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[录入] 1918年德布斯《在听取判决前的演说》

1918年德布斯《在听取判决前的演说》

1918年德布斯《在听取判决前的演说》


说明
:尤金•维克多•德布斯(1855—1926年),“工运大师”,美国早期铁路工会的创始人。1918年因为发表反对美国参战的演说而被政府以“反间谍法”判处十年徒刑。本文是他在法官宣判之前发表的演说。这份演说有多个中译本,奇怪的是,没有一个译本是完整的,尽管演说并不长。某些译本有许多明显错误。以下演说词集合了多个中译本中的译文,与所附的英文版对照,内容已完整一致,但“法官先生,我被指控为士兵的敌人”这两段,在后附的英文版当中反而不见原文,待查。


尤金•维克多•德布斯
1918年9月14日于俄亥俄州克利夫兰


  尊敬的法官先生,若干年以前,我发现我跟所有的生物都是血肉相连的。我还断定,我不比地球上最卑贱者优越一分一毫。只要有一个下层阶级,我就是其中一员;只要有犯罪者,我就是其中一分子;只要监狱里有一个犯人,我也就不是自由人。我当时是这么说,现在也还是这么说。
  我在法庭上听到了支持这一起诉和为之辩护的所有证词,但我的想法始终如一。在我看来,间谍法是与民主原则和自由制度的精神公然对抗的蛮横法令……

  【上一段的另一译本】如果判决我的法律是一种好的法律,那就没有理由不对我宣判。我听到法庭上所说的一切都支持这种法律,都证明这种法律有理,但是我的思想始终没有改变。我把它看作是专制暴君的法令,它公然同民主原则及自由制度精神相对立。
  阁下,我在法庭上已经说过,我对我们现在的社会制度持反对态度;我坚信我们有必要对它进行彻底的改变,只不过,有可能的话,最好能采用平和有序的方法来完成。

  今天上午在这里站着,我想起了我的童年。我十四岁进一家铁路工厂做工,十六岁当了货运机车的司炉工。那时候的种种艰苦和匮乏我记忆犹新,从那时起直到现在,我的心一直始终和工人阶级在一起。我早就可以进国会,可我宁愿坐班房……
  此时此刻,我想到了工厂里、矿井中、铁道上的工人,想到了为区区几文薪水所迫、为艰难度日而出卖劳动力的妇女,想到了在这种制度下被剥夺了童年的童工们,他们小小年纪就落入了贪婪之神无情的手掌,被塞进地牢般的厂房,去喂饱那些魔鬼般的机器,而他们自己却忍饥挨饿,遭受身心摧残。我看到,他们发育不良,疾病缠身。他们幼小的生命惨遭践踏,因为在我们二十世纪基督教文明的全盛时期,金钱还是比儿童的血肉重要得多。事实上,今天,黄金就是上帝,无情地统帅着人类一切事务。
  我们这个得天独厚的国家,有最肥沃的辽阔土地,有用之不竭的富饶资源,有世界上最神奇的生产机器,还有千百万积极肯干的工人急于去操作那些机器,为人民大众生产出充足的物资。还有无数人陷于贫困,一辈子一刻不停地苦苦挣扎,直到死亡来解脱他们,让他们饱受痛苦的心脏停止跳动,让这些不幸的受害者进入没有梦境的睡乡。但这一切不是万能的上帝的错,不能将这归罪于自然,而完全是我们这套畸形发展的社会制度造成的。为了劳苦大众,为了整个人类的更大利益,这个制度应该予以废除……
  阁下,我跟所有的社会党人一样,认为本国工业应归国家所有,为国家所管。我跟所有社会党人一样,认为一切共同需要、共同使用的东西都应共同占有。我们社会生活的基础——工业,不应是少数人的私有财产,不应只为这些人制造财富,而应该是全体人民的共同财产,为所有人的利益以民主方式加以管理……
  我反对让社会制度允许一个人什么有益的事都不做而积累起亿万财富,而千百万男男女女却即使是日日辛劳也还是只能勉强糊口。
  这样的局面是长不了的。我对此已表示了抗议。我知道我的力量是微薄的。所喜我并非孤军作战。有成千上万的人像我一样已经认识到,要真正享受文明生活的好处,就必须首先在互相合作的基础上重新组织社会。我们已经为此发起了一场席卷全球的伟大经济和政治运动。
  今天有六千多万社会党人,不论其国籍、种族、信仰、肤色、性别如何,都忠实地、全心全意地投身于这个事业。他们为共同的事业,以旺盛的精力宣传着新的社会秩序。他们在等待,在观察,满怀着希望日以继夜地工作。他们虽然还是少数,但已经学会了怎样耐心地等待时机。他们感觉到,其实他们完全明白,尽管有阻力、有迫害,但是解放的福音广为传播的时候已经到了,少数将成为胜利的多数,并将在一举掌握政权之后,发动有史以来最伟大的社会和经济变革。
  到了那一天,我们将实现世界大同,所有国家都合作无间。

