Thank you Madame Speaker. Good evening members of the House. <<Rebuttal>> our opponents say that World War 1 had an overall positive effect on Canada as a country, but nothing is positive about the deaths of 60 000 Canadians, who lost their precious lives fighting in this overseas war. These soldiers weren't just any men; they were husbands, fathers, boyfriends, brothers, sons and uncles, and they were missed dearly by their families.
This first argument that WWI had a negative impact on Canada is that the conscription crisis put a strain on Canadian unity, and the English-French relations became even tenser. Conscription was first introduced since fewer men joined the army by the mid-1917. This was because they knew that there was no glory in war, and the true horrors of the war have been revealed by the wounded soldiers who were sent home. The young Canadians were finally aware of the horrible conditions, and therefore the numbers casualties started outnumbering enlistments.
When, conscription was brought into place by Prime Minister Borden, men were forced to join the armed force. French Canadians were strongly opposed to conscription because they felt that this law was against their rights since the war did not affect them directly, and Western framers also opposed because the young men were essential workers who were needed to stay at home and contribute to the goods being sent overseas. There were even anti-conscription forces in Quebec, and the leader, Henri Bourassa made radical demands that threatened to lead to the breakup of the nation. The French Canadians felt that they were being treated like second class citizen in Canada, and that they're language and culture weren't being protected.
Prime Minister Borden also passed the Wartime Election Act, which took away the vote from Canadians who spoke enemy languages or who had emigrated from enemy countries like Germany and Austria-Hungary. World War I brought many issues of racism to the forefront in Canada. The unjust custody of many "enemy aliens" or immigrants from "enemy" countries in Canada during WWI was truly unfair. African-Canadian soldiers faced discrimination even though they contributed to the effort, working in labor battalions