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intelligent woman. Rose Pastor Stokes, who has not yet reached jail, who for an interview in the Kansas City Star, which did not reflect her opinions, wrote a letter to the Kansas City Star, which they placed in the District Attorney's hands and then convicted her of attempting to interfere with the draft; no chance for any one to see it, unless the Kansas City Star gave it to the world. Ten-year sentence—ten years.
The case of four young Russian Jews, three boys and a girl, is specially outrageous. These enthusiasts were circulating leaflets calling on the Government to withdraw our soldiers from Russia. For this they were sentenced to twenty years each in the penitentiary.
Assume, for the sake of argument, that in times of war, what any of these said should not have been said because it interfered with the right of self-defense of a nation. What proportion is there between the offense and the penalty? What relation does it bear to the administration of justice in the United States? So far as meeting out justice to an individual is concerned, it is simply a mockery. If it is a question of defense of a nation, then the need is gone. The prison doors should now be opened!
Everybody takes advantage of a war, good and bad alike. They take advantage of everything. Everybody is edging up on you in this world. I have always found them that way; trying to put something over. War time is a good time to put over prohibition! A good time to put over any old scheme, under the necessities of war. A good time to raise the price of beef; a good time to put over repression of free speech; a good time to get rid of agitators and disturbers. Of course, if you can put it over under the necessity of war, then you are all right, anyhow. Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty as well as a lot of other things. Men have to be everlastingly watchful or something will get away from them, if they have it.
Under the Espionage Act, advantage has been taken to try and convict many people whose offenses were not against the Espionage Act at all. Why have the I. W. W.'s been unmolested year after year in this country, until the Espionage Act was passed? And then everything that they were said to have done since their organization is brought in as an offense against the government and against the law that is only two years old?