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* Disclaimer: These excerpts were compiled from editorials Frank Marshall Davis had written for the Honolulu Record.

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May 12, 1949: How Our Democracy Looks To Oppressed Peoples

For a nation that calls itself the champion of democracy, our stupendous stupidity is equalled only by our mountainous ego. Our actions at home and abroad are making American democracy synonymous with oppression instead of freedom.

Four years ago, we had the opportunity for world leadershipThis was near the end of World War II, a global conflict for freedom and liberation We shouted our antagonism toward the superior race theones of the Nazis.

But before the guns grew cold, we interpreted freedom, and liberation to be the exclusive possession of the imperialist governments of Europe. I have watched with growing shame for my America as our leaders nave used our golden riches to re-enslave the yellow and brown and black peoples of the world.

As the colonials see it, the Marshall plan is a device to maintain what they call "white imperialism " and no manner of slick phrases can convince them otherwise. They also see our congressional failure to pass the civil rights program as merely the domestic side of the same coin of the oppression of non-white peoples everywhere.

Billions To Bolster Empires

Tinder the Marshall plan, billions of U S dollars have been used to bolster the tottering empires of England, France, Belgium, Holland and the other western exploiters of teeming millions of humans The Dutch have used their share to make war upon the Indonesians who are guilty of wanting self-government, France and England have gotten the financial means of crushing rebellions against white Imperialism in Asia and Africa with callous disregard for the natural rights of the subject peoples, we have told Western Europe to rebuild itself through taking out tremendous profits by robbing the 150,000,000 black Africans who get only ignorance and poverty and the print of the aggressors' heels stamped hard into the face.

With our usual genius for suppressing the common people, we backed the oppressors in China. We poured in a Niagara of cash to the corrupt Kuomintang, thus insuring the enmity of millions of Chinese who thereby faced a harder fight for freedom and the end of feudalism.

These crimes we have committed in the name of democracy. They have the blessing of the makers of our bipartisan foreign policy. And if anyone thinks we can be right on the international front and wrong at home, that our aid to imperialism is not the same as our rebuff of the idea of equality for all Americans, let him remember that the bipartisan coalition that passed the Marshall plan is the same bipartisan coalition that thus far has wrecked the civil rights program.

Our national leaders may be complacent about discrimination based on color, religion or national origin, but the non-white world is not Read, for instance, the report of Lawrence C Burr, a correspondent for the Associated Negro Press writing from Madras, India. This article, appearing in Negro periodicals on the Mainland in April, said.

What the East Thinks of the West

The victory of Southern Democrats and Republicans over the right to limit debate in the Congress of the United States - Was staggering blow to American prestige in this part of the world Never having too much faith in the 'white man's' way of life, the colored peoples of the East interpreted this victory as a warning not to have too much to do with the democracies of the West.

Being in the midst of a campaign for freedom and self government, Asiatic nations want no part of a political system that perpetuates hypocritical government As a result of this fiasco, the gulf between East and West has widened rather than become more narrow.

Already Communist leaders are capitalizing on this out-moded means of keeping the Negro in virtual serfdom Russia continues to point to the fact that discrimination and segregation based on race does not exist there With Chinese Communist armies on the verge of total victory there is a very real possibility that other nations of the East will come into the orbit of Communist domination.

To Whom the Oppressed Look

I want to point out, for the benefit of the FBI, that Lawrence C Burr is not a Communist. He is a YMCA official in Madras but like most Negroes he has felt oppression and doesn't like it.

Burr also notes that Paul Robeson will be given a "royal welcome" when he visits India later this year at the invitation of Prime Minister Nehru who long sought to have Robeson come there. And then Burr adds.

'Well known for his part in the truggle for human freedom and equality through the years, Robeson will perhaps receive the greatest ovation ever accorded an American. In the minds of many Indian leaders, the noted singer symbolizes the aspirations of oppressed peoples in all sections of the world."

We may as well face it. The oppressed peoples of the world are not looking to our Wall Streeters, our' brass hats, our Trumans or our Vandenbergs for laceration. These leaders had their chance — and muffed it. 


May 19, 1949:


May 26, 1949: Civil War in CIO

No longer, is the CIO the straight strong crusading organization it was at birth. Instead the controlling elements of the top leadership have departed from the path of true trade unionism to engage in a civil war, thus playing the game of the nation's powerful anti-labor forces

We see that here in Hawaii. Without this mounting civil strife in which union brother is pitted against union brother, the Citizens Committee of Hawaii would not be able to invite Phil Murray, national CIO president, here to "investigate" the ILWU headed by Harry Bridges, whom Murray would oust.

It is obvious that organized labor has been weakened by this widening gap within the ranks.

I have watched and applauded the struggles of the CIO for 14 years I have seen this fighting organization in the old days successfully combat prejudice and make itself a champion of minority peoples and working groups. Lately it has been like watching a dear friend sicken and waste away from a disease of his own choosing.

This has come since the death of Roosevelt. The controlling CIO top leadership has voluntarily tied itself to the coattails of the Truman administration which looks one way and walks another. Officially, the CIO backs the Marshall plan which bolsters European imperialism and the continued subjugation of non-white colonial peoples. Yet it is impossible to fight sincerely for equality at hornet while giving full support to oppression abroad. To show how the CIO has fallen down on its program of justice for minority groups, look at the Dixie organizing drive and its acceptance of Southern racial patterns.

In 1944 the CTO was completely back of Henry Wallace In 1948, when he offered the only political program that made sense, the CIO leadership except for Bridges and a few others chose to play footsie with Big Business and Big Brass who set our costly brink-of-war pokey. Truman said he was against the Taft-Hartley law and for civil rights, although his actions belie his words. Despite right-wing CIO support, we have no civil rights legislation and the Taft-Hartley law is still on the books. Both have been sacrificed in order to get backing from the Republicans and Dixieorats for the Atlantic pact, and more Marshall plan funds. This is obvious to all who will take the time to see.

Many Negro unionists realize they have been deserted by the CIO right-wingers. A few weeks ago in Chicago, where the right-wing United Auto Workers CIO, led by Walter Reuther had been, trying to take over the left-led Farm, Equipment union also CIO, there was an election at the McCormick Works of International Harvester. A big majority of the 2,300 Negro workers helped FE win because they were aware that UAW promised much but had not delivered while Negroes had national office with FE.

There is a lesson in this for the CIO unionists of Hawaii. It is that their welfare will be served only by a leadership such as that of Bridges, which realizes racial equality goes hand in hand with economic equality. Until the controlling top CIO leadership returns to this policy and regains the unity which has been its driving force, the whole of organized labor will be weakened to the benefit of anti-labor forces who have never given up their dreams of busting the unions.


No one familiar with the long and fighting history of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People should be surprised at the refusal of the committee on branches to withdraw the Oahu charter on the ground that it might be used "as a tool for local Communists and fellow travellers," in the words of Mrs. Catherine Christopher, vice president.

The NAACP does not ask a person's political faith as a prerequisite to membership Non-partisan, it demands only complete adherence to its goal of first class citizenship for all non-white people. A founder and its chief figure for many years, the distinguished Dr W E B DuBois, was one of Wallace's strongest backers last fall, one of its most prominent directors is the noted attorney, Earl B Dickerson, former president of the National Bar Association, a national officer of the National Lawyers Guild, a director of the Civil Rights Congress, and a defense attorney for Eugene Dennis, national secretary of the Communist party.

Many branch officials throughout the nation ran for office last fall on the Wallace ticket; some ran as Republicans; Walter White, executive secretary, and others were staunch Trumanites. That they still work for common goals in the NAACP.

Because of its militancy, this powerful organization of some 500,000 Americans has itself been labelled "Communist" by John Rankin and others on the floor of Congress and by Dixie governors who think democracy is the exclusive possession of white Americans.

My first poem to reach a national audience appeared in the Crisis magazine, official NAACP organ, in 1928. Since then I have written other material for the Crisis and have aided the NAACP in every way I could. I have not always agreed with the activities of many of its individual leaders, but I have never lost faith in its membership or principles.

I have been amazed and shocked by certain persons in the local branch who, if they cannot dominate the group and turn ft aside from its militant struggle for equality, would use the Communist bogey to kill it. I am glad that national officials have not bought this false bill of goods.

As for myself, I will back the local elected NAACP leadership, be it Catholic or Protestant, Republican, Democratic, Socialist or Communist so long as I am convinced that leadership will actively and sincerely fight to end discrimination and for the establishment of complete democracy in these islands.


June 2, 1949: How To Become a Communist

Apparently I have greater respect for the intelligence of the people of Hawaii than do certain local business interests I do not believe there are as many suckers in the Territory as the Hawaii Citizens' Committee seems to think.

I refer specifically to the spot radio announcements on Communism, the glorified, super-duper Red-baiting that has been polluting the ether waves, the transcriptions based on the program "Communism USA" and on unsubstantiated reports made by the notorious Tenney committee of California.

This has occurred simply because the stevedores have dared to ask for an hourly wage just 10 cents below that paid by the same companies on the West Coast.

Even though the cost of living is at least 25 per cent higher here than in the major cities of the Mainland, the waterfront workers haven't asked for 25 per cent more wages than are paid on the West Coast. They haven't even asked for the same scale. They will settle for 10 cents an hour less and since the employers have said no, they're willing to accept the decision of a board of arbitration.

But this simple and fundamental request for higher wages is looked upon with holy horror It is a "plot to wreck island economy." It has come about "on orders from Moscow." For this reasonable proposal of better pay, the leaders of the ILWU are "agents of a foreign power." The stevedore, who wants enough money to eat regularly, have sufficient clothes and a decent roof above his head is a "dupe" who "has been tricked by the Communist leadership of the union."

What the Hawaii Citizens' Committee and its backers have said, in effect, is this.

"We don't care if the cost of living is higher here than on the Mainland. We don't care if arbitration is the accepted method of settling wage disputes elsewhere in America We don't care that our wage offer would give the stevedores 30 cents, an hour less than we pay for the same kind of work on the West Coast.

"We want you to make only enough pay to keep working and reproduce others who will carry on as stevedores. If you want anything better, then you and your leaders are Communists and we shall use our rich resources to so inform the Territory and try to bust your union."

See how easy it is to become a Communist? The foolproof method for getting labeled is to ask for a bigger share in the good things, to put in a plea for a little meat instead of dry bones.

That is why I believe there are not as many suckers in the Territory as the Hawaii Citizens' Committee seems to think. I believe this strike and the vicious hate propaganda directed against the ILWU and the working people have made many persons realize for the first time that the loud cry of "subversive" and "Communist" is a device used by the haves to block the onward march of the have-nots and maintain the status quo.

This is one of the great fundamental truths of our time that comes slowly to many, but once learned is not easily forgotten. I learned it, just as have others, who will not be satisfied until democracy' becomes a fact instead of a promise. So long as I believe that my cause is just, I shall not be halted by name-calling:

It is also well to ponder the fact that borrowing and using the divisive Big Business weapon of Red-baiting has not saved working people Phil Murray, Walter Reuther, Emil Rieve and the other big guns of the CIO who control policy and are trying to weed out the left-led unions, have tried it and despite this yeoman service to the huge industrialists, the U. S Chamber of Commerce Bulletin, had this to say in March.

IO pamphlets, the Economic Outlook and the CIO News regularly carry a heavy cargo of hates and slurs toward employers, toward our way of life, in the form of words and cartoons.

"CIO leaders, while not Communists themselves, are continuing the Marxist ideology. Profits and profit motives are under constant attack in the CIO literature, while the wage motive is endorsed. "

This proves my point that working people gam nothing by Red-baiting. They may not be called Communists, but if they want higher pay and better working conditions, they will be labelled Marxists and will be fought just as bitterly as ever.

Here's a question for the Citizens' Committee Is the huge Ford Motor Co, bigger than any or all island industry, to be considered a partner in subversion? because it agreed to arbitrage its dispute with the United Auto Workers, a CIO union?

Who Is "Frank Davis?"

I lay no claim to being the only Frank Davis in existence. But it is a little odd that in the recent ILWU-Business radio forum over KULA, a loaded anti-union question about Negro stevedores on the West-Coast should have been directed to Jack Kawano and sent in by somebody who called himself "Frank Davis."

If there is such a person, come to the office of the HONOLULU RECORD arid identify yourself. I'd like to meet you. Otherwise, some of us may have the idea that it was another of the cozy little propaganda ideas of the Hawaii Citizens' Committee. You wouldn't want that to happen, would you?

From 1939 to 1948, corporate profits increased 423 per cent before taxes. Total wage and salary payments went up 194 per cent.


June 9, 1949: For Charles J. Pietseh

The high priests of privilege would have us believe that huge profits for the mighty stockholders and pennies for the lest of us are the ideals of America. They would tie together democracy and free enterprise—which actually was murdered decades ago by the strangling fingers of the monopolies and trusts—and feed us the lie that the fight of working people for higher wages is "un-American."

This fantastic theory goes hand in hand with a radio broadcast recently over KGU by Charles J Pietseh, well known real estate broker, who informed his listeners that "human rights and property rights are identically the same. " I do not know where you live, you who read this column. But I am thinking now of the slums of Honolulu, of Chicago, New York and New Orleans. I see in my mind rain driving through rotting walls and ceilings, disease breeding community bath rooms and outhouses with the clogged toilets running over, of humans sardined five and six to a room.

I think further of higher death rates, of juvenile delinquency, of complete dejection and hopelessness, of crime and social disorders which share these miserable hovels I think of fellow humans living in these slums, not by choice, but because they aren't paid enough money to do better in this land of plenty. I think also that when these people unite in unions and ask for wages that will enable them to break away from these conditions, as the stevedores have done, they get kicked in the teeth and are pointed out as "subversive."

Who owns this property which makes a mockery of human dignity? Who has the right to collect rent from these pest holes that are too far gone to repair? Does Pietsch deny that the right of absentee landlords to collect rent on rundown property is not superior to and completely opposed to the right of humans to have decent housing?

It is the slum owner who insists on continuing the right to collect rent from his ratholes and degrade humanity. The big real estate people, shouting the cry of property rights, have used then tremendous power and resources against the extension of human rights by battling every government attempt at slum clearance.

It happened here in Honolulu, Mr. Pietseh. The Territorial legislature had before it Senate Bill 592 which would have provided for condemnation and redevelopment of blighted areas. But it was emasculated. The measure as passed permits the Territorial government to merely plan for redevelopment and maybe use some federal funds if and when they are available. We shall have our slums for at least another two years. The absentee landlords will continue to collect rents from, fellow humans who have no choice but to exist, breed, sicken and die in these filthy reminders of the superiority of property rights over human rights.

But of course these slum dwellers should buy their own homes, according to Mr. Pietseh, who happens to be in the business of selling homes. That, he said, is "a bulwark against communism." And, I might add, it also helps the income through commissions of those who deal in real estate, even though 100 per cent home ownership would kill the profits of the slum owners.

Actually, it's like the period just prior to the French evolution when the queen was told the people were starving because they had no bread "Very well," she said, "then let them eat cake ".

The slum dwellers, these victims of property rights, can't buy homes for the same reason they can't quit the slums no money. If the stevedores, said by the waterfront employers to be the "highest paid for their kind of work in the Territory" earn only enough to maintain minimum health standards, how can the ordinary worker save enough for a down payment on a home of his own? Where will they get the cake to eat?

A family of five must earn $260 net monthly to maintain minimum health standards, according to a recent survey. How many families of five have this income? How many would draw this much, pay if those employers, who could afford this rate, shared more with their employes instead of giving property rights precedence over human rights? How much must a family earn above the minimum in order to put aside enough to make a down payment on a house and thus establish the Pietseh "bulwark against communism?"

