The Duty of Canada and Her Sons to the Empire
The Empire Club of Canada Addresses (Toronto, Canada), 23 Mar 1916, p. 137-151
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The Duty of Canada and Her Sons to the Empire

Democracy and the volunteer system. Asking whether the volunteer system is best suited to us; is it economical? These questions being asked today by ten thousands of Canadians, both in and out of the King's uniform. A few words on the phenomena of war itself: an examination of several schools of thought on war. Questions asked of a group of 56 cadets in the Royal Military College in the autumn of 1913 for two reasons: to get a grade on the thought and initiative of each individual student; to discover how far the chloroform of pacifism was affecting the mind of the rising generation. Responses and results of the questions asked. The need for right to be backed up by the shadows of might; with the shadow of force and occasionally they must be supported by force itself. The present war a case in point, and how that is so. In self-preservation and in duty, we are bound to raise an army; bound to raise the largest and most effective army which is compatible with our ability to maintain it in the field at our own expense and keep it supplied with recruits. Asking whether or not the volunteer system does this; responding that it does not. An examination of the volunteer system. The volunteer system inefficient, uncertain, and unequal to the strain of a really great war. A more serious charge against the volunteer system: it is antagonistic to the spirit of free institutions; it is undemocratic. Looking at the volunteer system from the standpoint of business. Such a system wasteful of our national energy. The speaker's belief that the volunteer system lacks dignity and smacks of insincerity, if not of moral weakness. An explanation of this point. A summary.