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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 9, No. 4 April 17, 1946

[Letter from Student Executive to Salient Vol. 9, No. 4 April 17, 1946]


We claim our right to reply to the criticism in the last issue of "Salient," and submit the following statement.

A. Mr. Cohen's Statement.

1.Mr. Cohen states that he was not instructed to reply on certain lines. On the evening the offending statement appeared Mr. Cohen admitted to Mr. Poole before other Exec. members that he had been instructed to apologise on the Executive's behalf.
2.Mr. Cohen regards the truth as a "trivial matter." We do not. Nor do we so regard the deliberate flouting of the Executive's expressed wish.
3.Mr. Poole instructed the permanent Secretary, Miss Peterson, to notify members of the meeting. Mr. Cohen omits to state that Miss Paterson made numerous attempts to locate Mr. Cohen on the Friday, and that it was no fault of Mr. Poole's that he could not be notified before Monday.
4."Disrupting the activities of the Association." If we were doing this at the busy time of the year we should not be re-elected. But this is not the case. Every signatory is carrying on the duties he has undertaken as actively as he has in the past. The Tournament Delegates continued to work to midnight or 1 a.m., and all day Sundays, and the Extravaganza Officials will be no less enthusiastic than they were. Messrs. Cohen, Taylor and McArley are still going to the NZUSA Conference at Christchurch.

We resigned to protect our personal honour, because we will not be officially associated with a person who published a deliberate lie in the name of the Association, but neither will we allow our resignations to interfere with our other duties to the Association.

B. The Commentary.

Once again "Salient" has misreported a person with whose views they disagree. Mr. Ting was not in favour of withdrawing the motion.

C. The Editorial.

1.Three members who voted for the motion were co-opted, but students will note that every officer of the Association on the Executive resigned except the President.
2.The Editorial states that the letter should have been ignored. In our opinion the honour of appointment as a Life-Member of the Association carries with it the duty of criticising the present members although not much weight will be given to remarks expressed as extravagantly as those of Mr. de la Mare". It were better that we carry on our correspondence till Doomsday than that we should lie to dispose of it.
3.The Editor calls a deliberate lie, the flouting of the Executive wishes and the slur on a previous Executive a "minor error." We do not.
4.We have not "disrupted the student body a week before Tournament." Everything is going just as it did except that there has been an extra issue of "Salient." The Extravaganza Controller, Mr. Cohen, might however, explain why the Extrav. rehearsals will have to be crammed into the totally inadequate time of a fortnight.

M. J. Poole, Secretary; G. McArley, Treasurer; D. Stan. Campbell. Asst. Secretary; D. Steele, Asst. Treasurer; R. M. Daniell, Vice President; Vivienne Rich, Vice President; Alison Keys, I. Ting.

¶ With respect to A1, an extract from the minutes of the Exec. meeting, March 31: "Moved, Mr. Campbell, seconded Mr. Ting, that a letter be written to Mr. de la Mare giving him our defence." This should answer A2 and makes us wonder what "truth" means to the framers of the letter.

¶ A3.—The fact that Miss Paterson did not contact Mr. Cohen before Monday is hardly an excuse for the inefficiency of the Secretary. The Constitution explicitly states that all members must be notified at least 48 hours before a meeting.

¶ A4.—This is undoubtedly the busiest time of the year for the Exec. Yet the activities of Extrav and Tournament officials are being unnecessarily diverted into contesting an election.

¶ The Commentary was taken direct from the official notes made at the meeting.

* C1 is correct—the implication is left to the reader.

* C2 is adequately answered in the editorial of this issue.

* C4.—If Mr. Poole worked on "Salient" staff he would surely not say this. Also, how can the Extrav. Controller possibly be held responsible for the delay in writing the script? A fortnight for rehearsals has been all the College has had for many years pre-war. It is regrettable that the framers of the letter should descend to this level of abuse.