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distributing its patronage among the Canadians, which was quite as offensive to that people as their previous exclusion."
He then proceeds to illustrate further this point of "national hostility" by the separate education of youth-the difference of language, leaving both parties subject to much misconception and misrepresentation of each other-the almost total absence of social intercourse between the races-the extreme rarity of intermarriages (though formerly this was not the case)-a marked division of society, preventing the conflicting opinions which divide it from coming into direct contact, in political personal controversies-and the total want of combination for public objects. "They cannot harmonize," says the Report, "even in associations of charity. The only public occasion on which they ever meet is in the jurybox; and there they meet only to the utter obstruction of justice.”
There is but little sympathy, Lord Durham says, between the bulk of the English population and the "Officials," as the clique is termed, which has been from time immemorial in possession of the Executive Government; and he thus states the cause which has thrown them into a singular alliance. The Assembly were thought to exhibit a jealousy of the influx and success of the English; and instead of promoting emigration, enterprise and the accumulation of wealth, rather to incline to cast obstacles in their way. The English were for urging on extensive schemes of internal improvement, as the first object to which all the efforts of legislation should direct themselves; while the Assembly refused to increase the burthens of the country by imposing taxes to meet such proposed expenditures, or to direct to that object any of the funds formerly devoted to other purposes. Some of the works, indeed, which the assembly authorized and encouraged, were undertaken on a scale of due moderation, and successfully perfected. But to the great work of rendering the St. Lawrence and the Ottawa navigable through their whole extent, they exhibited, it is stated, an invincible repugnance-though, the Report continues:
"It is true that there was considerable foundation for their objections to the plan on which the Legislature of Upper Canada had commenced some of these works, and to the mode in which it had carried them on; but the English complained, that, instead of profiting by the experience which they might have derived from this source, the Assembly seemed only to make its objections a pretext for doing nothing. The applications for banks, railroads and canals were laid on one side until some general measures could be adopted with regard to such undertakings; but the general measures thus promised were never passed, and the particular enterprises in question were prevented. The adoption of a registry was refused on the alleged ground of its inconsistency with the French institutions of the Province, and no measure to attain this desirable end, in a less obnoxious mode, was prepared by the leaders of the Assembly. The feudal tenure was supported, as a mild and just provision for the settlement of a new country; a kind of assurance given by a committee of the Assembly, that some step should be taken to remove the most injurious incidents of their scignoral tenure, produced no practical results; and the enterprises of the English were still thwarted by the obnoxious laws of the country."
The Assembly being at the same time in collision with the Executive Government, the latter gladly threw itself on this powerful and energetic minority; who combined with it from perfectly dif ferent motives, and with perfectly different objects, against a common enemy.
“The English desired reform and liberal measures from the Assembly, which refused them, while it was urging other reforms and demanding other liberal measures from the Executive Government. The Assembly complained of the oppressive use of the power of the Executive; the English complained that they, a minority, suffered under the oppressive use to which power was turned by the French majority. Thus a bold and intelligent Democracy was impelled, by its impatience for liberal measures, joined to its national antipathies, to make common cause with a government which was at issue with the majority on the question of popular rights. The actual conflict commenced by a collision between the Executive and the French majority: and as the English population rallied round the Government, supported its pretensions, and designated themselves by the appellation of "loyal," the causes of the quarrel were naturally supposed to be much more simple than they really were; and the extent of the division which existed among the inhabitants of Lower Canada, the number and nature of the combatants arrayed on each side, and the irremediable nature of the dispute, were concealed from the public view."