And, finally, don't many people turn to communism because the owners of slum property live in big mansions and use their rental income to help fight low cost housing? Because they haven't got the money to own homes due to the low wages paid by the wealthy corporations who resist every legitimate plea for higher pay?

Since Mr. Pietseh seemed to know all the, answers on his radio program, surely these questions will give him no trouble. I'll be waiting for his reply.


June 16, 1949: Murder in Guam

Was Pvt. Herman P. Dennis, Negro air force private, convicted in Guam for the murder of Ruth Farnsworth, white civilian worker, or because he dared to question the armed forces' long-established and anti-democratic policy of race separation?

I do not pretend to know all the facts. But I am sickeningly aware of the way in which Negroes have been brutalized and even legally murdered for crimes they never committed. They have been framed because they opposed white supremacy or to serve as examples by which to hold others in subjugation.

Such instances have occurred all over the Mainland, under the very noses of fair-minded whites and strong organizations like the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Civil, Rights Congress. It took an aroused nation to block the legal lynching of the nine innocent Scottsboro boys in Alabama; the frameup against the Trenton Six in New Jersey is still being fought.

If such rough deals are pulled in the continental U.S., what is to prevent the railroading of guiltless Negroes to death in such isolated areas as the island of Guam where the military is in control and there are no organizations to protect the lives of the intended victims?

I hold no brief for the killers of Miss Farnsworth. I believe the guilty, no matter who, should be punished. But I do not want the legal slaughter of scapegoats to cover somebody else's crime.

There were no eyewitnesses to the abduction and murder of the girl around 8:30 p. m. last Dec. 11. But following the practice long established on the Mainland where the Negro must be terrorized into continuing his inferior status as a second class citizen, military police rounded up. Negro suspects and charged two brothers, Herman P. and Calvin Dennis, air force privates, and Sgt. Robert W. Burns with the rape-slaying. Herman P. Dennis, first to go on trial, told the court martial he was subjected to a brutal third degree and threatened by the M. P.'s with lynching unless he confessed. Pleading his innocence, Dennis denied he had even seen Miss Farnsworth the night of the slaying and swore he was at a movie when the murder occurred. His testimony was corroborated by Cpl. Moss H. Scroggins of Baltimore, who told of seeing Dennis as he left the air force theater eight miles from the slaying site about 9 p. m. The prosecution declared Miss Farnsworth's assailants had entered her gift shop about 8:30.

But what was undoubtedly just as important in this case composed of thin and circumstantial evidence was the prosecution's contention that Dennis had spoken out against race separation in Guam's quite limited social life. The military, as you know, loves its jim-crow. To oppose this system is almost as serious a crime as murder. This defiance of American social patterns may have weighted the scales against the soldier.

Anyway, Pvt. Herman P. Dennis was convicted. There are rumors that the actual slayers of Miss Farnsworth are known on Guam, but they are to go free if the crime can be pinned on somebody else. In other words, the Guam case has some of the smell of Hawaii's famous Massie case of the early 1930s.

When one recalls the hard, historic pattern of Negro oppression and the denial of that democracy in practice which we talk about so loudly, there is sufficient reason for questioning the murder charges against the three black soldiers.

It is painfully clear that segregation and discrimination to maintain white supremacy are the real policies of the governing apparatus. Truman has given only lip service to his own civil rights program; his real energy has been expended in getting acceptance of the Atlantic pact, more Marshall plan funds and other legislation which help maintain European empires at the expense of exploited dark colonial peoples.

Out of this unrelenting terrorizing of Negroes has grown the oppression of other minority groups such as Jews, Orientals, Latin-America bor [text missing]. This strategy, designed to mainta [text missing] quo, depends upon the technique of [text missing] tims divided on the false basis of co [text missing] national origin, economic status and [text missing] liefs. And so we have Taft-Hartley, [text missing] clusion, jimcrow laws, un-American [text missing] and colonial attitudes toward the non- [text missing] ers of Hawaii.

Thus the Guam case has vital m [text missing] Hawaii. It cannot be dismiss [text mi] involving three members of an ethnic group neither populous nor well understood in the Territory. If these men are innocent, their conviction must be understood as another link in the chain of oppression forged by the haves around the necks of the have-nots as a blow against those of us who want an end to the inequities of the status quo and who seek the equality of real democracy. That is why I, for one, want to know more about the Guam case. I do not think their guilt has been fully established and will welcome the facts in the case. If they actually are guilty, let them be punished for rape-murder instead of the crime of being Negroes and fighting against a policy that perpetuates white supremacy.


June 23, 1949: Hawaii's Loyalty Oath

With Hawaii trying so hard to become a state, I suppose it is only natural to find the Territory behaving like some of the Mainland common wealths. I refer specifically to the loyalty oath passed by the legislature and which must be taken by some 15,000 Territorial employes before next Dec. 31.

Here is the oath of allegiance to which they must swear:

I do solemnly swear and declare, on oath that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I am not now nor have I been at any time within the five years preceding the taking of this oath a Communist or a member of the Communist party; that I have not at any time within the five years preceding the taking of this oath held membership in, paid assessments, dues or made contribution to any organization or any political party which advocates the overthrow of the constitutional form of government of the United States or any change in the government of the United States except as provided by its Constitution; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.

I am no lawyer, but I seriously question the legality of such an oath under the federal Constitution. I think, further, that one could be strongly anti-Communist, and still consider this oath not only an affront to personal liberties but also unconstitutional and just plain stupid.

Since a solemn promise is made to support and defend the Constitution and laws, it means that Territorial employes must give up their traditional American right to oppose any statute passed by congress with which they might disagree. Opposition by any Territorial employe, even though a trade union member, to the Taft-Hartley law, is therefore disloyal. The same goes for any other legislation, no matter how unfair, which happens to have been passed in Washington.

The oath, in effect, gives an air of untouchable sacredness to both the Constitution and acts of Congress never intended by the Founding Fathers of our nation. Throughout our history, men have fought for the repeal of laws they thought unjust and oppressive. Even a constitutional amendment that of forcing prohibition upon America, has been banished because the majority of the people vocally opposed this legal monstrosity. Yet the loyalty oath would take away this historic right from a large section of the population. That, it seems to me, is unconstitutional.

As for the denial of membership in the Communist party, this is based on the assumption that this organization is "subversive," "un-American" and "against the best interest of the nation." However, the truth of this premise has not been established and will not be until so declared by the U.S. Supreme Court. Until the Communist party is legally decreed illegal, and a subversive conspiracy, it is due to have the same status as any other political party.

the first 10 amendments to the Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights, guarantee to each individual freedom of thought, association, speech and assembly. This is the constitutional basis on which O. John Rogge, former assistant U.S. attorney general, has attacked the legality of Truman's loyalty order for all federal workers. If the Truman loyalty order is unconstitutional, as many non-Communists firmly believe, the Territorial oath of allegiance is likewise unconstitutional.

It was never intended that any man or group of men, having the power, would so misuse that power to undermine the fundamental concept of our democracy and arbitrarily decide how men should think and with whom they should associate. The Constitution may not be suspended, even by legislators.

As a matter of fact, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule upon the legality of legislation similar to the Territory's loyalty oath. While the Constitution is obviously what the nine justices say it is, I doubt that they will become victims of the prevailing hysteria and render a decision violating what many of us have been taught from childhood was the true spirit of American democracy. But the sooner the issue is settled, the better it will be for all of us.


July 7, 1949 : Butler’s Beliefs

As I read Butler's report on why statehood should be denied Hawaii, I re-called that only a few weeks ago Dr. Ralph Bunche, world, renowned United Nations Palestine mediator, turned down an offer from President Truman to become an assistant secretary of state, highest diplomatic post ever offered an American Negro.

Butler's report says Communism is a menace. It is unlawful because of its aims, among them major changes in our present pattern of living, the senator declares. I re-called that Dr. Bunche turned down the job because it would mean living in Washington, where as a Negro, he would be subjected to jim crow and discrimination, no matter what his standing in government circles.

That is, I think a biting commentary on our democracy. Butler, Rankin, the American Legion leadership and similar champions of the status quo can tailor you a bright new Red menace to fit any situation; but they have not even, one timid word to say against lynching, segregation, the poll tax, restricted employment opportunities or the labor-crippling Taft-Hartley law.

In fact, efforts to change the second-class citizenship of minorities are labelled as "Communist plots." You lay yourself open to name-calling for even protesting jim crow. I was not at all surprised to read in a Mainland newspaper that some Dixiecrat had called Dr. Bunche a Communist for his comments on Washington.

If Butler were genuinely interested in democracy, his report would have mentioned the colonial status of islanders, the wage differential between haoles and non-haoles which the current waterfront strike has underlined; restricted jobs and restricted residential areas, and the color bar against various non-haole groups in certain public places. He might have suggested that Hawaii get rid of these conditions before statehood, for they are contrary to the spirit and intent of the federal constitution. They are the real menace to democracy in Hawaii.

I don't know about you, but I personally, am tired of the wolf cry of Communism raised by those in power to justify their refusal to grant equality, whether to a territory, a minority group, or an individual. And I am not alone in this stand. Increasing numbers of Americans are becoming angered when they are thrown the same old smelly Red herring each time they ask for a helping of democracy.

Recently in New York, the Rev. Thomas S. Harten, for many years one of the most noted Negro pastors, told the Baptist Ministers' Conference that racists are the basic enemies of the country.

"I say to America," the Rev. Harten said, "that before she preaches to Russia or to any other nation, she must remove the mote from her own eye, and clean up the dirt in her own backyard." I shall pray to God that the 11 Communists now on trial be exonerated. I shall ask my congregation to join me and get others to do likewise. "If there are any traitors to this country, I call men who deprive a human being of his citizenship and God-given rights, traitors to the country and to the flag."

For the benefit of the FBI, which is still unable to find the lynchers of those four Negroes in little Monroe County, Georgia, three years ago, the Rev. Harten's remarks were carried in the New York Amsterdam News of March 26.

There are some who have been frightened into silence by the attacks of the Butlers. But there are others who, like the Rev. Harten, feel their cause is just and are ready to face crucifixion, if need be, for what they believe in. They have no fear of the Pontius Pilates of 1949. And for every one who falls, a dozen, rise to take his place.

It will be a glorious day for America when our leaders decide to give the constitution firm flesh and strong bones and make it a living reality instead of the curiosity they now would have it be. Then there will be no need for the angry cries of a Rev. Harten; the nation will not be forced to forego the services of a talented Negro like Dr. Bunche, who cannot stand the jim crow pattern of living in the national capital. And, of course, the Butlers will be all washed up.


July 7, 1949 : Made on the Mainland

I was in Hawaii only a few weeks before I saw that the treatment of non-haoles here followed the broad outlines of the Mainland treatment of Negroes. The current longshore strike has made this brutally clear.

White Stateside employers traditionally have paid Negro workers less than haoles for the same jobs. This takes place even in some areas where there are trade unions. Strikes have been called by some, of the more militant labor organizations over refusal to upgrade Negroes who were performing the same jobs as haoles working beside them.

I cannot believe there would be this wide gap between the wages of West Coast and Territory longshoremen if white stevedores were the base of the Hawaii rank and file as they are at the other end of the line.

Opinions expressed by haole women on the anti-union picket line emphasize this fact. Some have frankly stated they did not want "them" to have more pay because it would raise "their" standard of living to equal that of many whites. This way of thinking is all too familiar to those aware of Negro-white relations on the Mainland. The striking stevedores actually have two battles. They must not only fight the traditional fight of organized labor against anti-union employers, but they must also wage war against the common prejudices aimed at the non-haoles of America.

It is no mere accident that the women's anti-union picket line has been overwhelmingly haole, or that haoles have been conspicuous by their rarity on the stevedores' lines. This merely follows the usual path of division on the basis of color, of haoles working together to slap down those non-whites who have the audacity to demand equality.

Those courageous haoles who have marched with the strikers have been immediately classed as "Communists," although by doing this, the name-callers make it appear that only the Communists believe in democracy. This is the same propaganda used on the Mainland in an effort to discredit those who join forces with Negroes in their struggle for equality. For even speaking out in favor of a civil rights program giving fair treatment to Negroes, last election President Truman was termed "Communistic" by the Dixiecrats. Thus the hammer of American discrimination bludgeons not only Negroes, but all colored peoples, including those of Japanese,Chinese, Filipino, Puerto Rican, Hawaiian and Latin-American descent. It also hits Jews, who are popularly but erroneously considered to be a "race."For one victimized group to consider itself superior to others and thus isolate itself, weakens what should be a united front to crush discrimination. It plays directly into the hands of the racists who smoothly set one group against another in order to rule both—the old game of divide and conquer.

In these columns I often refer to Negroes, although they are only a tiny fraction of the island population. Nevertheless, I use such references because the second-class, inferior treatment of the 15,000,000 American Negroes, the nation's largest minority, sets the pattern for the treatment of all other colored peoples. Because of this there can be no lasting solution to the problem of racism until anti-Negro discrimination, the foundation for prejudiced treatment of other ethnic minorities, is wiped out. The Oriental, Polynesian and Latin peoples cannot themselves get full, first-class citizenship until jim crow is dead and buried.

If color discrimination were not the national policy of the real rulers of America, there would be no wage differential between West Coast and Hawaiian stevedores; no two rates of pay for haoles and non-haoles performing identical work in the islands; no restricted jobs and restricted residential areas, and certain public places which ban colored patronage. This pattern is the result of anti-Negro practices logically extended to other non-whites.

Because the road is so much easier when you conform, I have tremendous respect for those haoles who have the radical belief that the U. S. Constitution means what it says and that democracy should be the common possession of all instead of the private property of a select few with cash and a pale skin. By taking sides with the strikers and speaking out against injustice, many have jeopardized their whole economic future in the Territory. Some haoles do so out of a strong sense of fair play; other haoles have learned that prejudice, whether against Negroes, Jews, Orientals or organized labor, has economic roots. It means bigger profits for those on top when they can keep the rest of us divided.

It is a tragedy that some of the colored victims of discrimination, for personal gain, follow the line laid down by the racists. They take their 30 pieces of silver in the form of a job and then do the bidding of their masters. There are Judases among Negroes as well as among Orientals and Polynesians.

As for myself, I cannot take the easy way out so long as the monster of prejudice roams the land. Despite the thicker veneer of democracy, underneath I find the same problems here that exist in Chicago and Atlanta. The surface may have changed, but the framework remains the same.

In New York and St. Louis the victims of prejudice may be Negroes and Jews and Spanish-speaking Americans. Out here, the list has been increased and made more complex because of the physical fact that haoles are an actual minority of the population and therefore they must be more subtle than in Boston or Omaha.But when you get to the bottom, it's still the same old pattern of discrimination, of maintaining white supremacy. It is a way of thinking that has no place in a democracy. Racism has got to go.


August 4, 1949: Role of the RECORD

Despite the confusing propaganda aimed to deceive the American people into supporting a new world war, if need be, to bail Big Business out of a depression, and despite the tactics of the thought police through probes and loyalty orders to make us all conform to a belief in the status quo, there are still strong voices giving leadership to those who believe in peace and true democracy.

In New York there is the National Guardian, closely linked to the Progressive, party headed by Henry Wallace, and more community isolated from the Mainland. It is important as a rallying ground for those of us in Hawaii who want no new war, who want a better life for the common man, and an end to discrimination. The RECORD has given this area leadership in these critical times.

