving the United States to go back there because, with the money they possess, they can buy land and be prosperous over there. They are not coming. The farmers of Norway and Sweden and Denmark and England are not going to give up the opportunity and happiness that they have over there now, and come over here. They did not come here before the war; why should they come now? It is like asking for the moon; to ask that those people come. They are not coming; and Canada must make up its mind that they are not coming, and if it wants agriculturists they must find them out of that element that is ready to come to Canada.
Now, who is ready to come? I maintain that the farmers who are on the land and who have their land are not coming. I maintain that the Bolshevists, the Radicals of Russia, are not coming, because they want to stay over there and work out the destiny of Bolshevism for Russia. I maintain that the Nationalists of Poland and Galicia and Czecho-Slovakia are not coming; they have a destiny to establish. But I do maintain that a great many middle-class conservative peoples who have not been able to adjust the conditions to the rapid and radical changes that have gone on in Europe are ready to come over here, and they are the people we want. To be sure, many of them are industrials and not farmers; but I maintain-and I do not expect you to agree with me; it is my own humble opinion-that a man is not born to be a farmer any more than he is born to be a Rabbi or a Minister or a business man or a physician or a judge or a lawyer. A man becomes very largely what his opportunities make him. (Hear, hear) The United States, from the period of 1880 to 1914 had millions of immigrants coming to its country. They were very largely farmers, peasants off the land, from Central and Eastern Europe. Why did they not go on to the land in the United States? If you go into the whole of the New England Peninsula you find it full of those agriculturists from Central and Eastern Europe. What are they doing there? They are working in the cotton mills, in the mines of Pennsylvania and Virginia. They have become industrials; why? Because the opportunities at that time were industrial rather than agricultural, and they were transferred from an agricultural stage to an industrial one. They have made good industrials
My point is, if Canada wants agriculturists it will have to take those industrials from Europe, this middle-class of the conservative people from the heart of Europe who are ready and willing to come here, and transform them into agriculturists. What would make a man become a farmer? What kind of an inducement can we offer him? He would rather stay over there and starve six months in the year than starve in Canada for six months. What do you offer a man when you ask him to take a position as a farm hand? You offer him occupation for six months. What is he going to do with the other six months? And what conditions of labour do you offer him? What hours of work? Gentlemen, you have to look at this from the human standpoint you cannot throw out dogmatism and doctrines an expect people to live up to them. The whole of farming has been revolutionized in the last twenty-five years. A man cannot go on a farm and use shovel and a hoe when his neighbour has a tractor. If you want seriously to have people come on farms you have to do something to help them. We have not only to give them land, but we have to make it easy for them to go on that land and to build a house and get a little live stock and some machinery, and when they get on the land we must follow them up and see that in a few years they are willing and able to pay back that which you loaned to them. The whole attitude of mind has to change on the transformation of the element in Europe that is willing and-ready to come, in order to make agriculturists out of them.
But my contention is that Canada need not be always an agricultural country. It has industrial possibilities, and tremendous industrial possibilities. At present the balance of our trade in manufactured goods is in favour of our neighbour to the south. Money which should stay here goes over there. Why? Business men have asked this question many times. The reason why the balance of trade of manufactured articles is in favour of the United States, not in favour of Canada, is because we do not manufacture as cheaply over here, and as well in some things, as they do; that is the contention. But why shouldn't we? Have we not got the opportunities? Have we not got the mines that will produce the elements that we need? Have we not got the space? Cannot we have the men? Cannot we bring them over here and do at least as well as our neighbours have done in the south? Have we not the initiative and the forward look in our eyes that can be had? We are doing it in some lines. It is only a question of being able to look at it from the big and broad angle of courage, of initiative. To do that we need the city dwellers as well as country dwellers. Ninety percent of that which the United States manufactures is consumed in its own country. Why should we look for foreign markets for most of the things that we produce, and contend with exchange, and contend with the fear of foreign tariff walls? If we had a population in this country large enough to consume most of the things we produce we could make ourselves independent of much of that which we have to depend on over there. The whole attitude, I think, has been one of balancing the agricultural and the industrial. We need both. We need city dwellers as well as rural dwellers, and I have absolutely no rear that we are going to be swamped by the peoples over there.
After all, immigration and labour follow two very distinct lines of economic action. The forces that make for prosperity over here bring immigrants to our shores in numbers as great as we can absorb them; and the forces that make for unemployment here and industrial and economic depression keep immigrants from our shores, and normally it means a return movement of people over here who .axe looking for opportunities over there. Water will find its own level; and so, in life, men must find those economic opportunities which will make it possible for them to earn their bread.
I have said something about the question of selection. I would advocate the formation of a commission that will work out an intelligent policy of selection; that commission to be composed of three elements-of labour, of industry, and the agricultural groups in our country-working in conjunction, and with the advice of representatives from the different immigrant groups here; finding out what our needs are; finding out what is the labour material that is willing to come over here, and then adjusting the two. We need a survey that will be a real study of the question before a selection policy can be laid down.
