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Hellraisers Journal: Edith Wyatt on "The Chicago Clothing Strike" in Harper's Weekly, Illustrated

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age.
Put on your fighting clothes.
-Mother Jones

Wednesday December 15, 1915
From Harper's Weekly: Edith Wyatt on the Chicago Clothing Strike & Special Police Guards

In the December 11th edition of Harper's, Edith Wyatt offers the following account of the Chicago Garment Workers Strike, now ongoing in that city, along with news regarding police brutality, and some history on the practice of arbitration in the needle-work trades:

The Chicago Clothing Strike

Chicago Garment Workers Strike of 1915, Harpers Wkly, Dec 11.png

"THE story of civilization,” says Norman Angell in Arms and Industry, “is the story of development of ideas.”

One of the most interesting chapters of that chronicle is the narrative of the development of the idea of industrial arbitration in this country, in opposition to the idea of industrial war. Chicago is now watching intently a bitter contest between these two principles in one of her greatest industries, her trade in men’s clothing, a business truly enormous, the value of its product in this city being rated in the last census at over eighty five million dollars.

Transgender activist wins deferral of removal

Kim Watson is a 52-year-old trans woman living in the Bronx with her husband and adopted daughter. She is cofounder of an organization called Community Kinship Life (CKLife), which provides space for transgender individuals to gather and offers scholarships. Her work has been honored by Bronx elected officials and citywide LGBT groups.

She arrived in the United States on a tourist visa in 1988. When the pass expired, she remained.

The city offered her refuge from persecution she faced over her identity in her homeland, but she continued to struggle with mental illness and substance abuse.

While homeless, she was twice arrested for selling controlled substances in 1997 and 1998. Nazrali said that at the time she was going through a wrenching identity dysphoria that led to the run-ins with the law.

However, more than a decade ago, Watson said she went to rehab and started receiving counseling for PTSD and her other identity issues.

Watson earned a bachelor's degree from Pace University and began grassroots organizing over LGBT issues and HIV status.

Hellraisers Journal: Gurley Flynn's Victory at Paterson Recalls 1909 Free Speech Fight at Spokane

Never before had I come in contact with women of that type, and they were interesting.
Also, I was glad to be with them, for in a jail one is
always safer with others than alone.
-Elizabeth Gurley Flynn

Tuesday December 14, 1915
From Archives of The Workingman's Paper: Gurley Flynn on the Spokane Jail

Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, on trial in Paterson, Nov 29, 1915.png

Fresh from her victorious one-woman fight for Free Speech with the city of Paterson, New Jersey (see photograph at right), Miss Elizabeth Gurley Flynn plans to continue her struggle to establish the rights of union organizers to speak to the silk workers in that city. With this struggle in mind, Hellraisers offers an article, written by Miss Flynn for the December 11, 1909, edition of The Workingman's Paper in which she described her experience in the county jail at Spokane during the I. W. W. Free Speech Fight in that city which took place during the winter of 1909 and 1910.

Miss Flynn came to Spokane as a young married woman, having married John A. Jones in Lake County, Minnesota on January 7, 1908. The newly weds arrived in Missoula, Montana, in time to play an active role in that victorious struggle for Free Speech. They then moved on to the fight for Free Speech in Spokane, Washington, where Gurley Flynn was arrested as an I. W. W. "agitator."

Miss Flynn's article gives us some idea of the special hardships endured by women when prisons and jails employ male guards rather than matrons. The male guards are often less than trustworthy to be in charge of the keys which give them unfettered access to women prisoners, day and night.

Hellraisers Journal: Elizabeth Gurley Flynn and Her Long Free Speech Contest with Paterson

Miss Elizabeth Gurley Flynn
Gets Chief Bimson as mad as sin;
When Chief Bimson gets mad as sin,
Sweetly smiles Miss Gurley Flynn.

