Sunday, May 17, 2009

Eugene Debs - Bigot

Link to:
In the early 20th century, the premise of left wing radical Eugene Debs’ ideology rested upon identification of the labor movement with Anglo-Saxon male Protestants intimately familiar both with the prophetic strain in Christianity and with the traditions of American democracy. Immigrants, especially those of non-English or non-German stock, black and female workers did not fit into this conception. Debs wrote, “The Dago works for small, and lives far more like a savage or wild beast, than the Chinese.” These sentiments did not inspire universal labor solidarity.

Debs was not unique in his outlook. The American Protective Association identified Catholicism as the country’s most dangerous threat. Members took an oath never to vote for a Catholic, patronize Catholic merchants, or strike with Catholic workmen.

The objects of intolerance change over time, but the shrill voices of intolerance never seem to change.

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