Review of Reviews

Brickbats and Bouquets

October 15 1934
Review of Reviews

Brickbats and Bouquets

October 15 1934

Brickbats and Bouquets

Morals and the Movies

I would ignore D. S. D.’s remarks in the September 15 issue but that they are indicative of a mental attitude that makes possible the alienation of dearly won personal liberties. It was centuries before the right to worship as one chose was finally conceded. By meek subservience to dictatorships women are losing or are about to lose their economic independence and the franchise. One needs no Benge Atlee to point that out, if one reads any other section of the daily papers but the society columns. Are we now, by a sheeplike failure to exercise our God-given intellects, to allow the forces of reaction to legislate away the last bit of personal freedom we seem to possess, the right to choose our entertainment to suit our very own tastes regardless of what those tastes may be? “One man’s meat is another man’s poison” is a saying never more true than in this of all instances. What supreme egotism to assume that one’s own particular taste is the ultimate; that all others are beneath consideration !

This clean-up-the-movies campaign is a subtle attack on personal liberty, the more insidious in that it hides, like all hypocrisy, behind a cloak of plausibility and respectability. “Muddled mentality” indeed ! If a bland and blind acceptance of and submission to the dictates of professional reformers with a gift of coining empty phrases is not a

sign of muddled mental processes, if not indeed a complete lack of any conscious cerebration whatever, I should like to know how better to describe it !

No one but a fool goes to the theatre thinking of his morals and the possible or probable effect of the movies on them, and no one but a fool is affected by them. Have the rest of us, then, to go on a diet of pap because of the presence of idiots and morons in the audience and in the world? Granted that there is much trash shown on the screen; is it not present everywhere? Why condemn the whole or attempt to circumscribe our choice on that account?—Miss M. E. Jollow, Brandon, Man.

More About the Mary Celeste

Between you and me, a sea cook’s curse and the mystery of the Mary Celeste are just so much conjecture as far as I am concerned, and anybody is welcome to make what he will of the facts.

Your correspondent, R. G. Stirling, and his authority, J. L. Homibrook, however, seem to have overlooked one of the most obvious features of the Admiralty findings. The Mary Celeste had been a derelict for ten days before the Dei Gratia came along—time enough for any pirate to scuttle the Mary Celeste and the Dei Gratia to boot.

Imagine the disgust of those Moslem

pirates when they found the cargo was alcohol ! They would be, I agree, simply furious. And when a Moorish pirate is furious, what does he do? He spits, that’s what. A whole parcel of furious pirates, and a clean deck to work on—how did the Admiralty court overlook this evidence?

And I ask you, in pity’s name, when I had given the captain and crew an honorable seaman’s death, why must Mr. Stirling resurrect them, hustle them inland, and condemn them to a fate far worse than death. Was that nice?Ralph E. Spencer, Toronto.

The Prevention of War

I could not read Maclean's without realizing that I, like many others, should express to you a true feeling of appreciation for your constant readiness to publish articles which must have the effect of creating in the hearts of many persons a horror of war, and which will lead some to act, where possible, to prevent war.

If these articles are colored with sentiment, that is a fair weapon. War wounds our deepest sentiments. If they are partly propaganda, that is fighting the war machine with its own ammunition. Your effective campaign, I am confident, will always continue.

This one object not only justifies the publication of Maclean's, but should inspire those who control its policies to help in directing the progress of Canadians with true facts and clear thinking on many other movements of the day.—Aubert W. Giffen, Edmonton, Alta.

Churches in Quebec

I have read with interest “Ile d’Orleans” by Marius* Barbeau in the September 15 Maclean's. 1 was surprised, however, at his statement: “the stone church faces the west, as all Quebec churches do.’’ All Quebec churches do not face the west, though the majority of the old ones do, the reason being, I have been told, is that it was the custom in the early days of the French régime to build all Roman Catholic churches facing the west, so that the priest standing at the citar would face the rising sun, or the East, where our Lord lived and died for us. In Quebec City 1 can think of three Roman Catholic churches that face east, six that face north, six that face south, and eight that face west. In the country districts I can think of churches facing east, north, or south as far as the newer churches are concerned, but the old ones certainly do face west in the great majority of parishes. Today convenience of location governs the direction in which the new churches face.— J. G. Scott, Quebec City.

Taxpayers vs. Trading Companies

I have lived in the North country for the past ten years, six of which I spent with the Hudson’s Bay Co., part of the time under Mr. P. H. Godsell who wrote your article, “Should the N.W.T. Close Its Doors?”

I believe that Mr. Ferguson, who replied, is right regarding the shiftlessness of the majority of Indians. I also believe it is time the taxpayer was given a little consideration in the matter, along with the white trapper. The large trading companies are not suffering nearly as much as the taxpayers are at the present time.

1 also believe that any man who has ambition enough to try to make a living in the North West Territories should be encouraged instead of discouraged.—Victor Erickson, (“Hay River Jack”) Fort Vermilion, Alta.