Page:Instead of a Book, Tucker.djvu/405

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
389
COMMUNISM.

The worthy national guard, incarnating in himself all the infamous solemnity of the laws which the monopolists had framed for the defence of their property, pointed with pride to the body stretched across the steps of the palace, and his comrades hailed him as an avenger of the law. Those placards of 1830 and 1848 will not be seen again upon the walls of insurgent cities. No robbery is possible where all belongs to all. "Take and do not waste, for it is all yours, and you will need it." But destroy without delay all that should be overthrown, the bastilles and the prisons, the forts turned against the cities and the unhealthy quarters in which you have so long breathed an atmosphere charged with poison. Install yourselves in the palaces and mansions, and make a bonfire of the piles of bricks and rotten wood of which the sinks in which you have lived were constructed. The instinct of destruction, so natural and so just because it is at the same time the instinct of renovation, will find ample room for satisfaction.

Nothing more incendiary than that was ever uttered in the Haymarket or on the lake front at Chicago by the most rabid agitator of that volcanic city. And if further proof were needed, it could readily be found in the columns of Kropotkine's paper, Le Révolté, in which he lately lauded to the skies as a legitmate act of propagandism the conduct of a member of his party named Duval, who, after a fashion externally indistinguishable from that of a burglar, broke into a house in Paris and plundered it, and who afterwards vindicated his course in court as deliberately entered upon in pursuance of his principles.

In view of these things, I submit that General Walker has no warrant whatever for referring to such men as Kropotkine as true Anarchists and "among the best men in the world," while in the same breath he declares (I use his words as reported in the Post) that "the mobs at the Haymarket were composed of pickpockets, housebreakers, and hoodlums," and that "the ruffians who are called Anarchists who formed the mob in the Haymarket in Chicago were not Anarchists." If Kropotkine is an Anarchist, then the Chicago men are Anarchists; if the Chicago men are not Anarchists, then Kropotkine is not an Anarchist. If the Chicago men are pickpockets and housebreakers, then Kropotkine is a pickpocket and housebreaker; if Kropotkine is not a pickpocket and housebreaker, then the Chicago men are not pickpockets and housebreakers. The truth is that neither of them are housebreakers in the ordinary sense of the term, but that both of them, in advocating and executing the measures that they do, however unjustifiable these may be from the standpoint of justice and reason, are actuated by the highest and most humane motives. And as to their Anarchism, neither of them

are Anarchists. For Anarchism means absolute liberty, noth-