Source: Buffalo Courier
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Speech That Turned Young Czolgosz’s Head”
City of publication: Buffalo, New York
Date of publication: 8 September 1901
Volume number: 66
Issue number: 251
|“Speech That Turned Young Czolgosz’s Head.” Buffalo Courier 8 Sept. 1901 v66n251: part 3, p. 27.|
|Emma Goldman (public addresses).|
|Leon Czolgosz; Emma Goldman; William McKinley; William Henry Vanderbilt.|
Speech That Turned Young Czolgosz’s Head
(By Special Wire to The Courier.)
Cleveland, O., Sept. 7—An address delivered in
this city, May 6th last, by Emma Goldman, is very largely responsible for the
attempt on the life of President McKinley.
The Goldman woman spoke here twice on that date, and a copy of her address was found in the pocket of Leon Czolgosz when searched by the Buffalo police. In the audience at No. 170 Superior Street on that occasion was the man who tried to kill the President and his associates now recall that he was one of the most enthusiastic in his applause of the utterances of Miss Goldman. The hall in which the lecture was delivered is at No. 170 Superior Street, the same hall in which the Anarchists now meet in this city.
FULL OF FIRE.
In the course of her address of May 6th Miss
Goldman first outlined the principles of Anarchism and detailed the methods
whereby she hoped to accomplish the ends of Anarchy. Her talk was full of forceful
passages and in some cases more notable for their strength than for their elegance.
“Men under the present state of society,” she said, “are mere products of circumstances under the galling yoke of government, ecclesiasticism and a bond of custom and prejudice. It is impossible for the individual to work out his own career as he could wish. Anarchism aims at a new and complete freedom. It strives to bring about the freedom which is not only the freedom from within, but a freedom from without, which will prevent any man from having a desire to interfere in any way with the liberty of his neighbor.
AWAY WITH GOVERNMENT.
“Vanderbilt says: ‘I am a free man within myself,
but the others be damned.’ This is not the freedom we are striving for. We merely
desire complete individual liberty, and this can never be obtained as long as
there is an existing government.
“We do not favor the Socialist idea of converting men and women into mere producing machines under the eye of a paternal government. We go to the opposite extreme and demand the fullest and most complete liberty for each and every person to work out his own salvation upon any line that he pleases. The degrading notions of men and women as breeding machines are far from our ideals of life.
“Anarchism has nothing to do with future governments or economic arrangements. We do not favor any particular settlement in this line, but merely seek to do away with the present evils. The future will provide these arrangements after our work has been done. Anarchism deals merely with social relations and not with economic arrangements.”
The speaker then deprecated the idea that all
Anarchists were in favor of violence or bomb throwing. She declared that nothing
was further from the principles they support. She went on, however, into a detailed
explanation of the different crimes committed by Anarchists lately, declaring
that the motive was good in each case and that these acts were merely a matter
of temperament. Some men were so constituted, she said, that they were unable
to stand idly by and see the wrong that was being endured by their fellow mortals.
She herself did not believe in these methods, but she did not think they should
be condemned in view of the high and noble motives which prompted their perpetration.
“Some believe we should first obtain by force and let the intelligence and education come afterwards.”
Miss Goldman then dwelt on the most revolting
forms of the social evil, and assigned to each its cause. Some of the vices
which are most abhorrent to the sense of modern civilization were upheld by
She bitterly attacked the churches and the modern systems of education as responsible for most of the social evil. She did not hesitate to put forward a number of sentiments far more radical and sensational than any ever publicly advanced here.
During Miss Goldman’s lecture a strong detail of police were in the hall to keep her from uttering sentiments which were regarded as too radical. This accounts for the fact that the speaker did not give free rein to her thoughts on this occasion. By reason of Anarchistic uprisings elsewhere it was thought best by the city officials to curb the utterances of the Goldman woman.