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Newspaper Page Text
THE PUBLIC FORUM
MESSINGER STRIKE. Messin
ger's lunchrooms are known about
Chicago as "work houses." Porters,
waiters, cooks, etc:; worked 12 hours
a day in these places for $6, $10 and
$12 a- week, and no pay for overtime.
The workers were treated like slaves.
Conditions were unbearable. There
fore it is not surprising that these
workers became dissatisfied and
sought to organize. A meeting was
held and it was decided that a com
mittee should visit the Chicago Fed
eration of Labor and secure aid in
Here they met with a flat refusal.
They were told the C. F. of L. were
too busy organizing more important
v workers; also that there was no or
ganization affiliated with the C. F. of
L. that would accept porters, dish
washers, waiters,, etc., in one union.
And these workers understood that
it was necessary to organize in this
manner. They were disappointed.
They sent a committee to the Indus
trial Workers of the World and were
welcomed as fellow workers. The
.1. W. W. halls were turned over to
"them with an organizer and funds
In a short time an industrial or
ganization was perfected and their
demands framed and submitted to
Messinger, but were ignored. They
decided to walk out . at 7 o'clock
Wednesday morning, May 10.
At this time, in Chicago, restau
rants of the Messinger class are run
ning short of help. In every window
the banner is out for a waiter, por
Last Wednesday morning at 7
o'clock the workers quit their jobs
almost to a man. Messinger could
not possibly fill their places with
workers who would apply foT such
jobs. There were no scabs looking
for a job there. Messinger was
plainly beaten. But Ben Parker came
to his aid. Parker is pres. of local
union No. 7, the Chicago Waiters
Before 12 o'clock the strikers'
pickets had been thrown into jail,
while union men from the Waiters'
ass'n were working in the Messinger
The only hope of hotel and restau
rant workers is to organize indus
trially, that is, all workers in the "
same industry must be in the same
union. We must use new methods
and. tactics. This is the time for ac
tion. Let's organize sensibly. 5am
Scarlett, 164 W. Washington.
THE DEAD PAST. Friend Al
bright is always bright and nearly al ,
ways right. A few" days ago under
the caption, "Relics of Antiquity,"
he gave us a splendid discourse, "but
there was one count in the indict
ment he left out, i. e., the laws, or
the rules of government under which
we are working at present
Nearly all our .governmental
troubles arise from a reverent sub
mission to the will of the dead.
Our people, like the Chinese, must
suffer from arrested development un
less they find some means of freeing
themselves from the dead hand of k
Constitutions and laws enacted
hundreds of years ago, also laws by
precedent the ruling of judges of
the long dead past are cited by law
yersand decided "by judges as law of
None of the tools and implements
of industry or trade of a hundred
years ago are in use today. All have
undergone an entire change. Yet
we are securely shackled to the laws At
of antiquity the old Roman law '
handed down to us by the ancient
rulers of an earlier civilization and
the common-law of England. Both
A government of the people, by the
people and for the people should for
all intents and purposes be up-to-date;
not by our forefathers or our
anti-deliyian ancestry. But such is
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