A Public Debate on Lynching – The Day Book Newspaper, 1915

A Public Debate on Lynching – The Day Book Newspaper, 1915

(Letters featured in the Day Books’ “The Public Forum” section
proposing and contesting the moral propriety of lynching.)

That “Hanging Picnic” – Miss G.H. 8/12/1915

We have all been reading of the public hanging of two negroes in Starkville, Miss., and of the fact that
the event was made a picnic, and that after the hanging the crowd sang a religious song, “There Is a
Land of Pure Delight” Surely, this is not America, which we are all so proud of! Surely no orgy of this
kind could happen in a civilized nation which we believe we are! A friend of mine who has lived in the
south a number of years tells me that I would feel differently regarding the negro if I were to live amongst
them for a time. I wonder if I should ever feel a keen delight in the public hanging of a human being of
flesh and blood and brain. I am not capable of arguing the question as to whether the negro race is
something between the lower animals and the white people, as some maintain. But, no matter what
the race is, they should receive justice at the hands of the white man, the same as other races do.
This using them as a kind of Punch and Judy show is certainly a most disgraceful thing. I believe that,
given equal chances with the whites for the same number of centuries that the whites have enjoyed
liberty and rights, the negro would equal the white man. But whether I am right or wrong, if a crowd of
Christians can sing for joy at an affair of this kind in question, I am glad to be, instead, a Humanitarian.

That Hanging Picnic – A Southerner, 8/16/1915

After reading a contribution in your paper of Aug. 12, entitled “That Hanging Picnic,” it is with much
disgust and feeling of repulsion that I write this letter. Surely the contributor who signed Miss G.H.
is either a nigger herself or closely associated with them, or related to them, inasmuch as any self
-respecting white could not but rejoice at such an event. I well remember the article of which this
woman spoke, and also the feeling of satisfaction which possessed me when I read it. Would not
one be delighted at having an opportunity to attend such a festival after knowing of some of the
outrages committed by these on the white women whom they covet and desire and whose trust
they nearly always betray. Lately the columns of the papers have been crowded with such happenings
as the foregoing, and right in the face of it a woman pens the aforesaid contribution. If Miss G.H.
were to be in the south and express such an opinion as she has here she would be classed as a
nigger lover and treated accordingly. That also goes for those who a short while back advocated
serving negroes in the same restaurants with whites. If the niggers were placed on an equal footing
with the whites, as some northerners advocate, a very short time would elapse until said coons
would crush the white people out of power and existence. This is no idle supposition, but true
facts based on history. Before expressing such an opinion as this woman has it would behoove
her to be well posted on the subject, which would enable her to see these things in the light of
a white person. She frankly admits her ignorance of the question, but dares to contribute such
a revolting piece of writing as she has. To recall to the minds of some like Miss G.H. a few things
which they have undoubtedly forgotten:

When Jack Johnson made the remark that he could get any white woman in Chicago for
his woman much hubbub was raised over it-and women held Indignation meetings-but that
has been forgotten by most northerners. and now comes a woman to publicly intercede for
them, and if she be white her interest for them will be believed to be her passion for nigger
men. This is not from the pen of what Miss G.H. calls a humanitarian, but, thank God,
instead. – A Southerner

That Hanging Picnic – S. Taradash, 8/18/1915

The “Southerner” who in such outrageous words attacks Miss G.H. for expressing her opinion
towards the scandalous hanging of the two negroes deserves such a picnic. In my estimation
the woman, white or black, spoke from a view of a right-thinking person, whose conscience is
free from such insane and beastly pleasure, resembling the gladiatorial shows in the ampitheater
at antiquated Rome. I care not whether you call me “humanitarian” or “thank God, instead,”
-such a method of legal murdering must no longer continue.