Monday December 13, 1915
From The Survey: Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Victorious in Long Contest with Paterson

The Survey of December 11th described the long one-woman free speech fight, a contest fought between Elizabeth Gurley Flynn and the city of Paterson, New Jersey, which ended on the evening of November 30th with a victory for Miss Flynn:

Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Without Sunday from Fort Wayne (IN) News of Mar 20, 1915, cropped.png

ELIZABETH GURLEY FLYNN, I. W. W. leader in the Paterson strike of 1913, was acquitted last week of the charge of inciting to riot that had been pending since the jury disagreed in her first trial in July, 1913. This is the last of the cases growing directly out of the strike of two years ago that will be tried, and the verdict sets Miss Flynn free to continue her contest over free speech with the Paterson authorities.

Chief of Police Bimson said that the trial narrowed down to a question of the veracity of the police officials and Miss Flynn’s supporters, “and evidently the police hadn't been believed.”

The calling of the case to trial at this time came as a surprise. In the summer of 1913, three strike leaders were tried following similar indictments—Patrick Quinlan, Carlo Tresca and Miss Flynn herself. Feeling in Paterson at that time was bitter against the I. W. W. and the defense believed that it would be difficult to obtain a fair trial. Nevertheless a Passaic county jury disagreed in the first trial of Quinlan. A second trial resulted in his conviction with a sentence of two to seven years in the penitentiary. Attorneys for the defense then secured an order from Supreme Court Justice Minturn directing that in the other cases pending, juries should be drawn from outside Passaic county. Tried before so-called “foreign” juries, Tresca was acquitted, and in the case of Miss Flynn the jury disagreed. No move toward a new trial was made at the time.

H.Res.561: Expressing support for support of transgender acceptance

Yesterday Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA) and 19 House co-sponsors introduced House Resolution 561: Expressing Support for Support for Transgender Acceptance

The co-sponsors include all members of the recently formed Transgender Equality Task Force.

This is another much-needed step in our fight to ensure that the transgender community’s voice is represented in Congress. The transgender community faces widespread bullying, harassment, and violence, and these individuals do not yet have sufficient legal means of protection from such discrimination in many states. We cannot achieve equality without acceptance. This resolution is a step toward greater acceptance of the transgender community. We must work to address the challenges and risks that transgender individuals face on a daily basis in their places of work, education, and housing, and ensure that their individual rights are understood and respected.

--Rep. Honda

The full text of the resolution is on The Other Side:

Hellraisers Journal: Paterson Praised for Acquittal of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn of Inciting to Riot

The constitution of the United States is on trial-I'm not!
-Elizabeth Gurley Flynn

Sunday December 12, 1915
From The Washington Times: People of Paterson, New Jersey, Praised for Acquittal of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn

In a section of the Times reserved for editorials on subjects of interests to women, there was expressed in the December 9th edition, high praise for the "law-abiding and law-reverencing good people of Paterson." The topic at hand was the acquittal of Miss Gurley Flynn on charges of inciting to rioting:

Women, editorials on, W (DC) Tx, Dec 9, 1915, text.png
Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Without Sunday from Fort Wayne (IN) News of Mar 20, 1915, cropped.png

The law-abiding and law-reverencing good people of Paterson are to be congratulated on the acquittal of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn. They are to be congratulated because the effort of the Paterson police, responsive to suggestions from lawless elements in the community, to substitute Russian for American government has failed. The greatest winner by the verdict is Paterson.

The verdict is important as vindicating free speech, freedom of orderly assemblage, and freedom of orderly and legal organization. It is also important as tending strongly to shift the burden of presumption when lawlessness occurs in connection with industrial disputes. Formerly, when violence occurred during a strike, or bombs exploded, or labor agitators were charged with having incited to riot, the public assumed that the strikers were responsible. But it now appears that in many cases things are not as they seem. Private detective agencies are used and public police forces permit themselves to be used to arrange for crimes.

Victory in Venezuela

This past Monday Venezuela held parliamentary elections in which the opposition Democratic Unity Movement (MUD) claimed a sizable majority.

 photo Tamara Adrian_zpswx1rrlts.jpgOne of the winning candidates was transgender woman Tamara Adrian. The 61-year-old lawyer managed to do this in a country which does not recognize gender reassignment.

