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The Spike or Victoria University College Review

The Debate

The Debate

The Y.M.C.A. Hall was too small to accommodate all who trudged through the drizzle on Saturday evening to listen to the Debating Contest.

Professor Dettman made an admirable Chairman; his remarks were brief and pithy; he kept time precisely, and he smiled aptly—no easy achievement.

The Judges were the Hon. George Fowlds, H. G. Cousins, Esq., M.A., and C. J. Tunks, Esq., and the subject for debate was "Should the State continue to sanction the use of the Totalisator"? The affirmative was supported in the first debate by R. H. Melville, and R. M. Algie (A.C.), and in the second debate by C. H. Taylor and M. H. Oram (V.C.), while the negative was upheld in the first debate by J. Ross and L. H. Hunt (O.U.), and in the second by G. N. D. Mulgan and A. T. Donelly (C.C.).

Melville delivered a quiet reasoned speech, spiced with some genuine humour. His colleague, Algie, indulged in a large amount of personal criticism of his opponents, which, being irrelevant, spoiled a well-delivered speech. His humour smelt of the lamp.

Ross's speech was logical and well thought out, but delivered in a staccato style. He probably got nearer to the heart of his subject than any other speaker. Hunt, his colleague, spoke earnestly, but his rapid and indistinct delivery prevented him from impressing his audience.

Taylor seemed to have braced himself for the occasion; logical and clear as ever, he yet smiled, and handled his subject with a playful art, His speech was undoubtedly page 34 the best of the evening. Oram was in good form, and attacked his opponent's arguments neatly. He made a fluent and effective debating speech.

Mulgan, of Canterbury, had thought out his ease thoroughly, but his gentle address and lack of animation militated against the effectiveness of his speech. His colleague, Donelly, who was suffering from a severe cold, had an excellent knowledge of his subject, but his speech was marred by the unceasing monotone in his voice.

The debate was an excellent one, and was notable for the lack of both sermonising and mere flippancy. in which respects the anticipations of many wisacres were agreeably disappointed.

Our representatives were awarded first place with 185 marks. Auckland College being second with 171 marks, a verdict generally concurred in.