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AY back in Vermont, on the
the minister's sermon that was just
W farm, wasn't it good to shove the bit harsh," or the choir that wasn't
chairs a little to the big fireplace, along in October, when the woods were all painted reds and yellows and soft browns—and we had the chores done, and had been to church in the morning, and the neighbors that had just taken the Brown house with the story and a half and an ell walked across the meadow and dropped in to talk a while, and mother said, "Just you stay to Sunday night supper!"
Do you remember what there was in the big iron kettle on the back of the stove in the kitchen-the kitchen that would hold half the houses nowadays? Oh, but it was good, Sunday night-corn meal mush, and lots of it. And there was a blue pitcher full of milk, so rich with cream "it was almost as yellow as the leaves that rustled against the east windów. And gingerbread-the old-fashioned sort, made of sour milk and just a little mite heavy, because father liked it that way; and a pan of rosy fall apples, not a basket, just a lovely shiny tin pan, and the white bowls, and great-grandmother's solid silver spoons that "
And everybody talked a little. About
quite up to mark because the regular soprano had gone down to Boston to see her cousins who had come on a visit from Illinois, and the supply did "real well, considering "-and how the new fashion of having a choir wasn't so sort of dignified as "congregation singing," and the organ did get out of fix.
About the weather outlook, hard winter predicted; and the doings in Washington, where it looked as if some of the men were trying to set themselves up above the rest of us. Never do at all. This was a real democracy, we allowed; and just about the time when politics threatened to divert the conversation from topics then considered more proper for Sunday night, mother comes back from the kitchen with half a pumpkin pie, to tempt the guests who were a little new to our country hamlet ways.
How that mush did hold out, and how mellow those apples felt! And sister had to explain that she never got any lumps in the mush when she made it because she sifted in the meal before the water quite boiled; while on our side of the fireplace there was nursed an idea that the vigorous stirring given by the boy
BY B. PRESTON CLARK, JR.
The glory of the sunset and the night
The homage of the waves beneath our walls.
When the end came or how, we do not know,-
from the village by way of "not being in the way" helped a lot.
Then somebody carried out the bowls on the great tin-no "japanned "-tea tray, and father opened the melodeon for a little "sing." Sister played, and of course "the boy" helped find the places and hold the book open, and he sang a nice second to the pretty soprano notes in the lead, while the others "chimed in," some in tune and some in triumphant discord. The new young neighbors went home early, as they should, and the boy didn't stay long; just talked over the afternoon walk through the maple woods, and planned for another next Sunday. In the old red brick farmhouse where generations of children had satisfied hungry appetites on Sunday night mush and milk and gingerbread, the youngsters dreamed of adventure, and the elders turned in contentment to their beds, welcoming sleep to fit them for the week of work ahead.
Simplicity, sincerity, nobility in unexpected places, high hopes-these are the visions that a Sunday night supper of mush and milk, apples and gingerbread, bring to a city wayfarer, weary of the road, camped in a "single" apartment in California.
Dreaming our dreams and watching from our towers.
IMMIGRANTS AT ELLIS ISLAND ATTEND AN ENTERTAINMENT The pictures at the top of the page show young Americans who have gone to Europe and won triumphs for themselves and their country. This picture shows elderly Europeans who have come to America, the land of hope and opportunity even for them. The new Commissioner of Immigration has begun a series of entertainments for the immigrants, which are thoroughly appreciated
"AND THEY WONDER WHY WE'RE RED"
"'M an I. W. W., and I'm proud of it!"
This outburst, coming from a total stranger a mere traveling acquaintance -startled me, to say the least.
I was on my way to Portland, Oregon, and, as the train was crowded, I had taken a seat in the smoker beside a typical lumberjack. He was a tall, husky-looking chap with sandy hair and the sort of blue eyes that seem to bore holes straight through you.
We fell into conversation about the weather, and had wandered on from topic to topic in a leisurely fashion. Somehow or other, I happened to mention the Centralia tragedy, where I. W. W.'s were accused of shooting down soldiers marching in an Armistice Day parade last November. There was an instantaneous change in my neighbor. His face became tense and before I knew it he had snapped out his startling admission.
