Source: American Federationist
Source type: magazine
Document type: article
Document title: none
Author(s): Carter, W. S.
Date of publication: September 1902
Volume number: 9
Issue number: 9
Pagination: 495-97 (excerpt below includes only pages 496-97)
|Carter, W. S. [untitled]. American Federationist Sept. 1902 v9n9: pp. 495-97.|
|law (due process).|
|Leon Czolgosz; Charles J. Guiteau.|
This article is one of 17 separately authored articles appearing in this issue under the collective title “Labor Day: The Day We Celebrate” (pp. 479-501), described as being “A Symposium on Labor Day in Its Relation to the General Economic Movement, Contributed by the Most Eminent Thinkers of the Country and Written Especially for This Issue of the American Federationist.”
Article is accompanied on page 495 by a photograph of the author.
From page 495: W. S. Carter, Editor Locomotive Firemen’s Magazine.
The constitution of the United States guarantees that “no person shall . . . be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law.” That document also declares that—
In all criminal prosecutions the accused shall enjoy the right of a speedy and public trial, and by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
If a Guiteau or a Czolgosz murders a President
of the United States, the courts assure him the protection set forth in these
clauses of the constitution. The judge is careful to know that the accusation
is in legal form. With paternal care the judge examines every member of the
jury, to see that none are prejudiced against Czolgosz; the judge sees that
the trial is speedy and public; the judge sees that Czolgosz is not condemned
without being confronted with the witnesses against him; the judge uses compulsory
process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; the judge selects the most able
 counsel procurable to defend Czolgosz.
But what would the judge do if the prisoner had been accused by his former master
of “speaking” to or “persuading” other men to not take his place as a striker?
What would the judge do if the prisoner had been accused of “assembling” with
his fellows? The judge would deny the servant every right and privilege he so
gladly accorded Czolgosz! The judge would deny the servant a jury of any kind,
much less an impartial jury; the judge would deny the victim the right to meet
his accusers or to be confronted with the witnesses against him; the judge would
not issue compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; the judge
would not select any counsel to defend the prisoner, much less select able counsel;
the judge would condemn the workingman to imprisonment; would deprive him of
his liberty, without “due process of law;” without “trial by jury.”
The workingmen now demand that Congress shall intercede in this contest between the servant class on the one side and the judges and master class on the other. Workingmen believe that the courts have been prostituted by the corporations. Workingmen believe that they have had ample evidence that the courts are being used by the corporations to win their contests with their employees. Workingmen now demand that a striker shall have as many rights before the courts as a Guiteau or a Czolgosz. They demand that the rights guaranteed them by the National Constitution shall be no longer taken from them by the judges.