Give Negro a Chance – F.E.S. 8/18/1915

I am surprised to see so many letters published in The Day Book’s Public Forum in which the practice of
injecting personal criticism goes on unrebuked and without protest from any one. Hurling scathing remarks,
which do not relate to the subject under discussion, does not strengthen argument, it weakens it. A letter
signed “Southerner,” published Aug. 15, in answer to Miss G. H., is the cause of this writing. The injustice
of the vile accusations which he flings at Miss G.H. is sound evidence of a narrow, evil and filthy mind; and
even though The Day Book does not discriminate in allowing voice to opinions, it should have thought twice
before printing a letter of that character. In part Southerner says: “And if she be white her interest for them
will be believed to be her passion for nigger men.” Can a gentle lady like Miss G.H. do aught but blush for
shame In being the object of so mean and filthy an attack? It is only a man of his type that is capable of such
narrow reasoning. I will answer Southerner to save Miss G.H. from the humiliation of replying to a person
in such a condition of mind. Will Southerner please tell me why the white man’s system of courts and juries
is maintained at such great expense? Are not the courts there to deal with all offenders of the law, whether
white, yellow, black or red? Are not the juries there to give culprits fair hearing. regardless of race, creed or
color? Then why the lynching parties? The people that participate in these lynching aprties are murderers
and should pay the full penalty of such lawless action. How do we know that the negroes lynched were guilty?
Innocent men are murdered for no other reason than that their skins are dark. Educate the negro. Do not
stunt him and keep him in ignorance. Ignorance is the cause of all these low crimes, whether committed
by the black race or white race.

If the negro can compete with the white man in civilization and development may the best man win. If the
negro, with equal opportunities, can show himself superior to the white man, why should the inferior race
object to their lead won by fair test of brains. I would rather be governed by intellgent, fair and progressive
black goverpment than by scheming white politicians who see people of their own race murdered before
their eyes without flinching. Give the negro a chance! If the white race wants to prove itself superior, let them
educate everybody with no restrictions and take a great step in dcreasing the number of crimes committed.

Southern Tactics- C.M. Maxson, 6620 Normal Av. 8/19/1915

I have just been reading the insulting tirade from the pen of “A Southerner” in regard to “Miss G.H’s
letter on the “Hanging Picnic,” in which he says: “I write this with the utmost disgust and repulsion.”
Well, Mr. Southerner, I should think you would be so repulsive to yourself that you would hide your
head in shame, if you have any of that qualilcation left in your make-up. I think that that much-vaunted
attribute, “southern chivalry,” has not found a lodgment in your system to any alarming extent, and I’ll
wager a couple of doughnuts to a pretzel that you belong to the poor white trash of your dear, beloved
south. Do you really know the meaning of the word “humanity”? I doubt it. Listen! I am a northern man
and I am not in love with the colored race, but I know that they have their place in the great economy
of life and have just as much right on this-earth as you and I. Neither am I in love with a bulldog or a
coyote, but my whole soul would revolt at seeing either of them hung by the neck or burned at the stake.
Any man or woman that can stand around and gloat and croak like a lot of vultures over an incident
of that character ought to hike back to the jungles among the cannibals and head hunters of darkest
Africa, where your forebears, Mr. Southerner, used to gather 200 years ago to kidnap the ancestors
of these negroes and bring them here to pander to their damnable lust and laziness. Mr. Southerner,
your boasted chivalry, aristocracy and high cast is based upon the rapine, butchery and exploitation
of the negro race. You are simply reaping what you have sown. Did you think you could insult a northern
lady in such a gross manner and not get caught at it? If you don’t like northern people and their ideas
of humanity, go back to your southern sunny clime, your sweet corn pone and your razor-backed swine.

Savage Picnics – M. Green, 2613 Crystal St. 8/19/1915

From the kind of picnics that the southerners get most pleasure out of would indicate just what kind of
savages and beasts they are, as we have seen from the recent report about the lynching of a negro,
where they enjoyed themselves immensely, having drink and delicacies served in honor of the occasion.
How any one could write an article such as the one which is signed “A Southerner” further goes to
show how base they can get in even suggesting that the motive for the article written by Miss G.H.
might be her passion for nigger men. Space in The Day Book is too valuable to write all I would like
to and there may be more who would like to express their opinion of “A Southerner.”

To “Southerner.” – B.J.R. 8/20/1915

Being a constant reader of your valuable and fair-minded paper, I read with considerable amusement
the article printed the 16th inst., concerning “That Hanging Picnic,” which was signed “A Southerner,
Thank God.” Now, then, really, “Mr. Southerner,” I think you have very little, indeed, to thank “God for”
However, if you take issue with this remark, I would suggest that you read the editorial published in
the Tribune Aug.18, entitled “Leo M. Frank” and pay particular attention, “Mr. Southerner,”
to the four last paragraphs.

