Every believer in Socialism, in Communism, in Anarchism, and in every other ism, who thinks, or who has the faintest idea, that any permanent good can be done in the world by the use of violence should stop and study well the passions raised in his own heart by the Chicago executions. He will find there, among other things, and in varying quantities, rage, contempt, a strengthened desire to annihilate the State, as firm as belief as ever in his principles, and a fierce determination to continue in his work. Then he should stop again and study equally well the fact that it is these same passions which he arouses in the hearts of the State's people every time he says anything about using violence. After he has considered how little effect the State's violence has upon him and upon his belief in his principles and his advocacy thereof, he can spend a little time profitably in thinking what an equally small effect his talk about violence is to going to have on the people who constitute the State, who believe that in its American form it is the perfection of human political wisdom, and that in its continuance lies the only hope, not only of their safety, but also of benefit to the race. he can terrify them, and in their terror they can only strike back and hug their beliefs all the closer. What ought to be, if it has in it any truth whatever, and what must, if it is to have any root whatever, a struggle of intellectual forces and the final supremacy of that which shows the stronger reason and the greater utility, can become, by the use of violence, nothing but a brute battle for physical supremacy with a rabid determination on each side to exterminate the other.
And it happens that the probabilities of extermination are all on the wrong side.