The RECORD, and papers like it on the Mainland, stands as a barrier to the sinister and selfish plans of Big Business for the continuation of high profits, at home and abroad, at the expense of humanity. Naturally, it is not popular among those who act as errand boys or are dupes of the slick propaganda of the gigantic trusts and monopolies. It is therefore, forced to depend upon the plain people it serves, rather than upon advertising subsidies from those in control of the economy.

In a day of rising reaction, of liberals being scared into silence by un-American committees and the weapon of Red-baiting, of repressive anti-labor legislation such as Taft-Hartley and attempts at union busting, it is encouraging to know that there are Americans so imbued with the traditions of democracy and fair play that they have fearlessly maintained their independence of thought. It was such as these who in Illinois defeated the Broyles bills, patterned after the repressive Hitler measures in Germany; have exposed Jack Tenney in California for the bigot that he is; are resisting the dangerous regimentation of the loyalty oaths, and are trying through public meetings to find ways of healing our differences with Russia without the costly and crazy bipartisan policy dictated by Big Business and Big Brass.

One of the rare but forceful voices cutting through the prevailing insanity of today is that of Dr. Robert Hutchins, chancellor of the University of Chicago and one of the world's most renowned educators.

Blasting the mounting anti-Communist hysteria as he addressed graduating students in June, Dr. Hutchins said: "The dragnet philosophy of the witch-hunters is down with criticism, down with protests, down with unpopular opinions, down with independent thought."

Yet the history and tradition of our country make it perfectly clear that the essence of the American way of life is its hospitality to criticism, protest, unpopular opinions and independent thought.

The cloak and stiletto work that is now going on will not merely mean that many persons will suffer for acts that they did not commit, or for acts that were legal when committed, or for no acts at all.

Far worse is the end result which will be that critics, even of the mildest sort, will be frightened into silence. Stupidity and injustice will go unchallenged because no one will dare to speak against them. To persecute people into conformity by the non-legal methods popular today is little better than doing it by purges and pogroms.

Speaking of the loyalty oaths for teachers and the dismissals of professors without regard for their competence, the educator said: "We do not throw people into jail because they are alleged to differ with the official ogma. We throw them out of work and do our best to create the impression that they are subversive and hence dangerous not only: to the state, but also to everybody who comes near them."

Labeling some thing or some man Communist because Communists happen to favor it or agree with him, that easy process by which one disposes of different views by applying a dirty name to them, involves the negation of thought of any kind. If it had been applied consistently in American history, it would have deprived us of some ideas and some men that we are proud to think characteristically American.

"For example, the Communist Manifesto demands free education for all. Are we therefore, to recant and renounce the American doctrine of free education for all?" Speaking of the cold war, Dr. Hutchins said: "It has never been shown that there are so many spies and traitors in this country, or that the external danger is so great and imminent that we have to divert the entire attention of our people into one great repressive preoccupation, into one great counter-revolution in which the freedoms of our citizens must be thrown overboard as too burdensome for the floundering ship of state to carry." This is probably the first time you read of this significant speech, and then you read it only in this copy of the RECORD, which again points to the value of this paper in the sharp struggle, against growing fascism here in America. For if fascism and World War III are to be averted such publications as the RECORD will play a leading role in their defeat.


August 11, 1949: Paul Robeson's Stand

Two distinguished Americans are leading the resistance movement against the drive of Big Business toward World War III as a way out of the new depression and for preservation of tremendous profits through global domination. They are Henry A. Wallace, former vice president, and Paul Robeson, singer and actor.

You don't hear much about Wallace in the islands. Out here he gets the silent treatment. On the Mainland he is lambasted or ignored. Recently the propaganda guns of the warmongers have been turned on Robeson, and the errand boys of Big Business, who live on the crumbs tossed by the trusts and monopolies, have taken up the cry.

The intensive effort to discredit Robeson and render his leadership ineffective, thus confusing his followers and making them potential supporters of the suicidal and selfish policies of Big Business, began during the World Peace Conference at Paris in April. With vicious inaccuracy, Paul was quoted by the daily press services as saying that "American Negroes would never go to war against Russia."

Despite generations of experience common to Negroes of being caricatured by the daily press, despite the common knowledge that the white newspaper can seldom be trusted to print truthful accounts of events concerning Negroes, there were many of the "professional Negro leaders" who took the published report as gospel truth and rushed into print to vilify one of the most famous men of our time, regardless of color. They were like faithful dogs, trying to curry favor with their masters.

But what has been most encouraging to the fighters for peace has been the reaction of the Negro people who, acting on the same distorted reports, have rejected the "me too, boss" attitudes of their so-called leaders and have written letters to the Mainland press, both Negro and white, supporting the alleged stand of Robeson.

What Paul said, however, is different from what the press services reported. Instead of saying that "American Negroes would never go to war against Russia," he said that Negroes would not "join in a war of aggression against Russia." There's all the difference in the world between those statements. The 1,800 delegates from 52 nations at the Paris conference, including Dr. W. E. B. DuBois, world famous scholar and a founder of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and Paul himself have denied the first report and confirmed the accuracy of the second statement.

Here is what else Robeson had to say:

"The emphasis on what I said in Paris was on the struggle for peace, not on anybody going to war against anybody.

"Go and ask the Negro workers in the cotton plantations of Alabama, the sugar plantations in Louisiana, the tobacco fields in South Arkansas, ask the workers in the banana plantations or the sugar workers in the West Indies, ask the African farmers who have been dispossessed of their land in the South Africa of Malan, ask the Africans wherever you find them on their continent:

"Will they fight for peace so that new ways can be opened up for a life of freedom for hundreds of millions and not for just the few; will they fight for peace and collaboration with the Soviet Union and the new democracies; will they join the forces of peace or be drawn into a war in the interest of the senators who have just filibustered them out of their civil rights; will they join Malan in South Africa who, just like Hitler, is threatening to destroy 8,000,000 Africans and hundreds of thousands of Indians through hunger and terror; will they join their oppressors or will they fight for peace?"

To these words may be added those of Mrs. Eslanda Goode Robeson, his wife, who told a Wallace Peace Rally held recently in Madison Square Garden, New York:

"I know that every sensible Negro in this country, professional leaders notwithstanding, feels that if he must fight any future war for democracy, the proper place to begin such a fight is right here."'

That, frankly, is the attitude of many of America's 15,000,000 Negroes, whose oppressive treatment has set the pattern for discrimination against other non-white groups, not only on the Mainland but in other possessions arid dominated areas such as the Hawaiian Islands.

Disillusionment has followed both world wars of this century, sold to America as "crusades for democracy." The Negro was promised equality after World War I and instead got a wave of lynchings, riots, and revival of the Ku Klux Klan. Even though World War II was a duel to the death against the kind of fascist racism most Negroes taste with their daily bread, there were those who remembered the unkept promises of 1917 and preferred bearing arms against the Bilbos and Rankins of the South than against Hitler.

That is why Paul Robeson says that the bulk of the Negro people will not be inclined to support any aggressive war planned by Big Business against the Soviet Union or any other nation which is known to have abolished jim crow and color discrimination. There is no desire among the Negro masses to strengthen the hands of their own oppressors. The feeling is growing if there must be fighting, let it be against the Dixiecrats, the northern perpetrators of such raw deals as the frame-up of the Trenton Six in New Jersey, and those who use the happenstance of color to restrict job opportunities and housing.

That is why efforts to discredit Paul among the plain people have fallen flat, and also why all the big guns of thought control, including the aptly named un-American committee, have been turned against him. No aggressive war planned by Big Business can be successful without the support of the 15,000,000 American Negroes, one tenth of the population. It should be obvious by now that mere words won't get Negro support; it can be forced only through guns and the absolute terrorism of fascism. Therefore, the fight for peace and against fascism has as its natural allies the Negro people and, with them, the other non-whites who stand in a similar position.


August 18, 1949: Labor Weakens Itself

I have been forced, reluctantly, to the opinion that when Franklin D. Roosevelt was buried, the intelligence of many of our most powerful labor leaders was laid to rest with him. That is the kindest explanation I know for the suicidal folly that is now official policy of the top national CIO leadership. When the CIO was created about 15 years ago, it was believed that its aggressive, realistic program would liberalize the hidebound AFL conservatives. For a time this was true, but today we find Phil Murray and Co. slipping into the same thought patterns so recently condemned, as typical of Bill Green and associates: This has been a deep disappointment to those of us who looked upon the CIO to give real guidance to the working people.

Currently, the CIO officially backs the double-talking Truman administration with its program for World War III, if necessary, to bail Big Business out of a depression. Murray and his boys have allied themselves with the gigantic trusts and monopolies, thus strengthening the hands of those who have been organized labor's bitterest enemies. At the same time, the CIO has been sinfully weakened as the alliance became stronger. It just doesn't make sense. For it is impossible to strengthen reaction and at the same time fight it. Had the CIO leadership held to its original principles instead of virtually offering the organization as a sitting target for the powerful union busters who have master-minded the nation's brink-of-war program, we would have no Taft-Hartley law nor the. divisive Red-baiting tactics which so weaken organized labor that it cannot adequately protect itself from outside attacks.

The Wagner Act came into being in 1935 under Roosevelt. Its purpose was to prevent employers from using their economic power to keep their workers from organizing. As for the strength of Big Business, the Temporary National Economic Committee of the U. S. Senate, set up in 1938, reported: "Corporations in modern times are economic states with power in many instances fully as great as that of political states of the American union."

Remember, this report was made prior to World War II, which saw mergers and the creation of new financial empires far more powerful than any which had previously existed. Unions basically, are the allies of the general public in keeping these "economic states" from growing so strong they can defy all efforts toward public control.

Here in Hawaii the ILWU is the barrier to complete dictatorship over the Territory by the Big Five, but on the Mainland many right-wing unions have lost the will to resist. They have forgotten they cannot side with both the "economic states" and the public. So the top leadership of organized labor backed the Truman doctrine in Greece and Turkey and then the Marshall plan based upon the continuation of colonial slavery by the ruling classes of Western Europe, even though imperialism, through the exploitation of cheap labor, lowers the living standards of workers in capitalistic countries.

Today, production and real wages in the Marshall plan countries are still below pre-war levels and there is rising unemployment in Western Europe as well as America. Meanwhile, profits remain terrifically high.

By going down the line with the bipartisan warmongers and swooning at the proper times to the slick siren songs of the Truman gang, labor is now saddled with Taft-Hartley, which got its ideological leadership from White.

House anti-union action in the threatened rail strike of a couple of years ago. The witch-hunting of the federal government set the pace for witch-hunting within the CIO.

Last year, Wallace and the Progressive Party warned organized labor that it could expect no relief from Taft-Hartley or the excesses of Big Business if it supported the two parties of Wall Street, the Republicans and the Democrats. But those who had gone down the line for Wallace as Roosevelt's running mate in 1944 now would have nothing to do with him and tried to kick out those who backed their former fair-haired boy.

Since the 81st Congress went in last January, the prophesies of the Wallaceites have become painfully true. A GOP Congress passed Taft-Hartley and a Democratic Congress has failed to repeal it. The living standards of American workers have dropped and jobless ness has risen.

Management's key weapon of Red-baiting, which pits union brother against union brother, has weakened the whole trade union movement, thus automatically increasing the dictatorship of Big Business. Instead of leading the fight for peace and security and opposing profit-grabbing and world domination by the billion-dollar corporations, the top leadership of organized labor still swoons to the siren songs of the Truman gang.

But there are bright spots on the dark labor horizon Among them are the refusal of such unions as ILWU, Marine Cooks and Stewards, Farm Equipment United, Electrical Workers, Mine, Mill and Smelter, and a few others to march to self-destruction with Murray, Walter Reuther, Emil Rieve and the rest of the labor traitors.

There is also growing dissatisfaction among rank-and-filers who followed their leaders' advice and voted for Truman, only to have Taft-Hartley still chained to their necks, the warmongering Atlantic Pact, a continued high cost of living and layoffs. Those who have gone along and eliminated the so-called Communists from leadership have learned the hard way that management is no more inclined to give a living wage to a "purged" union than to one which will have no part of the anti-Communist hysteria. How long the mentally feeble leadership, under these conditions, will be able to keep its errand boy job for Wall Street is a matter for conjecture.

Truth is, the Bill Greens and Phil Murrays no longer have the psychology of labor. They think like corporation presidents, peddling labor instead of autos or radios. Yet, if we are to have peace, prosperity, equality and real democracy, organized labor must reject the aid to imperialism given by Green, Murray and Co. and become militantly independent.


August 25, 1949: How to Block Both

We Americans have no yearning for war despite the propaganda barrage intended to whip up hysteria. Leading scientists and military experts have warned that nobody can win the next global conflict, despite the pipe dreams of our Big Business and Big Brass.

Even more horrible than the atom bomb are the new techniques of bacteriological warfare — a method of mass destruction not limited to a nation with the stockpile and know-how of. converting uranium into atomic energy. I have no desire to give my life to maintain high profits for Standard Oil. I have no intention of making the world safe for John Rankin of Mississippi. I shall not help England and France keep millions of my colored brothers in Africa and Asia in colonial slavery. Yet that is what our dividend diplomats ask of you and me when they demand our support of the bi-partisan Marshall plan, Atlantic pact and a shooting war, if necessary, to bail us out of depression.

To block World War III we must block the mounting depression. The two are inseparable. I love America so much that I want to fight to save it from planned folly. I am confident we can end the threat of the worst depression the world has ever known, we can halt the rush to destroy civilization through a new world war, if enough sincere and patriotic Americans demand a reversal in the present disaster-inviting policies of government dictated by Big Business.

Higher wages for labor are basic to blocking the depression. The murder of OPA and high prices have caused real wages to decline steadily since V-J Day, while corporation profits have exceeded even the stratospheric totals of World War II years. The high cost of living prevents the workers from buying more than a fraction of what they produce. Big Business, with its tremendously expanded productive capacity, cannot dispose of all its merchandise. Under the Marshall plan, subsidized goods were dumped overseas, but this merely worsened labor conditions in England and France, thus sharpening the economic crisis abroad.

Layoffs have followed here at home, thus further reducing the number of potential buyers. A glance at the profit sheets shows that greatly increased rates of pay could be granted and prices of commodities drastically cut, thus making it possible for more people to purchase merchandise now in over-supply.

Shorter work weeks and higher minimum pay also should be established, thus providing jobs and a living wage for the 5,000,000 jobless and the 10,000,000 or more part-time workers, thereby furthering the purchasing power of the general public. Currently, 75 cents of each tax dollar is spent for the cold war and in payment for World War II. We spend billions of dollars annually in buying armaments and in training the biggest peace-time military force our nation has ever known, as well as intervening in the internal affairs of other nations to keep their governments flunkies of Wall Street. The bulk of these huge funds finds its way into the pockets of our gigantic trusts and monopolies.

Instead this money should be spent for the benefit of the people instead of the corporations. These taxes should be used for public works projects, increased social security benefits, health insurance, education and low-cost housing. Billions poured down the rat-hole in China to aid the corrupt Nationalist regime of Chiang Kai-shek could have completely eliminated the slums in a number of major American cities, not only providing decent housing but employment in the construction of this housing.

Trade with Russia, Eastern. Europe and Liberated China should be demanded, thus creating additional jobs in U. S. industry and halting lay-offs. Our government has declared an embargo on exports to the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, Poland, and the other nations eager to do business with America. Thus workers are laid off and factories closed down—while millions of people stand waiting to buy the products of these factories. We have turned our backs on cash customers willing and able to spend several billions annually.

