Imatges de pàgina

French government ds*n it had yet taken; thus practically admitting that its prev\o\is passivity had been an error, even as I have here contended, and trom the last-named paper I gather the following- pertinent paragraph: "only Fifty-five Closed.—After all Premier Combes' threats and efforts, it does not appear from a recent Paris cable that he has been very successful in closing the French religious houses. Only fifty-five convent schools have been closed to date. The Marquise de MacMahon, however, was last week thrust out of her own house for venturing to interfere in behalf of nuns on her estate.1'

Here, again, there is no perception of the inherent tyranny of the Associations Bill, but simply a milk and water recognition that the facts in human cruelty are not as universal or wide-spread as might be feared ; and likely as not in the same paper there are editorials in praise of President Roosevelt, who is all the time pursuing courses that are as brutal and unjust toward other Catholics and Catholic interests and God's truth and justice as are any—even the worst—features and actions of the Associations Bill in France.

In truth the stultified sense of justice in the whole body of the people—including Catholics, Protestants and infidels of all nations —is so solid and stolid, that the terms ignorance and infamy are all too weak to define the actual condition of the people and their actions. Justice has fled to brutish beasts and men have lost their reason in the rot of newspaper civilization.

It is simply folly even to try to make the matter plain to an age so utterly sold to selfishness, tyranny and the devil as is the age in which we live ; and the folly is only intensified by the thought that this hellishness of ignorance and infamy has become so respectable that we not only have to treat the perpetrators of the world's great wrongs as gentlemen, but even as Christians while they are palpably the followers of Mammon and the well-fed children of hell.

I want the laboring man everywhere to have his utmost rights, even if he has to rise and take them by force from the clenched, gripped hands of his oppressors; but I want that, if he ever has to do this, he shall have justice and right on his side and not present the spectacle to Gods and men of one set of ignorant and pampered tyrants fighting against another set of the same breed only a little better clothed and fed and with a little more money. In fact I think that the laboring man in this country has always had not only his rights, but that he and his Labor Union officers have far more of rights and pleasures and luxuries than the character and quality of their labor deserves and far more than is good for them. Fourth of July gatherings or shooting wild boars tamed to their skill.

Many families of the strikers, seeing that the fight was to be a long one, went to Europe early last summer to spend the season with their old-world relatives and friends. Could they have done this, had the average wages of the miner been as low and contemptible as Mitchell and Co. have proclaimed.

Could these same miners support in luxury and ease a host of loafers like Mitchell, were their wages as contemptible as Mitchell & Co. have proclaimed?

They have lived, with comparatively little suffering and privation, for many months during the strike upon their own savings and the savings of their fellow workmen in other parts of the country. Could they have done this, had their earnings been as meagre as Mitchell & Co. have declared? There is as much lying and deception as there is high-handed and brutal tyranny in the action of the Labor Unions and their officers.

I am not here criticizing or denouncing the so-called "Coal Barons" and their ill-gotten gains. Too many fools are engaged in that business just now and still will be so engaged. I am simply pointing out the fact that the methods of the Union, as of the general government of this nation and of our sister republic, are all as corrupt, tyrannical, oppressive, selfish, godless, inhuman and damnable as anything can be.

We all know that the wealth of the millionaire is gotten by deception and robbery.

Shall the working men and their leaders follow the example of the millionaire and go with him to the races and to hell-fire? or shall we try to teach them all justice together, even though we may have to die for the fools, as others have died before us?

When we consider the fact that the miners have long been in the habit of working only about half time—often of their own choice and at other times by reason of various conditions in the coal market—and yet that in view of this short-time labor they have all been comfortable and many of them prosperous; can their wage earnings and their generally oppressed condition be as contemptible as Mitchell and Co. declare?

The fact is that what with many holidays, much loafing and short hours the average laboring man and mechanic of to-day does not


In a word, the general management of our affairs is as stupid, ignorant, uncivilized and basely tyrannical as are the lawless actions of the striking miners.

You do not pay me fifty thousand dollars a year for governing you or superintending your miners, mechanics, street-sweepers, or cooks and waiters, or I would soon tell you how and when such matters should be attended to. As it is, you can go on in your ignorance until you are nauseated with the incompetency of your own methods;—then, fly to the next scientific humbug that is ready to bluff you, and then, petition the next fool President that is ready to hear you and inform you that he will give the matter his attention—the incompetent, much-gesturing, loud-mouthed fool.

In truth the main work of modern education and progress seems to have been to produce an abundant harvest of scoundrels and fools. Talk of the Dark Ages, they were luminous with supreme intelligence and virtue compared with these ages of enlightened and scientific republicanism.

How do you account for it, that the republics of to-day, though constantly improving, are constantly retrograding, declining, and rotting with vice and ignorance.

I gladly admit that in all classes of men,—even among the negroes and moneyed classes—there are thousands of conscientious, industrious, sober and even God-fearing people; but the masses, for whom republics were founded, are more vulgar and less industrious than ever. They dress better than of old. Only connoisseurs can tell a gendeman from a laboring man or a mechanic of the bluff species in our day. The working man has everywhere too many hours for loafing and hatching mischief. I would make the laboring mans day ten hours everywhere; but our modern republics are running like tail-piped dogs, everywhere, as long ago predicted of them, at the swish of the scavenger's broom. In a word, the newspapers that are not owned and directed by the capitalists and money-lenders, are cowards in the service of the tyrant laboring man and his Unions; and the governments are doing the bidding of one or the other class, trying at the same time and always to serve God and Mammon. To do what is just and right is an old story to be laughed at, one that is not practical in our time.

I am aware that in all ages and nations men have complained of


their own day in something the same strain as this and have pointed to old days when things were better.

I am not sure that they were ever much better than now, but of this I am sure that the prevailing action of the masses is such a parody on Christian ethics, such a contradiction of all moral laws, such a glaring, constant and universal insult to all justice, that for a Christian to remain silent in view of the social order of the day is to prove himself recreant to the soul of truth and honor and duty.

I take it for granted that the old commandments have not become obsolete; I take it for granted that intelligent men everywhere admit in their inmost hearts that to do justice and love mercy is binding upon all men in their daily actions; that honesty is the best policy; that we should do unto others as we would that others should do unto us.

I do not name the higher commandments that we should love one another, even our enemies, and love God supremely. These and other such ideals are for those who have chosen a religious life in earnest Moreover, in all that range of life which concerns a man's highest duties and relations to Almighty God there is everywhere a feeling that all such matters are between a man and his Maker; but that, in all which concerns the daily life of man, it is proper that those who pretend or presume to teach anything should insist upon what everybody admits to be true and necessary, even though nobody pursues it, or, at least, only a few.

This is my only excuse for insisting upon justice and not simply yielding to the injustices, follies and tyrannies of the nations merely because in the eyes of popular cowardice these have become respectable.

It has been pointed out during the past year in a leading magazine that newspaperism has ceased to have any influence for justice on the leading questions of the day because of the patent fact, everywhere believed, that in the whole fraternity of American newspapers there is hardly one among the so-called "great dailies" that is not already sold to commercialism, neck and heels. They simply have nothing to teach and have to dawdle to the party or the commercial "fads" of the day.

If a man runs an illicit whiskey still, or is a counterfeiter, or a green goods man, a gambler of the condemned classes, a horsethief, or engaged in any occupation that is openly lawless and is

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