For so long, writers of all ages have made their appeals to kings, to queens, to archbishops, saints and popes. When trying to advance their own interests, men of letters would correspond with dukes and rulers of provinces. By contacting those in power, they were confident that their ideals would be expressed to the people in the most succinct and powerful way. Yet, it has been the trend of Anarchists, regardless of era, to make their appeal not to the rulers, but to the ruled — not to the presidents or the prime ministers to beg for their mercy, but to the workers of the world’s nations, and command them to action. Since we are advocates of a certain sense of justice, since we are the prophets of social doom and resurrection, we believe that the cause of the condition of the world is the ruling class and its minions, their state-sanctioned slavery of Capitalism. And, furthermore, we believe that to plead for mercy from those who casually mock the things that stir us, to plead for mercy would be to offer a begging hand to our executioner. For these reasons and more, Anarchists and Freethinkers make their appeals not to kings or queens, not to “sovereign entities” and their mechanized armies, but to the people themselves, that they might liberate themselves and others. It is in such an attitude that I present this piece… An Appeal to the American Workers.
First, when I am speaking to my fellow brethren, my comrade citizens in the United States of America, I want to say this. At first sight of the Communist and Socialist manifestos, their ideologies, the speeches made by their affiliated parties, when I heard these things for the first time, I was in complete disagreement. The language used by these demagogues of Communism was burdened by economic vocabulary. In some works that would be classified as liberal, I’ve seen the word “aggregate” used five times in a single sentence. Through these bizarre concepts, these overly technical definitions of a so-called sociological science, these “decline in the wage conditions of proletariat” and “bourgeoise distribution of wealth,” through all of these is where we hear the call for Communism. I first want to tell my readership that I am familiar with these speeches, these pamphlets, these books, and I am familiar with the awkward and almost inhuman way that they have dealt with the economic question. I have seen men of Socialism do nothing but reprint manifestos and sloganeer, as though their drone-like actions were about to bring about the greatest state of peace, justice, and equity for mankind ever known.
While these socio-economic appeals of Communist and Socialist parties are made to the public, they are often ignored; in a way, they are regarded solely as “preaching to the choir.” They use words and phrases that the people are generally unfamiliar with. Their politics are relatively dreary; whenever a new party pops up, its statement of faith seems to be followed a pattern completely uniform with the last party. This is not an attack on those who are unfamiliar with the phrases and vocabulary of Communist theory. Rather, it is an attack on those who are ridiculously stuck with such phrases. To other Communist and Socialist comrades, those who feel that society would be greatly benefited through collective property, I ask this: that these awkward and almost erroneous phrases are abandoned now. Not because they are no longer understood by the common people, but because they were never understood by the common people. People must not be intellectuals that they might be revolutionaries. health and safety awareness course