At the same time, we must insist that America as well as all other nations, live up to both the letter and the spirit of the United Nations. We must reject all war alliances such as the Atlantic pact, fake "recovery programs" such as the Marshall plan, and unilateral action of any kind aimed at a member nation. Let us insist upon an honest and sincere return to the principles written into the UN charter and subscribed to by the government of each signatory nation.

This, briefly, is the kind of program we must fight for if a hopeless depression and the global suicide of a new world war are to be averted. But it will not be granted voluntarily by the Truman administration and the bi-partisans, busy trying to find a way to conquer the world for Big Business.

All of us who face loss of our jobs as times get harder, who have been forced to lower our living standards or who are unemployed; those who have no desire to die in a new war to insure super-profits for the billion-dollar corporations, must act as well as talk.

This calls for unity around such a program as the one advocated here, and a refusal to let our ranks be split by such divisive and weakening weapons as Red-baiting and the playing of one race, national or religious group against another. The future of America and of the world depends upon how the people fight the depression and the very real threat of war.

If we want jobs and higher living standards, we will start work on a peace and prosperity program now.


September 1, 1949: "Democracy is Indivisible "

An amazingly large number of Negroes have observed that the forces who shout loudest about the Communist menace are the same forces who won't extend equal rights to minority groups. They realize also that if the civil rights of Communists can be taken away in complete defiance of the Federal Constitution, then it will be much easier to grab back those democratic rights that minority groups have won through long and painful struggle.

It has also been asked how the U. S. expects to rule Russia when the federal government can't rule Mississippi. Some cynics have suggested that the reason for the scarcity of democracy throughout the Mainland comes from the amount we have exported to Greece and Turkey.This is why many Negroes' have become [sic] quite vocal about the lengthy trial of the 12 Communist leaders that has been going on for some time in New York.

This, and the fact that two of the defendants are Negroes—New York City Councilman Ben Davis and Henry Winston.The racial ties to these defendants, who have struggled long against white supremacy, have created additional sentiment among America's largest minority in favor of the Communists.

In July the California Eagle, published in Los Angeles, and one of the nation's most influential Negro newspapers, carried a half-page advertisement under the heading: "Democracy is Indivisible." Called "a statement by Negro leaders to the President and attorney general of the United States on the trial of the 12 Communist leaders," it was signed by doctors, lawyers, ministers, writers, civic workers and labor leaders.

Here is part of what they said: "Today, terror and violence are being directed against the Negro people throughout the land. The Ku Klux Klan adds new victims to the thousands of Negroes who have met violent death in America at the hands of lynch mobs. Police Police brutality against Negroes is growing at an alarming pace. "Legal, lynching is increasingly the practice of the courts as in the case of the 'Trenton Six' and the 'Virginia Seven.' Negro postal employes and Negro and white federal workers—who have actively fought against these injustices are being discharged under the President's so-called 'loyalty program.' Mrs. Rosa Ingram and her young sons are rotting away in prison because they dared resist violence from a Southern planter.

"While allowing those guilty of violent acts to go free, our government is now trying 12 national leaders of the Communist party. Among them are two of our brothers.

"They are Honorable Benjamin J. Davis, Communist member of the city council of New York, and Henry Winston, youthful veteran of World War II, who holds one of the three leading posts in the Communist party nationally. Three of the defendants are now in jail for their refusal to act as stool-pigeons for the prosecution. Among these is Henry Winston, who was jailed for the duration of the trial by the judge when he arose to protest the prosecutor's demand for the names of Communists and Progressives in the South, which would lead to a wave of hysteria against his own people.

"But the government has not charged these men with one single overt act. These persons have been placed on trial for their political beliefs and ideas, an action which is unconstitutional and unprecedented in the history of America.

"The Communist party has a long record of vigorous advocacy and struggle for the democratic rights of Negro citizens. We feel that this fact is not unrelated to the current persecution of its leaders. We raise here no defense of the principles of the Communist party. We represent many and varied political beliefs and affiliations. We are concerned, however, with the right to hold different political beliefs--the right of every man to think for himself.

"Negro Americans are concerned about the growing attacks upon their rights, but they are also anxious about the growing assaults upon the liberties of many other groups—political parties, civil rights organizations, teachers, federal workers, actors, writers and foreign-born. Anyone who dares to think for himself and to say what he thinks is in danger of being fired from his job, branded as a Communist subversive, and thrown in jail.

"Freedoms guaranteed by the Bill of Rights are now, once more, in serious danger. There is no hope for Negro freedom if the liberties of our country are now snuffed out behind anti-Communist hysteria.

"If the freedom of Davis and Winston can be taken away today, the gains we have made in our battle for full equality will be taken away tomorrow. We therefore call upon you to stop this unconstitutional prosecution of Benjamin Davis, Henry Winston and their associates because of their political beliefs.

"We call upon you to stop the current drive against the civil liberties of the American people and to use the power of your offices to defend the constitutional rights and lives of Negroes and all other American citizens."

Parade, Speeches, Picnic In CIO Labor Day Program

Labor Day speeches will deal with the local, national, and international problems of labor, according to information from Ralph Vossbrink, chairman of the Labor Day Committee, and the speakers will include representatives of the community outside the trade union movement. Though the list of speakers is not complete, Chairman Vossbrink said he has already received confirmation from W. K. Bassett, administrative assistant to Mayor Wilson, and Frank Marshall Davis, RECORD columnist, that they will speak on the program at the reviewing stand, Iolani Palace Grounds.

Union Speakers will include Jack Hall, Regional Director, ILWU, Jack Kawano, president of ILWU Local 136 (longshoremen), and Rev. E. C. Yadao, International Representative, ILWU, Calixto Damaso, Local 136, Justo dela Cruz, Local 142, and possibly others to be announced later.

The parade, beginning at 10 a. m. at the corner of River and Queen Streets, will proceed to Beretania, on Beretania to Miller, and from there to the Palace Grounds. Five floats are being prepared by the ILWU, locals, Marine Cooks and Stewards, United Public Workers, the American Communications Association, and ILWU Women's auxiliary, Local 20, who will have contingents in the parade.

Following the speeches, which will begin shortly after 11 a. m., transportation will be provided for all who wish to attend the afternoon of sports and picnicking at Ala Moana Park. Picnickers are advised to bring their own lunches.


September 8, 1949: Down form Olympus

The gods who maintain economic rule over the islands have condescended to come down from on high at the firm request of the federal government and meet with the striking stevedores this week in New York. It took a number of prayers and incantations before these Mighty Beings contented to leave their Big Five Olympus.

I have no way of knowing how successful will be the efforts of Cyrus Ching and the U. S. Mediation service to bring this lengthy strike to an end. Like the rest of the Territory, I can only hope for the best, but if the waterfront employers hold to their position that bargaining must take place "in an area substantially below the 14 cents per hour recommended by the governor's factfinding committee," then there is little reason for optimism.

The attitude of the stevedoring firms, through­out the strike, has been ah insult to the working people of Hawaii. Although longshore wages are 42 cents an hour less than the West Coast scale while the cost of living here is about 40 per cent higher, the employers boast the stevedores "are the highest paid workers for this type of work in the Territory," thus indirectly admitting how poorly paid are other workers.

Rather than lessen the gap between wages and cost of living, the waterfront companies forced strike action by ILWU in desperation. With the ports closed as the employers try to force the union to its knees, food prices have skyrocketed. This eats a bigger hole in the insufficient paychecks of the employed. An added insult was the cutting of salaries by many of the large island businesses, thus visiting further hardship upon non-striking wage earners.

The propaganda shot at us through press, radio, whispering campaigns and their front organizations by the employers has been intended to make workers believe they have been victimized by other workers. The employers have tailored for themselves shining, oversize halos and move about as lords of Hawaiian creation.

But as the strike strung out into weeks and months, many people who originally were taken in by the slick talk of the port bosses are no longer convinced that the longshoremen are a bunch of devils out to wreck the Territory.

In the little restaurants and taverns, in the small independent business places and on the street corners there is open talk that maybe the strikers are not solely to blame for present hardships, that perhaps the seven shipping companies are not free of guilt.

I have no doubt that these rumblings, which have become louder after Senator Morse's many congressional speeches to favor of arbitration and the previous refusals of the employers to negotiate on the Mainland, finally reached on high to the lofty ears of the Territorial gods in their Big Five Olympus. This unquestionably was a factor in the decision of the shipping companies to meet this week in New York.

Several days ago I talked with, an AJA employe of a Big Five firm. Although no union member, he was quite anxious for the ILWU to win a sizeable wage increased. This was now a personal matter, he told me, for if the longshoremen lost, then he could expect a permanent cut in his weekly wage from the all-powerful employers. But if the union can raise the living standards of its members by winning a raise, then the bosses' power would be weakened to that extent and there would be a sound precedent for getting a raise himself or at least returning to his pre-strike pay rate.

That is a personal approach to the strike that has meaning for all working people, union or non-union alike. It is a pity that more have not figured out this fact of economic life for themselves, for then we would not have the sorry spectacle of underpaid workers allowing themselves to be turned against the ILWU.

It must be remembered that at no time have the struck companies pleaded inability to pay. It should also be obvious to anybody capable of grammer [sic] school arithmetic that the money lost to the Territory during the over four months of this strike would for a good many years, more than pay the 32 cents an hour increase sought. Obviously, then, the question of money is not important in this connection to the employers.

The well heeled stevedoring firms are willing to suspend profits for a few months despite the hardship to the Territory if, by so doing, they can smash the union and force the longshoremen to work at any pittance offered. In the days to come, they would more than make up any loss temporarily sustained.

These are facts which the employers have tried to hide in the Territory but which are not unknown on the Mainland.

Senator Morse, who cannot possibly be called a Communist, has blasted their attitude several times on the floor of the Senate. I am positive that Cyrus Ching also knows what the score is.

I cannot believe the Big Five stevedoring firms will bulldoze the Mainland as they have the Territory. And yet, although the strikers have right on their side, there is no assurance that the might of vested interest and concentrated wealth will not prevail at New York. We can but wait and see.


September 15, 1949

Several weeks ago I pointed out that it was considered subversive in some quarters to fight against white supremacy, and that campaigning for peace was labelled "un-American." The advocates of peace and equality are termed "Communists" and every attempt is made to silence them. This is fascism, American style.

In Peekskill, N.Y., we recently had racism in action at the mob level. On Aug. 27, Paul Robeson was scheduled to sing for the benefit of the Harlem chapter of the Civil Rights Congress. A group of young white storm troopers, calling themselves the "Joint Veterans Council of Westchester County," and operating under Ku Klux Klan direction, announced they were going to stop Robeson from singing and cause trouble.

Although a lynching spirit was aroused against the great leader, not a single policeman or state trooper was on hand to maintain law and order. Scores who came to hear Robeson were brutally beaten and their cars overturned. Klan crosses were burned. Not one arrest has as yet been made. The mob of white veterans who planned the terror say they did so, according to the New York Times, "mindful of the fact that former Attorney General Tom Clark had labelled the Civil Rights Congress as a subversive organization." This was interpreted as government sanction for violence.

Commenting afterward on the riot, Robeson said:

"It's clear now who uses force and violence. Let it be equally clear who advocates its use.

"The money crowd pulls the strings, right up to the White House. President Truman talks a good game of civil rights, but that's just talk. He gives the lynchers the green light.

More than 100

Negroes have been lynched since he fell into FDR's shoes. For doing nothing about that, his attorney general was promoted to the supreme court.

Target Is Broad

"This was more than an attack on me. More than an attack on those who came to the picnic grounds. This was an attack oh the whole Negro people. This was an attack on the workers who haven't stopped fighting Taft-Hartley and for higher wages. This was supposed to scare the progressives who want peace.

"But we're going to give that concert, really give it. I'm going to sing in Peekskill."

And Paul went back to Peekskill, went back Sunday, Sept. 4. And some 30,000, heard him, despite the efforts of some 1,100 young storm troopers to breakup the meeting. But after the concert was over, and the people were on their way home, these Klan-directed veterans attacked individual cars, with the cooperation of the police, injuring some 200 persons. The only arrests were of the victims.

This was fascism, American style. It had the silent backing of Gov. Dewey, Republican presidential candidate a year ago, who promised protection but didn't deliver and who has made no effort to punish or remove from office the anti-Negro officials in Peekskill. It has the silent backing of President Truman, Democrat, whose loyalty order, witch-hunts and promotion of Tom Clark to the supreme court indicate his real attitude on civil rights.

On Friday, Sept. 9, the Star-Bulletin commented: ''The best thing to do about Robeson is to let him sing, let him talk let him lecture, Don't interfere with his rights. The he'll run out of topics for his stage speeches."

Not Mere "Propaganda"

Now, just what are the topics that the Peeks­kill storm troopers didn't want discussed and which the Star-Bulletin evidently considers propaganda?

The topics are these: Equality for Negroes and all other oppressed minorities, and an end to segregation, discrimination and jim crow. Since Negroes are identified almost exclusively with the working class, Robeson, is naturally for the rights of labor.

This is the platform on which Paul Robeson stands. This is the battle Negroes have fought throughout their long history in America; it will continue to be the fight of Negro Republicans, Democrats and Progressives until we win first class citizenship. Some 15,000,000 Negroes can tell the Star-Bulletin that lynching, terrorizing and jim crow are not mere "propaganda." Although Hawaii is far superior to the Mainland, nevertheless there is discrimination here, not only against Negroes but other non-haoles.

The afternoon daily also commented that the white veterans who tried to break up Robeson's concert "fought against some of the very things which Robeson, as a fervent admirer of the Soviet Union, is espousing today."

In Paul's own words, what he admires most about the Soviet Union is the abolition, by strict law, of racism and jim crow, the doctrine of equality regardless of color or race, and human dignity for all.

If that is what the New York veterans fought against, they were on the wrong side. So long as discrimination exists we of minority groups will have topics for stage speeches.

As for violence to silence militant Negroes, it hasn't worked yet. There have been over 5,000 lynchings of Negroes in America, but still we fight for justice.

There have been beatings, terrorizing and frameups by police, but still we battle for our rights. It will take more than storm troop attacks, aided by local authorities, to make the Negro people and other minorities succumb meekly to fascism. As a matter of fact, the Peeks­kill incident has had the opposite effect.

Not only in New York but throughout the Mainland, many whites and Negroes who have been sleeping through it all, have been aroused into angry wakefulness by this mob assault on Paul Robeson. May it light the torch that will destroy forever the mushrooming threat of fascism to your and my America.


September 22, 1949: Cold War In Church

Remember the name of the Rev. Dr. John Howard Melish, rector of the Church of the Holy Trinity, Episcopalian, in Brooklyn. If civilization survives the threat of World War III, future generations will remember Dr. Melish as one of the great martyrs of 1949 in the fight against the flood-tide of American fascism. Dr. Melish is a victim, on the religious front, of a Truman administration that talks like an anger and acts like the devil.

The cold war policies of the bi-partisans, administered by their thought control police, are aimed against such Negroes as Paul Robeson, who think American democracy could learn about race relations from Russia, against such labor leaders as Harry Bridges who oppose Taft-Hartley and the imperialistic Marshall plan, and against such pastors as Dr. Melish, who believe the Soviet Union and the U. S. can live peacefully in the same world.

This is pro-fascist ideology, pure and simple, but it is being peddled to the nation as democracy while the drive to wipe out the American tradition and constitutional guarantees of freedom of speech, thought and assembly becomes increasingly a major activity of the government.

