MAILBAG

Here is a bonus-size selection of what readers have been glad about, sad about — and, sometimes, just plain mad about — in recent issues

January 2 1965

MAILBAG

Here is a bonus-size selection of what readers have been glad about, sad about — and, sometimes, just plain mad about — in recent issues

January 2 1965

MAILBAG

Here is a bonus-size selection of what readers have been glad about, sad about — and, sometimes, just plain mad about — in recent issues

I AM ASTOUNDED by the Arthur Hailey whitewash of Manning’s government in Alberta (Ordeal By Rumor: The Skeletons In Manning's Cabinet, November 16). He skimps a two-milJion-dollar claim involving a cabinet minister as if it were the merest trifle. He says nothing about a rancid electoral system, nothing about repressive legislation which the bar association and at least one supreme court justice have expressed the gravest concern about ... I protest the Hailey poppycock. — R. D. MATHEWS, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, DEPT. OF ENGLISH, UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA, EDMONTON

* I read Hailey's report on Premier Manning with all the eagerness of a displaced Albertan pining for that golden country. This is without doubt the most straightforward, penetrating analysis of that remarkable man that I have ever seen. Canada needs more of this caliber of honest journalism.

R. J. RAINE, MD, FAIRVIEW, N.S.

What’s happened to Calgary?

Arthur Hailey's story on Manning’s Alberta was good, but there is something phony about the photo of Calgary. The mountains look thirty miles closer than they actually are. What happened to all the houses on the western edge of the city? From what point was this photo taken?

I. FROSLEV, CALGARY

* I was amazed that a man of Hailey’s calibre did not consult either Dave Hunter, leader of the Liberal Party in Alberta, or Nick Taylor, President of the Alberta Liberal Association. Had he done so, he would have learned that Tom O’Dwyer has resigned from the Liberal Party, is therefore no longer a Liberal, and does not in any way reflect the views of the party. CAMERON MII.LIKIN, CALGARY

The Americans don’t want us

If the average Canadian can be taken in by such trashy generalities (The Cranky Conclusions Of An Un-American Canadian, November 2), then he is as hopeless as the average American who stands indited. For the zillionth time — average Americans don’t control the news media; average Americans don’t invest in Canadian oil, timber and ore! If you have a beef with Wall Street or the press,

Photographer Don Newlands used a 500 mm telephoto lens when taking this picture and its effect was to make the sixty-mile-distant Rockies appear closer. The photo was shot from a hill on the north shore of the Bow River, near the Centre Street bridge, and the western residential areas of the city are obscured by a rise of land just behind the buildings that are seen in the foreground.

address yourself to them and please stop dragging in all Americans. Believe me, we don’t want to take over Canada! — LEO B. PORTER, NEW

YORK, N.Y,

* Sclanders cut them down to size. Thank God there is one Canadian with the courage to do it.

BRUCE BROOKS, KINDERSLEY, SASK.

* My suggestion would be that this poor oversensitive boy should be sent home to his mother. — NEWTON A.

THOMAS, NEW HAMBURG, ONT.

* Hurrah for a brave writer.

MRS. EMMA PARIZEAU, MONTREAL

* He speaks of “Americans” when, to be accurate, he should say “some Americans.” He does not know me and he can’t say what I think. I’m glad you’ve got him back.

T. M. BOWERS, UMATILLA, FLORIDA

Happiness on a budget

Congratulations to Richard J. Needham for his vivid and accurate portrayal of the lives and customs of us Newfoundlanders (The Happiest Canadians, November 2.) However, I’d dispute a remark made to him: “You can live like a king in Newfoundland on a quarter of what you make in Toronto.” If the average Toronto salary is twenty thousand dollars a year, this may be true. But if it is what I think it may be, five thousand, a Torontonian’s vision of a Utopia in Newfoundland would become a nightmare. Ask the tens of thousands of Newfoundlanders in our many coves and settlements how many servants they have in their kingdom.

M. J. HOWLETT, ST. JOHN’S

* Is Needham a secret agent for the Newfoundland Tourist Bureau? His creation of an indigent Utopia, complete with gaily singing fisherfolk, makes a first-rate bedtime story.

