Catholic v. Government Ideals
am glad to see (of February 11) that you are bringing to the notice of the Catholic public in England and Wales the attack upon the Mission Schools of South Africa. We have no "Negroes" in South Africa. We have many native tribe e and their power has been weakened and in some cases entirely destroyed by the destruction, at the hands of European invaders, of tribal law and custom which, rightly directed, would have made for peace and order amongst the Natives.
Sir John Harris is right. The Commission's findings are those which were expected of them by the South African government. As to the " incompetence" of the missionaries, one can only say that the criticism comes badly from the Gov ernment. In the majority of cases the Mission Schools are in the hands of Catholics and the number of such schools is enormous. To transfer the control of these C.atholic schools to the Government means the end of education for the natives. The Government has nothing to give in exchange, nor does it desire to give anything. Native education must cease because an educated native from a Catholic Mission school trained by an " incompetent" and "subversive" missionary will not be inclined to agree in all things with the policy and ideas of the Dutch Reformed Predikant who may be induced, or forced, to take that missionary's place.
It is quite true that the missionary is unwilling to teach the State doctrine of racial discrimination against the natives. That that doctrine is industriously fostered by a Government which owes its existence to a desire to put an end to all racial discrimination is also true. Those or us who desire to see peace in South Africa know perfectly well that under present circumstances we are far more likely to see war. The gentlemen who govern us and our native brethren, in spite of their titles, have military reputations which would make the issue of such a war somewhat doubtful.
What is really needed is a better understanding of what is happening in South Africa today on the part of the Dominions and Colonial Secretaries. We do not want and we shall not get a repetition of 1899. We shall get something very much worse.
CHARLTON B. WALKER.
Doway, Golden Valley, Cape, South Africa.