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Figure The Hanly-Bigelow Joint Debate Hon. J. Frank Hanly For Four Years Governor of Indiana NEGATIVE Hon. Herbert S. Bigelow President Ohio 's Constitutional Convention AFFIRMATIVE Question : Resolved : That the Federal Constitution is Outworn and Obsolete and Should Be Amended in Some of its Fundamentals Figure MANAGEMENT THE COIT LYCEUM BUREAU ARTHUR C. COIT, President LOUIS J. ALBER, Gen'l Manager CLEVELAND, OHIO Figure Gov. J. Frank Hanly Hon. J. Frank Hanly For Four Years Governor of Indiana GOVERNOR HANLY enters upon this series of joint debates with enthusiasm, taking what may be called the unpopular side of the question, arguing in favor of retaining as it is our Federal Constitution. He has held this view for years and is the most able exponent of it. His lecture, The Government of the Fathers, deals with the same question, so his side in this debate has been, like his opponent's, thoroughly prepared for some time. Of Governor Hanly's platform ability, we reprint a part of an appreciation by MacInnes Neilson, noted lecturer and critic: Of all our public men and statesmen today, there is probably no one in our national life who more closely resembles the late W. E. Gladstone, who was England's Prime Minister, and, for half a century, her first orator, than does J. Frank Hanly, who, for four years was Governor of the State of Indiana. The likeness becomes the more apparent when one considers the essential characteristics of both men. Physically, they have both been built of stalwart type; mentally, they are rich in the scope of their intellectual life. Neither man has ever hesitated to champion weak and unpopular causes, or lead forlorn hopes, when they have deemed these to be just. In their methods of appeal to the people the resemblance is quite as striking. In their manner of preparing an argument on which to base their appeal, in their felicitous use of fact and history in illustration, in the measured tread of their chaste but simple Saxon, in their sincerity and conviction, in their passion to make others know the truth as they themselves see it—in short, in the form of their eloquence and in the type of their oratory, even to the tone and quality of voice, these two men—Gladstone and Hanly—bear a distinct resemblance to each other. Since rendering distinguished service to his native state, Governor Hanly has devoted a portion of his time to the advocacy of those themes which are amongst the Reform movements of the nation. No one has been more active and prominent than he in the discussion of the question, The Disarmament of the Nations, and the plans to bring about International Peace, in the movement for the overthrow of the Liquor traffic, in the efforts to keep alive the true principles of a Democracy in the government of the people. There are many figures today in the Chautauqua and Lyceum movements, of which these institutions may be justly proud—men and women who have set their hands and their hearts to tasks worthy of the best and most gifted. Of all such there is perhaps no one of more brilliant platform attainments than Governor Hanly. Honest in his public service, pure in a life full of rewards and honors, a life which has been without the slightest stain of cowardice or double-dealing, he brings, in his presentation of these public questions, the force of a compelling and mighty personality. It is the art of public speech at its best, it is oratory at its highest. Hon. Herbert S. Bigelow President Ohio's Constitutional Convention Figure Hon. Herbert S. Bigelow NO BETTER equipped speaker, whether in experience, familiarity with his subject, or oratorical ability, could have been secured to engage in the joint debates with Ex-Governor Hanly on the Federal Constitution, than Hon. Herbert S. Bigelow. All are familiar with the great work he did in Ohio in securing a progressive Constitution for his native state. He is now beginning a nation-wide movement for a Constitutional Convention to rewrite the Constitution of the United States and these joint debates will be one method for bringing this big subject to the attention of thoughtful people. These debates will be given National attention at once by the press and big magazines of the country. It is not too much to say that Herbert S. Bigelow is Ohio's foremost citizen. Below we give brief extracts from some of the leading magazines, nearly all of which have devoted considerable space of late to his work in Ohio. The American Magazine Says: ( Part of an article by Brand Whitlock, reform mayor of Toledo, accompanied by a full page portrait of Dr. Bigelow .) THOSE citizens of Ohio who a dozen years ago used to throng the big circus-tent in which Tom. L. Johnson was then making his first campaigns in the