  法官先生,我被指控为士兵的敌人。我希望,当我说我相信士兵们不会有比我更加同情他们的朋友,我决不是往自己脸上贴金。要是我能够实现自己的道路,士兵也不会存在了。但是,法官先生,我认识到,他们正在作出牺牲。我想念他们,我同情他们,我关心他们。这就是为什么我用极其微薄的力量一直在进行工作的理由之一。这种工作就是要在我国造成一种能够同士兵们在过去和现在所做的牺牲完全相称的状况。
  法官先生,我想对我的辩护律师表示感谢。他们不仅用卓越的法律才能,而且用他们个人的感情和忠诚为我辩护。对此我深有感受,并且永远不会忘怀。

  阁下,我不求宽大,也不求豁免。我知道最终公理必胜。对于贪婪和剥削势力与工业自由和社会正义的新兴力量之间的斗争,我从来也没有过这样深刻的理解。
  我已经看到了人类美好日子的曙光。人民正在觉醒,到时候他们会,也必须得到他们应得的一切……

  航行在热带海洋上的水手为了摆脱单调枯燥的天文钟而寻找安慰,便把目光转向在颠簸飘摇的大洋上空红光熠熠的南十字星座。当午夜降临,南十字星开始下沉,于是各种旋转的天体都改变了自己的方位。全能的上帝用星星作为指针在宇宙大钟的钟面上标志着时间的转换。尽管没有钟声传报喜讯,但瞭望员却知道午夜正在消逝——欣慰和安宁就在眼前。
  愿世界各地的人民都鼓起勇气和希望,因为十字星座正在下沉,午夜正在消逝,欢乐也正在伴随黎明同时降临。
  法官先生,我感谢您,我感谢法庭上所有给予我礼遇和好意的人,对此我将永远不会忘却。

  现在可以对我宣布判决了。



E. V. DebsStatement to the CourtUpon Being Convicted of Violating the Sedition ActDelivered: September 18, 1918

First Published: 1918
Source: Court Stenogropher
Online Version: E.V. Debs Internet Archive, 2001
Transcribed/HTML Markup: John Metz for the Illinois Socialist Party Debs Archive & David Walters for the Marxists Internet Archive Debs Archive


September 18, 1918


Your Honor, years ago I recognized my kinship with all living beings, and I made up my mind that I was not one bit better than the meanest on earth. I said then, and I say now, that while there is a lower class, I am in it, and while there is a criminal element I am of it, and while there is a soul in prison, I am not free.