Fortunately for me, I was able to gather my thoughts together before replying, for my chance acquaintance kept right on with:
"You think it's funny I'm a 'wobblie'? Well, why shouldn't I be? The way the papers talk, you might think I was a sort of Jo-Jo, the man-eating ape. But the funny thing is that a year ago I was a hero. Yes, sir, I was eleven months in France. Didn't have one of those coffeecooling jobs either-right up on the front line, that's where they put me. I nearly got mine, too. Was gassed and shot through the chest. Just look at that."
He pulled open the old army shirt he was wearing, and showed me an ugly scar just above the heart.
"Don't look like much, maybe, but it sure got me for a while. I was over six months in the hospital with that. Well, when I got out of the Army I went back up to the woods an' asked for a job. The boss said, sure, he'd give me one. And so then I told him I was pretty soft and asked him to break me in easy-like-you know, an easy job for a week or two until I toughened up, as I was pretty soft after all those months in the hospital.
Well, what do you think he done? He gave me a pick-an'-shovel job. Can vou beat it? But, I ask what was I
Underwood & Underwood
The intrepid lumberjack is an "under dog" in name only when he climbs into such dizzy eminence as this. At this great height, his bird's-eye view of the social order may indeed make him " see red "
BY C. LUTHER FRY
to do? I didn't like it, but I couldn't say nothin'. I'd have been fired right there probably, so I give it a try. Stuck at it for nine days. It was tough, though. After the second day I got to coughin nights. Two nights I didn't sleep at all. Then, too, my hackin' away used to keep the other boys awake. Of course they didn't say nothin', but it made me feel rotten, anyway.
At the end of the ninth day I couldn't stand it no longer an' I went to the boss an' told him. He just up an' told me that there wasn't no other job, and if I didn't like the one I had I could quit. Well, I did. There wasn't nothin' else for me to do. I just couldn't keep goin' no longer.
An' then I went to see the company doc an' asked him to give me somethin'. He did he gave me the jolt of me life. First he asked me how long I'd been with the company, an' then he wanted to know when I'd been injured. I told him it was in France, an' then watcha think he told me? He said he couldn't do nothin' for me, since I hadn't been injured on the company's ground. An' me having just paid them a dollar for me hospital fee!
"An' then he come out with the advice that I write to the Government at Washington-to some bureau or other-an' ask them what to do. Honest, buddie, he told me that! And they wonder why we're Red!"
The scorn and bitterness with which he spit out the last few sentences was diabolical. I felt that the man had brooded over this injustice until it had become an obsession that had suffused his whole personality with hate.
In an effort to turn the conversation from himself, I said. "But why join the I. W. W.? How's that going to help you ?"
Like a flash he came back with:
Well, what else can we fellows do? Political action ain't possible for us boys. In the first place, we don't live long enough in one place to have a vote. An' even if we did, what good would it do us? Take them Socialists, they spend twenty years campaignin' an' elect Victor Berger to Congress and then what? Why, then, the Senate just naturally throws him out on his neck. Or look at them five Assemblymen in New York that were kicked out. That's how far you get with political action. No, sir, the only thing left is direct action. I didn't used to think so, but after the way I've been treated lately I've come to see things different. I tell you, if you got money you can get away with murder, but if you're a poor sucker like me they'll pinch you for readin' the
Declaration of Independence. Honest to God, it's a fact."
As he went on he became more and more excited, and his voice rose louder and louder. Men around us could not help but overhear. Two traveling salesmen began eying us with mild hostility. Others did the same. Suddenly my neighbor became aware of this. He looked around with a defiant air, hesitated, and then lapsed into a moody silence.
I, too, became thoughtful. Here was a man who had been forced to live in an atmosphere of heat and hate until he saw
the world through bloodshot eyes. His outlook on life was the result of an economic and spiritual environment that was unusually efficient in turning out anti-social beings. He therefore should be looked upon, not as an isolated revolutionist, but rather as a significant symptom of a sick society.
