Y, AUGUST 7, 1927
THE SUMMER MICHIGAN DAILY
BOOKS OF TH
A SPONSOR FOR YOUTH
Prohibition and Christianity-byI
John Erskine (Bobbs-Merrill, $2.50).
Obviously it is inconsistent and in-
compatible with logic to be a Pres-
byterian and a prohibitionist at thej
same time, according to John Erskine
especially for anyone who takes either'
the bible or prohibition seriously.
His thesis is that prohibition and
christianity are but the first in a ser-
ies of American paradoxes; that by'
the letter of the law of the Patriarchs,
prohibition is irreverant; that in the
ethical interpretation of the law, it is
disrepectful and absolutely contradic-
tory, and that in the Christian observ-
ance of the eucharist, it is nothing
short of childish to substitute unfer-
mented for fermented juices. On the
whole Mr. Erskine's standpoint is ten-
able but his proof does not measure
up to his conception. He is definitelyi
popular in his first argument. It is'
rather flippant at times but reasonable
behind it all.
His stand on prohibition is that it'
is unchristian and unnecessary andl
"This is a materialistic, commercial
age" is not doing all the things that
E DAY people like, Bertrand Russell believe
that it is. There is however a big
problem in eductation; to bring the
He is a bit too close to the ma- spiritual back into the material, to
or perhaps feels a little sharp ?keep an ideal before the labor move-
the question having just had Jment. For the poetic, he calls this
t unsatisfactory argument with spiritual quality, poetry, for the more
esbyterian friend which proved practical he dubs it efficiency of a bet-
cessful due to the placid faith ter kind.
friend. The next article en- There are several articles in this
"The Prohibition Tangle" is book which the 100 percent rotarian
comprehensible and logical-the would hate to mace-his inside desire
is less biting and more effective for aristocracy which he is unfit for
es not stoop to parady as he has because of his lack of knowledge of
first. And then, he has an op- the past and this indifferent interest
c faith in the temperance and in the present. But most rotarians
.ence of youth, which of course would not see where John Erskine'
us, and binds our allegiance gentle raps applied to them.
second article. "Popular discussion of youth and
t the ideal of temperance versus its behavior begins to die down. Our
ition he says: "The ideal of generation wil soon be accustomed to
ance is heroic and noble; youth youth." The discussion while it last-
Lmire sacrifice for the good c' ed, observed Mr. Erskine, was carried
and can see the moral beauty on by those who had not recently, if
eration, of self-control, of al' ever, been young. "The goodness of
e for the sake of a fine en(' youth is only a promise and the bad-
actice of temperance leaves the ness only a threat." And he takes the
)f beauty on the temperate. But side of youth in the argument. He
tion, the passion of preventir believes in it, in its worship at the feet
people from doing what the3 of real leaders, those who came at the
essentially a mean passion, and I climax of civilization. Youth ignores
n to it has never 'yet develope' Benjamin Franklin who admittedly
ive or lovable character." was a great man but who is not ade-
nd his sarcastic treatment of quate for the present because he came
that it is temperance which we should
advocate instead of abstinance byl
force. Some evil results of the pres-I
ent situation are: Class resentment
because liquor is almost legal for the'
upper classes and economically out
of reach for the loiver classes; the end
of law and order must follow where
the same law bends so flexibly ,forr
the wealthy and the poor; ands manyl
a good cause can be ruined by a bad]
law, the keeping of which results in
corruption among the agents. In
other words, prohibition itself has ac-]
cepted a co ipromise which "ham-
strung" their law in order to get thair
law on the statute books.
It is too bad that Mr. Erskine called 1
his book "Prohibition and Christian-
ity" because most of his other essays
are better than the one bearing the
for all makes of typewriters. Rapid
t*rnoer, fresh stock, insures best
quality at a nmoderate price.
O. . D. MORRILL
17 Nickels Arcade Phone 6615
Christianity, Mr. Erskine is mild and'at the beginning instead of the end
very human in his studies of modem'n of a development. Plato, Michael An-
American problems. He emphasizes gelo, Leonardo-these are men leader-
at other times the importance of build- ship can be felt in all ages. And it
'ing "attractive and lovable character" is to these that youth is turning. Their
'as in his "Poetry and Work" in which disrespect for industry, which some of
he recalls that the seamstress who the elders have decried with flattened
plied a needle all day long on dark and outstretched palms, is not serious
blue serge, probably did not find much because much of the industry which
more poetry in fire than the person
who manipulates a machine today. It
is comforting sometimes to think that
the machinery of which we are so!
patriotically proud when we affirml
4 JACK HOXt'E
they ignore is unnecessary for them,
having already done its work.
Yes, Mr. Erskine is behind youth.
All the way through his book, the
subtle stabs and digs at modern
American society, all his criticism;
and suggestions seem to hinge around
his faith in what youth will do-from
prohibition to chirstianity.
-3f. L. W.
The pioneer portable
Nearly a million
'.ib hs"ad" 'll IOC
Moday-Loin Chaney in
0. D. MORRILL, Dealer
L. C. Smith and Corona
17 Nickels Arcade Phone 6615
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