J. Frank (James Frank) Hanly.

Speeches of the Flying squadron online

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of his community.

No man, in the name of personal liberty, can claim a
right to be a drunkard or to make other men drunkards.

Those who defend the liquor traffic claim that prohibi-
tion deprives men of getting what they want that citi-
zens who desire to drink are not able to do so, for the rea-
son they cannot find that which will satisfy their longings.
Thus, according to their claim, prohibition interferes with
the freedom of action and choice of the individual. In
the next breath they set up the claim that prohibition is a
failure, that instead of resulting in decreased consump-
tion of drink more liquor is consumed in prohibition towns,



counties and States than in corresponding communities
where liquor is sold.

If this be true, the citizen who lives in a prohibition
community has more liberty than one who lives in a com-
munity where there is an open saloon.

If more liquor is handled and used where there is pro-
hibition, those who wish to drink it, instead of finding
their liberty abridged, discover that drink is easier to get
than where the open saloon predominates.

Of course, these two positions taken by liquor advocates
are flatly contradictory. If one is true, the other cannot
be so.

We might go on through the list of objections which
are offered, but why do so? They are not made in the
hope of throwing light on the question, but rather to con-
fuse the minds of the people, and are failing of their pur-

Notwithstanding all the efforts of the saloon sympa-
thizers, county after county, State after State, are joining
the dry column.

My prophecy is a true one. In State and in Nation the
liquor traffic is to die, and is to die soon.



MRS. ELLA SEASS STEWART is a native of Moul-
trie County, Illinois. Her father, Levi Seass, and her
mother still live in the township in that county where
he was born. Her paternal grandfather, Jacob Seass, was one
of the early settlers in the same county. Her maternal grand-
father, Nelson Powell, was a soldier in the Civil War, and one
of her maternal grandfathers was Bushrod Henry, who estab-
lished more Disciples' churches in Illinois, probably, than
any other pioneer preacher of that religious body.

Mrs. Stewart first attended school at Arthur, Illinois.
Later she was a student in the High School at Decatur,
which was not far from her girlhood home. She was grad-
uated from Eureka College, at Eureka, Illinois, taking both
the classical and scientific courses. Later she attended
the University of Michigan, and was graduated from that
institution. Scarcely had she finished her school work
until she began doing public work for the temperance and
prohibition reform, and on behalf of woman suffrage, and
she has remained a consistent advocate of both these
causes. She and her husband, Oliver W. Stewart, were
classmates at Eureka, and have been fellow-laborers in
the many causes and organizations in which both believe.
For many years she has been a member of the Board of
Trustees of Eureka College.

Since removing to Chicago, Mrs. Stewart has taken an
active interest in club life and work, and during her resi-
dence in that city she has served as Vice-President of the
State W. C. T. U. and President of the Illinois Equal Suf-
frage Association. This latter position Mrs. Stewart held
until a short time before the enactment of the woman suf-
frage law by the legislature of Illinois. She has served
also as Secretary of the National Equal Suffrage Associa-
tion, and has spoken in almost every State in the Union.

She visited forty States with the Flying Squadron dur-
ing its campaign, and spoke whenever called upon, filling
the places of absent speakers in all three groups.



A FEW months since there was issued in Washington a
most interesting document one which will have an
honored place in the museums of the future and which
will be treasured by historians as the landmark of a new gov-
ernmental era.

This document was a bulletin issued by the great Gov-
ernment of the United States on the Birth of a Baby.

Its significance, as some one pertinently remarked, is in
the fact that the National Government has arranged here-
after to underwrite child rearing.

When the organized women of the land, after years of
work and disappointment, finally secured from a reluctant
Congress the votes necessary to establish the Children's
Bureau, and when, later, the President appointed as the
head of this new department Miss Julia Lathrop, one of
the great women of Illinois, perhaps neither Congress nor
the President realized that the womanhood of the Nation
had at last planted its foot in the crack of the govern-
mental door, and that gradually it would have to open
wide enough to admit her whole body.