Another Whack at “Southerner.” – Mrs. John Kanka, 8/20/1915

The article signed “A Southerner” fairly makes my blood boil. The remarks concerning Miss G.H.’s morality
certainly were wholly uncalled for. I am a self-respecting white woman and my opinion of your southern
hanging bee is that it was a deed brutal and fiendish enough to make our savage ancestors turn in their
graves. That a crowd of human beings could so completely banish the result of 2,000 years of humanity’s
struggle up from the beast is deplorable indeed. It is enough to make the most optimistic turn sick with
despair. Suppose the crime was of the most revolting nature. Does the fact that a band of scarcely more
than savage creatures took his life, eating pop-corn, drinking lemonade and singing songs, right his crime?
There was not a word in the letter of Miss G.H. to show that she sanctioned the negroes’ crime, but merely
an expression of horror at such a reversion to the beast. I am positive that her feelings are echoed in the
mind of every intelligent and enlightened person, whether they live in the north or south. I spent many
months in the south, so I know something about conditions there and I defy “Southerner” to show me
a self-respecting white man in the north who makes a practice of visiting the negro women in the absence
of the men. I further defy you to show me a self-respecting southerner that is not guilty. Nigger lover,
indeed! Yes, we believe in giving them a chance to lift themselves out of the slime of ignorance and
degradation. If we feel without any fear that we are bemeaning any of our own flesh and blood. Five
hundred years ago the American negro man was a naked savage, living in grass houses and living
on fruit and raw meat. Then they were trapped like wild beasts and brought to this country, where
they were treated like other animals. Fifty years ago they were released from bondage to begin
their development as a race. Yet you expect him to have reached the plans that it took the white
race 2,000 years to reach. You wonder that he can commit such brutal crimes after 50 years
of development. Yet you rejoice in such brutal scenes after 2,000 years of civilization.
So mentally you are at least 1,500 years behind the negro.

More Indignation – Miss Northerner, 8/21/1915

After reading “A Southerner’s” comment on Miss G.H.’s article in The Day Book of recent date I cannot
help but express my indignation and disgust with him. Just because Miss G.H. possesses some human
feeling and is not of the dark ages type like himself he takes the liberty of intimating that she has a passion
for nigger men. Mr. Southerner relates an instance that Jack Johnson made the remark that he could have
any white woman in Chicago. It was disgusting, indeed. But I should like to ask Mr. Southerner if he will be
honest enough to admit that about our own chivalrous white men? Does not every one of you, no matter
how old or ugly you may be, think you can flirt and have almost any woman you please? Fortunately, some
of you get a real bump occasionally and you wake up from your happy illusion. It is not neecssary for me
to go into a lengthy argument with you. Mr. Southerner, on the subject. I guess we have all had a pretty
fair example recently of southern justice. It has left a stain on your south that will take a long, long time
to wipe off. In conclusion, I wish to say that I am very happy that our land is so divided that there is a
north, east and west, that we don’t all have to live in the south and be subject to your southern justice.

Stop Hating Unjustly – Viola Larsen, 8/23/1915

It is with amused interest that I read “Southerner’s” article and the answers of condemnation he brought
about his head. I guess he opened his eyes wide when he saw them. Still, I think it is enlightment that he
needs, and not such severe censure, such as given him by C.M. Maxson. Remember, “Southerner” did
not stop to think when he penned that letter. It is written in an uncontrollable hatred, and who knows but
that he was taught to hate the black man since his infancy, as most southerners are. He has not hurt Miss
G.H. any, because if she is a negro it is right for her to defend her race, regardless of such insinuations,
and if she is white and feels that a word from a white woman would aid the negro much credit should be
given her for her courage in raising her voice to what she thought was just and right. No sane, even-tempered
white person will imagine for an instant that her interest in the black race is caused by a passion, such as
“Southerner” says will be believed of her. Really, I have to laugh. And I’m sure Miss G.H. must do the same.
Sick minds and angry minds express many uncalled-for things. “Southerner” should remember that there
has been just as many horrible crimes committed upon white women by white men as by black men. If black
men covet and desire white women they have more control of themselves than they are given credit for, as
their crimes are comparatively few considering the number of black men we have mingling daily with white
people. I wish, Mr. Southerner, you would stop hating unjustly, as it does a lot or harm and no good.

