Daniel DeLeon

The Daily People
April 6, 1906

Y esterday’s dispatches from the coal-strike region of Wilkes-Barre, Pa. tell the tale of some shots having been fired from the direction of East Boston, a mining settlement.

The dispatches proceed to say that Sergeant Dimon and ten troopers immediately thereupon proceeded to”do what? To arrest individual delinquents for some violation of the law? No”they started a house-to-house search for weapons.

The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States contains this clause” “the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed"; the Fourth Amendment provides as follows: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” These are integral portions of the organic law of the land.

And yet, without a warrant properly issued, describing the place to be searched or the persons and things to be seized, Sergeant Dimon undertakes an indiscriminate house-to-house search for weapons”that is, of articles the individual is guaranteed the right to keep and bear as part of his sovereign rights!

Lieutenant McClelland of the Colorado State Militia said: “To hell with the Constitution!” and he proceeded to trample it under foot; Sergeant Dimon of Pennsylvania does the same thing without saying it, and the capitalist press shouts “Hurrah!””all to the greater glory of the “Law.”

The dispatches proceed to say that the people of that mining settlement, upon finding their homes invaded by Sergeant Dimon, ran into the woods with their weapons, whereupon the sergeant desisted from further searching, but issued the threat:

“If there is any more shooting during the night, I will return with my troopers in the morning and burn down the village.”

And the capitalist press jubilantly adds:

“This was no idle threat, for the coal company owns the houses, and has authorized the troopers to burn them.”

In other words, the ownership of a house, rented to a tenant, invests the owner with the right to burn that house down any time during the lease, and, along with the house, the belongings of the tenant!

Why not?!

Is not the Constitution sent to hell by word of mouth and by act on the part of the capitalist class? Is not anarchy the device of our modern rulers and their imitators? Live we not in the days when “order” is the mask for disorder, “sanctity of the family” the mask for lechery, “freedom” the mask for enslavement, “truth” the mask for falsehood, “godliness” the mask for bestiality, “honor” the mask for calumny?

Why should not the houses of the working class be searched for the arms that the Constitution guarantees them the right to keep? Why should not their belongings be burnt down at the behest of the pirate class of capitalism?

Why not!? Or until when!?