Baltimore Evening Sun (26 August 1913): 6.
Nevertheless, what the Hon. R. Keith Compton did to the Hon. Patrick Reddington is as nothing to what the Hon. Sunday-School Field, LL. D., did to the Rev. Dr. John Roach Straton.
A DAILY THOUGHT.
We are unavoidably influenced by the moral indulations [sic] of the nation at large.—The Hon. Aristides Sophocles Goldsborough.
The vote for United States Senator at the November election will be a very fair test of the strength of the Anti-Saloon League. For two months past the Hon. William H. Anderson has been rousing the moral rabble against the Hon. Blair Lee, and now he is openly seeking an alliance with the Repulican machine, and has made his peace with its organ, the Hot Towel, which he was lately denouncing as the spokesman of the “liquor ring.” Moral endeavor, like politics, makes queer bedfellows. But when it goes back to the Republican machine, the Anti- Saloon League enjoys an Old Home Week. It was as a pious adjunct to the Republican machine that it first arose in Ohio, and its principal political allies are Republican wire-pullers today. Here in Maryland it has tried to play both ends against the middle, but its secret leaning is always visible.
Meanwhile, win or lose, it is a safe bet that the Hon. Mr. Anderson will give a good show. He is an extremely clever politician, but his true vocation is that of the showman, and in that he shines magnificently. He has the so-called “moral” element sized up very accurately; he knows that the thing they enjoy most of all is rough-house. And so he seizes his two-edged sword in hand and lays about him with great heartiness. The louder the yells, the better the moral yokels like it. They want to see somebody put to death every day; they get the same stimulation out of chasing sinners that the city man gets out of chasing the duck; they are true ethical sportsmen, moral jaegers. They don’t want to hear argument: what they want is butchery. Which butchery the Hon. Mr. Anderson performs with happy and accurate stroke.
But can he beat the Hon. Mr. Lee? Alas, the betting is not in his favor in the kaifs! Where terror reogned a few short months ago, there is now a bouncing confidence, and the odds on Lee now oscillate around 4 to 1. What is worse, the talent looks forward to hard sledding for the Local Option bill and various agreeable conspiracies are being hatched. The Hon. Mr. Anderson insists that he will not accept a local option bill; the thing he demands is the bill. But it is easier to demand than to get. Unless the counties come nobly to the rescue, and he can organize the House of Delegates, he will probably find himself in deep water toward the end of the session. In any case, there will be a good show. The coming session, indeed, promises to be the most exciting and stimulating for a dozen years. Both sides have resourceful leaders and both sides have bar’ls.
The barr’l of the Anti-Saloon League, in truth, is probably a good deal deeper than that of the Rum Demonists, despite the Hon. Mr. Anderson’s constant gabble (for country consumption) about a $1,000,000 corruption fund. No such fund exists. The anti-Anderson headquarters are run on a very modest scale. The Anti-Saloon League, taking one week with another, probably spends four times as much. It employs skillful and high-salaried rabble-rousers, it has a large stall of clerks, it plays politics in every county, it publishes an expensive weekly paper and it sends out an enormous quantity of circulars and letters. Behind it are a dozen very rich moralists, who are given offices of honor in return for their mazuma. The Hon. Young Cochran, who inherited millions, is the star of this little troupe, but there are others. And the Sunday-schools are shaken down regularly and with scientific precision.
Tips for the Society for the Suppression of Vice, the policewomen and all other matadors of virtue:
- The short side paths in Washington Square, south of the monument, are full of lovers after nightfall. They sit on the low stone walls and hold hands. A searchlight on top of the monument would rout them out very neatly.
- The benches along the east side of Mount Royal avenue, between North avenue and Druid Lake, are monopolized these fine nights by young couples sitting close. Policewomen hidden in the shrubbery to the rear should drive an excellent trade.
- The new stone wall along the south side of the Lake drive in Druid Hill, between Mount Royal avenue and Eutaw Place, has become a favorite roosting place. A swift automobile, with a searchlight, would grasp these hand-holding immoralists.
Passing down Gilmor street last night, from Baker street to Saratoga, I counted 227 couples saying good-night on the front steps. Where were the cops? Where was the patrol-wagon?
These tips will be printed once a week. It is my hope that all true friends to the uplift will keep a sharp lookout and send them in. Anonymous letters preferred. Let us help our gifted sinner-scourgers to put down love-making in all its horrifying branches. Let us keep the spotlight on the working girl.
Eighty cents to any registered voter who will publicly argue that the foolishness of the suffragettes is a sound reason for withholding the vote from sensible women.
The Hon. Eva O. Wilson in the current Maryland Suffrage News:
Let no one make the mistake that private morality * * * is the object of vice crusaders.
Exactly. Nor is abstinence from alcohol the object of the local optionists. The one aim and purpose of both bands of pious brothers is to start a rough-house, to make somebody jump, to put somebody to the torture, to do some agreeable uplifting with a club. This is the beginnning and end of all malignant morality in our fair republic.
The Suffrage News! The Suffrage News! The one sure Swamp Root for the blues!—Adv.
Meanwhile, the Hon. Charles J. Bonaparte, LL. D., is magnificently silent about the Society for the Suppression of Vice.
From the report of a hearing before the Wisconsin Vice Commission, now in session at Madison:
Chairman Howard Teasdale—What remedy do you suggest for the reduction of immorality? Dr. C. A. Harper–I have found that communities having segregated vice districts under strict regulation have the highest degree of morality. Senator Victor Linley–Doesn’t the recognized vice district require the abasement of a certain per cent. of women? Dr. Harper—That is true. But at least one per cent. of the girls would go wrong anyhow.
Dr. Harper is secretary of the Wisconsin State Board of Health.