The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 82
[Memorial from, 1,604 Working Men's Societies in Italy]
Memorial from, 1,604 Working Men's Societies in Italy, (Page 64. Address Amer. Legis.)
"To the Working Men of Great Britain and Ireland."
"Fellow-workmen,—The General Congress of the United Italian Working Men's Societies, held in Genoa in September last, resolved by a solemn and unanimous vote, to co-operate with the British and Continental Federation in their holy working for obtaining the repeal of those regulations which in many countries of Europe give State sanction to the infamous trade of prostitution.
"The Congress resolved also to issue an appeal from the United Societies to all the workmen of the various European countries, inviting them to work unanimously together in fraternal accord, so as to give to the moral crusade, proclaimed by the courageous virtue of English mothers, the mighty support of their united strength, The universal conscience is now thoroughly aroused to the deep dishonor and incalculable injury brought upon the people, and the working classes especially, by this old Social Evil, and by sacrilegious negation of God's law and human justice which is expressed in the legislation for this evil.
"The work, then, in which the working classes (the most threatened and injured by the cursed institution) unite, consists, according to our opinion, in an incessant cry for Justice, which the Jaws of prostitution shamefully violate, and in an assiduous, persistent, universal propaganda against the insidious arguments of materialistic science, which condemns to infamy the sisters of man that he may find in that infamy safety and impunity for his vices.
"The Italian Societies will fulfil this duty with all the means that the conditions of their country place at their disposal. They mean to fight openly against the establishment in the artisans' districts of Houses of Infamy, and thus to oppose opulent vice in its long-established usage of seeking hospitality amidst the poor but honest dwellings of the working classes. They mean to stop this horrible insult to humble virtue, so that the shame and responsibility of its own dishonor may wholly and entirely rest on privileged vice.
"The world knows that no plea of antiquity, no arrogance of science, will page 19 ever succeed in proving that the vice of the few is useful to the many, or that it is possible to secure the health of the body by the vilifying corruption of the soul.