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Invited by a Sydney "Daily Telegraph" reporter to speak in regard to the licensing question in New Zealand, Sir Robert Stout replied that there had undoubtedly been a great advance in the No-license vote. "Anyone who has lived there knows that the attitude towards liquor is quite different from -what it was forty j-ears ago. Of course, a great many people still drink, and there are drunkards; but the public feeling aroused against the use of liquor is quite different as compared with that of forty years ago. On steamers and anywhere you go when travelling, you see nothing to approach the consumption of liquor that was witnessed in earlier days."

When the objection frequently marie that Xo-license was likely to affect the tourist traffic "was mentioned, Sir Robert ridiculed it. "If a man cannot come and see our scenery unless we fill him with whisky, he ha<j better stay away. Ido not think any tourist worth having who will refuse to come to New Zealand unless he can get liquor. In any ease, I do not think that New Zealand is going to be dominated by the tourist traffic.

"No doubt," he continued, "the NoIi cense people are very optimistic as to the speedy attainment of their dream; but I do not think it will be realised as soon as they imagine. You cannot expect a reform like that in a day. Peo« pie who have bfeen drinking liquor for thousands of years are not likely to become non-alcoholic at once.

"All the fame, a great advance has undoubtedly been made. I can remember when only twenty people or so met forty years a<ro in Dunedin to advocate this reform. There wns only one clergyman at the meetimr —Rev. Dr. Stewart—■ and I remember well, when he caw Mr. Jago depressed about the poor attendance, how he checrilv said. 'What are you downcast nh-mt? Why, there are more here than there were Apostles.'"

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Bibliographic details

TOURISTS AND PROHIBITION., Auckland Star, Volume XL, Issue 63, 15 March 1909

Word Count

TOURISTS AND PROHIBITION. Auckland Star, Volume XL, Issue 63, 15 March 1909