country districts will recall the figure of the slender youth with the Grecian profile and the fair hair who used to stand there under the flaring light and speak of fundamental democracy. They, or those of them who were accessible to such impressions, caught something of the spirit of the youthful idealism that was in the young man; if they did not, his presence and personality gave them reassurance, for attendance on one of Tom Johnson's meetings in those days was, in Ohio, an enterprise to impart the thrill of a spicy and dangerous adventure. Time flies, and time has flown fast in this last decade, and the political ideas that Herbert S. Bigelow was helping Tom Johnson to disseminate, though they were flouted and scorned then as heretical, insane, and wicked, have since become, by the inevitable and monotonous operation of the universal law of progress, conventional, respectable, orthodox, and popular. His great opportunity came when, last year, a convention was called to draft a new constitution for Ohio, and he set out to impress the people with the fact that it was their opportunity. He organized the Ohio Progressive Constitution League, with subsidiary leagues in every county; he worked all summer; and through that league, aided and inspired by what the lecturers call the Spirit of the Times, a majority of delegates elected to the convention were pledged to the principles of direct legislation. And for the first half of the year Mr. Bigelow was at Columbus, presiding over the constitutional convention as its president. At forty his figure is no longer slender; it has taken on the rotundity of the middle years; but as he sat there in gray tweeds, with the yellow hair hanging over his forehead, smiling, it must have been gratifying to him now and then to reflect that his old heresies had become so orthodox in his own time. The convention adopted articles providing for home rule for cities, for a license system to control the liquor traffic, for equal suffrage, for verdicts in civil cases by a three-fourths vote of the jury, for the welfare of labor, and, under Mr. Bigelow's leadership, a clause adopting the initiative and referendum in the State. Everybody's Magazine Says: T HIS great magazine declares Dr. Bigelow to be the preacher-president of the Constitutional Convention that gave the people of Ohio the right to say how they shall be governed—the dominant personality in this struggle for more democracy, and in an eleven-page article by Frank Parker Stockbridge, continues: One morning in August, 1902, two visitors stood on the veranda of Mr. Tom L. Johnson's house in Cleveland. One of them was August Lewis, to whom Henry George had dedivated[sicdedicated] his last book; the other a young preacher from Cincinnati, broad-shouldered, blond-haired, blue-eyed, boyish-looking, with an appealing smile and a stimulating hand-clasp. Mr. Johnson threw his arm affectionately around the young preacher's shoulders. Lewis, he said, some day Bigelow and I are going to rewrite the constitution of the state of Ohio. He did not live to see his prophecy fulfilled, but the young preacher, Herbert S. Bigelow, became president of the Constitutional Convention that ten years later gave the people of Ohio the right to adopt the Initiative and Referendum. I am going to tell you a great deal about Herbert Bigelow, because, until you know and understand him, you cannot understand what lies behind the awakening in Ohio. ( Here follows a five page account of Mr. Bigelow's fight in Ohio for a progressive constitution which was successful . Bigelow will be elected to the Legislature in November—he will be elected to many higher offices if he lives. He is forty-two, looks thirty, has the constitution of twenty, and has proved himself a leader of men. He isn't bothering about the future, though—merely preaching every Sunday to a congregation that fills the Grand Opera House. But the big thing—the thing that interests you and me—is that conservative old Ohio dared to wrench itself free from the grip of dead men's hands and to contemplate its constitution from the point of view of its usefulness to the people of today, as something to be scrapped like any other piece of worn-out antiquated machinery. That is the hopeful message for the rest of us. The Hanly-Bigelow Joint Debate SUBJECT: Resolved, That the Federal Constitution Is Outgrown and Obsolete and Should Be Amended and Altered In Its Fundamentals, or a New One Substituted Hon. Herbert S. Bigelow, Affirmative DR. BIGELOW believes that constitutions are made for people, not people for constitutions; that when the conditions under which the people live change, constitutions should change. He does not believe a twentieth century business could be successfully conducted with eighteenth century