Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1789-1924 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the
National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress. external link Learn more
Image provided by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL
Newspaper Page Text
H'WfMHgHHiaiy JWWiA VWWgMtWW WWrefTTg
ONE MAN'S OPINIONS
BY-N. D. COCHRAN.
Workingmen and War. War is a
game of kings, czars and other mas
ters of men. Often is it played for the
benefit of Big Business. The men who
provoke war, prepare for war and
levy taxes on the people to pay for
war dont do the killing and getting
killed. That is done by the young
men who come from the loins of
workingmen on farms and in cities.
Prom childhood these boys are
taught to worship a flag, to work
themselves into a frenzy about it, and
to follow it with guns wherever their
master sends it
In some countries preparation for
war is made by teaching men in their
religion that it is a glorious thing to
die for one's country. Writers write
slush and bunk about patriotism that
makes boys want to go to war and
fight for their country and their flag
like the sloppy "A Man Without a
Country," for example.
Seldom, however, to the men of
any country who do the fighting the
common soldiers know what it's all
about. They have no grievance
against the common soldiers of the
other country. They merely obey or
ders and kfll their brothers.
The Austrian farmer doesn't hate
the Servian farmer. The Servian
workingman doesn't hate the Aus
trian workingman. Each may have
been taught to hate the GOVERN
MENT of the other. He may imagine
he hates the people of thfc other gov
ernment But he doesn't .know why.
The people are not the governnient
And he has no reason for hating the
people of another government.
If Austria and Servia fight, then
Russia will fight with Servia, and
England and France will have to fight
with Russia. On the other hand, Ger
many will have to back Austria, and
Italy will be drawn in on that side
of the scrap because of her "belong
ing" to the triple alliance.
The common English people don't
hate the common German, Italian or
Austrian people. Neither do the corn
man people of France and Russia.
Nor do the common people of Austria
hate the common people of. England,
France and Russia.
Each set of common people, how
ever, has a certain flag waved before
their eyes and when the king says
"forward" why forward they go, right
up to the cannon's mouth if need be.
At one time kings were powerful
enough to declare and wage war
whenever the whim moved them.
Later on they had to get the consent
of the money lenders; for without a
war-chest they couldn't fight The
next step in evolution will make war
dependent upon the common people
the ones who do tha killing and get
I think the time will come when
labor unions will be universal, and the
workers of every industry will have
a common purpose and a world-wide
organization. There will be an alli
ance of the workers on farms through
farmers' jgranges, and the workers in
industry through labor unions.
Then will come a time when the
toilers, the world's workers, will de-.
termine whether or not they will kill
and be killed.
Suppose all the coal jniners of
Europe were to go on strike against
war, and refuse to mine coal to move
trains and battleships. Suppose the
railroad workers of all Europe should
quit their job and refuse to move
trains for war purposes.
Suppose the soldiers themselves
should lay down their guns and refuse
to kill their brothers or be killed by
them. Where would your old war be
What would the kings, czars, em
perors, presidents, generals, admirals
and other masters do then?
Anyhow, what's the use of having
millions of men scatter death and de
struction when there is a simpler
remedy at hand? We might make the
rulers do all the fighting themselves.
Then we could throw King George,