And after the armed collision into which the two races have been brought, with all "the melancholy scenes exhibited in the progress of the contest, or the fierce passions which held an unchecked sway during the insurrection, or immediately after its suppression,” the following is the picture which he draws of the present relative attitudes of the two portions of the population:
"Removed from all actual share in the government of their country, they brood in sullen silence over the memory of their fallen countrymen, of their burnt villages, of their ruined property, of their extinguished ascendency, and of their humbled nationality. To the Government and the English they ascribe these wrongs, and nourish against both an indiscriminating and eternal animosity. Nor have the English inhabitants forgotten in their triumph the terror with which they suddenly saw themselves surrounded by an insurgent majority, and the incidents which alone appeared to save them from the unchecked domination of their antagonists. They find themselves still a minority in the midst of a hostile and organized people; ap
Lord Durham calls this collision a "treasonable attempt of the French party to carry its political objects into effect by an appeal to arms." This, we are satisfied, is entirely unjust and untrue. It is true that events were rapidly ripening towards that consummation, and this whole Report teems with abundant evidence of accumulated misgovernment and oppression on the part of the British ascendency fully to justify the resort to the ultima ratio of “the divine right of insurrection," to cast off so burthensome and galling a thraldom of foreign dominion. But we have amply shown, in our former Articles on this subject, that it is upon the Government party that the responsibility of the outbreak of November, 1837, properly rests. There was no contemplation of, and not the slightest preparation for, an immediate "appeal to arms." This is an all-important point in the consideration of this general subject, and we beg our readers to bear it fully in mind. We have met with no attempts entitled to notice, to controvert the evidence and statements, establishing this point, contained in our former Articles, and therefore are not called upon at present for any further illustration of it, but are entitled to assume it as proved and established.
prehensions of secret conspiracies and sanguinary designs haunt them unceasingly, and their only hope of safety is supposed to rest on systematically terrifying and disabling the French, and in preventing a majority of that race from ever again being predominant in any portion of the legislature of the province."
"Never again will the present generation of French Canadians yield a loyal submission to a British Government; never again will the English population tolerate the authority of a House of Assembly, in which the French shall possess or even approximate to a majority."
And with respect to the material condition of the Province, he speaks of the tranquillity and happiness of families destroyed-the value of property alarmingly depreciated-the improvement and settlement of the country arrested-a great diminution of the wealth of the country and of the public revenue-the importation of grain for domestic consumption, instead of its exportation as formerly--a general insecurity both of person and property--a paralysis of a large portion of the industry and capital of the countryand a great diminution of the influx of emigrants, once so considerable. In 1832 the number of emigrants who landed at the port of Quebec amounted to 52,000; in 1837 it had fallen to 22,000; and in 1838 it did not amount to 5,000,-without taking into account the serious drain of emigration from the Province to the United States.
The animosity thus generated, he states that there is not the slightest chance of putting an end to, during the present generation. It has entirely overcome their ancient national antipathy to the people of the United States, and he has no doubt "that an invading American army might rely on the cooperation of almost the entire French population of Lower Canada." The Report also admits "the growth of an alarming state of feeling among the English population" themselves--a dissatisfaction with home the government, and a jealousy of every measure of clemency or even justice towards their opponents, "as indicating a disposition towards that conciliatory policy which is the subject of their angry recollection; for they feel that, being a minority, any return to the due course of constitutional government would again subject them to a French majority;"--and notwithstanding the late exasperation of the Canadian loyalists against the American people and government, there is "a strong under-current of an exactly contrary feeling ;" and he significantly intimates that the English population are disposed to contemplate with great favor an annexation to our Union, confident that the influx of American emigration would soon give the predominance to the English race, as in Louisiana, and that they and their posterity would share in that amazing progress, and that great material prosperity which every day's experience shows them is the lot of the people of the United States."
The evils of this conflict of races have been aggravated by the conduct of the Government. Liberal institutions and a prudent
policy would at any rate have softened its character, and brought it more speedily to a more decisive and peaceful conclusion. “Unhappily, however," says the Report, "the system of Government pursued in Lower Canada has been based on the policy of perpetuating that very separation of the races, and encouraging those very notions of conflicting nationalities which it ought to have been the first and chief care of Government to check and extinguish❞— and thus we again return to British colonial misgovernment, as still the prima mali labes. For the purpose of arresting the further dismemberment of the Empire, it became the policy of the Government "to isolate the inhabitants of the British from those of the revolted colonies; and "to cultivate the nationality of the French Canadians, as a means of perpetual and entire separation from their neighbors," and at the same time "to break them down as much as possible into petty isolated communities."
