Today's Debs

Nature’s storehouse is full to the surface of the earth. All of the raw materials are deposited here in abundance. We have the most marvelous machinery the world has ever known. Man has long since become master of the natural forces and made them work for him. Now he has but to touch a button and the wheels begin to spin and the machinery to whir, and wealth is produced on every hand in increasing abundance. Why should any man, woman or child suffer for food, clothing or shelter? Why? The question cannot be answered. Don’t tell me that some men are too lazy to work. Suppose they are too lazy to work, what do you think of a social system that produces men too lazy to work? If a man is too lazy to work don’t treat him with contempt. Don’t look down upon him with scorn as if you were a superior being. If there is a man too lazy to work there is something the matter with him, He wasn’t born right or he was perverted in this system. You could not, if you tried, keel) a normal man inactive, and if you did he would go stark mad. Go to any penitentiary and you will find the men there begging for the privilege of doing work.

I know by very close study of the question exactly how men become idle. I don’t repel them when I meet them. I have never yet seen the tramp I was not able to receive with open arms. He is less fortunate than I. He is made the same as I am made. He is the child of the same Father. Had I been born in his environment, had I been subjected to the same things he was I should be where he is.

-from “The Issue”