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DUNEDIN WEST ELECTION.

TO THE EDITOR. Sir, —He is an "amoosing cuss" that judiciously hides his identity under the nom do plnme " Elector Dunedin West." In my first public utterance 1 fitated that " I had every sympathy with the aims of the No-license party, but pointed out they were on the wrong track, and had more to gain from a clear and simple issue of National Prohibition only, on a threefifths majority, than from a complicated issue on a 55 per cent. vote. I urged that the ground should be cleared for a straight vote by wiping out the local option poll, which last election was virtually aba idoncd, and also by diopping the 55 per cent, agitation, which d.thcttd considerable energy away fiom tho main issue—viz., National Prohibition. I wrote to the No-license party, in reply to their written questions, in exactly the same it.ain, ind "Elector" takes" one unimportant lino from that letwr (ignoring the main part of the letter)), and quotes it to cieate an inconsistency that never existed. Is this fa.ii- tactics, Mr Editor? The letter to the No-license party 1 expected would be published, even il it was belated ; and " Elector" is gu.lty of a breach of confidence in using any part of it when the whole letter was not made public. With regard to tho Bible in schools, I have neither privately nor publ.ely departed from my well-known attitude —that is, the maintenance of our piesent secular t-ystem, with every facility ior Bible-read-jj-.g—but was open to consider any non sectarian system acceptable to all. I stated explicitly to all that I would not favor any particular lefereiidum. 1 am however, in favor of the referendum as a political expedient to deal with all matters that may be without the province of Parliament, aad 1 stated that I would not exclude any matter simply because conscience and'religion might bo In ought into play. But I would exciude any question whereby a majority could impose their religious beliefs and views on a minority that conscientiously objected to them.

An illuminat.ng incident came unaer my notice in connection with one of the Bible-in-schools canvassers Calling on a supporter <>f mine, t-h-j nible-in-schools question was discussed, and an opposite candidate's name was introduced. •' But," said inv fiiend. "'have you called on Mr Johnson?" "No," .-aid* the lady. "It would not do. He might, be in favor of the Bible in 'schools "too, and that would be awkward." " Oh, I =ec." said my friend ; " vou are not for tho Bible in eo much as for vour candidate." " Elector's" gai-bkd "confusing of tlva Bible-in-schools referendum with my advocacy of the referendum as a political expedient and his misrepresentation of my state ments places him at once. The allegations re Sir Joseph Ward ar; in the same catejoiy, and I have dealt with this phase front every platform. Sir Joseph will be glad to know that in '• Elector"' he ha* found someone who will vindicate him by supporting Mr Uownie Stewart. As a matter of fact, as "Elector" has exposed my hand, I might ns well admit that I am really Mr Stewart's contest committeeman, merely d'«guis-d a-s an Opposition candidate, to help Mr Stewart to" beat Mr Magmre. and I am sorry that "Elector" has spoilt the little game.—l am, etc., Jons T. JohnsonDecember 8.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/ESD19141208.2.46.1

Bibliographic details

DUNEDIN WEST ELECTION., Evening Star, Issue 15670, 8 December 1914

Word Count
555

DUNEDIN WEST ELECTION. Evening Star, Issue 15670, 8 December 1914

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