of cost; and though capital's faintest whisper should sound louder in official ears than labor's mighty voice, let that voice give all its power to protest loud and long. Only so shall we have no error to regret.
Above all, we must not fail to learn the lesson of these troublous days. In all that Liberty has had to say about this sorry business from the first, the effort has been to make plain the folly of supposing the State to be at all concerned about justice. More than ever am I convinced of this after reading the long opinion of the Illinois judges. Their very able summary of the testimony offered at the trial confirms me in the opinion that under the law as it stands there was a sufficiency of evidence to convict the prisoners of murder. For it takes but precious little. For aught that I can see, the State's attorney has it in his power to hang thousands upon thousands of innocent citizens of Chicago as easily as he will hang the seven victims now under sentence. It is the infernal conspiracy law itself which is responsible for this iniquity; and this law, which passes almost without question, shows how inevitably the State becomes an instrument of tyranny. This monster cannot be reformed; it must be killed. But how? Not by dynamite; that will not harm it. How, then? By light? It thrives in the darkness of its victims' ignorance; it and they must be flooded with the light of liberty. If the seven must die, such must be the lesson of their death.
CONVICTED FOR THEIR OPINIONS.
[Liberty, September 24, 1887.]
The judges of the supreme court of Illinois are in accord with the Communists of Illinois upon at least one point. They say in their opinion: "Law and government cannot be abolished without revolution, bloodshed, and murder." Despite the sanction which the Communists thus receive from so exalted a quarter, Anarchists will continue to hold the contrary opinion, and to maintain that only under very rare and extreme circumstances is bloodshed essential to the abolition of government, that under other circumstances it can be no more than incidental to it, and that it will not be even that when there is a little more intelligence abroad regarding the principle of liberty, which, revolution or no revolution, must
in any event be the chief factor in the abolition of govern-