I'm going to risk a prophecy that this humble, harmless,
despised little Children's Bureau of the Government of the
United States is the thin edge of the wedge which eventu-
ally will bring national woman suffrage and national pro-
hibition, and it will produce other great governmental

The idea that the child is the greatest national asset
will modify the ideals of the Nation, as it has led to larger
vision the great body of women who sponsored and finally
succeeded in establishing this department of government.
I propose to use my time on this program in discussing the
phase of the drink question which appeals most strongly



to women. For I will confess that there is one phase of
supreme importance to women as women.

A short time ago a group of men representing great
business interests met in Chicago and discussed the saloon
as a foe to business. One of the speakers said: "Let us
leave the moral side of this question to the women and
the preachers. We are interested in the business and
economic phases of the problem."

For the moment I felt hurt not so much at the old and
rather contemptuous classification of "women and preach-
ers," but it was the implication that women (and preach-
ers) can evaluate the evils of drink and the liquor traffic
only through the emotions. It was the mistaken notion
that women can approach the discussion only from the
personal side.

Business? Turn to the tax books of every State and
behold how great a percentage of the public funds comes
from the pockets of women taxpayers ! And remember,
Mr. Dry Taxpayer, that much of the money that goes to
feed saloon jail-birds in every county and to support in
penitentiaries and asylums the products of the saloon, the
money that pays the cost of police courts and guards for
saloon criminals, is money wrested from citizens who have
been consulted neither about the tax levy nor about the
saloon which, like a vampire, not only sucks the Nation's
wealth, but destroys its moral fibre !

I wish that there might have been unrolled the lists of
women stockholders in railroads and other corporations
whose net earning power depends so much upon sober and
efficient workmen.

Women are as much interested in business as men
both directly and indirectly. Whether they are stock-
holders or wives and daughters of 'men whose business
suffers from incompetent and alcohol-logged workmen,
or the wives and daughters of men injured in industry, or



of those whose earning power is lessened through drink,
women can count the cost of alcohol in dollars and cents.

We have studied arithmetic all of us and thousands
of us have studied higher mathematics. But one needs
only the most elemental education to appreciate, for in-
stance, the report of a commission recently appointed by
the legislature of Massachusetts to investigate drunk-

After giving statistics of arrests for drunkenness that
are appalling, the report says : "Four out of every five
men so imprisoned were between the ages of seventeen
and fifty, and therefore at the very period in life when
their industrial output should be largest." These men,
according to the report, at the very prime of life, lost over
three hundred thousand working days (in one year and in
one State), and probably an equal amount of time was lost
in hunting work after release fro'm prison. That means
six hundred thousand lost days. A fair estimate of the
lost wages is two dollars a day. That means, according
to our woman's arithmetic, that the licensed drink cost the
laboring man of the single State of Massachusetts the
amazing sum of one million two hundred thousand dol-
lars, besides what he actually spent for the liquor, and
besides what other laboring men spent who did not get to

Now, this is not the snap judgment of women and
preachers, but from the official report of a commission
appointed by a state legislature.

We might also remind business men that women are
the distributors of the family income. The bulk of the
consumption of the world's wealth centers in the home.
Sixty per cent, of the working men live on forty dollars a
month. The mother -has the problem of making this pitiful
wage cover food, clothing and shelter.

A member of the Illinois Legislature asked me last



spring, after our women down State had helped gloriously
to vote out eleven hundred saloons, what I thought the
result would be if the question were submitted in Chicago.
I thought I would be very conservative. I said : "It would
not carry the first time, but I should like to see it submit-
ted, for the educational value of the campaign." I men-
tioned our great foreign population, speaking forty-seven
languages, only one-fourth of us being native. "Well," he
said, "I'm not so sure that the result wouldn't be the same
as down state, now that the women can vote on the ques-
tion, for I've figured it out this way: The average wage
in Chicago is not over fifteen dollars a week. The mother
has to make that fifteen dollars pay for the rent, the milk,
the groceries, the heat and light, the clothes and school
books. She may wish money for the dentist and doctor
and for all sorts of things needed and desired by the family.
If her husband is just a moderate drinker he will pay two
dollars a week for liquor. I don't care what country that
woman was born in, when she faces that mathematical
problem in the quiet of that secret polling booth she is
very likely to vote that two dollars into the family treas-
ury instead of the saloon keeper's strong-box."

