Baltimore Evening Sun (12 March 1913): 6.
The more you hear that them stuffers are going to be tried, the more you hear that they ain’t.--Adv.
The old argument that women do not want the vote is being trotted out again by the pertinacious antis. A few days ago, in the fair city of New York, they armed a spellbinder with it and sent her against the redoubtable Miss Inez Milholland, whose pulchritude is alone sufficient to turn all arguments, however sound. But this one, of course, wasn’t sound. It was merely a mass of idle words, vapid and meaningless. It had no more logic in it than Dr. Janney’s astounding theory that the public control of prostitution is a cause of “murder, robbery and rapine.”
The brave anti-Milholland was full of exact figures. Only one-sixth of all American women, she said, or, to be precise, only 16.66666666666666666666666 per cent.--are asking for the vote. Well, let its grant it. But does it prove anything? Nothing whatever! The very same argument, applied to the antis, would prove that only 5.55555555555555555555555555555555555555 per cent. of all American women are against the vote. Here in Maryland there are at least two active suffragettes to every active anti. In many States there are from 6 to 50. Talking the country in general, the ratio is certainly no less than three to one.
No; it is impossible to show that the majority of women are against the vote by any such process. All that you can prove thereby is that the majority of women are indifferent. But that is no reason why they should continue to escape one of the common burdens and duties of good citizens. Not many men, I believe, are actively interested in politics, or eager to go to the polls on election day. And yet the majority of them do go to the polls, and whebever there is an extraordinary call upon decent citizenship, that majority tends to approach nine-tenths. Such is the effect that the possession of the franchise upon them has had upon them. It has given them a feeling of responsibility. It has forced upon them a personal and intimate interest in all that concerns the community as a whole.
It would do women a lot of good to gain that interest. It would take their minds away from trivialities, it would augment their confidence, their dignity, their self-respect. What is more, it would work for the good of the State. The very qualities that set women apart from men are the qualities that are most needed in politics. I allude especially to their sharp common sense, their impatience with mere moonshine and wind music, their eager seeking of the genuine and immediate benefit. Men may do the dreaming of the world, but its victualing and mending are done by women. They see that it is fed and clothed today, letting tomorrow take care of itself. And that is the best of all ways of insuring tomorrow’s three square meals. It is the practical and efficient way, as opposed to the romantic and boshy way.
Many critics argue against women’s suffrage on the ground that it has not brought the millennium in those States where it prevails. The fact is true enough, but its value as a criticism is much overestimated. After all, what sane man desires the millennium? If any such exists, I have not met him. The demand, for all its noise, is confined wholly to quacks with something to sell–and women have a penetrating eye for such quacks! One of the chief effects of the extension of the suffrage, indeed, has been to abate perunaism in politics and morals. The women of the suffrage States, once they have grown accustomed to voting, have generally voted against the current panaceas. No State has gone dry by their ballots; no city has gone on a debauch of puritanism; no Dr. Munyon has been elected to high office.
The truth is that wornen as a class are against all such brummagen schemes for making the world perfect overnight. They are cynical of large reforms because they know by practical experience the difficulties in the way of small reforms. A woman who has tried for 20 years to make her husband abandon pipe-smoking in the house, only to suffer ignominious defeat in the end--this woman is not apt to have much faith in a plan to turn him into a teetotaler by legislative emactment. She is hep, as the psychologists say, to the nature of the critter. She knows that he will fight for his little vices as he would never fight for his hearth and home. She is aware of his essential depravity. And being aware of it, she senses the folly of brooding over it.
But the suffragettes preach the millennium! They are in favor of all the political panaceas and moral bile beans! So they are--where women still lack the vote. But where the victory has been won they quickly subside. The great masses of hard-headed, unsentimental, intelligent women overwhelm and obliterate them. The legislative program of the Just Government League of Maryland, for example, has no duplicate in Colorado. I haven’t the slightest doubt that there are women out there who favor it, but they are in such a hopeless minority that they are never heard of. The average Colorado woman is against it, just as the average Maryland woman is against it, and so it is not even debated. Give the women of Maryland the vote, and they would settle the nonsense of the suffragettes in 10 minutes.
My personal belief, indeed, is that even the suffragettes have little faith in their boluses. I mean, of course, the women suffragettes. Many of the men, perhaps, are genuine believers, and some of them, no doubt, argue for the suffrage merely to advertise their moral merchandise. But the sincerity of the women is open to grave doubt. They promise the millennium simply because they hope to make votes thereby. It is men voters to whom their present appeal is addressed--and men are romantic. But once they gained their heart’s desire, it is very probable that they would come down to earth. And it is wholly certain that the majority of enfranchised women would never leave the earth.
Ten thousand dollars reward for any evidence that coffee contains no caffeine, or for any evidence that caffeine is not a drug, or for any evidence that the use of drugs is not immoral, or for any evidence that the sale of drugs is not more immoral.--Adv.
Standing of the clubs in the National Tuberculosis League for the week ended February 15:
New York.....................433 Boston........................238 Chicago........................371 Pittsburgh...................225 Baltimore....................322 St. Louis.....................000' Cleveland.....................303
The boomers! The boomers! They waken with the spring! And soon they’ll flap their angel-wings, and clear their throats and sing!