But let's get back to Dr. Melish, 74, for 45 years rector of one of America's most famous churches. Last spring he was kicked out by his bishop. For what reason? Because he believed in applied Christianity, and because he and his son, the Rev. William Howard Melish, assistant rector, refused to join in the anti-Communist hysteria.

In his 45 year at Holy Trinity, Dr. Melish has acted on the belief that Christianity, to be truly effective by living up to its obligations, must pay attention to the world about it. He has fought for the common people. His son, imbued with the same vision, has carried on in the same fashion. During World War II, he took an interest in the displaced Nisei and helped establish a Japanese Hostel on Brooklyn Heights. As Negroes moved into the community, they were welcomed and the church today has a 15 per cent Negro membership.

Long before V-J Day, the Rev. Melish, with the blessings and advice of his ageing father, began working toward friendly postwar relations between the Soviet Union and the U.S. He saw that the future of the world would largely be shaped by how these two powerful wartime allies got along in peace. He, believed it was up to the Christian church to lead in this field. At that time the war department thought so highly of his efforts' that he was invited to speak to servicemen, averaging two such talks per week over a period of. four years.

In 1946 he became chairman of the National Council of American Soviet Friendship, shortly before the nation announced, in effect, that it was out to conquer the globe for Big Business by thrusting the Truman Doctrine into the international arena. He was also one of the committee of six clergymen and two laymen who visited Yugoslavia and returned to make a factual report giving the lie to the persecution propaganda surrounding the arrest and conviction of Archbishop Stepinac.

It was in the fall of 1947 that Tom Clark, who has since been elevated to the supreme court as a reward for his assassination of civil rights, issued his first list of "subversive" organizations. Included was the National Council of Soviet American Friendship, although it is non-political. This was the break long awaited by the vestrymen at Holy Trinity, a group of well-to-do Republicans who were opposed to the activities of the Melishes and didn't like the democratic membership of the church which cut across racial lines.

They used the Clark subversive list in the same way as did the New York stormtroopers against Paul Robeson at Peekskill- as justification for silencing progressives with federal sanction. Dr. Melish refused to bow to attacks and supported his son, who was asked to resign.

The members backed the Melishes, 10 to 1, but this made no impression on the vestry, who preferred charges with the bishop. Bishop DeWolfe, himself a mouthpiece for the war scare boys, backed the vestry and removed the Melishes. The angry parishioners voted out a majority of the vestry, who then went into court to sustain their actions under church law. They were upheld, but the case comes up next month on appeal, and if necessary, will go to a higher court. The progressive forces at Holy Trinity haven't been entirely licked yet.

It is significant that other noted religious leaders have rushed to the defense of the Melishes, among them Walter Russell Bowie of Union Theological Seminary, who says "the liberties of the whole church are threatened here," and Joseph F. Fletcher of Episcopal Theological School who asserts: "The ecclesiastical apparatus of the Diocese of Long Island has professionally lynched two ministers who entertain unpopular opinions." Bishop William Scarlett of Missouri, Truman's home state, has stated publicly: "In the church-at-large there is a multitude of men and women to whom Dr. Melish has become a symbol of all that is noblest and highest in the Christian ministry."

This, in brief, is the Melish case which has shocked the world It was front page news from Prance to Australia and hundreds of letters have been sent from all over the world to support the ousted clergymen. It has been a strong example of democracy at work in a nation which manufactures crocodile tears over the arrests of churchmen in Eastern Europe for treason against the new governments

It is a real challenge to the church. Basic is whether religion is to be kept free and made to serve mankind, or shackled and forced to become a body servant to the war plotters That's a question for all of us to answer.


September 29, 1949: Challenge to the Church

I cannot emphasize too strongly the significance of the two recent riots at Peekskill woven around the Paul Robeson appearances. Here was naked violence in the strictly Nazi pattern. Hitler could have led those New York stormtroopers and Goebbels could have written their propaganda. The danger is that these riots may establish a precedent and encourage other domestic fascists to similar activities unless curbed. As it was when Hitler rose to power, the rallying cry of the rioters was that this was "an attack on Communism."

Completely forgetting the lessons of Germany, many Americans have let themselves be taken in by this slick slogan, as if a fascist attack on Communism can be divorced from an attack on trade unions, liberals and minority groups. Under the guise of fighting Communism, some 6,000,000 Jews were murdered by the Nazis, organized labor was suppressed and civil liberties vanished.

As I write this, I have before me a number of eyewitness accounts, including news articles in the New York daily press. If the Peekskill riots were merely "an attack on Communism," why did the stormtroopers shout, "Lynch the niggers," "Nigger lovers," "Kikes! String 'em up!" and "Kill the Jew bastards"?

I have also a published photograph. It is a portrait of fascism in action. It shows a man being assaulted by uniformed police, state troopers and a stormtrooper in plain clothes. All are swinging clubs, their faces filled with hate. The object of their fiendish assault is black. His name is Eugene Ballard, first U.S. Negro pilot in World War II, decorated five times for bravery. He is being beaten because, when a stormtrooper hurled a racial epithet and spat at him, Ballard spat back. And I have a copy of a letter from Benjamin D. Shaw, noted New York churchman, written immediately afterward and addressed to "the clergy of Peekskill and its environs." He saw the riot with his own eyes and, he says, in part:

"I saw the spirit of Hitler grinning victoriously in the faces of the young, the middle-aged, and the older Americans. I heard the voice of Hitler sounding in the throats of my fellow citizens. I saw him desecrate the American uniform by wearing it on the highways of Peekskill. And the sight made me sick and mad and humble. Humble, thinking how, you, and you, and you, and I have failed our country and our God. What I saw and heard a week ago Saturday night and again this past Sunday night at Peekskill was incontrovertible proof of our failure.

"Do you recall that Godly priest, dear brethren, whom Pierre Van Passen tells about? He arrived in Heaven and the Lord asked him to render an account of his flock. Said the good Father, 'Lord, they were not a flock of sheep; they were a pack of wolves!'

"On your Judgment Day, when the Lord will ask you for an account of your stewardship, will you have to say, 'Lord, they were a pack of wolves'? If God will then ask you, 'My son, did, you do all you could to humanize these wolves, to Christianize them, to teach them My Way?' will your answer be, 'Lord I was too busy Redbaiting, consorting with the money-changers in the Temples of Peekskill, and mouthing platitudes about the Sermon on the Mount before the Chamber of Commerce. I had no time to teach Thy Torah to Thy Children'." Continuing, he says:

"The Christian churches, and the Catholic church in particular, are making a grievous error in their shortsighted belief that the major enemy of Christianity is Communism. What are the facts?

"Think of the infamous Ludendorffs, especially Mathilde, and the series of anti-Christian, anti-Catholic works which they published in fascist Germany. Russia has not yet produced a Ludendorff! Think of the Rosenbergs and the other fascist ideologists, and their efforts to revive paganism, the cult of Wotan, in Nazi Germany. To date, Soviet Russia has not called for a return to the anti-Christian paganism from which you were rescued by the teachings of Jesus.

"Whatever your differences and mine may be with Soviet Russia, we must recognize the difference between the Communist attack on religion and the fascist attack. The Communist attack is intellectual, philosophical, critical and harmless, practically speaking. The fascist attack on religion is emotional, uncritical, satanic and fraught with evil consequence. You do not agree with me. No matter. You say it is six of one hand and half-a-dozen of the other. Very well. But why then, have you devoted your time and your energies in attacking the six and not the half-a-dozen? Did the Pope at the height of the period of Nazi atrocities, ex-communicate the followers of Hitler?

"Be that as it may, remember that in Peekskill, Russia was not on trial nor was Robeson on trial. You and I and the American Way of Life and the Christian" faith were on trial. I wish every minister, every churchman, every Christian could read the entire statement. Copies can be obtained by writing to Benjamin D. Shaw, 80 East 10th St., New York 3, N. Y. For if fascism is to be defeated and democracy made a living reality, the church must play a leading role.

I might add that the Peekskill incidents are merely the logical extension, on the domestic front, of the cold war policies of Truman and the bi-partisans. Unless all of us Americans demand that our government return to the founding principles of the United Nations and abandon our brink-of-war program, Peekskill will be only the beginning.


September 29, 1949: Atom Bombs and Peace

I think we have reached the point where the big question, the key question, the question which the thought control boys have decided is the test for "loyalty," has become merely so much empty rhetoric.

Specifically, I refer to the many variations of this basic question: "Would you fight for the United States in the event of a war with Russia?"

I say this is so much rhetoric, so many wasted words, because if there is a war between America and the Soviet Union, I, for one, will take a last fond glance at this beautiful world of ours and prepare to bid it goodbye forever. Not even life in Timbuktu could survive World War III.

This has been removed from the realm of speculation to the real­ity of grim fact with the recent and reluctant admission by President Truman that the Soviets have the atom bomb. This means, simply, that an A-bomb cannot be dropped on Moscow or Siberia without expecting a return of the compliment at Washington, D. C., or California.

I phrase it this way because the only talk I have heard of using such bombs came from high officials of the American Legion, former U. S. ambassadors and other top-ranking politicians. If there has been similar talk in the Kremlin, our espionage agents have not mentioned it in the daily press. Instead, the men of Moscow speak of peace—something which is officially interpreted by the White House as a "Communist plot."

Thus it comes to pass that the "atom bomb Russia now" boys have missed their chance. They were unable to get popular backing among the people of America for such an adventure when it could have been done without fear of retaliation. And during the period in which hysteria against the Soviets was being manufactured, the Soviets have gotten the know-how of making this spectacular weapon. It seems that uranium and plutonium refuse to play politics; given the proper mechanism, they will explode as willingly for Communists as for anti-Communists. The Russian explosions not only blew apart the atom; they blew apart any idea our warmongers had of a quick and easy victory over the Soviets. Time has run out.

Even the most rabid of the hate-Russia crowd should at last be able to see that a war, with both sides dropping atom bombs, would be mass suicide. It puts things in a different light when your own estate and manufacturing plants might go up in smoke.

As for me, I am not contemplating suicide, I refuse to consider war. I am interested only in peace, peace and more peace. We must find the key to peace or we will not survive.

But it must be a peace born of trust and respect, not one of fear and suspicion. Modern science has made the world into a small neighborhood. In one house lives the American family; next door are the Russians. Disagreements have arisen, as will happen between neighbors. But instead of meeting the problem squarely and solving it, a feud has developed. There is peace, yes, but there is no longer the easy feeling of friendship. There are the coldly bitter looks of hostility; guns are polished and loaded in front of open windows. The neighbors who a few short years ago slapped each other across the back as they planned together how they could rid the community of three gangsters, now sit tense and suspicious. In such an atmosphere even the most innocent act could set the neighbors at each other's throats.

I do not care to live in this nerve-wracking way. It would be bad enough if both sides had only the weapons they used to defeat Hitler; the new devices for wholesale killing have made the end of civilization the price of war.

Spectacular as the atom bomb may be, we are now told by military experts that this terrible new contrivance today ranks but fourth on the present list of weapons. Scientists have worked hard and successfully at the technique of bacteriological warfare; no nation needs a stockpile of precious uranium to unleash this horror.

And so I am for peace out of the selfish desire for self-preservation. I have no yearning to be among those wiped out in a war which nobody could win. I don't think my name would add one bit of distinction to a casualty list—if there were anybody left to read it.

But I am also for a peace with trust and respect and dignity. This we cannot have so long as there is preparation for war. When you strut around with a loaded revolver, you often run into trouble that otherwise could be avoided. I want the kind of peace which will find all the peoples of the earth, no matter what their color, religion or political faith, sitting down together with complete equality and friendship. That means self-government for the millions held in colonial slavery, for there can be neither trust nor equality when part of the world must bow to the lash and gun of imperialism. That is what we thought we had in the making when the United Nations was formed. Since then we have gone a long way back down the road to international barbarism. But if the globe is to survive we've got to do an about-face and demand that all of the member nations live up to the spirit and the letter of the UN charter. Basically, it's our job, yours and mine. By petition, by letter, by voice, we can insist, you and I, that the UN be strengthened and become the spearhead for peace instead of a sounding board for propaganda by rival political and economic blocs. Or don't you want to live?


October 6, 1949 : Atom Bombs and Peace

I think we have reached the point where the big question, the key question, the question which the thought control boys have decided is the test for "loyalty," has become merely so much empty rhetoric.

Specifically, I refer to the many variations of this basic question: "Would you fight for the United States in the event of a war with Russia?"

I say this is so much rhetoric, so many wasted words, because if there is a war between America and the Soviet Union, I, for one, will take a last fond glance at this beautiful world of ours and prepare to bid it goodbye forever. Not even life in Timbuktu could survive World War III.

This has been removed from the realm of speculation to the reality of grim fact with the recent and reluctant admission by President Truman that the Soviets have the atom bomb. This means, simply, that an A-bomb cannot be dropped on Moscow or Siberia without expecting a return of the compliment at Washington, D. C., or California.

I phrase it this way because the only talk I have heard of using such bombs came from high officials of the American Legion, former U. S. ambassadors and other top-ranking politicians. If there has been similar talk in the Kremlin, our espionage agents have not men­tioned it in the daily press. Instead, the men of Moscow speak of peace—something which is officially interpreted by the White House as a "Communist plot."

Thus it comes to pass that the "atom bomb Russia now" boys have missed their chance. They were unable to get popular backing among the people of America for such an adventure when it could have been done without fear of retaliation. And during the period in which hysteria against the Soviets was being manufactured, the Soviets have gotten the know-how of making this spectacular weapon. It seems that uranium and plutonium refuse to play politics; given the proper mechanism, they will explode as willingly for Communists as for anti-Communists. The Russian explosions not only blew apart the atom; they blew apart any idea our warmongers had of a quick and easy victory over the Soviets. Time has run out. '

Even the most rabid of the hate-Russia crowd should at last be able to see that a war, with both sides dropping atom bombs, would be mass suicide. It puts things in a different light when your own estate and manufacturing plants might go up in smoke.

As for me, I am not contemplating suicide, I refuse to consider war.  I am interested only in peace, peace and more peace. We must find the key to peace or we will not survive.

But it must be a peace born of trust and respect, not one of fear and suspicion. Modern science has made the world into a small neighborhood. In one house lives the American family; next door are the Russians. Disagreements have arisen, as will happen between neighbors. But instead of meeting the problem squarely and solving it, a feud has developed. There is peace, yes, but there is no longer the easy feeling of friendship. There are the coldly bitter looks of hostility; guns are polished and loaded in front of open windows. The neighbors who a few short years ago slapped each other across the back as they planned together how they could rid the community of three gangsters, now sit tense and suspicious. In such an atmosphere even the most innocent act could set the neighbors at each other's throats.

I do not care to live in this nerve-wracking way. It would be bad enough if both sides had only the weapons they used to defeat Hitler; the new devices for wholesale killing have made the end of civilization the price of war.

Spectacular as the atom bomb may be, we are now told by military experts that this terrible new contrivance today ranks but fourth on the present list of weapons. Scientists have worked hard and successfully at the technique of bacteriological warfare; no nation needs a stockpile of precious uranium to unleash this horror.

And so I am for peace out of the selfish desire for self-preservation. I have no yearning to be among those wiped out in a war which nobody could win. I don't think my name would add one bit of distinction to a casualty list—if there were anybody left to read it.

