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Source: Bridgeport Herald
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Misery and Poverty Must Have Caused Tragedy”
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: Bridgeport, Connecticut
Date of publication: 8 September 1901
Volume number: 9
Issue number: 570
Pagination: 1

“Misery and Poverty Must Have Caused Tragedy.” Bridgeport Herald 8 Sept. 1901 v9n570: p. 1.
full text
McKinley assassination (personal response: socialists); Eugene V. Debs (public statements); McKinley assassination (opinions, theories, etc.); society (impact on Czolgosz); society (criticism); Theodore Roosevelt (assassination attempts).
Named persons
Eugene V. Debs; Ulysses S. Grant; Ida McKinley; William McKinley; Theodore Roosevelt.
In the original source the article is accompanied, at its outset, with an illustration of a skull.


Misery and Poverty Must Have Caused Tragedy


This Is the Opinion of Socialist Eugene V. Debs. Says Anarchist Did Not
Shoot McKinley Because He Was McKinley, but for the Purpose
of Furnishing Solace to His Own Aching Heart.

(Special to the Herald.)

     TERRE HAUTE, IND., Sept. 7.—EUGENE V. DEBS, the socialist, was profoundly grieved when he learned of the attempt to assassinate President McKinley. “I cannot imagine anything so deplorable,” said Mr. Debs. “I cannot conceive the motive for an attack on a man so universally admired as President McKinley. Misery and poverty must have caused it. The deed was not that of a madman. The method he pursued shows that the method was coolly and deliberately planned. It is one of the periodical outbreaks of a festering society. One cannot imagine the mental status of a man so mean, so cowardly, so brutal as to join in the throng of humanity that was pressing forward to greet the president and have the murder of the one whose hand he sought to grasp in his heart. Under pretense of greeting him as an admirer he shot down the president to give to the world the definition of his own misery. He did not shoot Mr. McKinley because he was McKinley, it was because he represented the great American people as their executive and he thought by ending the president’s life he would give solace to his own aching heart. It is just a chapter in life’s story. The poor miner is born to his cabin in the throes of death. His wife falls at his side with the same grief as that felt by Mrs. McKinley, one of the noblest and best woman [sic] that ever lived. The miner dies and the world knows nothing of it. The sorrow does not go beyond the circle of his own household and friends. The world would feel President McKinley’s loss. Yet the sorrow of his own family could not be more profound than that of the poor miner’s.
     “This is an echo of Lattimer and Homestead. Men are being driven into desperate straits and they cannot fail to make an outcry to offend the higher realms of society. Ground to a merciless poverty there cannot fail to be an uprising. That spirit of love for justice cannot be suppressed. The lower walks of life must and will cry out. Then men who fought for a principlie [sic] are shot down because they dare to assert their rights, the mutterings of those oppressed will break into an outcry and destructive action. The oppressed must have redress and it is just such deplorable outbreaks as this attack on the president that cowardly seekers after vengeance find solace in. As long as the world lasts there will be this disgruntled, festering, degrading class of peace disturbers who believe justice can be obtained only by such acts as that of yesterday.
     “Vice President Roosevelt would not be assassinated. Strange to say anarchy does not assert itself against a military man, it is always the man from civic walks that is attacked. True McKinley had a civil war record but that is forgotten since the Spanish-American war is added to history. Grant went without bodyguards and was not molested. He was worshipped as a military hero. Roosevelt could do the same thing without being molested.
     “As long as this lasts, however, there will be mutterings from those who are oppressed, or think they are oppressed and such murderous attacks as the one on President McKinley would be made by demons who could find revenge only in blood.”



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