Publication information

Ice and Refrigeration
Source type: journal
Document type: editorial
Document title: none
Author(s): anonymous
Date of publication: October 1901
Volume number: 21
Issue number: 4
Pagination: 147

[untitled]. Ice and Refrigeration Oct. 1901 v21n4: p. 147.
full text
McKinley assassination (personal response); anarchism (personal response); yellow journalism.
Named persons
William McKinley.


SINCE our last issue the entire country, regardless of section or political faith, has united in one of the most general and most sincere exhibitions of sorrow over the death of an individual that the world has ever seen. Party lines were forgotten in the universal tribute of respect for and appreciation of the services of a worthy president and an honest man, and in the unanimous voice of execration and abhorrence of the dastardly deed of the assassin. The dismal tragedy has served to call attention to the dangers lurking in the anarchical teaching that the personal rights of the individual are greater than the rights of the society that makes the life of that individual possible. There is no room in free America for the assassin of its public servants or for the teaching that is responsible for awakening the assassin’s bloody purpose.
     The murder of the president serves also to direct attention to the possible evil effects from publishing the absurd, unwarranted and extravagantly untrue attacks upon our public servants in high places, that have disgraced the columns of some of the so called “yellow journals” in this country. Although the wild and indiscriminate attacks may, by their very excess, defeat the purpose intended with all right minded citizens, they serve to stir up the passions of the fanatical, and offer tools by means of which the enemies of social order stir to feelings of hatred and arouse to deeds of violence the misguided souls who hunger to become “martyrs” to what they have been taught to consider as the cause of individualistic freedom—the slavery of an idea.
     Take, for instance, a typical bit of such vituperation as it appeared in the New York Journal, when it published—

     And McKinley—bar one girthy Princeton person, who came to be no more, no less, than a living crime in breeches—is, therefore, the most despised and hated creature in the hemisphere. His name is hooted; his figure burned in effigy.

     Such language, directed against two of the country’s foremost men and worthiest presidents, is little short of criminal. It is from just such indecent lies that the enemies of this country at home and abroad draw their conclusions about the political conditions here. It is such stuff that the anarchist leaders present before their fanatical followers as evidence of the “true character” of the rulers whom the anarchist is taught to despise, and the poor dupes become more easily inflamed to rid the earth of such a “tyrant.” Is it not time that public opinion were aroused to the enormity of the offense of which these “yellow” sheets are guilty, and an agitation begun that would end in stamping out such utterances by burying them under public scorn? To submit to such indecent publications is beneath the dignity of American citizenship.