The Illinois Racing Question., Daily Racing Form, 1898-01-23


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THE ILLINOIS RACING QUESTION There arc measures before the representatives of the people of Illinois assembled in a body by special call which seek to legalize racing Out of hypocrisy and the false and specious notion of busy men who go to reform in itinerant and unhealthy ways racing has been degraded A speculative side issue of racing which has handled it in a sordid way has contributed to the fund of falsity This speculative barnacle has used a noble sport for mere gambling pur pour ¬ poses and getting into the newspaperic newspaper eye by gaudy methods has been pictured as representa represent ¬ tive tie Mere speculation is not healthy in a general way The racing crowd of speculators were bolder than the mercantile band bandA band A similar crew is on board every ship of public business The dry goods grocery railroad and Board of Trade industries cover just as furtive a band of operators as the turf The latter paraded their odds while the former disguised theirs Each band had the same shade and each as eagerly sought cheats The newspapers attracted by display and ease of gathering news turned toward the turf speculator and sensationally told of his opera ¬ tions ions The other fellows working in less public lines escaped through the tunnels of newspaper sloth In consequence socalled scaled public opinion careless and superficial because lazy and busy with the affairs of the individuals that created it marked turf speculation for its scape escape goat The creators of this opinion had to mark something to cover their own let us call it unpublicness unruliness Thats Hats hypocrisy There ¬ fore race track gambling socalled scaled was chosen for the action of the elastic law of the land The men who owned the race courses upon which horses ran failed to face the hypo ¬ critical foe as it should have been faced To avoid trouble and interference with a profitable business the race track owners elected to be branded as gamblers and in folly drifted to the bribing of politicians for the purpose of securing the right to enable them to do that which they had a natural right to do It cost the race track people huge sums The goods for which they paid were not delivered Clumsy legalism exposed the flaws in what alleged rights the race tracks owned Their owners were branded as criminals by the Illi Ill ¬ nois noirs courts They either retired or were driven out of business Chicago has had no racing of account since 1894 until last summer at Harlem That meeting was illegal The closing of Washington Park Hawthorne and Harlem has cost Chicago merchants 5OQp000 yearly since 1894 It has benefitedjftgv benefited York Cincin Cinching ¬ nati Nat St Louis Detroit anjrotliertowns by iust oust so much muchThe much The same ban against an mUustry musty that had no more right to be selected for the ban than a dozen others of considered worth cost the horse breeders of Illinois as much almost as it cost the merchants of Chicago It took from the broad industry Of American horse breeding four times as much more Horse prices were cut into four by reason of the Illinois racing clos clods The crusade against the sport was built on a false foundation Eacing Acing needed regulation not abolition Men have as much right to earn a profit by the rearing or the racing of a horse as by the sale of a pound of tea a peck of po ¬ tatoes tattoos or a yard of flannel So the courts will decide if stanchly staunchly and reasonably asked to so do The bookmaker is not the prop and pillar of the turf Neither is the track owner Many men race horses for what their horses can earn in prizes olfered offered for speed Many men operat operant dry goods grocery and drug stores for what they can get for their wares over and above the prices which they paid for them If racing men chose to go to the American courts in a systematic and high class way they could legitimize their trade and prove as Eur Euro opean open turfmen Turkmen have proven that racing is not a matter of gambling They have however chosen the shabby avenues of technicality and been branded in consequence This does not apply to the Jockey Club which has been able by the high class energy and character of its officials to regulate eastern racing of limited geographical lines in excellent fashion What American thoroughbred racing seems most to need is division and dominance There is too much ground for one two or three bodies to cover There should be a national organiza organza ¬ tion ion of course That means unity regulation and purity But local conditions apply too sharply for the rulers in San Francisco to oven aid in governing racing matters in New York The bookmaker has caused most of the troubles from which the western racing suffers He is too flambuOyant flambOyant and too competitive He leans toward poolroomism poolrooms too strongly also Who can blame him An active man in any business naturally chooses the most profitable corners of his industry as he discerns them The pool room game is one of mere percentage of profit There is indecent rivalry over it in every fertile field This rivalry was the chief cause of the present local sterility The old law which closed the race tracks is a tough pro ¬ position as to pool rooms turning back as it does to the criminal code The entire matter of American racing is one of mere regulation There is no chance on earth that Chicago people wiser than any other people about racing will not use their judgment and money to bear upon it They have as mucli nuclei right to so do as a man has to buy wheat cloth tea or sugar and wait for an ad ¬ vance or a fall in prices for profit or loss It is infinitely better to let a race track centralize such investments than to have handbooks so called of furtive methods operate in every cor coir ¬ ner near of the town as they are now doing doingThis dinghies This all leads to the main matter the racing measures before the Illinois Senate Senator Fitzpatricks Fitzpatrick and Eepresentative Representative Carmodys Armloads House measure The bills are identical They will add some 300000 to the States revenue are reasonable in structure will regulate racing in Chicago and the State of Illinois benefit its breeders and its merchants abolish the pool room evil and legalize a noble sport racing and a noble industry the breeding and im ¬ provement preferment of the American horse horseF horse F H BEUNELL BENELUX

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