I listened to all that was said in this court in support and justification of this prosecution, but my mind remains unchanged. I look upon the Espionage Law as a despotic enactment in flagrant conflict with democratic principles and with the spirit of free institutions…


Your Honor, I have stated in this court that I am opposed to the social system in which we live; that I believe in a fundamental change—but if possible by peaceable and orderly means…

Standing here this morning, I recall my boyhood. At fourteen I went to work in a railroad shop; at sixteen I was firing a freight engine on a railroad. I remember all the hardships and privations of that earlier day, and from that time until now my heart has been with the working class. I could have been in Congress long ago. I have preferred to go to prison…


I am thinking this morning of the men in the mills and the factories; of the men in the mines and on the railroads. I am thinking of the women who for a paltry wage are compelled to work out their barren lives; of the little children who in this system are robbed of their childhood and in their tender years are seized in the remorseless grasp of Mammon and forced into the industrial dungeons, there to feed the monster machines while they themselves are being starved and stunted, body and soul. I see them dwarfed and diseased and their little lives broken and blasted because in this high noon of Christian civilization money is still so much more important than the flesh and blood of childhood. In very truth gold is god today and rules with pitiless sway in the affairs of men.


In this country—the most favored beneath the bending skies—we have vast areas of the richest and most fertile soil, material resources in inexhaustible abundance, the most marvelous productive machinery on earth, and millions of eager workers ready to apply their labor to that machinery to produce in abundance for every man, woman, and child—and if there are still vast numbers of our people who are the victims of poverty and whose lives are an unceasing struggle all the way from youth to old age, until at last death comes to their rescue and lulls these hapless victims to dreamless sleep, it is not the fault of the Almighty: it cannot be charged to nature, but it is due entirely to the outgrown social system in which we live that ought to be abolished not only in the interest of the toiling masses but in the higher interest of all humanity…


I believe, Your Honor, in common with all Socialists, that this nation ought to own and control its own industries. I believe, as all Socialists do, that all things that are jointly needed and used ought to be jointly owned—that industry, the basis of our social life, instead of being the private property of a few and operated for their enrichment, ought to be the common property of all, democratically administered in the interest of all…


I am opposing a social order in which it is possible for one man who does absolutely nothing that is useful to amass a fortune of hundreds of millions of dollars, while millions of men and women who work all the days of their lives secure barely enough for a wretched existence.


This order of things cannot always endure. I have registered my protest against it. I recognize the feebleness of my effort, but, fortunately, I am not alone. There are multiplied thousands of others who, like myself, have come to realize that before we may truly enjoy the blessings of civilized life, we must reorganize society upon a mutual and cooperative basis; and to this end we have organized a great economic and political movement that spreads over the face of all the earth.


There are today upwards of sixty millions of Socialists, loyal, devoted adherents to this cause, regardless of nationality, race, creed, color, or sex. They are all making common cause. They are spreading with tireless energy the propaganda of the new social order. They are waiting, watching, and working hopefully through all the hours of the day and the night. They are still in a minority. But they have learned how to be patient and to bide their time. The feel—they know, indeed—that the time is coming, in spite of all opposition, all persecution, when this emancipating gospel will spread among all the peoples, and when this minority will become the triumphant majority and, sweeping into power, inaugurate the greates social and economic change in history.


In that day we shall have the universal commonwealth—the harmonious cooperation of every nation with every other nation on earth…


Your Honor, I ask no mercy and I plead for no immunity. I realize that finally the right must prevail. I never so clearly comprehended as now the great struggle between the powers of greed and exploitation on the one hand and upon the other the rising hosts of industrial freedom and social justice.


I can see the dawn of the better day for humanity. The people are awakening. In due time they will and must come to their own.


When the mariner, sailing over tropic seas, looks for relief from his weary watch, he turns his eyes toward the southern cross, burning luridly above the tempest-vexed ocean. As the midnight approaches, the southern cross begins to bend, the whirling worlds change their places, and with starry finger-points the Almighty marks the passage of time upon the dial of the universe, and though no bell may beat the glad tidings, the lookout knows that the midnight is passing and that relief and rest are close at hand. Let the people everywhere take heart of hope, for the cross is bending, the midnight is passing, and joy cometh with the morning.



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