Temperance Cause Is Marching On!

December 31, 1914

Vote In Congress on Prohibition Amendment A Real Victory In the Face of Tremendous Odds

Congressman Talbott’s Attitude

Left His Sick Bed to Show His Contempt For The Mightiest Petition From the People Ever Presented to Congress–Hobson’s Triumph–No Reason Why Forces of Temperance Should Be Discouraged

There is nothing to discourage the temperance forces in the vote on the Prohibition Amendment in the House of Representatives as recorded in The Herald last week. On the other hand there is every reason why they should feel elated. Congress has at last been made to feel the forces of the tremendous sentiment behind the proposition to make the nation dry. The vote in the House was 197 for the Amendment to 189 against it. But this is a case where majorities do not rule, a two-thirds vote being necessary to pass a Constitutional Amendment through the House. The greatest petition ever presented to Congress was there, a massive, earnest, appealing prayer to the consciences of the people’s representatives, bearing the signatures of millions of the best citizens of the land.

This prayer was flung back into the faces of those who sent it by 189 members of those who had the courage to vote at all. Even the Representative of the Congressional District of which Carroll County is a part–a County that has taken its place among the dry units of the nation and voted out the saloon–left a sick bed where he had been ill and unto death and journeyed to Washington against the advice of friends and physicians, to cast his vote with the friends of the liquor interests whom he has always served. Fred Talbott, the man who could do more for the cause of righteousness than any other one man in all Maryland, if he only would, cast his vote against the Amendment–and he did it apparently with resentment toward the Christian forces who had dared approach his august presence with a petition, respectful and conciliatory urging him to support a proposition that simply gives to the people the right to vote themselves on the question as to whether the licensed bar shall continue to be tolerated in this Christian land!

Another Maryland Congressman, who aspires to be the Governor of the State, not only trampled the temperance sentiment of the State under foot, but he insulted the intelligence of the people he is supposed to represent, by making a speech in opposition to the Amendment in which he said the question was solely one of States’ rights. What a pity some friend of the cause in the House did not stand up and ask this distinguished gentleman what he did to help his State settle the question when he served in the State Senate! Mr. Linthicum has alienated the friendship and the vote of temperance people in Maryland, which means that he tossed the Governorship aside when he voted as he did, and placed the interests of the whiskey element above his high and honorable office. If he does not know it already, he will soon ascertain the fact, that the people of Maryland have reached the point in this fight against the forces of evil, where they will no longer place the interests of party above this great moral question.

Two Maryland Congressmen voted in favor of the Amendment, David J. Lewis and Frank O. Smith. Both of these men refused to do the bidding of the Baltimore liquor interests and are entitled to all credit. Unfortunately Mr. Smith retires from Congress at the end of the present session, his party having refused him a renomination last Fall.

An analysis of the vote in the

House discloses many interesting things, but we have not space to consider them here. As we have stated, there is every reason for encouragement for the temperance forces in the vote as cast, and nothing to be disheartened over. It is the first time in the history of the nation that the question has reached a vote in the House, and it had the votes of a majority of that body cast in its favor! And this in spite of the fact that the Speaker of the House, with all the mighty power that he wields, was against it, and in spite of the fact that the floor leaders of both parties stood shoulder to shoulder, exhausting every resource, in opposition.

To the man who led the temperance forces in the House against the mighty odds we have mentioned, and who marshaled a majority vote in favor of his resolution–Richmond P. Hobson–belongs the greatest share of the glory. For him it was a great victory. It should be remembered in this connection, that the temperance forces did not seek to force a vote at this time. It was forced by the other side. There is every reason to believe that the new Congress, soon to come in, will number in its membership more friends of temperance than the Congress now in its final session.

In any event, we are nearer a saloonless nation than we have ever been before and this vote in the House, if it means anything, means that the licensed bar will be closed in 1920. This great cause of Sobriety and Righteousness is not going backwards. It is going onward, steadily onward! Behind it is an earnest, tireless, courageous Christian sentiment that will not permit it to lag. As the Church becomes more solidified in its favor, and more fully awakened to the fact that this is God’s cause which we are upholding, the greater will be the progress. God is against all evil, and the saloon has never been anything else! Therefore all who would serve God, with diligence and faith and all who love Him as commanded in the greatest of all commandments, must stand against the rum demon and all that it represents, for this demon represents evil only!

Thank God for the progress that is being made! Thank God that the New Year which comes with the dawn of tomorrow’s sun, will be the last year that will see the sanction of a Christian people given to a licensed saloon in Maryland! The day of judgement for this tremendous agency for evil, with all of its licensed temptations, is near at hand. Let every friend and worker for the cause of temperance, take courage therefore. The victory is coming in Maryland and the nation! Pick your flints and go at ‘em again!

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