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The business of his employer
Mr Aylmer Rose, the Organising Secretary to the N.C.F., appeared before Southwark Tribunal on March 21st, claiming absolute exemption on grounds of conscience. The Clerk to the Tribunal was somewhat taken aback when he came to the applicant’s description of his occupation. Turning to the Chairman with a gasp of astonishment, he said:
“He says that the business of his employer is ‘A Fellowship for common counsel and action of men of enlistment age who are not prepared to bear arms in the event of conscription, whatever the penalties for refusing.
In the course of the proceedings the Chairman remarked to the applicant: “And you will do nothing to get your country out of its present difficulties?”
Mr. Rose: No, that is not my position; I AM doing something to get the country out of its difficulties. I advocate peace and oppose militarism, and have always done so.”
Chorus from Tribunal: So do we all advocate peace…. We all believe in peace…. We go the proper way about….!
Mr. Rose having expressed uncompromising opposition to non-combatant service in any form, the Chairman announced that his application for absolute exemption was refused.
At the Southwark Tribunal, on March 23rd, exemption for sis months was granted to 21 single men employed by the Amalgamated Press, Ltd., printers of “Home Chat,” “Forget-me-not,” “Comic Cuts,” “Chips” – and other works of national importance!
March 28, 1916