She became only the second transgender legislator in the western hemisphere, after Michelle Suárez of Uruguay.

The lawyer and activist was one of the 99 Democratic Unity politicians to win a seat at the National Assembly. She received an incredible 74.25% share of the votes.

Hellraisers Journal: Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Acquitted of Inciting to Riot in Paterson, New Jersey

Miss Elizabeth Gurley Flynn
Gets Chief Bimson as mad as sin;
When Chief Bimson gets mad as sin,
Sweetly smiles Miss Gurley Flynn.
-The Lincoln Star

Saturday December 11, 1915
Paterson, New Jersey: Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Found "Not Guilty" of Inciting to Riot

On Tuesday November 30th, Fellow Worker Elizabeth Gurley Flynn was found "not guilty" of inciting to riot in Paterson, New Jersey. Hellraisers will be covering this story over the next few days. We begin our coverage with this report from the Chicago Day Book of December 1st:

Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, Free Speech Trial, Paterson, Day Book, Dec 1, 1915.png

Paterson, N. J., Nov. 30. - "The constitution of the United States is on trial-I'm not!" So said Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, I. W. W. orator on the eve of her appearance in Paterson court for "inciting to personal violence"-a charge that grew out of her attempt to deliver a speech in a Paterson hall when the police did not want her to.

"It is free speech, that right guaranteed to every American by the constitution of our fathers, that Paterson seeks to abridge," she went on.

Exempting discrimination

You've no doubt never heard of Multnomah University. It's in Northeast Portland, on Glisan between 82nd and the 205.

Heck, I grew up in a suburb of Portland and I'd never heard of it until now.

Multnomah University is a non-denominational Christian university in Portland, Oregon. Multnomah consists of a college, graduate school, seminary and Degree Completion Program, and the university offers bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees.

MU's President G. Craig Williford wrote a letter to the US Department of Education in February saying that MU "affirms the dignity of all human beings."

Then he basically asked the Department of Ed to agree with him that transgender people deserve no compassion, because evidently they are not human.

The tiny, 79-year-old nondenominational university is one of a growing number of religious schools around the country asking the federal government for an exemption from anti-discrimination laws where gender identity is concerned.

Basically, the school's arguing its religious beliefs don't allow it to accept or employ transgender people, but that should have no bearing on the federal funding it happily accepts each year.

Hellraisers Journal: Report on Chicago Garment Workers Strike from International Socialist Review

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age.
Put on your fighting clothes.
-Mother Jones

Friday December 10, 1915
From the International Socialist Review: Report from Chicago Garment Strike
We Shall Fight Until We Win, ISR, Nov 1915, Chicago ACW Strike.png

The strike of the Chicago garment workers which began at the end of September is now in its eleventh week. The Amalgamated Clothing Workers remain firm in their intention to continue the battle to a successful conclusion. The Day Book is collecting funds to assist the strikers, and the Chicago Federation of Labor stands with the strikers despite the fact that A. C. W. of A. is not a member of the C. F of L. nor of the A. F. of L.

The December issue of the International Socialist Review includes an article by Leslie Marcy on the strike which tells of mass arrests of strikers at the hands of a corrupt police department, and dwindling strike funds with winter coming on fast. Yet, the strikers remain unified and determined to win a living wage and shorter hours.

Racist Pig Antonin Scalia Sticks His Hoof in His Mouth Again

“There are those who contend that it does not benefit African Americans to get them into the University of Texas where they do not do well, as opposed to having them go to a less-advanced school, a slower-track school, where they do well,” Antonin Scalia said.

“One of the [legal] briefs pointed out that most of the black scientists in this country don’t come from schools like the University of Texas. They come from lesser schools where they do not feel that they’re being pushed ahead in classes that are too fast for them.”

Foundations pledge $20 million to improve trans lives

A consortium of philanthropic foundations has pledged to contribute $20 million to transgender charities across the US and the world over the next five years in order to

ensure that all transgender people live in a world where they are recognized, valued, and supported by their families and in society.

