Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 2, No. 13 July 5, 1939
Dear Sir.—I was not present at the Students' Association meeting held recently, but I am informed on reliable authority that at that meeting very strong criticism was levelled against the editorial policy of our paper. I am told that Mr. Mitchell charged the Editor with unfairness, because a letter written by him on a religious issue had not been published. He, however, was not prepared to go to the length of moving a vote of no confidence in the Editor.
Mr. Freeman. In answer to the allegations of unfair editorial management, I understand, invited Mr. Mitchell to move a vote of no confidence in him as Editor. Mr. Mitchell, I am further advised, declined to take this course, whereupon Mr. Freeman, on behalf of the editorial committee, offered Mr. Mitchell the opportunity of editing "Salient" himself, for two weeks, an offer which Mr. Mitchell accepted.
This is how the matter was represented to me, and if it has been faithfully represented. I consider Mr. Freeman, unthinkingly, did a foolish thing. By the arrangement entered into between him and Mr. Mitchell, no finality regarding the good or bad conduct of editorial policy can be obtained. Finality on that point is what the Student Body desires, in my opinion, and I think Mr. Freeman by his action temporarily abdicated a position which was morally unassailable. That was weakness.
The responsibility lay with Mr. Freeman to force Mr. Mitchell to go on with the motion of no confidence. Even, if need be, arranging for the pro forma moving of the resolution in order that it could receive the overwhelming defeat which it merited. After the resolution had been defeated. Mr. Freeman's offer to Mr. Mitchell could then have been made, when it would have been a gesture of bigness.
J. P. Lewin.