<br /> on <br />the current state of Canada <br />and <br />the political dispositions of its inhabitants, <br />submitted, <br />to the citizen Genêt, <br />plenipotentiary minister of the French Republic<br /> to the United States of America|[[Henry-Antoine Mézière]]|June 12, 1793|}}
Canada is divided in two provinces ([[Wikipedia:Upper Canada|Upper]] and [[Wikipedia:Lower Canada|Lower Canada]]) and extends almost 200 miles. To preserve and defend the possession of this part of America, the English have no more than 6,000 men
in the current circumstances, several battalions having been sent this spring to the Islands. These troops are divided between [[Wikipedia:Quebec City|Quebec]] (the capital) [[Wikipedia:Ile aux Noix|Île-aux-noix]], the [[Wikipedia:Lake Champlain|Lake Champlain]], [[Wikipedia:Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec|St-Jean]], [[Wikipedia:Fort Chambly|Chambly]], [[Wikipedia:Fort Detroit|Detroit]], [[Wikipedia:Gaspé, Quebec|Gaspé]] and [[Wikipedia:Fort Michilimackinac|MisshilimaKinac]]. The government persuaded of the insufficiency of these troops to keep Canada, has had several battalions of militia raised since the [[Wikipedia:French Revolutionary Wars: Campaigns of 1793|declaration of war of France against England]]. But it would be quite a weak barrier to oppose in case of invasion; because in addition to the jealousy which reigns between the militiamen and their officers who are all dandies, it is notorious that the ''Canadiens'' are not interested in leaving their occupations to defend posts which only the King, they say, may find beneficial to preserve. And the government is so wary of the insurrectionary spirit that it has not yet provided weapons to the militiamen, keeping them for just in time distribution.
''Canadiens'' owe the French Republic the [[Wikipedia:Constitutional Act of 1791|constitution a little less arbitrary]] than [[Wikipedia:Quebec Act|their first]], which was granted to them in 1791 [1 ]. In both provinces of Canada, there is a [[Wikipedia:Legislative Assembly of Lower Canada|Lower House]], a [[Wikipedia:Legislative Council of Lower Canada|hereditary Senate]] and a [[Wikipedia:Governor of Lower Canada|Lieutenant governor]] holding a nice ''[[Wikipedia:veto|veto]]'': and it is this [[Wikipedia:hermaphrodite|hermaphrodite]] body which is responsible to make laws. In the province of Lower Canada, the oldest and most populated, the Lower House is almost entirely made up of ''Canadiens'' and one counts in it [[three French-born]] who are true [[Wikipedia:Republicanism|republicans]]. It is with delight that last winter I saw this House, in opposition with the government, order that the [[Wikipedia:Statute|statutory]] language would be the French language, ''being that of the majority''. Notwithstanding the strong ''veto'' opposed by the government, the House held on and appealed to the Parliament of England on this stupid veto. What will be the outcome? ... Nobody knows. [2 ] But it is easy to suppose that if the veto is not lift up, the ''Canadiens'' will have no loathing in shaking up the yoke of their stupefied tyrant.
[[Image:Debat-langues.png|center|thumb|694px|Tableau illustrating the ''Débat sur les langues'' (Language debate) held in the first Parliament of Lower Canada on January 21, 1793]]
Independently of this reason which would induce me to have good hopes for the
''Canadiens'', there is in an infinity of other reasons derived from the oppressive way in which they were of all time treated by the wicked English government. The first year after the [[Wikipedia:Treaty of Paris (1763)|cession]], one saw men, fathers, citizens of good consideration, immediately hung, without any form of lawsuit, under the simple suspicion of non-Royalism and the blood of these unfortunate victims which still runs in some ''Canadiens'', asks for revenge. Peasants were arrested and inhumanly whipped, for the sole crime of not having been able to clear their cars, collapsed in the snow under an enormous load, out of the way to give passage to an English officer walking a prostitute. House owners who strongly held on to their property because in it they had received the last embrace of their expiring fathers, were driven out of them by the infamous [[Wikipedia:Frederick Haldimand|Haldimand]], without any sort of allowance and saw their properties be used as ornament on the avenues of the this imperious man's castle. Fifteen days drudgeries made the craftsman lose the means of providing for the daily needs of a family. One saw the English in possession of all lucrative offices while honorary ones were hardly granted to ''Canadiens''. Finally, in addition to thousand other local circumstances, the ''Canadiens'' see, with the greatest disposition to revenge, their ports closed down to all the nations, except England and their [[Wikipedia:Fur trade|trades of fur]] and grain monopolized by this cruel mother who fixes at her will the price of these goods and forces Canada to receive her goods and her food in return.
It is to this disposition to revenge that the [[Wikipedia:Americans|Americans]], in their [[Wikipedia:Invasion of Canada (1775)|last expedition against Canada]] owe the hospitality that they received there. Major [[Wikipedia:John Brown of Pittsfield|Brown]] had but a small number of men with him and was without food and money, when he received the order of the Congress to advance towards the border. Hardly just entered in the colony he found everywhere help and friends. Assisted by the
''Canadiens'', he seized the various posts successively and soon colonels [[Wikipedia:James Livingston (American Revolution)|Livengston]], [[Duggan]] and [[Wikipedia:Moses Hazen|Hazen]] commanded considerable corps of [[Wikipedia:Congress' Own| ''Canadien'' militiamen]]: so much that it was over with the stupefied [[Wikipedia:George III of the United Kingdom|George]] in Canada, had not suddenly arrived in the harbour of the St-Laurent river an English fleet carrying eight thousand troops at the orders of [[Wikipedia:John Burgoyne|Bourgoyne]]: which, combined to the lack of weapons and ammunition the Congress had promised and which never came, forced the Americans to give up the battle.