But, you say, as long as a man holds rabid views he is a social menace, no matter how just and square he thinks his
True, but the only way to make such a man a social asset is to improve his
economic and spiritual environment. As long as we leave him a prey to every destructive influence in society he will think destructively. Raids and arrests, persecutions and deportations, will not permanently help matters. Russia and Prussia sadly attest to the futility of such enterprises.
Rather, we have to undertake the far more difficult task of making such a man's life more normal-of giving fuller and freer expression to his personality. It is only when evolution ceases that revolution begins.
THE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: ITS PROBLEMS AND PERSONALITIES
Under this heading each week until election we expect to print an article or articles, not necessarily expressing The Outlook's opinions, but presenting some phase of the political contest, some light upon it, some point of view concerning it, which will be of interest to the voter, and will have some bearing upon the decision which he or she must make before the ballots are cast on November 2.-THE EDITORS.
THE PIG AND THE PRIMARY
A COMPLAINT, A PLAN, AND A DOUBTFUL CONCLUSION
NEWSPAPER item appeared a few days ago which told of a system which a certain English city once used in the election of its mayor. I do not vouch for the historical accuracy of this item, but it may possibly be of value as a text for a discussion of our present primary system. According to the story, this English city chose its mayor by the simple process of seating T the candidates for that office in a circle and placing in the lap of each candidate a pan of beans. Into the center of this circle was then introduced an elector of the genus Sus. The outcome of the election was determined by the choice of the electoral pig. That candidate became the mayor from whose lap the pig first took the sustenance of life.
I happened to read this interesting item to a friend who in 1912 and 1916 had.voted for Theodore Roosevelt in the Republican primaries and who in 1920 had followed this by optimistically voting in the Republican primaries for Leonard Wood. "Well," he remarked when. I had finished, "that would be a great improvement over our present American Presidential primary system. Under the pig plan the people might really have a chance to secure the candidate that they desire. I move that we start an agitation for votes for pigs.
Perhaps my friend underestimated the present value of the primary system. But I do not think that he much underestimated the popular opinion of its worth. If you ask the average voter, "Why is a primary?" the chances are that he will
answer, "A primary is an institution designed to determine what the people want in order that the politicians can give them something else." Doubtless it might also be found that the average voter exaggerates the faults of our present system, but the faults are there, and some of them can be easily defined.
Our present primary system for the election of delegates to the conventions of the National parties is cumbersome and costly. No man can run effectively in the various State primaries without the expenditure on the part of his friends of what seem to the rank and file of the voters huge sums of money. It cannot be denied that the rank and file of the voters have come to look on large campaign funds, no matter for what purpose they are expended, as dangerous and reprehensible.
The present primary system makes for factional bitterness in that it brings to the contest for delegates to a convention all of the partisanship which has characterized the final National elections characterized the final National elections in November. Our country is governed by party government, and.so long as this system endures anything which tends to disorganize the functioning of our parties tends towards the dissolution of government efficiency.
Our present primary laws are as diverse as our divorce laws. Surely contests leading towards the nomination and election of a National President should be conducted under rules which show some approach at least towards unity of form and spirit.
Our present primary laws do not operate efficiently even within the present range of their possibilities. In the first place, in some States no contests are held to enable the voter to secure even a chance to express his preference. And where contests do occur this same voter frequently fails to put an appearance at the polls on primary day.
But even if our primary system were developed to its highest possible point of efficiency along its present line of operation, would the result be any more satisfying? To wax utopian in imagination, would all our troubles vanish even if contests for instructed delegates were held in every State of the Union, and even if in every State of the Union every voter voted? It cannot be denied that most voters would reply, "No!" Under such an imaginary development one of two alternatives might be expected by critics of our present system. Either conventions would be deadlocked and the delegates forced to disregard (or be excused from regarding) the popular plurality, as at present, or they would be reduced to the innocuous desuetude of the electoral college. It seems to me that if we are to continue our present system of party government, such a devitalization of our party conventions would not be wholly desirable. Heaven knows our conventions have been disappointing in the past, but the way to cure their weakness is not to make them still weaker. There are those who want to destroy every political organ which functions badly, just as old-time physicians pre