In their press release the foundations point out that

  • Globally, more than 1,700 transgender murders have been reported in the past seven years alone and many cases have involved extreme violence and torture
  • In the United States, transgender people are twice as likely as other Americans to earn $10,000 a year or less
  • In the United States, 20% of transgender people have experienced homelessness at some point in their lives.
  • Hellraisers Journal: Mother Jones on Rich at Horse Show & Children on Breadline, One Block Away

    I want justice, no more, no less.
    If you'll give us justice we won't need charity.
    -Mother Jones

    Saturday December 9, 1905
    From the Albuquerque Evening Citizen:
    Rich of Gotham Frolic While Children Stand in Breadline One Block Away

    Mother Jones, Mar 11, 1905, AtR.png

    In an article which appeared yesterday in the Albuquerque Evening Citizen, Mother Jones describes the ostentatious display of wealth at a Madison Square Garden horse show while the children of the poor queued up for stale bread one block away.

    Mother describes the Rich Spectators:

    Hundreds of men and women, dressed in the height of what they called fashion, were seated in boxes, facing a circle, where well-bred horses, beautifully kept, beautifully fed, beautifully groomed and carefully sheltered from the cold blast of a November evening, were prancing about on the tan bark.

    The horse show was in progress. The great garden was hung with gay bunting, the air was oppressive with the perfume of cologne and flowers. Pecks of diamonds glistened at the ears and breasts of the women. Orchids, which I am told cost $5 apiece, were as common at the corsages of the society dames as are daisies in an uncultivated meadow in July.

    Mother describes the Hungry Children of the Slums:

    I walked a hundred paces east, toward the corner of 27th street, and Fourth avenue. A little army of children from the slums was drawn up before Cushman's bakery. Those children are there every night at 6 o'clock, drawn up in a line of misery. They came for free bread-stale bread, something to hold together the bodies and souls of brothers and sisters and fathers and mothers.

    Tribune reporter communicates with Student A

    The Chicago Tribune's Rex Huppke Has attempted to bring some sanity into the case of the Palatine transgender strudent.

    At the center of a suburban school board's dispute over allowing a transgender student access to the girls locker room there is, of course, a human being.

    A teenage human being. A female teenage human being who I believe would appreciate it if people would stop trying to tell her who she is and who she is not.

    That's the point, Rex.

    At bottom, they do not accept that we are human beings.

    A settlement was reached last week to allow this girl to use th girls locker room, but that didn't end the disagreement between the Department of Education and the school board, so the school board met again last night and reaffirmed the settlement.

    We believe this is the best course of action for this student while balancing the needs of all the teenage students in our district. The district will accommodate gender-identified locker room access for this student predicated on agreement to use the privacy measures provided.

    We are installing privacy curtains in our locker rooms, with the assurance that this student will use them.

    --school board President Mucia Burke

    WE NEVER FORGET: Fellow Worker & Rebel Songwriter Joe Hill, 100 Years Later

    Goodbye, Joe: You will live long in the hearts of the working class.
    Your songs will be sung wherever the workers toil,
    urging them to organize.
    -W. D. HAYWOOD


    Joe Hill, Self-Portrait at San Pedreo Sailors Mission.png
    Joe Hill, Self-Portrait at Sailors' Rest Mission in San Pedro, April 1911

    Joe Hill on the Writing of Songs to Fan the Flames of Discontent:

    A pamphlet, no matter how good, is never read more than once, but a song is learned by heart and repeated over and over; I maintain that if a person can put a few cold, common sense facts into a song, and dress them up in a cloak of humor to take the dryness off of them, he will succeed in reaching a great number of workers who are too unintelligent or too indifferent to read a pamphlet or an editorial on economic science.

    This is the last of the WE NEVER FORGET series honoring the memory of our Fellow Worker and Rebel Songwriter, Joe Hill. Celebrations of the life and songs of Joe Hill have been going on across the nation. Joe Hill's songs are still being sung one hundred years after the State of Utah attempted to silence him forever. New recordings have been made by many talented singers, so that now, even most of FW Joe Hill's lesser known songs are featured in one or more youtube videos.

