IT would be well for statesmen, and political and social economists, and bankers, and capitalists, and directors of great moneyed corporations, to ask themselves why these men have risen against the present state and system of civilization as represented by the industrial interests of which they have been a part. It would be well for labor agitators, and master workmen, and workingmen, to ask themselves why they are in insurrection against the State, destroying the property upon the use of which they themselves, and others, are dependent, and threatening the peace of society. Is there any sufficient civil, social, or economic reason for this? There is not. From that point of view no sufficient cause can be affirmed. The cause arises farther back than civil, social or economic relations, it is in mutual, moral responsibilities which have been ignored, until not this reign of terror is developing. It is the natural and necessary result of mutual error and mutual wrong. Both parties are at fault.
THE established order of society is not at fault. The system of government is not at fault. The food supply is not insufficient. There is no stringency of currency. The origin of the whole matter is in the hearts of men. Both parties not only desire, but are determined to do by others as they would not be done by. The labor world, the financial world, the political world, the social world, the religious world, all are dominated at this time by that unrighteous spirit. Capital uses relentlessly the silent power of its inexorable tyranny to accomplish selfish ends. Labor is more than ready to appeal to brute force and violence to reach its own coveted purpose.
The Church, whose duty it should be to teach these members of the same body, which are antagonizing each other to their own destruction, that they should do to each other as they would be done by, is itself committed to the same unrighteous methods, and is by this not only disqualified from giving effective advice and counsel, but has even become an evil example. The Church makes use of unjust laws to attain its purposes. It does not hesitate to use moral compulsion to obtain legal action to effect injustice and to obtain the enactment of more extended statutes in the same line. It does not hesitate to use the illegal and unchristian boycott to further its purposes. It does not hesitate to influence Congress by fraudulent and repeated petitions, and to attempt to intimidate the representatives of the people. Its accredited mouth pieces, from the platform and the pulpit, do not hesitate to suggest the same resort to violence as that adopted by the Amalgamated Association and the Switchmen’s Union, if their claims are not granted. All are at fault. The origin of this is in the hearts of men. The remedy is in the gospel, pure and undefiled, nothing less.
NOW that the Government of the United States has invaded the domain of religious controversy it will dominate it; inasmuch as it has assumed jurisdiction to settle religious questions by act of Congress and by Supreme Court decisions it will surely never yield that jurisdiction. When Constantine had made Rome “Christian” it was only natural that he should seek an authoritative definition of Christianity; and when the Council of Nicea had given that definition in the shape of the creed which it adopted, nothing was more natural than that the emperor should require his subjects to subscribe to it. The Government of the United States has entered upon the same evil course. The Supreme Court has declared the Nation to be Christian. Congress has already taken sides in a religious controversy, and to be consistent must not the Government use all the power at its command to enforce that decision and to uphold the Sunday-Sabbath cause which it has espoused? A United States senator has well said, “The domain which government invades it dominates; the jurisdiction it takes it keeps.” This is true whatever the domain or the jurisdiction; and it always has been true.