Find this Story

Print, a form you can hold

Wireless download to your Amazon Kindle

Look for a summary or analysis of this Story.

Enjoy this? Share it!


One Of The Many Corpses In The Johnstown Mine
by [?]

WHY should he feel so badly about it?

If the Pennsylvania workman is willing to let a NEWPORT man manage the capitalistic end, should not that Newport man allow a CHICAGO labor leader to manage the labor end?

Is not one explanation the fact that the owner considers his workmen, in every possible respect, financially, morally, legally, ethically and eternally, his inferiors?

If one mine owner disagrees with another, each will treat with the other’s chosen agent, whether he be Tom Reed, corporation lawyer from Maine; Joe Choate, corporation lawyer from New York, or Levy, corporation lawyer from Chicago.

Why not accord to the workman the right to choose his accredited representative?

So much for the much-talked-of “interference in MY business by labor agitators.”

What about the interests of the country? There are in Pennsylvania, let us say, one hundred square miles of coal lands OWNED BY ONE MAN, and WORKED BY TEN THOUSAND MEN.

The working of this mining region develops an annual net profit, perhaps, of five million dollars, AFTER the workmen have been paid as little as they will work for.

The owner lives in a house of a hundred rooms.

The miner’s family lives in two rooms. The owner has a yacht, a private car, a fast automobile, fine carriages, many servants.

The miner WALKS. He has a wife who cooks, sews, scrubs, washes, mends while he and his boys work in the mines.

We wish to arouse no “maudlin sympathy” for the miner, no “anarchist loathing” of the owner.

We ask an answer to this question:

Which would be better for America: to let one man have five millions a year, and keep ten thousand men on the edge of want; or to let the one (and, if you choose, SUPERIOR) man have one million a year, and divide the four millions among ten thousand families, adding four hundred dollars to the income of each family? That is a plain, simple question.

Remember, we suggest and advocate no COMPULSION. We state a situation. The STRIKER is trying to get a little more for himself and family. The OWNER is trying to keep the vast sum for himself and his family. Each is convinced of the righteousness of his cause. The striker does not try to TAKE AWAY money or property from the owner. He simply strikes, saying:

“I will not work for less than such a sum, unless you starve me into working.”

He calls upon YOU, the public, to give him moral support. He entreats other workmen not to take his place while he strikes.

It is for YOU, the public, and for YOU, the idle, hard-pressed workmen, to answer conscientiously the question:

Is it better for one man to have four extra MILLIONS a year, or for each of ten thousand families to have four extra HUNDREDS a year, that they need sadly and sorely?

If this question were answered as Christ would answer it, there would be no smug respectabilities scoffing at the striker. There would be no heartless scabs taking the places of men struggling to support wives and children.

Leave out sentimentality, if you will, and Christianity, and our hollow pretence of following Him who called every poor man “my brother.”

What about the cold utility? Four millions more for an owner mean what?

Some bogus antiquities, and perhaps a bogus title brought to America.

Another palace, with a dissatisfied owner.

A dissipated son; money spent by this son to promote vice, and by the father to corrupt legislation. Four hundred dollars more for a workman’s family mean wholesome food for children. And the children go to school and have a chance.

This sum means a self-respecting life for a father, and for the mother it means everything. She can hire some woman to help her when her babies come. She can give her husband and her children good food, rejoice in their comfort, add good, healthy citizens to the nation. —-