Perhaps this isn't pure mathematics after all. It may get
around to the emotional and personal equation, and so I
will accept the role assigned me by the business men, and
am going to make my argument from the moral stand-
point and by the light that shines from the hearthstone.

But I want you to remember that women today can
compute all the mathematical problems connected with
the legalized saloon ; as scientists they can perform the
experiments which prove the poisonous character of alco-
hol; as trained statisticians they can compile the tables
which show the connection of alcohol with crime, degen-
eracy and poverty. From the operating table and hospital
wards they can trace the contributions of alcohol to the



corroding diseases of vice; as the predominating factors
in charitable organizations they can add the testimony of
sociologists, and as factors in government, active or poten-
tial, they can observe the baneful political encroachments
of the saloon.

In all these aspects of the problem men and women see
alike, or may at least learn to see alike.

But there is a reason why women should hate the saloon
beyond the hatred of men for it, and that is because, in
nature, they are Mothers. And, being Mothers, actual or
potential, human life is the most valuable thing in the
world to them.

The reason why humanity is staggering under this bur-
den of drink today is that we have been living, up to the
present, in a man-made world. Men have had the power
to protect in law and custom the vices they love. Men
have also idolized and protected property. On account of
the division of labor which men have assigned themselves
in this world men have learned to think in terms of prop-
erty. On account of their traditional duties and experi-
ences, women think in terms of life.

Now, I do not blame men alone for this sad state in
which we find ourselves. Women have been too passive.
They have too 'meekly played the part assigned of weep-
ing and enduring. They have not used to its full power
their indirect influence, and when armed with the vote they
have not yet exerted their whole strength.

Too many women have been selfish and indifferent, and
too many have reasoned that the saloon question is a gov-
ernmental question and, therefore, a man's question, out-
side the realm of women's activity.

Both men and women have been guilty, and the race
has paid the penalty. The main thing now is for both men
and women to solve this problem together, supplementing



each other's intelligence and ideals, and working out a
better social order.

This fundamental difference in the point of view of men
and women has been brought out many ti'mes during the
years the club women were working for the National
Child Bureau, and in state legislatures where women
have been working for the adoption of child welfare

Each Congress has appropriated large sums to the Bu-
reau of Plant and Animal Industry, to encourage the study
of the scientific culture of pigs and sheep, to eradicate hog
cholera, beetles, scales, chinch bugs, ticks, moths and
locusts ; but it started the Child Bureau off with a pitiful
appropriation of thirty thousand dollars, and the next year
even tried to cut that off.

But the mother-spirit of our Nation is now awake and is
demanding to know by accurate vital statistics if it is true
that three hundred thousand babies die annually in their
first year. And why? Is it heredity? Bad housing? Un-
clean air? Is it because the mothers are in industry? If
so, why are they there? How many are deserted wives?

When the causes of infant mortality are ferreted out by
Miss Lathrop and her assistants in the National Child
Bureau, Alcohol will have to come into court.

Then comes Child Labor. Why are there nearly two
million children toiling for gain today in sweat-shops,
mills, stores, factories and cotton fields who ought to be
in school or at play? Robbed of their childhood, stunted
in mind and body, they die in swarms ; they become nervous
wrecks and are thrown upon the industrial scrap heap
before they come to the age of maturity. Or, later, they
fill reformatories, asylums and penitentiaries because they
have never had a fair chance and a square deal.

