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ANOTHER important question discussed at the, Aberayron meeting was the Sunday Closing. Act. Though we fail-to see there was any special reasons why the subject should ever have been placed on the agenda paper, and though we believe it was intrusive on the part of the supporters- of the motion to present their petition to the Royal Commission.* that the Act under certain conditions be continued, yet we quite agree -\yith them as to. tlve im- portance of the question with which Sunday Closing has more or less to do,* viz., 9 -1, Temperance, and we believe that, the time is not far distant when County Council will be called upon to deal with it with firrttneas and effect. The temperance cause will and must grow. Such at least-is the opinion of a keen politician Lord Randolph Churchill who knows well the mind of the Democracy. A very large number of the people are tired of the rowdyism, poverty, and crime caused by the drinking habits of a certain section of the inhabitants of this country, and they have determined to do their best to withdraw some of the fatal facilities to get drink. In 1853 the Scottish Sunday Closing Bill was carried. Those interested in, the trade raised an outcry against it, at d a Royal Commission was appointed to -enquire into its working. A very favourable report was issued, and since then nothing has been heard against the Act. In Ireland the people have had Sunday Closing since 1879. A similar outcry was made against the working of the Act. A Select Committee sat, and so far from recommending the repeal of the Act, urged that it should be made still more stringent. Mr W. H. Smith lately said that Government hoped to pass a Bill, embodying g .this advice, before the endof- the, session. The Welsh Sunday Closing Bill was passed viA 1881. We should have thought that the opponents of such legislation might have learnt wisdom by their failures in former cases. But they have not, and so a Royal Commission is now being held to decide whether the Act has been successful or net. The evidence, so far, has been singularly monotonous in its favour. Of course, there are many thirsty people who procure drink, and who would do so under any circum- stances, but these are not the kind of persons for whom it would be wise to repeal an Act. A Sunday Closing Bill for England has passed its second reading. Now all this has been done in the face of what Lord Randolph calls an enormously powerful political organization; so powerful and so highly prepared as to be almost like a Prussian army. An organiza- tion which he also says has successfully intimidated members of Parliament and directly overthrown two Governments.


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