The Pleasure is Theirs – Lucy Lippert, 8/23/1915

A telegram was received by Elmer Murphy of this city from two of his former customers in Georgia. The
telegram signed by these two gentlemen (chuck full of chivalry-they admit it) said in part: ‘We have just
had the pleasure of seeing Leo Frank hanging by his neck-dead.” I doubt if the recipient of this atrocious
telegram envied these two southern hoodlums their pleasure. The pleasure was all thefts-and in the days
and months and years to come the pleasure I hope, will still be theirs-and if after this life comes another-a h
ereafter-if we poor mortals are to be judged for what we have done on this earth-then may the pleasure
still be theirs. I doubt not but what of all those present, of all those who so righteously and God-fearingly took
the law is their own dirty hands, any one of them was capable of doing just such a deed as was laid at the
door of that poor devil who never had a square deal. Chivalry-southern blood-Bah! The very words leave a
bad taste in the mouth. There never was a black hand feud, there never was a vendetta carried out, never
a mafia or Commorti, but what was a thousand times more seemly in the eyes of God and man than the foul,
noisesome crime committed by southern thugs in the name of chivalry. Southern blood-I wonder if the men
who signed himself “A Southerner” in his scurrilous letter printed in your paper just recently is a sample of
that chivalry which is supposed to be characteristic of the south. I wonder if it was his innate refinement and
good breeding which prompted him to say to a presumably white woman “and if you persist in defending
niggers we must conclude that it is your passion for colored men and the pleasure of their company that
you are defending.” These may not be the exact words, but that at any rate was the purport of this letter.
The truth hurts sometimes and I think the truth is simply this-that southern chivalry is nothing but an empty
mockery and does not for a minute compare with Yankee common sense and Justice.

Another Southerner – Another Southerner, 8/24/1915

Day Book readers who condemn “Southerner” should stop and think. Suppose one of them came home
some night and found their wife, mother or sister prone on the floor, clothes torn off, dead or dying from the
attacks of some big, drunken negro; or suppose they came upon the body of their little daughter lying in the
fields, its frail body almost torn asunder by some vicious brute. They would for-get all about their “humanity,”
their judicial calmness would vanish and they would want to apply the torch. Those who condemn the lynching
of Leo Frank should before they talk secure a transcript of the evidence presented at the trial. and, disregarding
the evidence of the negro accuser, they would have come to the conclusion that Frank was guilty and that death
on the gallows would be a mild punishment. The fact that all the courts in Georgia, as well as our supreme court.
reviewed this evidence and refused to inerfere should make people hesitate to champion his cause without
investigation. If Frank had not been a Jew be would have been hung two years ago and nothing would have
been thought about it. People of the south resent the interference of the northern press, which has been
subsidized by Jewish advertisers. The jury which tried Frank heard the evidence and acted accordingly.
It was only after the verdict of the law had been set aside by the governor, who was a member of the
firm that handled Frank’s legal affairs. that the people took the matter into their own hands and carried
out the order of the judge who sentenced Frank to death.

Why Scorn Race Rights? – Miss G.H. 8/24/1915

I wish to thank F.E.S. for so kindly and capably replying to “A Southerner’s” communication regarding the
negro hanging in Georgia. I have been wondering how I could have expressed myself in my former letter
to call forth such an attack as was made by this southerner against the character of a young woman he
knows absolutely nothing about. My sense of justice and fair play Is, I think, developed to an unusual
degree. The tyranny, brutality and injustice exhibited today by races, nations and individuals is a source
of suffering to me. If we would only stop to remember that difference in color of races is no more than
difference in climate. The black man is black because he has for centuries existed on the hottest portion
of the earth. The white man likewise is white because he has lived for centuries on that portion of the
earth which receives less of the sun’s heat. The climatic conditions account very naturally for the black
man’s lack of progress and ignorance up to the time he migrated northward. There is no reason to
suppose that, with the same advantages for the same length of time, the black race could not equal
or surpass the white race. Then why are we puffed up? Why should we scorn the rights of other races?
We should instead feel grateful for our civilization and make the proper use of it, which would be to
lend a hand to those less fortunate than ourselves. You see, it all comes back to this justice for all
living things, and if we cannot love our neighbors as ourselves, as commanded in the bible, we can
at least deal squarely with them and recognize their rights. Our laws ought to be built upon these
principles and should be carried out relentlessly. The law should-win out over ignorant prejudice.

