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Moral legislation in great Britain

The House of Commons was on the 3d ult. much exercised upon a bill, pressed with great zeal by certain moralists, for the closing of the public houses during the whole of Sunday. The debate was protracted, and concluded by the defeat of the measure by a vote of nearly two to one. The daily papers of London indulged in much satire of the movers and supporters of it. The Times pronounces its two essential patrons obscure men, and attributes it to the "agitation of a narrow religions party." But the moralists in this case showed the usual pertinacity of their class, and avowed their determination to continue their agitation. The Times administers a sharp rebuke to them, in which the following, sensible remarks occur:

‘ The promoters of the bill talked about "benefitting the working classes." The working classes, like every other class, prefer very much to be let alone as much as possible. We do not want a paternal Government in this country to regulate what in best for the working classes. They must, like every other class, be left to the influences, of religion, reason, and common sense. Every wrong between man and man is the proper subject of law, but we do not wish the 16 House of Commons to step in and tell us how to spend Sunday, and when it is good for us to drink beer. The working classes have a right to resent this sort of interference. We should be sorry to see them willing to submit to it, and we should be still more sorry to think there was any foundation for the representation made of them in the course of this debate, cringing to Parliament for laws to prevent them from gratifying the precessions they are too weak to bridle.

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