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There were fully 200 persons present. The Mayor (Mr J. J. Clark) presided, and was supported on the platform by the speakers for the evening - Messrs M. Cohen, G. M. Thomson, W. H. Warren and F. Jones. The Mayor said the one idea with every loyal person was the winning of the war.
Nearly three dark years had passed since the hurricane blast of war passed over the world, and today we seemed to see the clouds lifting and the day of victory approaching, but we must all realise that there was a long wait yet before that day came.
We were fighting to win, and we were going to win (applause) but we must forget our selfish interests and live and work and suffer and sacrifice for our Empire. Our battle cry must be: ''Fight for the right until the right wins.''
The time had come when every citizen, and body of citizens, should meet and discuss calmly and dispassionately what was the best thing to do in the present crisis. What might be right in secure times might not be right in time of war.
Mr Cohen said he was not there as a prohibitionist or a moderate, nor was he representing the paper which he edited. He was there as a resident, and as an elector of South Dunedin to move a resolution that had for its aim and object the winning of the war. The resolution which he had been asked to move read as follows: -
''That this meeting of citizens of Dunedin South, being satisfied that, in order to win the war, it is essential that throughout the Empire every means should be adopted to secure the maximum of efficiency in military, commercial, industrial, and social affairs, and to reduce private expenditures, and also the demands upon the means of transport; and being convinced that the restriction of the hours of sale of intoxicating liquors would assist in these directions more than any other single reform, urgently requests the Government to prepare and introduce into Parliament, at the earliest possible date, a Bill to reduce the hours from 8 o'clock a.m. to 6 o'clock p.m., and to use every effort to have the Bill passed and brought into effect without delay.'' - (Applause)
Mr G. M. Thomson, in seconding the motion, said he wanted to sound a prime note in the present great struggle with Germany - a note that should prevail throughout the whole Empire, - the note of self-sacrifice.
He referred to the great sacrifice made by others in various directions and said these had learned to make sacrifices, but most of the community had not learned to make them to any extent yet . . . After considerable discussion and attempts to amend the motion, it was passed, not without some dissent.
It was decided to send a copy to the Acting Prime Minister, Sir James Allen.
''I have always found the people on the West Coast warm-hearted and generous to a fault,'' stated Bishop Saddlier, of Nelson, at the Wellington Town Hall.
His lordship said he was proud of the fact that all the adults in one West Coast town attended communion, no matter what time of the day he celebrated it.
Aviatrix to enlist
Miss Ruth Law, the American aviator, who flew round the Liberty Statue on the occasion of its illumination, and who recently broke transcontinental records in her flight from Chicago to New York, has sailed for France, where she hopes to enlist for three months in the French Aero Corps, to ''bomb'' the Germans, as she explained it.
- ODT, 16.5.1917.
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