Senator Warfield’s Effective Speech

March 3, 1916

How He Met The Assaults Of The Liquor Advocates In The State Senate

Arguments That Went Direct Home

Meets The Claim That Prohibition Will Not Prohibit By Reading Telegrams From Colorado and Alabama – Stands Firm as Gibraltar For The Cause of Sobriety and Righteousness

The most effective speech made in the Senate in behalf of the prohibition referendum bill was made by Senator h. D. Warfield, of Carroll County. The wet Baltimore papers dismissed it with a few lines, while they gave liberal extracts from the so-called arguments of those who spoke for the whiskey interests. In order that Herald readers may know just how Senator Warfield met the assault of the wet advocates, we print here with a report of his speech in full. It is worth reading and we commend it to the attention of every reader especially those who sought to betray Senator Warfield last Fall.

Senator Warfield’s Speech

“Mr President – I regret that the Temperance Bill was not reported out of the Committee without the amendment. The amendment,if allowed to stand, destroys to a certain extent, the protection and great benefit the bill seeks to give the people.

“I have weighed most carefully the evidence that came before the Temperance Committee, and not a single argument, to my mind, justifies this measure being withheld from the voters of the entire State. I utterly fail to understand why the people should not be allowed to settle this question. It is a right that belongs to the people and they are demanding it, and it is our duty as representatives of the people, to see that this right is given them.

“Every argument against this measure proved, to my mind most conclusively, a lack of confidence in the people to be able to rule themselves – an insult to every voter of the State.

“Mr. President, this bill does not legislate intoxicants out of the State of Maryland – it merely gives the people the right to pass judgement on the wisdom of such a proposition.

“Our republican form of government places the government in the bands of the governed. Then why should we attempt to withhold the privilege from the people?

“The only concentrated efforts against the bill comes from Baltimore City, and vice was so rampant in the City that they appealed to the last Legislature for an appropriation of $5,000, and the appropriation was granted them, to investigate the traffic, and if possible, find a remedy. I say to you gentlemen, if you will close the saloon and stop the sale of rum, it will not be necessary for the State to appropriate money to stop vice – vice will not thrive without whiskey, they go hand in hand – kill one and you destroy the other.

“From some of the utterances made before the Committee, they would have you believe that Baltimore would be ruined and trade deserted if the saloon is closed. Mr. President, this is an insult to the business world. Business and drinking do not go together. Baltimore’s natural advantages have attracted the trade and will continue to hold the trade, irrespective of whether the saloon continues or not.

“As a business man, I feel that I have a financial and a moral standing with the trade, and I will venture to say, sir, should I enter a counting room or a business establishment with whiskey on my breath, I would certainly lose my moral standing, and I feel my financial responsibility would be investigated. To my surprise, men have been here representing banking institutions and large business interests, raising their voices against the measure, and I am confident these same men would not,under any conditions, employ in their establishments, or even as truck drivers, men addicted to the use of intoxicants.

“The largest Corporation within our State, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, does not even allow their men to enter saloons. At the solicitation of this company, Brunswic, in Frederick County, was voted dry some years ago, and only this week a representative of this railroad was here endeavoring to have Weaverton, in Washington County, made dry. These points are terminals of their different divisions where their men reside – this illustration does not need further argument – it speaks for itself. Think of what it will mean to this company and to the safety of thousands of their patrons, when Baltimore City, another terminal and the home of this great corporation, becomes dry. Our Monumental City, even with her annexed territory, will not be able to furnish homes enough for these wage earners, who will put their money into homes instead of in the saloons.

“I have a list of one hundred of the largest manufacturers in this country, who do not countenance the use of intoxicants under any conditions. The man who drinks is not wanted in any branch of business. He brings untold misery to his family, and in many cases becomes a burden and expense to the State.

“Great stress has been placed, Mr. President, on the Personal Liberty laws. This is merely a ruse to create sympathy. Personal Liberty stops where personal safety begins. The laws of this State prohibit you and me from running our cars on the side walks or pavements of this city, because it would endanger the lives of others – then why should xxxxxxxxxxxx

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