But I am also for a peace with trust and respect and dignity. This we cannot have so long as there is preparation for war. When you strut around with a loaded revolver, you often run into trouble that otherwise could be avoided. I want the kind of peace which will find all the peoples of the earth, no matter what their color, religion or political faith, sitting down together with complete equality and friendship.  That means self-government for the millions held in colonial slavery, for there can be neither trust nor equality when part of the world must bow to the lash and gun of imperialism. That is what we thought we had in the making when the United Nations was formed. Since then we have gone a long way back down the road to international barbarism. But if the globe is to survive we've got to do an about-face and demand that all of the member nations live up to the spirit and the letter of the UN charter. Basically, it's our job, yours and mine. By petition, by letter, by voice, we can insist, you and I, that the UN be strengthened and become the  spearhead for peace instead of a  sounding board for  propaganda by rival political and economic blocs. Or don't you want to live?


October 13, 1949: Longshoremen and CIO Unity

There can be no doubt that the stevedores won a significant victory in the waterfront strike. They have gone a long way toward parity with the West Coast. The union is intact and has not been broken. They have also paved the way for joint action with coast longshoremen when their contract runs out in 1951.

But important as this victory is, I can't help wondering how much greater it might have been had  there been the kind of unity within CIO ranks that  existed from the beginning in 1935 up until the decision of the dominating CIO leadership to tie  itself to the coattails of Big Business, serious disagreement between  the ILWU and the Phil Murray gang fell like an ominous  shadow over the long strike. There was no support from the top CIO brass as Harry Bridges' men fought for their trade union life in Hawaii.  This was understood by the employers' front organizations who invited Murray here in the hopes of weakening the strike and isolating the ILWU from the main CIO body. The possibility that the union might be kicked out at the coming CIO national convention undoubtedly influenced their thinking.

The federal indictment of Bridges and two other top ILWU officials was  so timed as to have propaganda value against the strike leaders.  Key witnesses against Bridges in the U. S. grand jury investigation leading to the indictments was certain right-wing CIO leaders in California who, in the day of CIO unity, would not have dreamed of taking this kind of action against a brother.  But with this labor reflection of the international cold war, it was just and proper.

The longshore victory, therefore, was primarily an ILWU victory rather than one for the entire CIO. The stevedores had  to depend virtually upon themselves and what support they could get from other directly interested and friendly internationals, instead of the powerful official family headed by Phil Murray. In view of this situation, the ILWU success is even more outstanding.

At the same time, I believe the Hawaiian victory cannot help but have a deep psychological effect upon the rank-and-file of the great right-wing unions. Here is a left-wing outfit that would be satisfied with nothing less than a substantial raise in wages for its members. The big right-wing unions, on the other hand, have demonstrated a willingness--almost an eagerness to settle for less even in the face of the popular demands for more pay.

For instance, take Steel, Murray's own organization, which recently went on strike. Back in June, when negotiations began, the union demanded a 30-cent package of increases of which 12 1/2 cents would be in wages and the rest in pensions and insurance. The companies refused. A strike deadline was set with great reluctance by Murray. President Truman got him out of a jam with a 60-day truce and a fact-finding board. Phil was so happy he agreed even before the board members were announced.

What the board recommended was a far cry from Murray's original demands. There would be no wage raise. Insurance plans were to be paid by the companies but would cost no more than four cents per man per hour with a revision of pension-plans next year with a ceiling of six cents. Actually, some companies already were paying four cents an hour in insurance plans—which meant the workers would gain nothing now and only a problematical pension scheme in 1950.

But the giants of the steel industry turned even this plan down. The workers were so incensed that wildcat strikes developed. The national walkout was set for Sept. 25 and then.

Oct. 1. Pressured by aroused rank-and-file, Murray reluctantly called out the boys Oct. 1—not to strike for a wage increase, but for a pension plan which will mean little by itself to large numbers of union members. To such depths has the bankrupt top CIO leadership fallen through its support of the cold war.

It was Henry Wallace who on Feb. 24, 1948, in testifying against the Marshall plan, warned that the cold war "would require a wage freeze." The top CIO leadership supports the Marshall plan. And had you noticed that not a single right-wing CIO union has fought for wage increases? Steel, which sets the pace for labor, Auto, and Textile unions have pressed for pensions instead of wages. On the other hand, the left-wing unions, now in disfavor with the Murray boys have continued to fight for higher wages. United Electrical and Radio workers have won pay increases, pensions, insurance and health benefits in 300 shops already this year. Mine, Mill and Smelter has won pay hikes. And, of course, here in Hawaii there is the ILWU. This shows that higher pay can be attained. The workers have a right to more money in a day of stratospheric profits and high prices. When the Rubber Workers president tried to follow the Murray-Reuther-Rieve line of not fighting for higher wages, the rank-and-file kicked him out.

The realization is coming to increasing numbers of CIO members that you can't play the bosses' game and at the same time advance the cause of laboring people. The unions that have opposed the Big Business-dictated Marshall plan and Atlantic pact are going right ahead winning more pay for workers. How long the bankrupt right-wing leaders can maintain their power in the face of victories such as those achieved by left-wing CIO internationals is an important question.

If  the  left-wing CIO can win a better deal for  its membership while at  the same time being forced to dissipate its energies battling  the CIO right-wing,  it is pretty obvious  that a united CIO would have  the strength to gain even more for working people, not only on the Mainland but in Hawaii. This, to me, is just plain common sense.

The closed shop dates back to 1794, when the shoemakers of Philadelphia compelled employers to hire only union members.


October 20, 1949: Who'll Get it Next?

It could be that in 1951, at the expiration of the extended waterfront contract, the ILWU leaders will be tried and convicted for attempting to disturb the status quo by demanding a wage raise and better working conditions, and their lawyers sentenced for having the audacity to defend them. Or maybe next year, or the year after, a Japanese or a Filipino alien will be indicted, tried and convicted for disruptive activities by asking for citizenship, and their attorneys sent to jail for the shocking crime of defending them in open court.

Or maybe next year, or the year after, I, as a Negro, will be arrested, tried and convicted of challenging the popular practice of jim crow and segregation and my defense counsel imprisoned for the illegal offense of representing me at the bar of justice.

That, it seems to me, is the threat that hangs over most of us if the conviction of the 11 Communist leaders and the sentencing of their lawyers for contempt is allowed to stand.

The lengthy New York trial has established two dangerous precedents that could doom American democracy. For the first time in our nation's history, men have been convicted in a federal court for unpopular thoughts, not because of any actual act. The second precedent is that of convicting the law­yer along with the client.

Finding the 11 Communist leaders guilty was expected. No one who followed the course of the trial as reported in the Mainland press, both White and Negro, and read of the court's prejudice toward and hamstringing of the defense could reasonably believe otherwise. The shocking surprise was in the sentencing of counsel for the defense.

This astounding action on the part of Fed­eral Judge Medina is a bold attempt to intimidate the entire legal profession. It is intended to have the effect of frightening lawyers away from defending those whose beliefs are unpopular with whoever happens to be in power, or else to permit only a token defense under threat of punishment if counsels represent their clients to the limit of their abiliy [sic].

I am curious as to how this new conception of the rights of lawyers will be received by the American bar. Will the nation's anti-Communist hys­teria make attorneys willing to accept this limiting straitjacket? Or will the legal profession fight for its traditional right to gather fees from defending those clients with whom its members do not necessarily agree? In Dixie, Negroes who fight back against op­pression are as unpopular as Communists throughout America today. The records show hundreds of cases in which brown citizens were convicted with either no lawyers or only token court-appointed defense counsel, because the white supremacy attitude of the community made an adequate de­fense of Negroes hazardous to the career of any attorney Judge Medina's action gives aid and comfort to this practice.

Let us remember that in the eyes of American reaction, any attempt on the part of the have-nots to get a better break is "Communist-inspired." The longshore strike here in Hawaii for higher wages was "a Moscow plot.'' Congressmen have called the fight for civil rights laws, equal employment opportunities, abolition of the poll tax, etc., "communism." They are the ones who cheered loudest at Judge Medina's action.

And now, having gotten convictions of the 11 top Communist leaders for unpopular thoughts, and having already labelled all moves for any change in the status quo of discrimination, bad housing, inadequate health protection and rising unemployment as "Communistic," the stage has been set for cracking down on those who disagree with John, Rankin, William Randolph Hearst and the National Association of Manufacturers

That is why the New York convictions carry a threat to all working people who want a raise and to members of all minority groups who want equality. To believe that they were merely after Com­munists is to play directly into the hands of the enemies of democracy who are prepared to estab­lish fascism to maintain the status quo.

It is not necessary to be a Communist to understand the implications of the mess in New York. Aside from the attack on all liberal and progressive thought inherent in the convictions, I, as a Negro and therefore at victim of lifelong oppression, can feel deep sympathy for any minority group that gets kicked around by those on top.

Although I am no Catholic, I felt a strong bond of sympathy for the Catholic minority in those days when it was popular to kick them around, and deeply resented the fight against Presidential Candidate Al Smith in 1928 on a religious basis. I knew that the people who kicked around Catholics were the same people who kicked around Negroes. I have felt a deep kinship with the Jewish minority, both in Nazi Germany and here in America, for my people too, have felt the horror of pogroms and mass murder.

More than 5,000 Negroes have been lynched in the U. S. and tens of thousands more legally murdered for the crime of being black.

When the West Coast Nisei and alien Japanese were bundled into concentration camps my heart burned at the outrage. If government officials could get by with this high-handed procedure against one people who were physically different from the majority, then they could do the same thing to another ethnically different minority when they felt like it.

In the longshore strike, I felt close to the ILWU which had been isolated through propaganda as a minority "acting contrary to the best interests of the majority in the Territory." I have heard "that cry raised against Negroes who wanted equality.

And so now I feel strong sympathy for the Communist minority who are being oppressed for their political beliefs. I don't like to see little people getting kicked around by the big guys on top. This is what I shall always fight against.


October 27, 1949: Mixed Marriages

I see by the Star-Bulletin that a former Honolulu youth ran into difficulties when he wanted to marry the girl of his choice in Springfield, Mo.

The trouble arose because the young man, Henry Inouye, Jr., a war veteran, is a Nisei, and his fiancee is white. The home state of President Truman, who has democracy for export through­out the world, has a law barring "mixed" marriages.

Nevertheless, the ceremony came off, although at first there was talk of the couple going outside Missouri to get a license.

It was held because a lawyer came up with the advice, according to the Star-Bulletin, that a Supreme Court ruling in a 1925 California test case cleared mixed marriages between American citi­zens. This was understood to "supersede state laws barring mixed marriages."

Since it worked, there's no harm in revealing that the lawyer's advice was pure fiction. The U. S. Supreme Court has yet to make a ruling on the matter. What did happen was that the California Supreme Court last year, in the case of Perez vs. Lippold, by a four to three decision, declared unconstitutional the California law against intermarriage.

This may come as a surprise to the people of Hawaii, where intermarriage is taken as a matter of course, but there are still 29 states of the 48 where mixed marriages are banned by law. Some of these bar only Negro-Caucasian marriages, but 14 also specifically prohibit unions between Orientals and Caucasians.

Here are the 14, and those who are barred from marrying white persons:

ARIZONA: Negroes, Mongolians, Malayans, Hindus, Indians.GEORGIA: Negroes, Indians, Malayans, Mon­golians, Asiatic Indians, West Indians or Mulattoes. IDAHO: Mongolians, Negroes or Mulattoes MARYLAND: Negroes, Malayans.MISSISSIPPI: Negroes, Mulattoes or Mongolians. Any person having "one-eighth or more Negro or Mongolian blood."
MISSOURI: Negroes, Mongolians. MONTANA: Negroes, Chinese, Japanese. NEBRASKA: Persons possessed of one-eighth or more Negro, Japanese or Chinese blood."
NEVADA: "Any person of Ethiopian or black race; Malay or brown race, or Mongolian or yellow race." OREGON: Negro or Mongolian, "or anybody having one-fourth or more of Negro or Mongolian blood."
SOUTH DAKOTA: "Members of the African, Korean, Malayan or Mongolian races." UTAH: Negroes, Mongolians, Malayans.
VIRGINIA: "Any colored person." WYOMING: Negroes, Malayans, Mongolians.

The 15 states which merely ban Negro-Caucasian marriages are: Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South' Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia. Nine others had similar laws but repealed them between 1840 and 1887.

The basis for these laws, which helped give Hitler his Nazi ideas, was the belief in the "inferiority" of non-whites. Although these statutes were passed prior to the findings of scientists that there are no "superior" races, they have been upheld in court as legal and the penalty of imprisonment for violation was meted out prior to last year's California decision.

The California Supreme Court based its finding on the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment, declaring that legislation stratifying people by race warrants "not a presumption of validity, but rather the closest scrutiny."

Some day undoubtedly, the matter will be taken to the U. S. Supreme Court and the nine justices will have a chance to decide whether these fascist laws will continue to exist or whether our nation will take a step closer toward the democracy in which we profess to believe.

These statutes prohibiting marriage between humans who happen to be of different colors are hardly a selling point for American world leadership when most of the people on the face of the globe are colored and therefore considered inferior by law, to white persons.

It is interesting to note that in Los Angeles County since the was was [sic] voided a year ago, there have been 80 mixed marriages. In this period, 23 Negro men, 20 Filipinos, nine Chinese, seven Malayans and four Japanese took out licenses to wed 63 haole women. At the same time, 17 white men got licenses to marry eight Japanese women, five Negroes, two Chinese, one Malayan and one Filipino.

And the sovereign state of California has been visited by no major calamity as a result.


November 3, 1949: Mississippi and Hawaii

Certain ideas' expressed on these shores Indicate that to some persons, Hawaii is next door spiritually to Mississippi although physically separated by several thousand miles.

I refer at this time to the charge, made by enemies of the RECORD, that this newspaper "foments race hatred" and "stirs up trouble between the races."

I say this shows spiritual kinship with Mississippi thinking because Congressman John Rankin and the other loud and vocal champions of white supremacy shout the same charges to high heaven at the mildest proposal to hasten equality for all Americans.

It was the line taken at the first proposal to equalize teachers' salaries, to increase educational facilities for Negroes, to establish a federal fair employment practices committee and to pass a law abolishing the poll tax.

"All you want to do is stir up trouble," Rankin has raved on more than one occasion. "We get along fine in the South. Why, we wouldn't have any trouble if it wasn't for you Northern agitators putting social equality ideas in our colored folk's heads."

What the Rankinites mean is that the condition which permits one person to keep his foot on another's neck because of color is quite peaceful—so long as the guy underneath doesn't try to remove that foot so he can stand upright.

It's like holding a man bound, gagged arid chained to the wall. Obviously, there is a peaceful relationship between captor and captive. Naturally, there is no trouble. The captor hasn't a worry in the world. But when the captive, through his own efforts or with the aid of somebody else, strains his bonds and shows signs of becoming free, then trouble looms. And the captor becomes quite uneasy over the impending disturbance to the previous tranquil relationship.

That's the Mississippi psychology which crops up among some people in Hawaii. For there is discrimination here, not so open or vicious as that of Dixie, but just as real. And those who kick about exposing the evil facts of racism are its perpetrators or cowed victims.

An evil doesn't disappear merely because you close your eyes or hide your head. Stupendous is the number of tail feathers lost that way by ostriches. This newspaper is no ostrich.

The truth is that the trouble was already stirred up before it was recorded in this newspaper. Like other truthful and conscientious publications, the RECORD doesn't create racist incidents, it merely tells about them after they happen.

However, there is one sure way of eliminating such articles, and that is by eliminating such incidents; For instance, when there are no longer restricted residential areas, or no wage differentials, or top jobs from which Orientals are barred, or public places which refuse service to prospective patrons on no basis other than that of color, or police brutality on Smith St., then there will be no more newspaper stories of this nature.