We ask why six hundred thousand children are illiterate.
We demand that the Government take as much interest in



the Home, and war as energetically against its enemies,
as it has been warring against the enemies of the hen coop
and the pig sty.

And when the Government issues its bulletin on the
American Home it will have to indict the legalized saloon
as the arch enemy of the Home. That is why I prophesied
that this harmless little Child Bureau would be the entering
wedge for National Prohibition.

An ancient prophet preached : "Build ye your cities for
your little ones."

If the city builders, from the days when nomadic tribes
began to settle and group their shacks and wigwams for
mutual benefit down to these days of cities that fling out
their hundreds of miles of concrete and stone to bound
their teeming populations if all city builders had followed
this vision of the prophet, humanity would be farther on
its way to glory. But, on the other hand, it would seem
that the average city had been builded without the expec-
tation that a child were ever to breathe its polluted air, to
play in its stony and treeless streets, to stifle in its sham-
bles of poverty, to be defrauded of sunlight by its sky-
scrapers and dark tenements, to be shocked and polluted
by its greed, by its brutality, by its profanity and crime,
to be scorched by its red-light district and trapped by its
gambling dens and saloons.

I am glad for a new study put in our school courses on
City Planning. I am glad for the new books coming to our
libraries urging the building or making over of cities to
provide for wide and clean streets, with shade and flowers,
for landscape gardening applied to towns and cities, for
good sewage and garbage systems, for parks and play-
grounds and libraries and clean air. All these movements
are in the right direction. We want the same standards
for the city, on the side of cleanliness, order and beauty,



that we have for the individual home a place beautiful
and fit to receive and environ a new-born soul.

The new standards of our city home which are being
fostered today are identical with the standards of the
individual home. On the physical side, comfort, beauty,
order, cleanliness, sanitation, fresh air. A good house-
keeper scorns the contrast between an ornate parlor and
a cockroachy kitchen or malodorous basement. She repu-
diates the incongruity of a grassy, terraced front yard and
a back yard full of tin cans and refuse. So the city visioned
by the prophet is not the city with fancy boulevards and
filthy alleys a so-called residence district and slum dis-
trict ; churches by the dozens and saloons by the hundreds.
What is a city? An aggregation of homes, and the child is
the heart of the home.

So the chief business of cities is to clothe, feed, keep
healthy, educate, give joy to and develop to worthy man-
hood and womanhood the ever-renewed fountain of life
that wells up within it. To this end wheels turn and shut-
tles fly, inventions crystallize, men and women buy and
sell, and coin their muscle and brain power. "Build ye
your cities for your little ones." That is the standard we
must come to. No institution should be permitted to exist
which is detrimental to childhood.

Now, the first great and fundamental right of the child
is to good parentage. The new science of Eugenics is
coming to the aid of Prohibition. At the International
Eugenic Congress, held in London recently, figures were
quoted which showed that out of three thousand two hun-
dred seventy-two children examined who were afflicted
with hysteria, epilepsy or idiocy that the father had been an
excessive drinker in one thousand one hundred and fifty-
six cases, the mother in one hundred, and in fifty-three
both parents were drunkards. Saleeby, the great Eugenic
scientist, says that of all evils at work to-day against



parenthood, and therefore against the child, I should put
alcohol and its evil effects first. He said: "To the many
charges against alcohol made by the champions of life in
the past, let it be added that it is the most potent ally of the
most loathsome diseases that afflict mankind."

Vice and drink go hand in hand. A few years ago a com-
mission was appointed to investigate vice conditions in the
city of Chicago, and to make recommendations. That
report is the most scientific document that has ever been
presented to any legislative body. Dean Sumner was the
chairman of that commission. He has said repeatedly
that the investigation of that commission opened his eyes
to the evils of the saloon, and this representative body of
investigators reported that vice could never be stamped
out of the city as long as the legalized saloon remains.
They are Saimese twins.