equipment, or that twentieth century people should be compelled to live under eighteenth century laws and customs. He does not care to make any extended statement in advance of the series of debates. Hon. J. Frank Hanly, Negative FORMER GOVERNOR HANLY makes the following statement regarding his views on the subject of this debate: Politically we are living in an iconoclastic hour. Everything in government, however tried and efficacious, is being questioned, re-examined, and analyzed anew, and if old and long-established, condemned with a calmness and cynical sangfroid unparalleled in the life of the American people. Teachers of the multitude and stewards of the public welfare are everywhere. The National Constitution is condemned as shop-worn, outgrown and obsolete, and the fundamentals of representative government derided and denounced as hindrances to human freedom. Closet-dreamers, academists and doctrinaires seek the substitution of forms of government dreamed by them for that framed by the fathers—willing to trifle with the liberties of a hundred million people that their experiments may be tried out. Journeymen-mechanics, tinkers and piddling politicians mock the men who founded the Republic and flout the institutions they established. Panaceas are heralded, cure-all, acclaimed. The occupant of the Chair of Political Science in a great State University, in a printed and widely published volume, proclaims the Federal Constitution a conspiracy against popular government and the rights of the people,— a constant menace to liberty, and brands the men who devised it and secured its adoption as conspirators against free institutions. The Mayor of a great City—the sixth in the Nation—declares, As to constitutions I am a heretic. I do not believe in them at all. The Federal Constitution is and has long been a doubtful blessing. The Governor of one of the States of the Union writes a Constitution in a night, carries it the next night into a partisan legislative caucus and demands that it be accepted by the caucus and passed by the General Assembly, and it is accepted and passed without substantial change or real opportunity for debate. The Chief Executive of another of the States, with the oath of office to support the Constitution fresh upon his lips, cries out in angry denunciation in a great assemblage, To hell with the Federal Constitution. A former President of the United States demands the revolution of the government over which he presided and which he administered for seven years, through the recall of judges and of judicial decisions wherever such decisions involve constitutional construction or interpretation. And this is being said and done in the name of social justice and of human liberty! Here is an issue more vital and fundamental, graver and deeper, than any possible questions of economics or of administration can ever be; an issue the like of which in vitalness and futurity of import has not been tendered the American people since the crash of Rebellion's guns at Sumter; an issue as deep as the genius of liberty itself, profound as freedom, reaching beneath the very foundations of the Government. Believing that all this is error, perilous and grievous; that the men who framed and elaborated the Federal Constitution were patriots and not conspirators, statesmen , and academicians; that the Constitution they envolved is a charter of power and of liberty, wanting only intelligent interpretation to meet every need of our free, complex and expanding life; that the system of representative government they devised and established is necessary in its every fundamental to the preservation of human freedom on this continent and the happiness and welfare of this people, I accept the defense of that system as a duty and a privilege . I was born under it. So, also, was my father and my father's father. I have lived beneath it for half a century; I have thrice sworn to support it, and I want that my children, and my children's children to the last generation, may have it for a heritage, its great provisions unimpaired, its fundamentals unchanged.
|Title||The Hanly-Bigelow joint debate|
|Topical Subject (LCSH)||
Debates and debating
|Personal Name Subject||
Hanly, J. Frank
Bigelow, Herbert S.
|Digital Collection||Traveling Culture: Circuit Chautauqua in the Twentieth Century|
|Contributing Institution||University of Iowa. Libraries. Special Collections Dept.|
|Archival Collection||Redpath Chautauqua Collection|
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|Contact Information||Contact the Special Collections Dept. at The University of Iowa Libraries: http://www.lib.uiowa.edu/spec-coll/contact/index/|
|Number of Pages||4|
|Digitization Specifications||Scanned at 600 dpi, 32-bit color. Master image available in tiff format.|