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Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 27, No. 1. 1964.

That's Your Business

page 2

That's Your Business

The minute a fresher arrives at University, he has loads of good advice heaped on him. He has advice from the Chaplains, advice from the vice-chancellor, from the librarian, the President of the Students' Association and various other people of varying degrees of intelligence.

There are people who can advise the student on how to study, though many of them have not done it themselves for many years. There are those who have complex plans to organise students' spare time activities, some of whom were never students. And, of course, everyone can tell you exactly what to do with your sex life.

There is no shortage of advice, particularly the illconsidered kind, the thou shall not kind, and the heavily emotional kind.

It seems to us that most of this advice is off the beam. Not that advice should not be given, but that care is needed if it is not to be given as gospel, and accepted as gospel.

It requires just as much intelligent thought to use advice as it does to give it. Too often intelligence is lacking in both cases.

We suggest that advice given and taken in this manner is one of the greatest faults of University life. An impressionable student straight from school, can so easily be taken in by the first or the most eloquent person they meet. It will be no help to them later that the advice which led them down the drain was "well intentioned".

We don't care whether you work or whether you don't. We don't care whether you came here to work or play. We don't care whether you booze or whether you don't. We won't even care if you sleep single/double/treble or have 0/1/2/3/4 /5 . . . de jure/de facto wives. That's your business.

We do care that you should realise that there is no such thing as "an intellectual god" in this University. We know of no one whose advice we would be prepared to take without question, on any subject at all. We believe that the only way to choose the most suitable course is by working things out for yourself. If you take our advice you will do just that.

And there, of course, is the paradox. If we advise you not to take other people's advice, should you take ours? Perhaps you could work that out for yourself.