Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Today -100: July 8, 1914: No citizen has a right to rebuke another citizen by subjecting him to ridicule or insult

The Manchester Guardian editorializes that forcible feeding is a form of torture and that Home Secretary McKenna’s defenses of it make that clear. In other words, it’s being used as a deterrent and not as a means of preserving the life of hunger-strikers.

NYC’s Board of Aldermen bans parades on 5th Avenue or Broadway, except on Sundays and holidays, but grandfathers in groups that have been parading more than 10 years (in other words, this is intended to allow the police to ban parades by women suffragists or Wobblies, and will be used against the latter tomorrow).

Frederick and Emmeline Pethick-Lawrence, expelled from the Women’s Social and Political Union last year, have formed their own suffrage group, the United Suffragists, which will be “politically militant,” whatever that means (I don’t think they know, and intervening events will prevent us finding out).

The Pethick-Lawrences, by the way, are one of those feminist couples that joined their last names together. My personal favorite example of that from this period is Francis and Hannah Sheehy-Skeffington.

In other intra-mural-squabble news, commissions representing Generals Villa and Carranza have met and supposedly sorted out their differences. Also, Federal forces are fighting mutinying soldiers near Vera Cruz.

Rumors again have Huerta’s family fleeing the country.

Pres. Wilson finally accepts the resignation of ambassador to Greece and Montenegro George Fred Williams, who claimed to have resigned a couple of weeks ago in order to be able to denounce Prince William of Albania and by extension the European powers who back him. He sent his resignation by mail, but it never arrived, so he was asked to do it again by telegraph. Now Wilson has to apologize to everyone in Europe because Williams was still ambassador while he was making insulting speeches. The Balkans are so troublesome.

The NY Health Commissioner refuses a permit to delay the burial of the bodies of the three anarchists blown up by their own bomb at 1626 Lexington Avenue so they can headline a parade Saturday.

Judge Crain of General Sessions upholds Upton Sinclair’s conviction for disorderly conduct for participating in the “Free Silence” picket line in front of Rockefeller Jr’s offices. One would have thought that silent picketing is the very opposite of disorderly conduct, but Judge Crain says “No citizen has a right to rebuke another citizen by subjecting him to ridicule or insult.” Evidently bringing Rockefeller’s connection to the Ludlow Massacre to public attention hurts his fee-fees and is therefore illegal. The NYT agrees with the decision, saying that the direct consequence of the picketing was the 1626 Lexington Avenue bomb.

Speaking of the Rockefellers, it’s John D.’s 75th birthday, but thanks to those kill-joy Wobblies and their bombs, he’ll be foregoing any major celebration. Also, his organist is on vacation, because John D. Rockefeller totally has an organist.

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