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Newspaper Page Text
, ONE MAN'S OPINIONS
BY N. D. COfcHRAN.
Prisons and Prisoners. Isn't it
strange when you come , to think
about it that a man out of work has
, to violate a law or get some officer
sore at him in order to get a place to
sleep and something to eat?
It is a very simple matter to break
into some prison; and once there so
ciety has to feed, clothe and shelter
But prisons are so uncomfortable.
They have iron bars over the win-
dows. They have steel-barred cells
for sleeping rooms. And they have a
lot of officers of the law hanging
around in uniforms, drawing pay.
I don't like the architecture of
wouldn't cost us so . much to
build them if we didn't build those
steel cells in them and put steel bars
on the windows.
. We could save money by building
them farther out from the center of
town, where land isn't so valuable
and where the air is purer.
We could save money by building
them like we build our hospitals.
And then we could admit the poor
and hungry without forcing them to
violate the sacred rights of property
in order to get food' and shelter.
And isn't it strange, too, that the
sensitive man, the man who doesn't
want to violate the law, who wants to
be good and all that sort of thing,
who prefers starvation to prison
isn't it strange that, if he prefers
starvation, the rest of us will let him
have his way about it and starve?
Things are upside down sometimes,
A Pointer for Privates. I was
glad to read about how those English
army officers threw up their jobs and
refused to fight when they didn't ap
prove of the cause. The important
thing about it is that they didn't
want to lead a fight against their own
Of course, they were glad of the
chance to go into South Africa to kill
Boers. They didn't mind shooting
down the natives of India. Undoubt
edly they would consider it a patriotic
duty to order their soldiers to fire
upon striking English workingmen.
But here was a different situation.
In Ulster they might have to order
the privates to fire their deadly bul
lets at rich landlords, members of the
nobility in fact, their friends and
associates, their class.
I am not finding fault with that.
On the contrary, I am glad they did
just what they did. It may educate
the men who carry the guns, who do
the killing and getting killed, when
the rulers of men go to war.
And when these private soldiers
get their eyes open then THEY may
see that there is no more sense in
them shooting down THEIR class,
THEIR friends and associates,
THEIR brothers, fathers and other
relatives, than there is in the classy
officers doing the same thing.
And tht may lead the privates in
the English army and then in all
armies to insist on haying a voice in
determining whether they shall fight
or not; and then refusing to fight
unless they are satisfied they are
fighting for the betterment of hu
manity and a good cause.
And that means there would be
mighty little fighting, for there is
rarely a good cause for trained
armies of men to shoot each other
It's all rot for English workers to
kill German workers, for German,
workers to kill French workers, or
for the workers of any nation to kill
the workers of any other nation, just
because a handful of masters in the
two nations have had a quarrel and
have decided to settle it by .war.
I hope the next move of the pri
vate soldiers of England will be to
demand the same right as that of the
officers to resign and refuse to fight
when they don't approve of the war.