Publication information
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Source: Free Society
Source type: magazine
Document type: editorial column
Document title: “Pen Shots”
Author(s): Austin, Kate
Date of publication: 18 May 1902
Volume number: 9
Issue number: 20
Pagination: 4

Austin, Kate. “Pen Shots.” Free Society 18 May 1902 v9n20: p. 4.
Leon Czolgosz (posthumous communications); McKinley assassination (personal response).
Named persons
Leon Czolgosz; William McKinley; Lois Waisbrooker.


Pen Shots [excerpt]

     In the People’s Press of Chicago there appeared some time ago a letter from Lois Waisbrooker, informing us that Leon Czolgosz had communicated to her from the spirit world that he had had [sic] been “obsessed by a monster to kill McKinley,” and that he was now “learning the right way to work for humanity.” When we pause and consider the result of Czolgosz’s act, and compare the small red stain at Buffalo with that “long damning line of red” which began under the McKinley administration, and has not yet ceased to flow with its attendant train of evils in the way of official corruption and military brutality, the question naturally rises why the crime that has slain thousands of human beings did not merit some explanation at the hands of spirits? From what I have observed of so-called spirit communications, I am led to the conclusion that the “messages” are highly colored by the receiver’s ideas and prejudices; that they in fact originate with the medium and not the spirit of the departed. I also admit that many mediums honestly deceive themselves in this respect, among whom I certainly include outspoken Lois Waisbrooker. As proof that honest mediums are the victims of mental hallucinations, I will wager that messages from the “Monster Slayer” would be in line with the mental attitude of every medium toward the act at Buffalo, and that the “reason” transmitted from the spirit world would vary accordingly.
     I have never taken kindly to the idea that a fellow creature could be possessed of a devil; this idea belongs to a dead past. The nearest approach a man can make to the character of being “obsessed by a monster,” is when armed with authority and at no personal risk to himself he metes out death to his fellow beings.



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