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Should Canada West Join Confederation?
Transcript of Should Canada West Join Confederation?
The American Civil War: The Threat of an American Takeover: In 1861, there was the American Civil war. Great Britain took the side of the South, because the South provided them with cotton. When the North heard of that, they jumped to conclusions about Canada, (British North American colonies). Because the colonies had a very strong tie to Britain, so, even though the colonies did not want to be involved, the North interpreted that the colonies were supporting the South as well. This was what caused the threat of an American Takeover, and the cancellation of the Reciprocity Treaty, which was already explained. The Threat of an American takeover, or “Manifest Destiny”, was though up of because the colonies felt that the Americans were growing hostile towards them because they, “supposedly” supported the South during the civil war. Also, some believed in Manifest Destiny because of the Fenian Raid which occurred in 1866. Defense Part II . In 1866, on the night of May 31st, as group of Irish American soldiers alias Fenians invaded Canada. All that they were faced against were weak, untrained, and volunteer Canadian soldiers. Thankfully, though, parts of the colony included British soldiers at the time, so they fought the Fenians, who wanted to claim Canada as “New Ireland”. In the end, the Fenians did not have reinforcements rushed to them, so within a couple of days, the raid was withdrawn. At the time, the Fenians invaded Canada because they wanted to get revenge on Great Britain for taking control over their home country, Ireland. They cut all forms of communication, and wrecked the railways, which had taken decades to build. So, because of the Fenian Raid, and because the North was hostile to Canada, Canada had feared that one day, Manifest Destiny would become a reality. This was one of the factors leading to confederation. If the colonies united, then in case Canada ever got invaded again, other colonies, like the maritime, could send over troops to defend for Canada. For a long time…the British North Americans living near the United States border lived in fear…they were always alert, in case of another Fenian attack. This also caused Sir John A. MacDonald to turn the potential threat of the raids into an argument for Confederation. Canada’s weak defense made Confederation essential for the safety of British North Americans. Alternative I: Our Colony Should Join Others In Confederation Advantages: - Confederation would change 5 colonies into one huge powerful nation.
-It would allow the colonies to trade with each other without any tariffs.
-Canada would become the third largest sea-going nation in the world, following the United States and Britain.
- A new strong country would attract new people
- Since the U.S. cancelled the Reciprocity Agreement with Canada, confederation would provide other markets for their goods.
- In case of a Fenian attack, or war, the colonies could stand and defend each other.
- The French Rights would be protected.
- If colonies unite, then we will be able to finish the Grand Trunk. Disadvantages: - We will lose our independance.
- We have the most money... Why should we give it away to the smaller colonies?
- Don't want to make French second language.
- We only want one main language to communicate through
- Too much empty space; it'd be easier if we were each our own separate country.
- We have the largest population...Won't our descendants make up most of the army? Alternative II: Our Colony Should Not Join Confederation Advantages: - Our colony will have its own freedom and government
-When other colonies do ship in goods, we can still tax them high tariffs and make money off them. Disadvantages: -If we ever get invaded again, no other colonies will help us
-We will lose money shipping our good over to other colonies
-We are starting to be a nuisance to Great Britain, as we are relying on them too much
-Our ties with Britain are starting to weaken, so we are unsure if they will send over troops if we get invaded again
-Britain has cancelled the Corn Laws, and the United States of America have cancelled the Reciprocity Agreement, so if we do NOT join confederation, we will be in economic turmoil
-We need to build the railway to ship goods over! But we are broke! Joining confederation could help split the cost among colonies, but we can’t do that if we’re not joining confederation Alternative III: Our Colony should Join the United States Advantages: - It was a country since 1776, older countries have the resources and knowledge about how to use resources and ship goods faster. ( They know the routes, etc. )
- More people = stronger defense and militia.
- If we join their population, it'd be larger, which means more trade, business, and money. Disadvantages: - Lose independence
- Lose close ties with Britain
- Since we have the most money, we will have to share it amongst such a large population
- Manifest Destiny would partially become reality. Alternative IV: Our Colony Should Only Join a Union of Maritime Colonies Advantages: -In case of a takeover, the Maritime provinces can ship over their troops to help us
-To build a railway to help ship the goods over to other colonies can be split among with the Maritime colonies
-They will not charge us to ship our goods over and we can get goods from other colonies Disadvantages: -Newfoundland will not support of the railway because they have the Atlantic Ocean, and the Gulf of the St. Lawrence for their transportation use
-We cannot receive goods from other colonies other than the Maritime colonies which means we’ll be overstocked on sea food
-Most Maritime colonies use water transportation as their main source of transportation, hence they may be unwilling to pitch in for the railway tracks
-Therefore the top jot note applies the knowledge that we may be stuck in economic turmoil either way unless we join union with all the British North American colonies Our Decision Part II
After the Fenians raided us, we are fearing of Manifest Destiny. Similar to the Threat Of An American Takeover, the Maritime colonies can rush troops over here. This way we won't always be such a burden and nuisance to Great Britain to rely on them so much, and our relationship with the British shall remain stable.
The Need for Rail Links:
If all the colonies united, the cost for the Grand Trunk (railway) could be split, and therefore, they troops could be shipped to wherever needed in case of a raid, without trespassing through the United States border. Canada West is on the verge of going bankrupt. Should the colonies unite, the cost of the railway links can be split. The railway links are to be used for the shipping of militia and goods to other colonies.
Changing British Attitudes:
A group of gathering British alias “Little Englanders” started to believe the colonies are a nuisance to Great Britain. And, we just started charging them high tariffs for their goods to enter our markets. They are starting to grow hostile towards us. They might stop sending troops to help us in war. They might stop supporting us, and stop shipping goods over! Our relationship is us depending on them too much. We need to form our own union to support ourselves. Therefore, ultimately, the logical solution is to unite all the British North American colonies so support for ourselves and remain an independent country.Therefore, it's only logical that Canada West should join Confederation, because all the factors benefit Canada West. Our Decision! We chose to join the colonies in confederation:
Because of the 5 main factors that lead to Confederation:The Threat of An American Takeover,The Trouble With Trade,Fenian Raids,The Need For Rail Links, and Changing British Attitudes
The Threat of an American Takeover:
Should we decide to unite with the other British North American colonies, if the Americans ever threaten to take over again, other colonies can rush their troops here to defend for our country. This will guarantee our safety here and will do all the colonies good. Our troops are too inexperience and weak, but if we join confederation, when we are attacked, the Maritime colonies’ troops can send help to us!
The Trouble With Trade:
After our Reciprocity Agreement with the United States has been cancelled, and Great Britain has called off the trade preference, we are left with no other choice, but to join confederation. This way, it could transport it’s goods to the other colonies without having to pay such a high tariff. Hence, we will not be in economic turmoil from investing all that money into the Corn Laws.