Canada has great opportunities at the present time, greater
than she may ever have again. The foundation-laying time is always
a day of golden opportunity, especially is this so in laying the
foundations of a nation. That day comes but one. "Once to every
man and nation comes the moment to decide." The present is our
moment of opportunity. The destiny of Canada hangs upon the all-
important "now". If we prove recreant to our present opportunities,
it will simply spell for us as a nation "Ruin".
If we are going to do our duty by our country, and grasp the
opportunity of the moment, we must build up a spirit of nationality.
This has been one of the strong points in the nation-building of our
Southern neighbors. It is perfectly marvellous how quickly the
United States makes "Americans" out of all peoples and tongues.
The only nation she has failed to assimilate is the Jew. Jonah is
still indigestible even to the United States. Men of all creeds and
nationalities become intensely loyal to the institutions and
customs of the Republic. (- Done mainly through Public Schools)
In the past we have failed most egregiously in this respect.
We have been a sort of people without a nationality. We have even
gone so far as to repudiate the name "Canadian" and applied it
exclusively to the French people. In days gone by when asked as to
our nationality, we have invariably replied "I am Scotch" or " I am
English", or " I am Irish". We have done this even though we were
born in this land, and perhaps our parents as well.
If we are going to assimilate the thousands that are flocking
to our shore from all lands, this must stop. We can never make
the foreigners settling in our country primarily loyal to Britain,
but we may make them loyal to Canada. The hour is coming, and now
is when a man in this land will no longer say I am Scotch, or
English or Irish as the case may be, but he will be proud to say
"I am a Canadian," and the sooner it comes the better if we are
going to build a nation in this new world.
It may be all very well to celebrate our St. George's days, and
come together on St. Andrew's night and thank God that we are
Scotchmen, and fly the green flag on St. Patrick's day, and float