Last updated on: 2/4/2008 | Author:

Committee of Fifteen Biography

Con to the question "Should Prostitution Be Legal?"

“Restraint by license is a surrender to vice under authority of law; restraint by segregation is a compromise with vice, illegally made, and nullification of laws by public officers appointed to enforce them. Either license or segregation condemns whole neighbourhoods, in which the vicious are but a minority, to the common brand of infamy, and fails, nevertheless to save other neighbourhoods from incursions of vice.”

The Social Evil, 1912


“The Committee of Fifteen, a New York City citizens’ group that advocated the elimination of vice (specifically prostitution and gambling), was founded in November 1900. Its members, chiefly prominent businessmen, hired a team of investigators who visited locations throughout the city where ‘vice’ crimes allegedly took place, filing reports on each site. The Committee disbanded in December 1901, after evaluating the collected evidence.”

The New York Public Library website (accessed June 29, 2007)


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