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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

Sun., Dec. 1, 2013

From our archives, 100 years ago

Joseph Ettor, a prominent leader of the Industrial Workers of the World (Wobblies), delivered a fire-breathing speech before a crowd of 1,000 in Spokane’s Turner Hall. Among his provocative statements:

• Patriotic songs, including “The Star-Spangled Banner,” are songs for “fools.”

• “The only “real songs of the people” are “The Red Flag” and the “Marseillaise.”

• The police are “blue-coated, brass-button anarchists.”

• There is no such thing as justice in court, “unless you buy it.”

• There are 3.5 million children employed in American mills, factories and sweatshops, “simply because their blood and lives can be bought for less than those of their fathers.”

Ettor was one of the leaders in Spokane’s Free Speech Fight four years earlier, and was touring the country in an attempt to “create a concerted sentiment” in favor of William Haywood and Gurley Flynn, both well-known Wobbly figures who were awaiting trial in New Jersey.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1913: The first drive-in automobile service station, built by Gulf Refining Co., opened in Pittsburgh.

1941: Japan’s Emperor Hirohito approved waging war against the United States, Britain and the Netherlands.

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