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IN CHAEGE OF
LAVINIA L. DOCK, R.N.
The curtain has rung down on international correspondence, so
far as Europe is concerned, and by the time this line is printed the
hideous conflagration may have spread even further. For the present
the work of international nursing organization is interrupted. Noth-
ing is heard now but the arrangements for sending nurses to the scene
of war. For one (perhaps the only one), the writer at least is no longer
able to regard war and army nursing with any feeling save that of sick
horror and aversion, as being a part of a vast and hideous stupidity
which a civilized nation should cast from it for ever. Does it not seem
that the very work of the Red Cross itself is a tacit giving of a moral
support to war which every human being should refuse to give? Does
it not make war more tolerable, more possible and, by mitigating, keep
it bolstered up and alive, just as organized charity helps to bolster up
poverty and keep it from appearing as the needless, preventable, use-
less survival that it is? War and poverty are twin monsters with their
roots in the same foul soil, the despotic belief that individual and coun-
try can only find prosperity by crushing some other individual or coun-
try; the spirit against which it is time for women to oppose a moral
resistance that shall finally break down the savage in man.
Meantime, in England, while nurses are conspicuously to the front
for the relief of misery, even while accepting all their services certain
men are tirelessly carrying on the old, petty, ignoble warfare on the
nursing profession by watching that no advantage be gained for that
status they are asking through state recognition. The last British
Journal of Nursing records two exceptionally base pieces of tactics of
this order; fortunately, while that journal stands, not one such under-
hand attempt will ever get through in safe silence.
One of these is positively funny in its simple frankness — the Selection
Committee of St. George' Hospital exacts a promise from its new matron
not to take a part in political or social propaganda while in service of
the hospital. This means the state registration movement. A simple
and effective method of preventing free speech and action!
So far China seems to be the only country unclouded by the war,
and a letter from the officers of the Nurses' Association of China, promis-
48 The American Journal of Nursing
ing to enter the International Council at San Francisco, is the only-
cheering letter that has come our way since the war began. It came,
however, just before that time. The Association had its annual meet-
ing in Shanghai in early July. The new president is Miss Hope Bell
of the London Mission Hospital in Hankow and Elsie Chung is vice-
president. As we have said, she will come to San Francisco as one of the
delegates. We shall hope to have the full number; China surely is not
far away from California. The former president, who brought forward
the international proposition, was Nina D. Gage, a graduate of Roose-
THE INTEENATIONAL MEMORIAL
Last month, when the account of the International Memorial to
Miss Nightingale was written, a copy of it was at once sent to England
to Miss Rundle, asking her to make any denial or contradiction from
her point of view. Ordinarily, a reply could have come before the last
Journal proofs went to press. But, with the outbreak of war, mails
were delayed, and the reply did not come in time.
Miss Rundle says she did not procure the material from Teachers'
College for St. Thomas' Hospital, but that they were referred by the
College to her after they had obtained it. This is, of course, quite
outside the criticism made in the last Journal. That criticism was
that, while Miss Rundle's right to advise any group of people on any
subject is unquestioned, her attitude of confidential adviser in this
instance is open to question.
However, this barbaric war will doubtless throw all these other
activities into the shade.
The Trained Nurses' Association of India has had a severe loss in the
death of Miss Tindall, who was for several years the president of the
Association, and always a most devoted, unselfish, and able worker.
The nurses of India feel bereft and lost, and all their fellow members
in the affiliated countries sympathize sincerely with them.
The two dominant nursing associations of Australia are perfecting
their arrangements for affiliation under one central executive committee
for the purpose of entering the International Council: a most welcome
and applauded step and one for which we have long wished and waited.