Countering Radicalism Then and Now

This passage comes from an Ottawa Journal editorial responding to the 1937 Quebec speech from the throne. The speech, prepared by the Union Nationale government of Maurice Duplessis, pledged to Quebec government to the global fight against communism. In response the Journal editors wrote:

“Quebec’s speech from the Throne says that war will be “waged relentlessly” upon Communism. Well, if Quebec or any other province wants to wage war upon Communism that is its own business, so long as it does not interfere with the ordinary rights of Canadian citizenship. It may be, too, that Quebec is going to war upon Communism in a really effective way, namely: Fight for decent wage and living conditions among the mass of its people; fight against slums and disease and squalor; fight against an infant mortality rate that is among the highest in the world. We hope so.”

The two points the author briefly outlines in this paragraph have tremendous relevance to today; just substitute communism for radicalism. It is only by respecting the rights of freedoms of citizens and ensuring that the needs of all people are met that any society can truly counter any revolutionary philosophy.

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