Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 2, No. 10. June 14, 1939

[Letter to Salient from E. Webster, 1939]

Dear "Salient,"

In an article on the 31st May, entitled "Revaluations." R.L.M. states that "no great reform has ever come about except by the use of force." This sweeping statement implies that all great reforms have come about by [unclear: the] use of force, but it is fairly obvious that there are many great reforms which have taken place by peaceful methods. For instance, the far-reaching reforms of Solon In [unclear: ancient] Greece affecting social. Judicial and political spheres of life; the persistent and whole-hearted efforts of Elizabeth Fry at the end of the eighteenth and beginning of the nineteenth centuries, who did not rest till the government Improved prison conditions: [unclear: Witherforce], who was instrumental in bringing about the abolition of slavery, and Shaftesbury with his reforms of the poor law, more humane treatment of lunatics, and his legislation with respect to factory operatives. These are Just a few of many great reforms which have been brought about without the use of force.

Generally speaking a reform will take place peaceably on the following conditions. There must be a conscious need on the part of the community or a section of it, and some person or persons sufficiently interested in the need of that section, that they work to have that need met. If the majority of the community are in favour of this reform or if it does not affect their interests then it will usually take place without the use of force.

—Yours, etc.,

E. Webster.