Since that period, the wicked English government, instead of reconciling the inhabitants by softness, has embittered them by new acts of oppression. The partisans of the Americans were obliged to flee and those who remained, were tied up and sent to England. It confiscated the
goods of various people and the courts pushed the ''royal rage'' to the point of nonsuiting private individuals of their actions, on the sole principle that they were suspected of being ''rebels'' and deserving consequently to lose their goods. [http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=36439 Cazeau], [[Wikipedia:Pierre du Calvet|du Calvet]], [http://www.biographi.ca/EN/ShowBio.asp?BioId=36092 Jautard], [[Wikipedia:Fleury Mesplet|Mesplet]], [[Lusignan]] and several others still alive suffered these horrors.
[[Image:Declaration-des-droits-1789.jpg|thumb|left|Declaration of the rights of man and of the citizen, 1789]]One could object the ignorance of the
''Canadiens'' as an obstacle to becoming free, their priests, their prejudices. To this I answer that one has a very imperfect idea of the inhabitants. Those of the cities are in possession of all the philosophical works; they read them with passion, as well as the French ''gazettes'', the [[Wikipedia:Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen|Declaration of the rights of man]] and patriotic songs. They learn how to sing those by heart them at the opening of a ''Club de patriotes'', where last year one counted more than 200 citizens. This club even defied the government by publicly discussing the affairs of France, something which, the day before, had been prohibited by a proclamation. The priests in the cities are considered as they should be, I mean to say, as infamous impostors who make use of lies for their own interests; and one looks this race passing by with as little respect as a herd of pigs. I will not speak of this other caste of despicable and scorned men who style themselves ''nobles''; the poor wretches do not exceed ten in number and their ignorance and their gueusery are pitiful. Lastly, I dare state that the [[Wikipedia:French revolution|French revolution]] has electrified the ''Canadiens'', and in one year, enlightened them on their [[Wikipedia:Natural rights|natural rights]] more so than one century of reading could not have accomplished. Even since the declaration of the war of France against England, such is progress that the ''Canadiens'' made in [[Wikipedia:reason|reason]], that they do not fear to publicly wish that the French win. Each day, they assemble in the cities in small groups, tell each other the news, are delighted when they are favorable to the French and are afflicted (but do not despair) when they are bad for them.
I swear that the
''Canadiens'' love the French; that the death of [[Wikipedia:Louis XVI of France|Capet]] the tyrant has upset only the priests and the government which fear the transplantation of a guillotine in Canada. I affirm that the ''Canadiens'' would rather be chopped up than to give but a single rifle shot on Frenchmen who would come to offer them freedom; I say more, I say that they would receive it with recognition and that they would be worthy to enjoy it by their courage to defend it. There are only in the province of Lower Canada sixty thousand valiant and robust ''Canadiens'', in a position to crush, on any signal, all the rapacious English who do not exceed (troops included) a number of 24,000 men.
But for a greater certainty of success, in case the French Republic wished to free her brothers, it would be very easy, by means of the right people, to distribute [[The Free French to their Canadien Brothers|an address]] in Canada to all the inhabitants in which one would expose
to the people the evils that they suffered since the cession; the oppression of the wicked English government; their brothers inhumanly sacrificed to its suspicions and its revenge, their trade monopolized by an unbelievable trickery; finally the absence of the arts and the ''[[Wikipedia:Belles-lettres|belles-lettres]]'' which one would attribute to the homicidal policy of England. To this tableau one would oppose a painting of the advantages which trade and letters would receive from the opening of the ports of Canada to all nations; the softnesses that there are to make the law by oneself, without being subjected to the ''insolentissime'' veto of a capricious good-for-nothing who shuts the mouth to a whole people; the positions which the ''Canadiens'' could apply to under a free constitution; finally, one would promise the protection of the French to them, if, rising as they did from their lethargy, they courageously wanted to make the sovereignty of their nation succeed to the sovereignty of George III (and the last, I hope) who, according to even the testimonies of his own Parliament and of his doctors, is an idiot, a ''[[Wikipedia:Non compos mentis|non compos mentis]]''. But we must be wary to publish this address only at the very moment of the French forces' arrival on the borders of Canada; because in giving it too early, one would run the risk of seeing, in the intermediary, the ardour which it could have given birth to, die out.
Voilà, citizen minister, the state and dispositions of the
''Canadiens''. I could have particularized the English forces, by specifying [the location of] the various forts; but it will be enough to observe that they are about the same as those which existed under the French government, except for Quebec, the capital, whose fortifications were since augmented.
If I did not put
any order in my narration, I flatter myself that at least it does not lack in frankness nor impartiality. In case you need further details, I will give them in person and I will be at your disposal at any hour of the day. If a generous feelings, the fruit of the touching interest which France take in the happiness of peoples, urged the [[Wikipedia:National Convention|National Convention]] to break the shameful irons in which groan Frenchmen's sons, sold by a king, citizen minister, you will reward my good citizenship by giving me the occasion to join myself to their brave liberators, to avenge them, or to die gloriously as a combatant of freedom and equality. I have no other passion but that one, except this sincere regard one must have for the virtue and patriotism proclaimed by the public voice; and the recognition due to a man who accommodated me as a brother and effectively proved me, by his behaviour, that I did not run after a phantom, when I left my country, without any other resource but my courage, to seek in the arms of the French the freedom of which I could not see any trace in Canada.
June 12 1793, Year 2 of the French Republic <br />
== Notes ==
# Read the communication between Grenville and Carleton for the proof of this assertion. # The outcome was to declare English the statutory language, but to allow a French translation.
== See also ==
* [[ The Free French to their Canadien Brothers]]