THE platform of the California State Prohibition Party, says:—
We favor the enactment of a law requiring one day in seven as a day of rest, as a civil institution, but providing that where any individual habitually rests from labor upon a certain day of the week, such person shall not be required to rest upon any other day, but providing further that in no case shall intoxicating liquors be sold upon such rest days.
This is another instance of the under-handed means by which the religious legislationists of the day, seek to secure laws enforcing their religious views. This statement is considerably involved. It does not say what is intended; and it pretends to say what it does not mean at all. First, “We favor the enactment of a law requiring one day in seven as a day of rest as a civil institution.” If a law were enacted in the very words here used, requiring everybody to rest “one day in seven,” the people who framed the above declaration would not admit for a moment that it was a right kind of a law.
Next, after demanding a law that shall require one day in seven as a day of rest, it also requires that a provision shall be embodied in the law that “when any individual habitually rests from labor on any particular day of the week, such person shall not be required to rest upon any other day.” Will the Prohibitionists of California please explain how a person can rest from labor on a certain day of the week without resting one day in seven? And if the law which they want is to require only that people shall rest one day in seven, and any person is found who actually rests a certain day in the week, then what is the use of making any provision for his benefit?
This betrays the fact that is not expressed—that they intend that the law shall fix the one day in seven which they want as a day of rest. This intention, therefore, made it necessary that they should insert the provision that where any individual actually rests upon a certain day of the week, such individual shall not be required to rest upon any other day.
Nor is this all. They not only intend  what they would not express, that they mean that the law shall fix the particular day; but they intend that the day shall be Sunday. Therefore this platform declares, in fact, for the enactment of a Sunday law. This we know by the documents that are sent out as campaign documents under the platform. R. H. McDonald, who is one of the leading Prohibitionists of California, was a member of the convention, and is an active worker in the campaign. He sent out circular letters to the newspapers, urging “upon all men of influence and conscience, the necessity of giving their aid in helping to remove from bur country its terrible scourge, the liquor traffic,” in which he appeals to the members and friends “of the First Congregational Church, corner Post and Mason Streets, San Francisco,” and laments that “our Sunday or Sabbath day is widely desecrated” and “God’s holy day desecrated and put to shame.” In another document he and Mr. C. C. Clay and Wm. M. Cubery, announce that they have banded themselves “together with others interested, to do all we can for the securing of a Sunday law in this State, or one day in seven as a rest day.” It is addressed to the “fellow-citizens and the friends of the Sunday law, or one day in seven as a rest day,” and it says to these “respected friends” that they “herewith will find enclosed a number of extracts from opinions of distinguished individuals on the Sunday law, or one day in seven as a rest day.”
Now, as it is evident that the Prohibitionists of California mean a Sunday law, and that only, why didn’t they say so? Why did they cover up their real meaning? Why is there such a juggling of phrases to hide what they want, rather than a plain statement of it? We hardly think they will succeed in catching the people of California with such chaff as that.A. T. J.