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Title: Public Disgrace
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The example of representative men in public trusts, who are habitually drunk, or who spend a large portion of their time at the gambling table, is terribly pernicious in many respects. Practice of this kind naturally and righteously destroys public confidence, and lessons our faith in mankind generally. Besides, the influence of such men on the young, is especially deplorable. The common gambler and drunkard, is usually, whether wisely or not, an outcast from society, and is pointed out as a warning whose example our children are to shun. But if we have voted for such men for important positions, or been in any way instrumental in securing to them offices of trust, how shall we meet our sons, and caution them against following their bad example?

It is said, and we all know it to be true, that intemperance and gambling are fearfully common at this time among Senators and Representatives in our national Congress, and in all our State Legislatures. And if the evils are not absolutely worse to-day, than it has been in the past, the offenders certainly sin against far greater light, and more than ever before, these evils demand prompt abatement. We know of no work that more urgently demands the correction of drunkenness in the officials of our country. We are firmly of the opinion that habitual drunkenness should be made a crime so aggravating, as by law would forever disqualify every offender from holding any position of trust or profit within the gift of the people. We cannot afford the risk of drunken officials, and provision should be made for the prompt removal of offenders.

And what is the remedy? Who can apply it? These queries are readily answered. A fearful responsibility rests upon every elector in all this country if we do not practically answer them. The unfailing remedy is a true ballot-a ballot cast for none but temperance men. It matters not to what political party, aspirants may belong, if they are not men of sterling temperance principles, they are unworthy of your suffrage. If you cast your ballots for drunkards and gamblers, you must sooner or later atone to an outraged community. The representative who enters the halls of legislation at our State Capitol, and there, under the influence of intoxication, casts his vote for a bad measure, is not one whit more to blame that the man who voted for his election. The repsonsibility for the enactment of bad laws must be shared alike by every voter who casts a ballot at our elections. Too much stress is laid upon partyism, to the exclusion of the inherent qualities of the candidate. If this mighty national evil is removed, it must be done by the united efforts of temperance men, irrespective of political preferences. Let every lover of temperance and humanity vote for temperance men for office, ignoring utterly all other qualifications, and in a few years, the tide of intemperance in public places would be stayed, and the servants of this great people would stand before their constituents in the erect attitude of a perfected humanity, unbloated and undebauched by the stenching lava that flows from the rum seller's still!

[Page 95 of scrapbook.]

Date: 8/5/1869
Origin: Warren Republican
Record ID: 00001592
Type: Periodical
Source Archive: Warren County Historical Society
Date Entered: 8/10/2001
Collection: Clippings scrapbooks
Entered By: Leslie J. Rice

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