By Our Special Correspondent [Closely linked with the activities in Great Britain of the Catholic Union' of Great Britain is the decision of the Colonial office to forbid officials in the Colonies using their positions to advocate birth control among the people over whom they have been placed.]
Among activities of the Union in England during the past year have been agreements with the L.C.C. that physically defective children should as far as possible attend Catholic Hospital schools in preference to the County Council's Special schools. A letter has been received from the Clerk of the L.C.C. saying that " this contention of the Roman Catholic Union is not disputed and the hospitals and medical services committee propose that arrangements shall be made by the Council accordingly except in the cases of surgical tuberculosis."
Birth Control Propaganda in Hong Kong
Birth control propaganda among the Chinese in Hong Kong has recently caused indignation among the better clement of the population.
A few weeks ago the Chinese Government issued from Canton, the southern capital, a decree banning the sale of contraceptives " in the interest of public morality"—the promotion of public morality being one of the chief ideals of the NEW LIFE MOVEMENT which is rapidly making a profound change in the life of China.
Within a few days after the issue of this decree an announcement was made by the " Eugenics League" of Hong Kong, an organisation for the promotion of birth control, that it intended to promote contraception in the southern provinces of China, thus going directly counter to the law of the country.
The moving spirit in this propagandist movement is a prominent Hong Kong Government official, Mr. R. D. Forrest. Secretary for Chinese Affairs, who has unlimited control over everything relating to the local Chinese population.
He is the President of the Hong Kong Rationalist Association, and the ViceChairman of this Association has just been appointed to one of the highest positions in the Police Service, a position held for many years by an exemplary Catholic.
Circulars Bearing Official Stamp Another form of birth control propaganda now seen is the diffusion of propagandist literature in Chinese among the poor of the Colony. Indignant Catholic parents have found that in their absence distributors have invaded their houses and put this literature into the hands of the younger members of the family.
The foundation of this propagandist association, and its present outburst of activity, both occurred during periods when, owing to changes of office, there was no Governer in the Colony.
On the previous occasion, Mr. Forrest started the society by sending circulars from the address of the Office of the Colonial Secretary, and this has created the impression in the eyes of many Chinese that it has official sanction.
On the intervention of the Catholic Union of Great Britain in this matter the Colonial Office has ruled that it is clearly irregular that a Colonial Secretariat Office should be allowed at any time to appear as an address for receiving communications on behalf of a society advocating the practice of birth control. Where, however, the Governor of another Colony included a reference to the subject in a speech delivered after the locally elected Legislature had made provision in its estimates for birth control clinics the Colonial Office did not consider that it would be justified in interfering.