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The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, August 12, 1916, LAST EDITION, Image 5

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1916-08-12/ed-1/seq-5/

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Say, Big Bill:
I gave you some good advice months ago. If youTI hunt up some
open Jetters I wrote to you months ago, you'll find you have fallen into
the very pitfalls I pointed out at that time. I told you .the Dry leaders
could never be -satisfied, and that no matter how much you might try to
please them you couldn't succeed, and that they would turn on you. It
has happened.
If they were to hand you a list of saloonkeepers who had violated the
Sunday closing law, and you revoked the license of every one of them,
they would come right back at you with another list And with still an
other list And if you revoked 90 per cent of the licenses, instead of being
given credit for that you would be damned for not revoking the other 10
per cent
They had you in a trap, Bill, the moment you ordered the saloons
closed on Sunday. You had the law on your side, all right, but in this
case the law doesn't happen to reflect the sentiment of a majority of the
voters of Chicago, even though it does reflect the sentiment of a majority
of the state legislatures. .
In most states the liquor laws are made by representatives of the
rural districts; and it seldom happens that the people of the big cities live
the same life and have the same opinions about reforming the other
fellow. It is easy enough to say that the. way to kill a bad law is to en
force it That's all right in theory, but it doesn't always work out in prac
tice as to state laws made to govern people living in cities.
You can't please the people of Chicago by enforcing a state law the
people of Chicago don't believe ought to be a law. They didn't make the
law, and probably a majority of it don't believe in the law because it isn't
their will. And they have no way of making a law to govern Chicago,
because they haven't got home rule.
There are many thousands of honest and sincere Drys in Chicago,
and they may be right in their opinion. But there are also many Dry
politicians who will play politics with the booze issue. I imagine you are
beginning to find that out There are some pretty cunning politicians
back of the game that is being played against you now, and they are rap
idly making you unpopular with both the Wets and the Drys.
Already school board politicians and Big Biz politicians back of them,
have got you in bad with labor, and made you lose all the prestige you had
gained by helping the street car men. You have lost thousands of friends
among the plain folks, who stood by you when the newspapers, politicians
and Big Biz were trying to put Sweitzer over.
I am amazed at one thing, and that's the apparent lack of sound po
litical advisers in your cabinet You are being outplayed in all of the
strategy of the game. Your enemies are gradually building up the im
pression that graft is rampant among your subordinates, and that the chid
aim of the Thompson political outfit is to build up a jobholders' machine
for the selfish benefit of the jobholders and Jhfe bosses

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