WHEN a brief and unpretending letter like mine calls forth nearly a column of editorial abuse from the Advocate, there must be either a remarkable sensitiveness to criticism or else a great lack of subjects for editorials. In the latter case I am glad to have furnished a slight stimulus to the laggard editorial pen; in the former case perhaps a slight explanation will help allay the indignation I have unwittingly excited.
The Advocate says that I failed to understand its editorial because my intelligence has "little in common with our [its] own." The compliment is obvious, and is the more pleasing because evidently unintended. My mistake was a natural one, for I supposed that an editorial criticism, however severe, upon a popular instructor would hardly be given a form more direct than that of a "suggestion," and would be expressed in civil terms; and I also supposed that severity in any editorial was not considered identical with ungentlemanly insinuations and abuse. Since I have been shown the error of my second supposition, I begin to see that my first is also wrong, and that I entirely overestimated the severity and importance of the unlucky editorial.
This explanation I willingly make, and I trust that it will be satisfactory. I must say, however, that the Advocate's remarks about my probable age, ability, and experience, though exceedingly sarcastic and venomous, have done little towards showing that the opinions advanced in my last letter are wrong. They are the opinions, not merely of the writer, but of some of the ablest men in the class; and if these men do not accept the editorial decisions of the Advocate, they certainly have a right to state their own views.
In conclusion I would ask - merely out of curiosity, I confess - what the Advocate means by the statement, apparently uncalled for, that "in forensics grammatical purity is not taken into account." Is this statement entirely true, or is it true only of those whose views on forensics the paper advocates, or, finally, is it another of those "serious thoughts beyond the comprehension of some"?