I'd much rather have it that way. It's another black eye against our democracy that such things exist—and, existing, must be exposed and fought until they are brought to an end.

Wolf Guards the Sheep

If there was any doubt still left as to the Truman sell-out on civil rights, one of the key issues which brought his re-election a year ago, it was completely dispelled with the appointment of Sen. James Eastland of Mississippi as chairman of the Senate judiciary subcommittee on civil rights. It was like loosing a hungry wolf to stand guard over a herd of plump sheep.

For Eastland is cast in the same white supremacy mold as Rankin and the late Theo. Bilbo. There were times when there seemed to be a contest between this trio as to which could spew hate loudest and longest against labor unions, minority groups and the foreign born. Eastland is every inch a Dixiecrat. The Dixiecrats played a most entrancing game last year with Truman. They went through the motion of forming their own party and staging a heated campaign against Truman because of his civil rights program.

This permitted the President to wear the trappings of a martyr for the Negro's cause and thus win black votes in crucial Northern states. As you know, we still have no federal civil rights legislation giving equality to all. When bills were introduced early in this session of congress, the President proved his sincerity by going down to Florida to fish. The fact that he was on hand in Washington to personally direct and get Dixiecrat support for the Atlantic pact which insures continued slavery for colonials has not gone unobserved.

The Eastland appointment—an insult to all Americans who believe in genuine democracy— came shortly after the administration announced it was shelving the whole civil rights pro­gram for the time being. The Mississippian, of course, is in a position to see that it stays shelved.

Apparently we have snipped so much democracy to the rest of the world that we have none left for home consumption.


November 10, 1949: End of Era

There are few persons identified with the Amer­ican labor movement who, five years ago, would have believed that by 1949 the top leadership of the CIO would have formed a partnership with reaction.

The national convention at Cleveland puts a period at the end of a cycle. The ancient relics who control the AFL nationally can now dodder to one side and make room for the decrepit Murray crowd.

This increasing shift to the right, which reached its climax last week at Cleveland, was not merely an attack on left-wing unions. 

For as the top leadership became more and more occupied with Red baiting, it at the same time became less and less occu­pied with the special problems of minority groups. 

It is not mere co­incidence that the strongest fights waged today against discrimination are waged by the unions which are in the process of being expelled by the parent body.

As a Negro, I have a personal stake in the trade union campaigns for the complete equality of all Americans. The colored peoples of Hawaii have problems similar to those facing Negroes, Jews, Mexican Americans and the foreign-born on the Mainland.

Back in the days when the AFL dominated the labor scene, Negroes as a group were anti-union. This was due to the simple fact that most "brotherhoods" either barred Negroes com­pletely or isolated them in jim crow locals.

Closed shops generally meant that no Negroes could be employed. It was only during the time of strikes or lockouts that Negroes could get jobs in any appreciable numbers in industry. This playing of one group of workers against the other was detrimental to both.

That is the way it was when the CIO was born back in 1935. 

Negroes, burned by bitter experience, looked upon this new movement" with cynicism. But it wasn't long before colored America realized that CIO leaders meant what they said about forming a union for all workers. Instead of jim crow locals, there was integration. 

Black men were elected as officers even when white members were in a majority. The CIO stepped into the forefront of the assault against segregation. 

This new militancy was in keeping with the bold policies and spirit of President Roosevelt who proudly boasted that he was left of center." Negroes gave the CIO their wholehearted support and took the lead in strikes and on the picket lines. This new alliance was the chief reason why industry could not bust the unions after World War II as they had done following World War I.

But this active championing of the Negro's cause has steadily declined as a national CIO policy for four years. It is a matter of record that few of the right-wing unions fought to retain jobs for Negroes in the employment cutbacks after V-J Day. There has been recently little more than token CIO support for civil rights--the same kind of token support given by Truman.

I recall that during the war the National Maritime Union, headed by Joe Curran, was considered the leftest of the left. At the same time, it was lauded by Negroes and other minorities everywhere for its uncompromising fight against jim crow. Today the NMU has gone about as far to the right as a union can go--and you no longer hear its praises sung by minority groups. Less than two years ago the national convention of the powerful right-wing Textile Workers, headed by Emil Rieve, tabled a strong resolution supporting civil rights. Negro leaders condemned the Atlantic Pact because it backs up colonial slavery for millions of Africans and Asiatics. The left-wing CIO unions also opposed the Atlantic Pact. But the top CIO leadership backed it. 

This failure to fight for minority rights logically follows an alliance with a program for keeping subject peoples enslaved.

In Washington, the United Public Workers, also facing the wrath of the CIO right-wing, has been leading a determined fight against the white employment policies of the federal bureau of engrav­ing and printing. The CIO also has a National Committee Against Discrimination with headquarters in the capital. This right-wing committee has entered the fight—but against the UPW efforts to break down discrimination! 

Much fanfare attended launching of the CIO southern organization drive. Here was a marvelous chance to smash the whole pattern of Dixie racism. But the right-wing was in control.

Its organizers were so busy proving they were anti-Communist that they even bowed to jim crow, in complete violation of traditional CIO principles.

I was not surprised, therefore, when it was an nounced by George Baldanzi, campaign director, that its "Op­eration Dixie" had pulled out of the states of Arkansas, Mississippi, Louisiana and Florida.

I can't help wonder what would have happened in the recent longshore strike had one of Murray's boys been in control of the ILWU. But judging from the pattern set by steel, auto and other right-wing unions, it is doubtful if there would have been a strike for such a silly thing as wage increases.

And so the CIO completes its era. Its top leaders, who once looked with scorn upon the feeble old men heading the AFL, now differ from the Green crowd only by name. The champion of minority groups, our ally in the struggle for real democracy, has hung up its sword and shield. Where do we go from here?

Demos Ask for Loan Publicity

Resolutions asking that the desperate unemployment situation of Hawaii be publicized on the Mainland and that the facilities of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation be publicized in Hawaii were seconded by the Oahu Democratic Committee at its meeting last Thursday, after having been presented to the committee by the Democratic Club in the 37th of the 4th.

The resolution regarding unemployment and the desperate economic plight of people in the Territory especially named Columnists Drew Pearson and Walter Winchell, suggesting that they be used as publicizing media.

The second, regarding the RFC, noted that, though many businessmen here are in need of loans they cannot secure from the banks, they do not know of the facilities of the RFC which would make loans available to many such applicants.


November 17, 1949: Test of Democracy

As I have often stated, the treatment of Negroes is the test of American democracy. It determines the acceptability by the rest of the world of the way of life we are insisting that other nations choose instead of communism.

Despite divisive propaganda calculated to keep groups apart—a technique that has had considerable success in Hawaii— the leaders of the colored peoples of the world know

that the national attitude towards Negroes differs little from the national attitude toward all non-white persons. Even Western Europe has pointed to the second-class status of Negroes and has declared that if this is the kind of democracy Uncle Sam wants these countries to take, they will have none of it.

The seriousness of this matter was again emphasized recently in Philadelphia by, Walter White, executive secretary of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, who was in Honolulu a few weeks ago as a member of the world touring party of the Town Meeting of the Air.

White pulled no punches as he spoke at the cooperative committee dinner of the Community Chest of Philadelphia, held at the Bellevue-Stratford hotel. Blasting our "soft policy" toward bigotry at home while trying to spread the doctrine of democracy abroad, he cited instances in Cairo, Istanbul, New Delhi and Pakistan where the natives spoke openly of the Negro's inferior treatment In the United States in contrast with the preached policy of equality.

While the group circled the globe in the role of salesmen for democracy, members picked up newspapers and read embarrassing stories of the burning of Negro homes in Birmingham, the bombing of a residence in Chicago, of the terror visited upon the entire black belt of a city in Florida, and of beatings and killings by the KKK and mobs in Dixie.

In Cairo, Egypt, White said he was told that young men are going to advanced schools in the sciences and technologies in Russia and England because they fear ill-treatment in America due to the dark color of their skins.

Jawarahal Nehru, now looked upon as the hope of America and Western Europe to keep Asia from going completely Communist, told White personally, that it was a hard job to keep his people from sympathizing with the Russians News of discrimination and jim crow is played up prominently in the Indian press. It is difficult, therefore, to convince the millions of Indian people that U. S. democracy, with its color preju­dice is superior to the Soviet system where racism is a serious crime.

"The darker races of the earth, who comprise three-fourths of the world's population, are keenly aware of the racial conditions here, despite our money and our preaching," White warned. "If America does not change her ways, she will find herself isolated from all the world with her own brand of democracy to cherish."

But bigotry continues. In Washington, all the members of the touring seminar gathered three weeks ago at the Carlton hotel, where dinner reservations had been made. Along with Walter White, there was another Negro who circled the globe with the Town Meeting—Mrs. Edith Sampson, one of the nation's most accomplished lawyers, who also stopped in Honolulu.

When the group showed up at the Carlton, the management refused to serve Mrs. Sampson, stating it was the hotel's policy to bar Negroes and there was no intention of changing this policy Walter White, incidentally, is blonde and blue-eyed and actually fairer in coloring than most "white" men. Mrs. Sampson is dark brown.

And so, after receiving courteous treatment in all those nations to which we are trying to peddle our democracy, Mrs. Sampson comes home to the national capital, where we prepare this democracy for export, arid runs into unrelenting jim crow. These are the actions which cancel out our words. How can we convince the world that our system means justice and equality when we can't stop discrimination and white supremacy in Washington?

I doubt that Nehru has been sold despite his official visit to the U. S. at the invitation of the White House. It is a matter of record that no Negroes were invited to the official State Department functions held during his first days in Wash­ington. It was not until Madame Pandit, his sister, gave a reception that he met any Negroes in the capital.

The visiting newsmen who came with him from India were disgusted. They told members of the Negro press, who attended the Madame Pandit reception that they particularly wanted to talk with Negro leaders over the workings of American democracy. And the man they wanted most of all to see was— Paul Robeson.

Informed that Robeson had appeared at a Negro Freedom Rally in Washington the previous night before a crowd that flowed out into the street, they expressed keen resentment at not being told he was in town, and resolved to arrange somehow to see him before returning home.

It looks to me as if the only persons being fooled by our high-sounding talk about a democracy that exists only on paper are some Americans.

Over half the patients in all American hospitals in 1948 (600,000) were being treated for mental disorders.—The Nation's Health (Report to the President, September, 1948)

Book-Burning In the U.S.A.

Citizens of Scarsdale, N. Y. want to keep all books by "radicals" out of reach of school children. They would judge the author as well as his works; if Mother Goose ever said a harsh word about American Business, nursery rhymes would be banned. This is how close Scarsdale has come to Nazi book-burning and Japanese thought control. Educators and churchmen in many areas are trying in similar fashion to suppress free thought.—Textile Labor, CIO.


November 24, 1949: Reaction’s Increasing Hunger

You cannot compromise with reaction. The more reaction gets, the more it wants. There is no point at which reaction will push its chair from the table and say: "I'm through eating. I've had enough for now. Gorge yourselves, boys, on the rest of the food."

Look at Phil Murray and his powerful Steel Workers union. Murray has teamed with reaction since the war's end and gone right along with the drive of Big Business to conquer the world. He has been as rabidly anti-Communist as they come and has weakened the whole labor movement by his anxiety to please Big Business and rid the CIO of leftist unions. He has further shown his subservience by refusing to fight for wage increases. You would think that such sterling services would be rewarded. Surely Big Steel would be kindly disposed toward a labor leader who was helping them make stag­gering profits and secure the world for gigantic dividends.

But when Truman's fact-finding board passed up completely any such ideas as wage raises and instead, recommended pensions to be paid for by employers—something many steel workers were already getting—Big Steel forgot Murray's trigger-man role and resisted the pen­sion plan with all the antagonism of Hawaiian employers resisting the wage demands of the avowedly leftist ILWU. You just can't compromise with reaction.

Anti-Communist hysteria is today at an all-time high in America. The conviction of the 11 top Communist Party leaders is a natural follow-up of the President's loyalty order which grew out of the Truman doctrine—a series of events unthink­able a few years ago. Theoretically, reaction should have a bellyful. It ought to be satisfied to sit back and relax for awhile.

But instead, the forces of reaction grow bolder and stronger with each victory. The banner of anti-communism is a huge one; they all ride under its big, bright folds. "I hate Reds" is a kind of national password; utter it and you can get by with almost anything.

For many years the Ku Klux Klan has been virtually inactive. . But recently the groups have come alive. Currently, there are four of these rival hate organizations seeking dominance following the recent death of Imperial Wizard Samuel Green. They are trying at present to unite all under a single leadership with the slogan of "Fight Communism to Maintain White Supremacy."

The Los. Angeles city council last month defeated a proposed city ordinance which was in­tended to ban discrimination in employment. In the usual doubletalk of reaction, the opposing councilmen insisted they personally were all for "absolute equality, regardless of race, color, creed or nationality," but felt that a law banning discrimination "would create dissension and that is exactly what the Communists want." In other words, to prove they are anti-Red, they decided to maintain white supremacy and jim crow. Sounds like Klan thinking, doesn't it?

Billie Holiday is America's No. 1 song stylist. In Detroit, she went with two other Negro women and a white musician into the Old Colony bar for a drink. For thus flaunting the unwritten rules of white supremacy, the musician was assaulted and beaten and the women threatened with physical violence by other patrons. One of the assailants asked the musician, who had worked with Billie several years ago in Artie Shaw's band: "Where do you think you are, bringing those women in here? In Russia?" Obviously, the implica­tions of this question will do little to make Negroes antagonistic to communism.

Even ex-Secretary of the Interior Krug, friend of big industrialists, was too liberal to suit Rep. John Rankin of Mississippi, one of the most powerful men in Congress. Shortly before Krug quit the cabinet, Rankin told the House that the secretary "ought to resign or be impeached" because of his non-discrimination policies.

Charged Rankin: "His order to wipe out segre­gation in the various playgrounds here in the District of Columbia is nothing in the world but a Communistic movement which, if carried out, is bound to stir up race trouble all over the country." 

To reaction, any attempt to change the status quo of discrimination is Communistic.

It is now subversive to protest the inhuman brutalities of Dixie chain gangs, according to Gov. William Tuck of Virginia, who publicly announced that the FBI had requested the names of all Negro and white citizens who protested the return of Lester Tate, 31-year-old Los Angeles, union leader, to Virginia to serve time on a trumped-up charge. Among the names turned over to the FBI, said Gov. Tuck, was that of Assemblyman Vernon Kirkpatrick of California, who had just made a tour of Virginia prison camps and openly exposed the horrors he found there.

These are but a few Instances, selected at random, which show the rising tide of reaction There is no satisfying this evil monster; under the slogan of "fighting communism," it is slowly but surely devouring the democratic rights of not only the Communists but all others who want to change the status quo.

Reaction's guns are trained upon trade unionists, state legislators, cabinet secretaries, members of minority groups and just plain, fair-minded white Americans.

Civil rights are indivisible. If we are serious about blocking the determined drive of reaction to wreck our democratic traditions, we cannot let ourselves be divid­ed into small, separate segments for leisurely liquidation. We cannot buy immunity for ourselves by joining with reaction in its attempt to kill off any other group.

We cannot sit back and say: "Well, after all, it's only the Communists they want," for in the dictionary of reaction, anybody who advocates equality for minorities or who wants higher wages or better housing and health care or an end to discrimination is a Communist.

There is no way to compromise with reaction.


