Education Will Keep Prohibition in the Constitution
by Ernest H. Cherrington
Director Department of Education, Publicity and Research
Anti-Saloon League of America
Only One Sure Method
The National Prohibition Amendment will remain in the Constitution of the United States of America, because the principle represented in that amendment is a righteous principle. Majorities are of great value in a righteous cause, but there is only one way to build and maintain real majorities, and that is by the slow yet sure processes of education, whereby the truth, through personal conviction and organized activity, becomes the settled expression of public opinion.
Education Will Determine
Scientific temperance instruction in the public schools of the United States, supplemented by the work of temperance organizations in colleges, secondary schools, Sunday Schools and the young people's church societies, will not only determine the future of Prohibition in the United States, but also contribute largely to the spread of world-wide sobriety.
Constitutional prohibition in the United States is largely the result of the teaching, a generation ago, of the evil effects of beverage alcohol on the human system. Continuation of that teaching, coupled with instructions in the economic and social benefits of abstinence and prohibition, will secure the continuance of prohibition as the national policy of the United States.
For forty years the school laws of most states have required instruction concerning the nature and effects of alcoholic beverages, in connection with physiology and hygiene. This work in thousands of schools undoubtedly contributed to the growth of public opinion which finally swept away the legalized liquor traffic.
The general tenor of present state laws is that there shall be taught the nature and effects of alcohol and other narcotics, purely as health instruction. In a score of states laws recently were passed requiring special temperance observances on special dates, as, for instance, the birthday anniversary of Frances E. Willard, the anniversary of the Eighteenth Amendment, etc.
The passing of the legalized liquor traffic did not end the necessity for education in the subject of alcohol. On the contrary, it made that necessity more imperative. Age-old customs and habits persist. Both the alcohol and drug habits are, and always have been, problems peculiarly of youth and formative years.
Modern scientific discoveries have thrown new light on the problem. Youth has a right to know, is desirous of knowing, and for the betterment of the race., has a duty to know, all modern f acts about beverage alcohol and the traffic in it, as these facts affect questions of industry and transportation, physical fitness, social hygiene, and the general public weal.
Furthermore, there are more than a million foreign-born children of school age in the United States, and about eight millions more are children of foreign born parents or of mixed parentage. Many of these trace their ancestry to countries where the ideas of personal abstinence and legal prohibition of intoxicants are almost unknown. These foreign-born children and the children of foreign-born parents are coming into citizenship, and its responsibilities, along with native born and temperance trained children, and it is highly important that this great element of the population shall be informed as to the nature and the effects of beverage alcohol.
Truth Will Prevail
If the truth is imparted, it will forever hold the oncoming generations on the side of prohibition, no matter what efforts may be put forth for its repeal or nullification. Modern youth must know the truth about the nature and effects of beverage alcohol and the practical relation of such facts to modern demands for physical and mental fitness, efficient skill and alertness, patriotic political sense and general capacity for service.
The most important function of the organized movement against alcoholism is the dissemination of the truth, and the creation, organization and crystallization of public sentiment.
"Ye shall know the truth, and the Truth shall make you free."
Printed as a two-page folded leaflet titled "Education will keep prohibition in the Constitution". This text is from small pamphlet published by the American Issue Press.
A hard copy of this pamphlet can be found in the Anti-Saloon League Collection at the Westerville History Museum.
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