I did want to say a word about distribution and incorporation. We have been in the habit of receiving the immigrant by admitting him and then letting him shift for himself. We have not pointed out to the immigrant where the opportunities are. We have not told the immigrant where it would be best for him to go. We have not established labour bureaus anywhere in the country that would register for us at any moment what are the capacities for the absorption of labour in different places in our country. We don't know the unemployment question is getting big until it swamps us. Economists will tell you that when the unemployment gets above four percent of the employment, then you know you have got a real unemployment problem on your hands, and you had better do something about it. It is well, if we are to place men on the soil, that we should do it directly under government agencies, not under private agencies-government agencies that will work honestly and intelligently; and I am enough of a democrat to have faith that government agencies might in time work as efficiently as private can in these matters of national concern. There are those men in the community who doubt it, who feel that only through private initiative in national affairs can we get the best results, but I say I place myself on the side of the faithful democrats.
We need rural credit banks that will go into the question of help to the farmer when he is in need, to help him in such a way that it will be a real help to him. And then when we have located the immigrant as a foreigner, we have forgotten that we are Canadians only because most of us were born in Canada. Your Canadianism is a very pure accident. The man who comes over here is a Canadian by choice rather than by birth. (Applause) That Canadian is to be looked upon as an asset, not as a foreigner or as an alien. You heard the story of the Scotchman who heard a young Canadian boasting of the fact that for two or three generations he was a Canadian. "Oh, yes," said he, "no doubt it is a very wonderful thing that your ancestors were starved out of the old country so long sin', while mine stayed until twenty years ago, when I cam' over of my own free will and accord." (Laughter) That is the attitude that I think we must adopt to the immigrant.
You know it is a fact, that has just begun to be proved in the statistics of naturalization bureaus, that it is the immigrants who come out of countries of autocracy and misrule that are the quickest of naturalization. Thus, for example, in the 804 cases of naturalization that you had last year in Toronto the majority of people who sought naturalization came from my people. They know how to appreciate liberty and citizenship, and when the opportunity is given to them they seek it, want it, and appreciate it. The immigrant is not inferior to us. Priority is no synonym for superiority: The immigrant brings with him a rich cultural heritage. (Hear, hear) We ought to make the best use of it. It is not a question of putting the immigrant in an AngloSaxon strait-jacket when he comes here, and telling him 'and urging him to forget everything that he brings with him from the past. We have a right to ask the immigrant several things. We have a right to ask the immigrant, when he comes to Canada, that he shall learn and make the English language his language. (Applause) But le me add, I don't believe that we ought to be rigid enough to say that everybody in Canada shall know and learn only one language. (Applause) I say that we have a right to ask of an immigrant who comes here that he shall forget all other political allegiances that he held before he came here (applause) and that he shall become a Canadian in body and in spirit and in patriotism. (Hear, hear) I say, too, that when the immigrant comes here he must learn to do business in accredited Canadian ways, so that we can all work on the same economic basis and understand one another, and take a certain business morality for granted. I say that we have a right to ask of the immigrant who comes here that he should adopt Canadian manners and ways. But after an immigrant has done that and become a Canadian, then we should give him absolute freedom in matters of religion, and give him absolute liberty to develop those elements in his make-up which he considers good and true.
We should ask the Italian who comes to our shores to develop his music. We should ask the immigrant from Scotland to bring with him some of his imagination and his poetry. We should ask the immigrant from Poland to bring with him some of the beauties of his literature. We should ask the Jew, when he comes here, to bring with him some of the passion for social justice and for ethics which were true of his people for generations and generations. Instead, what are we doing? We ask the immigrant to forget all these things, and we substitute for the true and the holy things of his culture and his soul, we substitute jazz for music (laughter); we substitute yellow journalism for good literature (hear, hear); we substitute the movie, with its morbidity, for the fine drama of his country; we substitute the dollar for religion. (Applause) We have the kind of immigrants that we make, and we have the kind of citizens that we by our own example and conduct produce.
How many of us make contacts with the immigrant? How many of us stretch out the hand of fellowship and say, "You are one of us; you are my brother; you are a future Canadian in every sense of the word; your children and my children will go to the same school and play together and work together, and build up this country together." (Hear, hear) We have forgotten that. We have permitted them to slink away and form little coral islands, to form wards, to form colonies, to think that we are bizarre and strange and offish, that we don't want to make contact with them. That is not Canadianization, my friends; that is not brotherly love; that is just snobbishness. (Applause)
Now, I say the time has come for us to see this thing in its big and broad angles, and put the whole question of the future of Canada before us as a great big panorama, and imagine each one of you a painter, imagine each one of you a conductor of a great symphony orchestra. You are painting a picture of Canada, and you are putting in colours, each colour representing a different immigrant group that comes here, and the whole thing producing a wonderful picture. You are; each one of you, conductor of a great symphony orchestra, and each one of your players represents a different immigrant group; each one of those players is playing a different instrument, and playing the tune that is native to his instrument, but you, as the conductor, are weaving all those melodies and all of those instruments into one beautiful, harmonious symphony.
We have an opportunity in nation-building. We can hitch our wagon to a star. We have the opportunity because we are ahead of every other nation in this regard-we can avoid all the mistakes they made; we can benefit by their experiences. Let us keep our minds and our eyes wide open, and let us feel that the destiny of Canada is in our hands. What we make of it, that it will become. Let us make of it something that our children will be proud to live in, and for which God will bless us. (Loud and enthusiastic applause)
VICE-PRESIDENT WILKINSON voiced the thanks of the Club to the speaker for his very eloquent and informative address.