YOUR recent Johnny Devlin article from the museum archives did not mention the fact that in June 1964 he was one of the opening acts for The Beatles' Wellington Town Hall concerts.

I was a teenager in the audience that night, which has gone on record for having a very inadequate sound system, bringing complaints from the performers, including Devlin and John Lennon. The promoters had apparently underestimated the effect that the very vocal female fans had on the overall sound levels in the venue.

It was the early days of Beatlemania and Johnny Devlin's career had peaked well before 1964, but nevertheless, he had been hired to do a gig with the hottest rock band in the world, which has to look good on any rocker's CV.

Interestingly, The Beatles went to the US a short time after the NZ tour and were saddled with more inadequate sound systems in huge venues, but — against the odds — they pulled off some impressive performances that have become history.



'Do not resuscitate'

I should like to respond to Bob Walker's comment (Chronicle, May 9) where he states he "totally disagrees with me" in reference to my letter on euthanasia (Chronicle, April 16).

Therein, I cited an experience of reading the hospital file of a family member inpatient which contained the statement "do not resuscitate". His response was — "that was the patient's personal choice, not yours". This response in spite of my pointing out in my letter that no discussion had been held with the patient or myself to authorise such a decision.

The patient was my husband, and he was as horrified as I was to learn that his file bore these "three words". Needless to say, this was taken up with the hospital concerned.
Incidentally, that hospital was not in this area. One can only wonder how many other patients' hospital files are so endorsed without their knowledge.


Local politics

The local elections are an opportunity for pro-life people to show the political establishment that they have not gone away. After their defeat in 1983, abortion activists never contemplated giving up. They settled in for the long haul. It paid off.


Pro-life people need to do exactly the same, confident that a time will come when people will look back in horror at the widespread social acceptance of abortion. It will be seen for what it is: a terrible choice for women and something that ends human life on an industrial scale while making a lot of money for those willing to carry it out.

People might think local elections are irrelevant but local politics really matter. It is not just because of issues such as exclusion zones around abortion facilities. Ireland's own Leo Varadkar has admitted that constitutional issues regarding freedom of speech are important, but in a startling attempt to impose groupthink, Louth County Council has already tried to ban this kind of peaceful vigil completely.

Much more important is the reality that the best way to build political momentum is from the ground up, by doing the unglamorous work of serving the local community.


Work for peace

What would I wish for as a dead soldier if I could observe our sorry world today? — using my imagination, obviously.

No uniforms, no guns, few monuments. I would want peacemaking, symbols of peace, teaching children, prisoners, all adults conflict resolution skills, equality, true social justice, no institutional racism, sharing, using the village to raise the child, being colour blind, seeing all as equally able to offer gifts emotional, physical, experiential, intellectual to society. I would want people to walk gently on our earth and its diminishing resources. I would also want a free truth press.

My family members have participated in more necessary and less necessary wars. I honour their service.

Don't glorify war ever. Work for peace.


Send your letters to: Letters, Whanganui Chronicle, 100 Guyton St, PO Box 433, Whanganui 4500; or email