    Joe Hill Centennial Celebration: Joe Hill's Great-Great Niece, Lovisa Samuelsson
    She is playing on the guitar of Utah Phillips which contains some of Joe Hill's ashes.

    More from Centennial Celebration:

    Dean of St. John's College, Cambridge re: Trans in the Church

    The Dean of St. John's College, Cambridge is the Reverend Duncan Dormor. He has published a new paper, Transgenderism and the Christian Church in the book The Legal Status of Transsexual and Transgender Persons

    His paper is discussed by Madeleine Davies at the Church Times.

    While a “growing number of Liberal Protestant denominations” are changing their policies, the advocacy of transgender groups and the reassessment of medical evidence may also produce a shift in conservative circles.

    --Rev'd Dormor

    The Dean concludes that

    Over the past 20 years, there has been a very significant increase in the number of liberal and mainstream Protestant denominations which welcome transsexual and transgender Christians as congregational members and affirm their ministry as leaders and teachers.


    There is always an important but...

    WE NEVER FORGET: The Love Songs of Joe Hill

    Organize! Oh, toilers, come organize your might;
    Then we'll sing one song of the workers' commonwealth,
    Full of beauty, full of love and health.
    -Joe Hill


    Hilda Erickson, about 1915.png
    Hilda Erickson, 1915

    There are three love songs written by Joe Hill that have survived to make their way into our Rebel Songwriter’s musical legacy. Two were found in his room when it was searched soon after his arrest in January of 1914. These two songs were subsequently published in The Salt Lake Tribune of June 21, 1914. The third was found years later in Stockholm, Sweden, during a search of the Joe Hill file of the Archives of the Royal Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    Confusion and Conclusions in Jackson Heights

    Transgender activists marched Tuesday to protest the savage beating of Kathy Sal in Jackson Heights last Sunday and the actions of the police and media since that took place.

    NYPD identified the victim as a man in their report, even though they were aware that she was known by a female first name. Television station WCBS deadnamed the victim (deadname: verb transitive, "identify a transgender person by their former name instead of their perferred name"). The Daily News and Newsday both misgendered the victim.

    Daily News headline: EXCLUSIVE: Crossdressing Queens man brutally attacked, suspect repeatedly smashed his head into a curb

    Newsday headline: NYPD: Cross-dressing man attacked in Jackson Heights, Queens

    WE NEVER FORGET: Joe Hill-Songs from the Little Red Songbook, Part Three

    Organize! Oh, toilers, come organize your might;
    Then we'll sing one song of the workers' commonwealth,
    Full of beauty, full of love and health.
    -Joe Hill


    Joe Hill, cartoon, %22And stay off! See! Sept 1911.png
    Cartoon drawing by Joe Hill, September 1911

    Fellow Workers, sit back and relax. It's time to honor the memory of Joe Hill by enjoying the songs that he left to us. For the second day, WE NEVER FORGET, The Labor Martyrs Project, features FW Hill's musical and lyrical legacy. We are presenting his songs in the order in which they were first published in the Little Red Songbooks of the Industrial Workers of the World. Today we offer Part 3 of this series.

    WE NEVER FORGET: Joe Hill-Songs from the Little Red Songbook, Part Two

    Organize! Oh, toilers, come organize your might;
    Then we'll sing one song of the workers' commonwealth,
    Full of beauty, full of love and health.
    -Joe Hill


    Joe Hill, cartoon, %22And stay off! See! Sept 1911.png
    Cartoon drawing by Joe Hill, September 1911

    Fellow Workers, sit back and relax. It's time to honor the memory of Joe Hill by enjoying the songs that he left to us. For the second day, WE NEVER FORGET, The Labor Martyrs Project, features FW Hill's musical and lyrical legacy. We are presenting his songs in the order in which they were first published in the Little Red Songbooks of the Industrial Workers of the World. Today we offer Part 2 of this series.