December 1, 1949: Davis Medina to Harris

Here's a question to ponder: Would Federal Judge George B. Harris have found Defense Law­yer Vincent Hallinan guilty of contempt for his handling of the Harry Bridges case had not Federal Judge Medina established this dangerous prece­dent by handing out contempt sentences to defense counsel for the 11 convicted Communist leaders in New York?

I think there could be a psychological link. As I stated in a column several weeks ago the new concept may call for the conviction of the attorney along with the client in an attempt to discourage the legal profession from representing those indicted for advocating unpopu­lar political beliefs.

Although specific charges against the convicted 11 differ from those against Bridges and his ILWU co-defendants, they all spring from the same source: the prevailing anti-Red hysteria.

Let's take another look at the New York trials. The case history cannot be studied too closely if this is to become a national pattern.

Let me say right away that I cannot condemn the jury for its verdict of guilty. From the evidence and argument Judge Medina allowed it to hear, from the openly hostile and belittling attitude toward the defendants and their counsel, and with hysteria being what it is, the 12 jurors had little choice. Had they freed the 11 Communists or had there even been a mistrial, the jurors who took a stand contrary to the "guilty" attitude manufactured by the New York daily press would have been hounded out of their jobs and perhaps would have suffered physical violence by the lunatic fringe that gave us Peekskill.

The case is now, quite properly, on its wary to the high court where there is a better chance for final disposition on legal merits instead of raw emotion and prejudice. Basic is the determina­tion of the constitutionality of the Smith Act itself, under which the Communist leaders were indicted and tried. If the Smith Act is unconstitutional— and many conservative authorities so contend— then the convictions would of necessity be set aside.

But let us say, for the sake of argument, that the now conservative-dominated supreme court finds the Smith Act constitutional. The 11 defendants then can contend that the trial they received in New York violated completely our whole concept of jurisprudence and the canons of judicial ethics, and I believe that even the most rabid anti-Communists among the high court jus­tices would, purely on the merits, grant them a new trial. That is, unless fascism in America is stronger than even I have believed.

Of course, I speak purely as a layman, but as a layman who believes in justice and fairplay. And there are still many who have refused to be silenced by the present hysteria and who consider it their duty as Americans to buck popular opinion of the moment in order to preserve the freedoms which are a glorious part of our national heritage.

At the moment, I am talking specifically about an organization known as the National Non-Partisan Committee to Defend the Rights of the 12 Communist Leaders, with headquar­ters at Suite A, 23 West 26th St., New York 10, N. Y. I have just received their pamphlet, "Due Process In a Political Trial," containing lengthy excerpts from the actual record in the New York case—a record completely at variance with re­ports in the daily press and revealing bias the like of which has seldom, if ever, been witnessed in a federal court.

This committee, be it noted, is composed of men and women with courage who sincerely believe civil rights are indivisible. Co-chairman, along with Paul Robeson, is Judge Norval K. Har­ris of the circuit court of Sullivan, Ind. Among the vice chairmen are Father Clarence Parker, Episcopal rector of Chicago; Mrs. Andrew W. Simkins, co-chairman of the South Carolina Republican party; Prof. Louise Pettebone Smith of Wellesley College, and Mrs. Theresa Lee Robinson of Washington, director of the Elks Civil Lib­erties committee. Others listed as members from all parts of the nation include artists, educators, ministers, rabbis, labor leaders and editors.

Their pamphlet was prepared by a group of New York attorneys and has been sent to many lawyers with a tetter by Judge Harris who says: "The undersigned has read the document and believes it raises serious questions in relation to the administration of justice."

In the first part, titled "The Judge's Antagonism Toward Defense Counsel and Its Effect On the Trial" are documented chapters headed "Silencing Defense Counsel," "Grounds for the Exclusion of Defense Questions Withheld by Judge Medina," "Discriminatory Treatment of Defense Counsel as Compared With the Prosecution,"

"Threats Against Defense Counsel," "Partisanship In Favor of Prosecutors Against Defense Counsel,” of Prosecutors Against Defense Counsel,"  "Discourtesy to Defense Counsel," "Discrimination Between Government Counsel and Defense Counsel," "Judge Medina's Conduct Toward George W. Crockett, Jr.," and "Ulterior Motives Attributed to Defense Counsel."

Part Two, "Judicial Conduct Toward Witnesses and Application of Rules of Evidence," 
includes these chapters: "The Meaning of Marxism and Leninism," "Aesopian Language," "Rules of Evidence Not Uniformly Applied," "Protectiveness Toward Prosecution Witnesses Contrasted With Badgering of Defense Witnesses," "Deportment of Witnesses to Counsel," "The Judge as Prosecutor," and "Judge Medina's Health." Although intended primarily for lawyers — and I wish every attorney would read it, regardless of his political beliefs— it gets its ideas across in unmistakeable terms to the layman.

It should be required study for all people who believe in civil rights. You can get a copy from committee headquarters in New York for something like 10 cents. And the question asked at the beginning of this column still stands.


December 8, 1949: Davis Inventory After A Year

With Dec. 8 marking the end of my first year in Hawaii, it seems only fitting that I pause and take a kind of inventory.

We came out here, my wife and I, for many reasons. We were tired of the crowded, big-city living of Chicago. We had read and had been told of the beauties of Hawaii, of its mountains and ocean and flowers.

This matter of democracy has always been of primary interest to me. I was told back in grade school that the constitution granted equality to all Americans regardless of creed, color or previous condition of servitude. It sounded good. But it wasn't practiced. And I'm still waiting for my native land to do what it talks about.

The question of civil rights is not academic to me. The question is personal and vital, for all my life I have suffered from their absence. And I refuse to settle for anything less than ALL the rights which are due me under the Constitution. And so we came to Hawaii, giving ourselves a period of four months in which to decide whether to remain or return to Chicago where I would resume my duties as executive director of the Associated Negro Press. We're still here.

Hawaii's fuller concept of ethnic democracy impressed me from the start. Both the Advertiser and Star-Bulletin interviewed me and printed liberal stories along with our pictures—something that would not have happened anywhere on the Mainland. For that I am grateful. The RECORD, moreover invited me to write my opinions about whatever interested me. For that I am likewise grateful.

And yet, despite this closer approach to the goals of democracy found in the Territory, I soon learned that full and complete equality for all does not exist here. There is jim crow and discrimination in Hawaii—as RECORD stories so often reveal. While the 80 per cent citizenship found here is better than, let us say, the 60 per cent citizenship of Chicago, I cannot be satisfied. I cannot be satisfied with 90 per cent citizenship, or even 99 99/100, for I am determined to keep on fighting until I get the full 100 per cent citizenship due me, until no person will be the vic­tim of discrimination purely on the basis of his color, religion "or place of national origin. As long as a Filipino or a Japanese or a Catholic or a Jew is denied full equality in all fields purely because he is a Filipino or a Japanese or a Catholic or a Jew, just so long will I be denied full equality. We have a common cause, we of minority groups in America.

I have long felt especially friendly toward organized labor, not only because most Negroes are working people, but because the unions have an economic stake in ending prejudice which some employers use to keep workers divided and thus weaken the whole labor movement. I have paid dues to both the American Newspaper Guild, CIO, and the American Federation of Radio Artists, AFL. Labor has a major role to play in securing civil rights for all.

I have also learned that if you fight too hard for civil rights, whether on the Mainland or in Hawaii, you are likely to be branded a Communist. I have seen the label of "Red" used in an attempt to intimidate and silence those who will settle for, no less than 100 per cent equality. I am opposed to Truman's loyalty order for its victims have been mainly Negroes and Jews who fought discrimination. For that reason the National Alliance of Postal Employes and the National Bar Association, the latter group composed of Negro lawyers from all over America, have as major objectives, the repeal of the President's loyalty order.

I, personally, have no intention of letting the cry of "communism" sidetrack me from my goal of complete civil rights as guaranteed by the Constitution. I ask neither the religion nor race of those who are willing to stand beside me as I assault the strong barriers of jim crow; I do not care whether those who want to end restrictive residential covenants are Republicans, Democrats, Socialists or Communists.

That is the way it was with me in Chicago; that is the way it will be with me in Hawaii or any other place where I am denied full first class citizenship.

But today not only am I, along with other Negroes and members of other minority groups, denied my full civil rights, but every effort is being made to take away the right to fight for them through the technique of the Communist label. The safeguards of the Bill of Rights are being snatched away from those who demand ' complete enforcement of the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments.

That's the picture as I see it; after a year in Hawaii. But the fight for absolute equality will continue. Whether in Hawaii or on the Mainland I want civil rights for all people, and I shall not rest until that goal is achieved. 


December 22, 1949: Un-Americans Housing Restrictions

Prom what I have been taught and have read about democracy, the ghetto and segregated housing are completely contrary to American ideals. The U. S. Supreme court apparently has the same opinion, judging from its decision of more than two years ago outlawing restrictive residential covenant.

With this basis in both logic and law, it is obvious now to all that housing restrictions, which, carry the idea of inferior and superior peoples, are un-Amereican [sic]. That being so, it would seem that an investigation of island housing restrictions based on race would be one of the first duties of the Territory's un-American Activities Commis­sion.

I have noticed that the persons who yell loudest about "subversive actions" are those who are most determined to keep racism and segregation alive. Three of the four chairmen of the house un­American committee—Dies of Texas, Rankin of Mississippi and Wood of Georgia—have been men who have fostered white supremacy and the ideology of the Ku Klux. Klan. The fourth chairman, J. Parnell Thomas, has been fined and sentenced for defrauding the American government.

The Hawaii un-American Activities Commis­sion has an excellent chance to break with tradition and win respect for such investigations by probing the activities and programs of powerful groups that use color, religion or national origin as a basis for denying equality to all.

The matter of restricted housing should be thoroughly aired and those who perpetrate this evil practice should be forcefully exposed. Naturally, it would hit some of the Territory's most influential persons, many who dominate our econ­omy. Is the commission willing to step on big toes or will it confine its investigations to the weak and powerless?

Restrictive housing covenants hit the majority of the Territory's population, since most are non-haole. In the year that I've been here, I have been blocked by this evil and totally un-American practice. Twice it came up when I sought rental units; last week it was raised again as I contemplated purchase of a home in an area off Kaneohe Bay Drive. It was Castle leasehold property arid restricted, I was told. And so the deal was off.

I suppose that if one had the time and the money, he could fight the matter through the courts. After a couple of years and appeals and a few thousand dollars; the right of an American to live anywhere he wishes might again be reaffirmed—but that solves no immediate problem. Why should such extensive and expensive procedure be necessary in. a democracy anyway?

It is amazing to know that Hawaii has set itself above the rulings of the nation's highest tribunal and continues to perpetuate restrictive residential agreements. Of course, the local exponents of white supremacy could state that technically they have not violated the ruling since the refusal to sell leasehold land applies to haoles and non-haoles alike. They might further say that the high court opinion did not specifically mention leasehold property, but that is merely a clever use of words. The Supreme Court dictum was intended to declare that any and all agreements restricting housing on the basis of race are illegal.

There are some who say that if you are barred from one place, forget it and go somewhere else. However, these are for the most part the people who have never suffered discrimination or else have become its beaten and cowed victims. As for myself, I have long had my path blocked by jim crow but I have no intention of accepting this un-American barrier with meekness and humility.

The victims of restrictions move about with the freedom of goldfish. They may go anywhere they like—within the narrow confines of their goldfish bowl.

The victims don't make the restrictive rules. If they did, they would no longer be victims. The placing of housing restrictions presupposes superior and inferior peoples. That's the basis of segregation and discrimination. And if there is anything more un-American than the idea that some people are superior to others because of color or religion or national origin, I have yet to hear about it.

Those who foster and support such policies as restricted housing while yelling about the Moscow menace are themselves subverting democracy. That is part of the "American way of life" that must be eliminated.

I am completely disloyal to the supporters of white supremacy whether in Hawaii or Mississippi. I would love nothing better than to see the whole pattern of jim crow, segregation and discrimination completely overthrown. But my loyalty to those Americans who want to do away with the vicious master race theory burns more brightly with each passing day.

What about a real investigation of such thoroughly un-American practices, as race discrimination, members of the Territorial commission?


December 29, 1949: Davis New CIO Battle Lines

With the CIO dictators having decided to get rid of the 11 left-wing unions, it will be most interesting to see whether this organization will now be able to work together in complete internal harmony.

Personally, I doubt it.

I doubt it because the CIO is not and has not been an organization sharply divided between right and left. Ousting of the 11 unions will not mean that the purged CIO will be completely united. Instead, it means that the rivalry between the middle forces as led by Murray and the right-wing factions as headed by Reuther will flare into open warfare. Theirs was a marriage of convenience; with the kicking out of the left, the truce is off.

Back in 1935 when the CIO was organized, with John L. Lewis as its guiding genius, this highly individualistic leader of the mine workers intentionally brought in Communists to get the new labor group started. The story goes that while Lewis was personally as anti-Communist then as now, he was nevertheless a realist and an opportunist. He hoped to use the organizing ability and labor savvy of the Communists to knit a group that would force the APL into the background, and when this job was done, he planned to "kick out the Reds" when they no longer served his purpose.

As you know, it didn't work that way. Lewis himself was the one who went out, with Phil Murray coming in as president. By this time there were three major forces herded together under the big, broad, fighting banner   of   the CIO.   

Murray of the middle forces, was able to hold the coalition together and the CIO grew even stronger. Differences between right and left were not permitted to materially handicap the main struggle for the betterment of all labor. But the right-wing was always restive and constantly sought ways and means of "getting rid of the Reds."   

Such powerful Social Democrats as Walter Reuther of the Auto Workers and Emil Rieve of the Textile Workers believed they could control the CIO if the Communists and the left were put out.  Murray would then bow to their wishes' or he, too, would have to go.

As long as Roosevelt was alive, there was room under the CIO roof for all three groups, while Murray charted a difficult course intended to hold the entire organization intact. But after the death of FDR, the ascendancy of Truman and the start of the "cold war" with its aid to imperialism and the hysteria built up against Russia and the Communists, the CIO changed politically. All-out support for Henry Wallace in 1944 changed to bitter enmity in 1948.

Meanwhile, the Catholic Church had taken an active interest in the CIO internal struggles with the avowed purpose of eliminating the left. Phil Murray is a devout Catholic. With the CIO officially committed to the cold war program of Truman, the time for which Reuther and Rieve had long been waiting, had arrived. And so the middle and the right combined forces to get rid of the left.

But this alliance is already disintegrating. Neither the Murray nor the Reuther crowd trusts the other. The strong differences that came to the fore many times in the past will now come up even more sharply and there will be no joint hate of the left to act as a leavening influence. In such a struggle, who would win? And will one side be able to get enough strength to expel the other, thus further weakening the already weakened CIO?

It is interesting to observe that already some anti-Communist spokesmen have started worry­ing. For instance, the New Republic recently stated editorially that expulsion of UE "sets a dangerous precedent." The Murray supporters, says the New Republic, "deeply distrust the political ambitions of the Social Democrats."

Max Lerner, writing in the New York Post, predicts "a new right-wing and a new left-wing will emerge, and Reuther will be the leader of the left—in a Socialist sense." The Washington Post has warned that in the future the Socialists might have to "conform or get wrecked," and that Reuther might be the next victim of the knife he sharpened for the Communists and the left.

So what we are about to witness is a strug­gle for power in the "respectable" remnants of the once mighty CIO, which started out as a militant champion for the rights of all workers everywhere but which has deteriorated into a trade union agency for the support of imperialism and continued exploitation and subjugation of colonial peoples.

As I see it, the odds are about even. You pay your money and you take your choice.