MARGARET NEVIN, MEMORIAL UNIVERSITY, ST. JOHN’S

* I think you failed to point out strongly one of the chief reasons for our contentment or happiness: our lack of knowledge of conditions different than those which exist in Newfoundland, and our consequent failure to appreciate those many things which we lack. To a degree this may be traced to general low standards of education, but must also take into consideration the isolation in which our people have lived for centuries. Lack of transportation facilities has led to an ignorance of the outside world which is only today being broken down slowly by the coming of roads, radio, TV. etc. Improvements in these fields together with a steadily

advancing standard of education undoubtedly will rapidly alter our way of life. It cannot fail to create desires for worldly things formerly unknown, whether or not they may be desirable. H. W. COLE, ST. JOHN’S

It’s a mad, mad world

I endorse Robert Thomas Allen’s excellent article I’m Fed Up With People Who Are Paid To Make Me Mad (November 16). Getting people mad, especially when it is done in an offensive manner, is not what we pay TV and radio to do for us.

V. W. BURGESS, PETERBOROUGH, ONT.

* It is infinitely preferable to read someone who is paid to make me mad than to read Allen who seems to be paid to make people ill. Allen’s fatuous, goody sweet-pants articles rep-

resent the type of writing which characterizes Canada as a journalistic garbage heap. — DENNIS T. PATRICK

SEARS, KINGSTON, ONT.

* “Amen” to Robert Thomas Allen. Dr. James Mutchmor showed more honest courage, conviction and creative controversy in any one of his stands, than do all the cynical Sinclairs, boring Bertons, and cosy Cohens put together—and Mutchmor did it for the love of God, not the love of MONEY.-(REV.) ROBIN SHARP, ST. GEORGE’S UNITED CHURCH, TORONTO

* We need more Pat Burnses, Bertons and Sinclairs to hammer, hammer, hammer at a brainwashed public who have absorbed so much political bunk they have lost the power of objective penetrating thought—if they ever had IT.-JIM RAINES, VIC TORIA

"That distressing weekend”

In Quebec City Aftermath — A Confederation Crisis In 1965 ( December 2) Blair Fraser has taken such a partisan anti-French attitude that the publication of his article can do little but create further antagonism and misunderstanding between English and French Canadians. Let us pretend for a moment that history has been reversed and that it was the English who

were defeated at Quebec in 1763. Considering that the news media both here and abroad had done their best to create an atmosphere of near-panic, even going so far as to suggest “another Dallas,” and considering that even the weather was unpleasant, would Mr. Fraser have turned out with his family, possibly exposing them to physical danger, to wave at the queen of France? Even the circumstances of the Queen’s arrival were unfortunate. She came in a yacht called “Britannia” escorted by four destroyers, landed at historic Wolfe’s Cove, and then proceeded to review the massed troops on the Plains of Abraham. Whoever was responsible, it is difficult to imagine a more tactless or a more perfect symbolical reenactment of the Conquest of 1763. It is vitally important to the future of this country that English and French Canadians should try to understand one another and the first step toward understanding is the use of a little imagination. In Quebec City, during that distressing weekend in October, Mr. Fraser seems to have left his usually understanding heart back home in Ottawa.

GWETHALYN GRAHAM, MONTREAL

What’s wrong with our schools

Dr. Benge Atlee’s article, There Are Just Two Things Wrong With Our Schools — What They Teach And How They Teach It (November 2), was the most concise and accurate statement of the problem I have seen in a popular magazine.

JOHN LABOSSIER, REGINA

What do those perhaps most concerned—the students—think of the criticisms offered by Dr. Atlee? A gradeten English teacher in Burnaby, B.C., read the article to her class, and the following are brief excerpts from letters written by her students following class discussion:

* Even though I feel insulted, I agree with Dr. Atlee that there has to be some change in the school curriculum so that students will be taught to think for themselves and not accept everything without question. But we must remember that a school’s primary function is to prepare a child for all facets of life ahead. We must add “reason learning” but we can’t drop other subjects, which, however theoretically unnecessary, are demanded in our materialistic world.

MARK VULLIAMY

* Dr. Atlee feels that foreign languages are “strictly for the birds” and the only time they should be included in the curriculum is in connection with postgraduate studies. What he overlooks is that English and French

(as well as English and other foreign languages) are closely related. Some, or most, of our words are counterparts of foreign words, so that when we study a foreign language, we are indirectly broadening our vocabulary. BARBARA SHEPPARD

* It is true that graduating students do not have very extensive vocabularies. But not everyone is going to be a great playwright, author, poet or politician, needing an abundance of words for success in his profession. Industrial and commercial courses should not be taken out of the school curriculum to allow more time for people to learn a vocabulary.