The South – Wm. James, 8/24/1915

I have been reading so much in The Day Book of people attacking the southern people. I am a
northerner, but believe in the southerners’ way. I only wish that the north had the same spirit as
the south. I believe they are the greatest lawmakers in the country. All of we thinking people know
that there is no law in the courts. There is only politics and graft, as was shown in the Frank case
by the governor of Georgia in changing his sentence. That is why I love the south for taking the
law in their own hands If the law doesn’t take its course in court the brave people of the south will
take it in their own hands. J. De Valdor wrote that they lynched Frank because he was a Jew. I
say he is mistaken. They would do the same to any man no matter what nationality he is. Black
or white makes little difference. There have been nine white men lynched this year so far. So it
is not only the niggers. There should be brave and noble men in our own state that should charge
the Joliet prison and do the same to Campbell, the nigger that killed Mrs. Allen. When that case is
tried in court I don’t believe there will be justice done. Just think! If It was our own sister or daughter
who was attacked and slain, as happened in these southern cases, would not our blood boil to
avenge them. People do not realize till it happens to someone dear to them and then they would
go and do the same thing. The southernors remind me of the brave knights of old. I have traveled
through the south and never met better people-people I could trust, people that keep their word,
keep their mouth shut and never squack. I agree with the party who signs himself “Southerner.”

That Sectional Scrap – C.H. 8/26/1915

Don’t you see. ladies and gentlemen who in holy indignation come to defend Miss G.H. against the insults
of “A Southerner,” that this matter is not worth while to take up so much space of our valuable Day Book?
This southerner is prejudiced, like so many others of the south. He is opposed to her point of view. He had
to write something, but he did not know what. He did not know, because he is ignorant and narrow-minded.
If “Southerner” had thought twice before writing this much-criticized article he would not have done it in such
a manner. But ignorant people never think twice. Let us assume that he did not mean it so seriously, that his
reply would have been different if he Had been just a little more civilized. Can you blame such a man for
using such language? Let us forget it. Miss G.H. is “avenged” and “Southerner” is but a southerner.

From a Northerner – Northerner, 8/27/1915

I have been reading the articles pro and con of “That ‘Hanging Picnic” and had hoped some one would
answer the communication of Miss G.H. as it deserved. While the answer of “Southerner” was stronger
than I approve of, yet for the most part it was suitable to the occasion. As I see it, “Southerner’s” article
is from the pen of a white man who would protect white women from the black brute, if necessary, with
his life, and the answers from white women whose “blood boils” after reading his article show they want
no protection. It is a pity some of them didn’t live among the people referred to by “Southerner” and they
would probably feel differently about it.. I do not wish it understood that I am condemning the black race.
Far be it from such, for I have known many able and honorable black men, but the element referred to
by “Southerner” cannot be too strongly condemned, nor can their defenders, especially the white women.

Calls ’em Ridiculous – L.E.S. 8/31/1915

The replies to “A Southerner’s” letter have been narrow and inconsistent., He has been flouted unduly
by people, who, judging from the atmosphere of their arguments, are incapable of discussing the question.
“Southerner’s” writing while somewhat petulant, surely contained the thought, but he should not have
slighted the male relations of Miss G.H. who would allow a girl or a woman to subject herself to such
censure. In The Day Book Aug. 24 Miss G.H. has a return communication which is absurd. She contends
that the negro is black because of the climate, from which his ancestors came. would ask this woman
by what authority she speaks, and if her ideas be correct, why has not generations in the temperate
zone bathed negro white, also why are the offspring not born white instead of black. She also claims
that with the proper education the negro could surpass the white. Can this be true, considering that the
negro’s skull is thicker than a white man’s, which necessitates a smaller brain capacity. The theories set
forth by this person and other re-cent contributors to your paper are little short of ridiculous.

Northern Justice Versus Southern Chivalry – Miss H.S. 9/1/1915

Inasmuch as southern chivalry has received such a jolt recently, it is due time it gets a boost. The one who
signs himself “A Southerner” was right and surely deserves credit for expressing himself thusly. About the
only time a northern man will show a sense of chivalry when a woman whom he loves respects is insulted
or accosted some brute. Then he, usually, turns the case over to the police. Seldom does he display enough
courage to whip the guilty party. There are less women insulted and attacked in the south, where there is
less need for police interference for such cases. Down south, if the offense is not serious, the guilty party
is merely thrashed severely, but if he be guilty of a graver deed, such as mistreatment or murder, he is
lynched-or hanged by the state, where justice is done. This is a much more effective way of dealing with
such people than small fines or short imprisonment and often no punishment at all. In the northern courts
it is not always a case of justice, but the one who has the best lawyer or the most political pull usually wins.
What we need is more action and less quibbling ane we wouldn’t need so many policemen and women.
Judging from some recent communications in The Day Book a few women admire northern cowardice.
Those who want that and the much-abused word “justice” can have it. I’ll take southern chivalry-and grit.