The French language, laws, and religious institutions were retained; all grants of land, even to the refugee loyalists, and the military bounties, were directed to be made in fief and seigniory, and Canada was divided into two Provinces-the settled portion being allotted to the French, and the unsettled being destined to become the seat of British colonization. And "thus," continues the Report,
Instead of availing itself of the means which the extent and nature of the Province afforded for the gradual introduction of such an English population into its various parts as might have easily placed the French in a minority, the Government deliberately constituted the French into a majority, and recognized and strengthened their distinct national character. Had the sounder policy of making the Province English, in all its institutions, been adopted from the first, and steadily persevered in, the French would probably have been speedily outnumbered, and the beneficial operation of the free institutions of England would never have been impeded by the animosities of origin."
The subsequent course of Government has been calculated to multiply and aggravate the evils of which it thus so carefully planted and fostered the seed. It has been a series of inconsistencies and vacillations, fruitful of the most pernicious consequences, with alternate concessions to the contending races, irritating both, impairing its own authority, and, by keeping alive the hopes of a French nationality-at the same time that it brought an influx of English emigration into direct contact with it, even in the province allotted to the French, without any provision for an easy and natural amalgamation-counteracting the influences which might, ere this, have brought the quarrel to its natural and necessary termination.
We have thus followed Lord Durham through his development of this which he makes his cardinal idea, in relation to Lower Canada. Yet, even if we had no other testimony, his own report abounds with satisfactory evidence that it is an erroneous one. No VOL. V. NO. XVIII.-JUNE, 1839. K K
doubt, indeed, this "national animosity" does now exist, as an actual fact, though we have also no doubt that the permanency of the feeling is greatly exaggerated in Lord Durham's view, even if its present intensity is not. This has long been a favorite idea with the Government party in Lower Canada, both as a supposed justification of its hostile policy towards the French majority, and as calculated to unite the whole insurgent population under the banner of Anglo-Saxon nationality, at the same time to secure the sympathy and support of the English people and the Home Government. They have succeeded in impressing it upon Lord Durham; though we must say that, in his elaborate development of this idea, he appears to be striving no less earnestly to convince himself than his reader. Here we see the Englishman, and the good old English prejudice and pride, which no superadded cosmopolitan liberality, of a political school but little congenial to a proud English aristocrat, can ever overcome, though it may attempt to disperse it. He was the rather induced, probably, to fall in with this idea, as affording a tolerable middle ground from which he might venture to pronounce on the Government party all the severe condemnation with which the report abounds, without carrying with it that full force of personal condemnation which their manifest gross misconduct and misrule would properly deserve. But ingenious as are his efforts to impose upon himself and the British public with this idea, it is apparent, on the face of the report itself, that he is committing the error common to many more superficial inquirers than the author of this document, of confounding between the consequences of misrule and the cause of public disorder. His own partial consciousness of the difficulty of the task of thus persuading either himself or other people, shows itself in the following remark at the close of this part of the subject. Positive as he declares his conviction to be of the truth of this idea, yet still, after all, he feels compelled to add :
"It is impossible to determine precisely the respective effects of the social and political causes. The struggle between the Government and the Assembly has aggravated the animosities of race, and the animosities of race have rendered the political difference irreconcileable."
And again, the implied acknowledgment that the "national animosity" was but the consequence of a long course of oppressive misgovernment, peeps forth in the admission that "that contest has arisen by degrees," and that it was not until the development of representative Government had placed substantial power in the hands of the people, that that people divided itself into races, arrayed against each other in intense and enduring animosity."
Now who is there that is acquainted with the history of Ireland but has seen the same causes producing similar effects to those which we witness to-day in Canada? In the former country the law and the favors of Government made two classes-the oppressed