Some grim devil has invented the fiction that the sow-
ing of wild oats is an expected pastime of young men.
Statistics of hospital wards and institutions for defectives
show that the pitiful harvest of that sowing is reaped by
the innocent wives, by babies blinded or with rotten bones
and spoiled brains.

A girl who wishes to protect her own safety will avoid
alcohol and choose for her children's father the one whose
life is as clean as her own. The saloon steals the birth-
right of childhood the right to health, the right to clean
blood and clear brains.

The second right of a child is to a home not an institu-
tion, not just a place to stay, but a real home to human
comforts and to love. The saloon gets that which should
be spent for necessities. The children's milk is cut off
before the father's drink, while love and respect die in the
drink-cursed home. It becomes degraded, a charner house
of dead hopes and departed purity.

Judge Gemmill, while judge of the Chicago Court of



Domestic Relations, voluntarily published a report stating
that of the homes broken up, the wreckage of which was
cast up in his Court, forty-two per cent, was caused by
drink. There are four thousand wife desertions reported
annually to our Chicago Bureau of Charities. Drink is the
principal cause. The families become wholly or semi-
pauperized. Mothers, who must add the duty of bread-
winner, go to work in factories or at the wash tub. The
children are under-nourished. The older ones run the
streets, where a careless community permits a bewildering
maze of perils to childhood. Later they turn up in the
juvenile court and fill reformatories. A volume of eight
hundred and thirty pages has just been printed by Dr.
Healy, of the Psychopathic Institute of the Juvenile Court
of Chicago, who has been studying the causes of juvenile
crime. He has made a careful study of one thousand cases,
and, as might be expected, Dr. Healy adds his testimony
to that of other scientists as to the evil effects of alcohol
on the social and individual life. He says : "If we could
with one blow do away with the use of alcohol, the num-
ber of annual convictions would be reduced by one-fifth."

Then, again, the city that is built for little ones should
have safe streets.

The time has passed when children can be kept in the
house with mother out of harm's way. There was a time
when all the women and all the children stayed at home.
That was the pioneer home of our ancestors that home
that was at the same time home, factory and school. Most
of the schooling that the children got was what they
received from their mother or the itinerant tutor, and they
were about her knees and grew to help her as she spun,
dyed, wove and manufactured cloth into garments, as she
pickled and smoked the meat, quilted, canned, made soap
and performed all the industries necessary to feed and
clothe the body.



Two great changes in civilization broke up that com-
bination. First, the industrial change for with the inven-
tion of labor-saving machinery those ancient spinning
wheels and looms changed to the great cotton and woolen
mills of today, the soap barrels went to the soap factory,
the family oven became the steam bakery and millions of
women had to follow these machines to the factory to
earn their children's bread.

Then, at about the same time, the State began to claim
the children for education. So, after the baby is six, the
mother can no longer shelter it at home. It must go out
on the street to school. It must begin to take its part in
the social order. Oh, those streets through which your
tender, innocent baby's feet have to be set ! If the rough
cobble stones and the disease-breeding refuse and the
dangerous crossings were the only perils on those streets,
built almost entirely, up to the present time, by the fathers
of little children ! But, alas ! If many of these little ones
had met their death only by street cars and automobiles
and trains and by smoke and dirt, the grief would not have
made lines so deep and plaintive in helpless mothers' faces.
But the traps that caught their feet, and the manholes that
swallowed them up, and the cesspools that strangled them,
have been the immoral influences set free on those streets
and even fostered by the voting community saloons and
gambling dens and brothels and a thousand minor influ-
ences for evil that help to nullify the pure influence of the
home and of the mother.

In my city there are thousands of homes that are tene-
ments of two and three rooms, so overcrowded with fam-
ily and necessary boarders that the children must go to tht
streets to play and the adolescents to the movies and danc*
halls, or the sidewalks, for the recreation which youth
craves and should have. What will future generations
think of an organized body of adults most of them pa-

Online LibraryJ. Frank (James Frank) HanlySpeeches of the Flying squadron → online text (page 9 of 27)