§ 19. Mr. Purbrick
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether, in view of the statements and actions of Kenneth Rawlings, rector of St. Michael's Parish Church, Lewes, which are contrary to the definite war policy laid down and being carried out by the Government and are subversive of our war effort, he will intern Rawlings under Regulation 18B.
§ Mr. H. Morrison
I have no reason to think that this individual falls within any of the categories of persons whom I am empowered by the Regulation to detain, or that, even if he did so fall, it would be necessary to exercise control over him. Opposition to the policy of the Government is, of course, not in itself a ground for detention.
§ Mr. Purbrick
In view of the fact that more than half the signatories to the petition of this reverend gentleman are conscientious objectors, will the Minister take steps to see that they are scrutinised from the point of view of subversive action?
§ Mr. Morrison
I cannot see any need for that. What this gentleman has done 960 has been to ask people to agree with a speech made by the Bishop of Chichester in another place. I cannot see that that is an action which warrants my attention. After all, somebody must uphold the liberty of the subject, if it is only the Home Secretary.
Is it not the case that this particular clergyman is a perfectly sincere pacifist of the old-fashioned sort, and that he is in no way tainted by Fascism or anything like that?