Answer to Miss H.S.. – Charles O. J. Lindholm, 1554 Highland Av. 9/8/1915

I’m a northerner through and through. None of that southern stuff for me. You speak of chivalry. I do
not see one iota of chivalry in your letter to The Day Book. To take a man from justice by mob force
and lynch him, that is not chivalry, that is murder. No man has the right to do so unless he is otherwise
authorized by the, state to do so. There may be evidence against the man that points to him as being
the guilty one, but you southerners do not stop to give that man a chance to prove his innocence or
guilt. There is no debate as to the cause of his actions. Simply mob him and burn him at the stake or
lynch him, whichever you have time to do the quickest. I care not what the crime may be, it is horrid
to think that in our enlightened times such savage blood still exists. We call ourselves civilized. If a
man must the for his crime, give him time enough to prepare himself the best way he knows how. No
civilized person will say it is right tb throw a person into eternity on a minute’s notice. The blood surely
will be on his head. We from the north are no cowards. We have just as much nerve as tillage of the
south, but we are manly in actions. If our sweethearts, friends or a stranger is insulted by some brute
I have never seen it fail but that some one volunteered. But we do not do as in the south, get a mob
and lay in wait for the person and then half kill him. (If that is what you mean by a mere thrashing.) If
it is such a severe case as that we must get an officer. There may be a few that do not get punished
for their wrong doings, for the sake of pull. But you have those in the south, also. The women of the
north do not approve of cowardice, but they are opposed to brute force. They are tender-heated and
have respect for humanity. I would like to hear from some of the northern women as to what they
think of the northern man as to his cowardice or chivalry.

The Negro – A Kentuckian, 9/9/1915

I wish to call the attention of The Day Book readers who have been roasting “A Southerner” about what
he said in reply to Mrs. G.H. And I also want to bring their attention to this Mrs. Martin, who was murdered
by her own negro servant. But if you play in the fire you are sure to get burned. These rich people are so
anxious to have negroes in their employ; let them take’ the consequences. Any place you see a big hotel
or a nice dining-room of any kind, who do you see as waiters and cooks? Why, as a rule, you see negroes.
And wherever you see a big moneyed man’s auto standing you also see a negro at the wheel. Now if these
people mingle with that race of people, why do they make such a holler when the negro gives them the-worst
of it? Now, friend readers, don’t think I’m a fanatic on this subject. But am a very close observer of human
nature and have traveled all over the country. I read that article about Mrs. Martin in The Day Book and the
Tribune. The Tribune says that Mrs. Martin got this negro out of jail and gave him a job as her servant. Now
why didn’t she get some poor unfortunate white man out of jail and give him a job. There are lots of fellows
in ther for stealing that had to steal or starve under the conditions today. An educated negro has naturally got
a dislike for a white man, for he has learned the dirty deal he has been handed by white man and he has
that feeling of revenge. There is one thing that dear honest old Abe’ forgot to do when he freed the negro
and that was to ship every dad-blasted one of them back to Africa, where they belong. I am a southerner,
but don’t believe in hanging any’ one or capital punishment of any kind, unless, as another Southerner said
in his article, some negro killed a sister of mine or some one closely related to me. Then I am afraid I would
want to burn him to a stake or something like that. You don’t know what you would do until it comes real.
close to home. I was born and raised in Kentucky. But since have done a great deal or traveling. And I
have had a great lot of dealings with negroes. In my little home town way down in Kentucky, you never
see a negro hungry and wearing rags like you do in Chicago. So guess he isn’t treated so bad down
there as long as he behaves himself and tends to his own business.

Answer to “Kentuckian” – William Robert Parker, 9/15/1915

I am a constant reader of your Day Book and like the way It writes up things on different topics. I want to
remind “Kentuckian” that the reason a wealthy white man will not give a poor white man a job instead of a
negro is because as soon as a poor white man works about a week and draws pay, and gets his stomach
full, then he feels that he is on the same “footing” as his employer, and nine times out of ten he will want to
give his employer orders. I am a Kentuckian myself and have done a great deal of traveling, have worked
for people and have hired help myself, but I say give every human being an equal chance.