LEIF MJANES

* I agree that many teenagers are conformists, ready to follow any current fad or stream of thought, but surely there are many who will refuse to conform and will stand up for their ideas. Canada being a bilingual country, I believe all students should learn French, and if French is not taught correctly, new techniques should be employed. The idea that students want prestige but do not wish to earn it is not true of ALL.-PAULA GASKARTH

* Students today are “abandoned conformists,” according to Dr. Atlee. On the contrary, I think that students speak their minds more than they did in past generations. It was those generations who couldn't settle their differences by talking and understanding each other and turned to the barbaric methods instead, namely World War I and Worjd War II. Dr. Atlee is quite right in saying it is our generation that will have to solve the problems that have arisen. But will the earth be intact long enough to give us a chance to do SO?—STEVE HENRICHSEN

Didn’t they ask the experts?

Re Our Double Image Of The North, October 17): Dr. Jean K. Boek and I are the anthropologists who spent the summer of 1959 in Aklavik and Inuvik for the Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources. A number of the conditions you described were predicted in our 160-page report. The Northern Research Co-ordination Branch does utilize anthropologists to obtain data and make recommendations, but I do not know how much of their work influences policy. Anthropologists would have recommended other uses for the vast expenditures at Inuvik if they had been consulted since it was obvious that Indians and Eskimos would benefit little from this, other than through welfare and jobs to maintain government. We were asked to determine why most people did not wish to leave Aklavik. We found they did not want to lose

their independence and become wards of the government. — WAITER E. BOEK, VISITING PROFESSOR. UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND, COLLEGE PARK

Memo from Gordon $inclair

You mention that the Unsquelchable Rosa Brown (December 2) amassed a fortune of $75,000 before she died. Surely you are not trying to persuade us that an amount that would bring about $68 a week before taxes is a fortune? Come, come . . . now really! GORDON SINCLAIR, TORONTO

Birth control or self-control?

Rita Ubriaco asserts that Canadians Need Less Birth Control And More Self-control (October 17). I would suggest that the unwanted child is the chief sufferer. If, as she says, there are people who prefer to own a car and a poodle rather than produce a baby, surely it is better for such a baby to remain unborn.

VALERIE F. GUEST, TORONTO

* When Miss Rita Ubriaco becomes a Mrs. and has an unlimited number of children, please ask her to rewrite her article.

MRS. F. MARVIN, WINNIPEG

* At last someone with common

First John A., please stand up'

James K. Smith, of Ryerson Press, challenged your claim that the photograph of Sir John A. Macdonald appearing in the September 19 issue of Maclean s represented the first publication of that picture (Mailbag, November 16). You deserve to know that Maclean’s has yet to be proven

sense. The philosophy that every urge must be satisfied is Stone Age; and followed through to its logical conclusion, is suicide of our civilization. — A. CAMPBELL, OTTAWA

* Miss Ubriaco cannot really be serious. Are the people who are offering birth-control and family-planning information to the poor, “nuts” because the poor are too ignorant to understand what they are being told and should therefore remain ignorant?

W. CARLYLE, TORONTO

Us and the Red Chinese

After reading your editorial concerning the acceptance of Red China into the United Nations (Let’s Make Friends, Not Enemies, of The Mainland Chinese, November 16), my opinion of your magazine tumbled down with a loud thud! Your summary advice is blatantly selfish and short-sighted. It doesn’t take courage to act in our own self-interest; rather it is the Americans who have the courage to oppose a war-minded regime of lawless aggressive criminals. What realist could possibly pretend that official recognition and acceptance of them would have any restraining influence on their use of nuclear power? Their abuse of the veto would destroy the United Nations completely.

P. LUCAS, BOWMANVILLE, ONT.

wrong. Ryerson used a photograph obviously taken in the same setting as yours, and I think probably on the same occasion; but the two pictures are by no means identical. The pose of the right hand, the position of the sheaf of papers in the left hand, and the angle of the tablecloth all attest to this. — MRS. W. R. MALLORY, STONEY CREEK, ONT.