What a big hullabaloo there is raised
over anarchism. Robert Pinkerton, of the infamous Pinkerton detective
agency, has an article on Anarchism in the current issue of the
North-American Review, in which he suggests that spies should “insinuate
themselves into the anarchist communities, as James McParland insinuated
himself into the Molly Maguires.” It seems to us that the talk of
anarchist associations existing for the purpose of blowing buildings
into eternity and shedding the blood of mankind is silly in the
extreme. We know anarchists who are highly educated men, and gentleness
itself. We know some men who condemn anarchists to be brutes in
human form. Men who would not hesitate, and have not hesitated,
to be the means by which innocent wage workers were massacred as
if they were so many beasts.
It is questionable if Czolgosz was
an anarchist, notwithstanding the fact that he claimed to be one.
Even if he were an anarchist this would not mean that the school
of economic thought represented by him was composed of murderers
any more than that the Republican party was composed of murderers,
because one of its members assassinated President Garfield.
No doubt Mr. Pinkerton’s article was
a play for patronage from the millionaires, who are usually as ignorant
of the principles of economics as a mud turtle is of the rules of
base-ball. An article like Pinkerton’s might have the effect of
ensnaring a bunch of millionaires to pay tribute to the Pinkerton
agency by having the latter employ men to become members of some
pseudo anarchist groups.
This is not, and must not be construed
as an argument in favor of anarchy. It is meant as an argument in
favor of common reason and common sense.