Our Rights. – F. Williams, 9/15/1915

I want to ask “A Kentuckian” where he gets the right to tell me, a white man, on what part of God’s earth
I shall reside, and if he has no right to dictate my place of residence neither he or any one else has the
right to say where any man, black, brown, red, yellow or white shall live. We are all the equal children of
our Heavenly Father and equally entitled to the use of his free gift to all man-kind, the earth..

Folly of Sectional Condemnation – Eleanor Perry, Bermont, Florida, 9/15/1915

I have been a most interested reader of The Day Book the past summer and consider it one of the
active forces destined to help bring the race to that long-sought goal, democracy. Some of The Forum
letters have been extremely interesting, notably those of Miss C.H. One, that of “Thank God, Instead
Southerner,” was most unfortunate, especially as the name might lead many northern people to
suppose that the ignorant, cruel and insulting nature displayed is general in the south. Such is by
no means the fact. intelligent southerners condemn the “hanging picnic” and the lynching of Frank
as severely as do northerners. There is probably no state that is wholly exempt from disgraceful
acts and nothing is so unless and foolish as wholesale condemnation of entire sections. Shall
the entire west be condemned because of the massacre at Ludlow, or the entire east because
Rockefeller resides there? In the case of Leo Frank, a northern man, apparently with no spite
against Frank, but solely to boost the circulation of his daily paper, is more responsible than any
other one man for the horrible crime at Marietta. The most unfortunate feature in wholesale
condemnation, the innocent as well as the guilty, is that it fosters the old sectional feeling-the
animosity through which the few gain power and the many get slavery. The working people
of the east, west, north and south have no quarrel, and never have had any. Their interests
are the same. But while the preachers, politicians and press are wrangling, the workers,
one and all, are being fleeced.

Blindness of Race Prejudice – Geo. V. Wells, 9/16/1915

The discussion following the killing of two women recently by negroes shows the absolute lack of real son produced
by race prejudice. A Kentuckian in a recent copy of The Day Book exhibits this to marked degree. He charges the
educated negro with a feeling of revenge and seems to trace the crimes committed by them to this feeling. There
is no evidence anywhere of this feeling in the history of the negro. There is nowhere in history a.record of any crime
committed by a negro but what has a parallel in crimes committed by white men. The negro in the United States is in
most respects an imitation of the white men with whom he has been compelled by circumstances beyond his control
to live. The criminal example of white men has had its influence as well as the good example, and the progress made
by the race is very remarkable considering the general prejudice which deprives him of even the restricted opportunities
enjoyed by poor whites. Why should every “blasted” one of the freed blacks be shipped back to Africa? Do they belong
there more than they do here? The white man will not let them live in peace there? The white man generally considers
them as fit for nothing but slaves. The white man of the south always made the black women the prey of the white
man’s lusts. Things done with impunity to black women by the white men if imitated ,by the black man are considered
to be only wiped out by the burning alive of the black. As Southerner says: “If some negro killed a sister of mine or
some one closely related to me I am afraid I should want to burn him at the’ stake.” He has no doubt had a great deal
of dealing with negroes, but there is nothing in his letter to indicate that he ever dealt with the negro as a man who is
entitled to the same rights as any other man. He has never thought of the black man as a fellow man who is entitled
to the same rights that the white man has here upon earth. He has elevated himself npon the pinnacle of the Pharisee
and thanks God that he is not as the black man is. He is willing that the black man shall live if he is always obedient
and servile, but if he imitates the vicious example of the white man and commits a crime against a man or woman with
a pale complexions nothing will satisfy the Pharisee but crucifixion or burning at the stake. If a dark-complexioned man
attempts to live in a decent neighbor-hoor among the white man he becomes a target for social crucifixion. He is forced
to remove from the neighborhood or the white man sacrifices his property in getting’ away from the place where, in his
opinion, the air is polluted by the dark skin. And yet these same white men will welcome the dark people into their homes
if they come to do menial service for the whites. The white men of the south who will not allow the vote of the black
man to be counted correctly for fear of being dominated by the blacks are all the time peopling the south and also the
north with children of the mixed races. Race prejudice does not prevent the whites from satisfying their lusts, and
notwithstanding the aping of the Pharisee by the white man it looks as if the final solution of the race problem might
be the evolution of a new race. But still, when we look over the history of all races, we see that the white man has,
when given the power, treated his own race as badly as he has the blacks, and so it comes to the point where the
black man must work out his own salvation, not by aping the white man in everything, but by selecting the good
in everything and becoming the superior in that respect.

Last Updated on July 24, 2021 by Bill Arp

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