Peaceable Boycotting

Chester A. Reed
1894 The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science  
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more » ... out Early Journal Content at http://about.jstor.org/participate--jstor/individuals/early-journal--content. JSTOR is a digital library of academic journals, books, and primary source objects. JSTOR helps people discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content through a powerful research and teaching platform, and preserves this content for future generations. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not--for--profit organization that also includes Ithaka S+R and Portico. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org. PEACEABLE BOYCOTTING. "Nor is it the province of judges to mould and stretch the law of conspiracy in order to keep pace with the calculation of political economy." (Bowen, L. J., in Mogul S. S. Co. vs. McGregor et als. 23 Q. B. D. 620, I889.) " It is difficult to see how, in a case of a conflict of interest, it is possible to separate the objects of benefiting yourself and injuring your antagonist. Every strike is in the nature of an act of war. Gain on one side implies loss on the other, and to say it is lawful to combine to protect your own interest but unlawful to combine to injure your antagonist, is taking away with one hand a right given by the other." (Stephen's "History of Criminal Law of England," vol. iii, p. 218.) The bill in equity brought in March, 1893, in the United States Circuit Court for the Northern District of Ohio by the Toledo, Ann Arbor and North Michigan Railway Company against the Pennsylvania Company, other connecting lines and P. M. Arthur, Chief Executive of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, was the means of deciding adversely to labor certain propositions of importance in the pending struggle between labor and capital. There being a strike of the engineers on the Ann Arbor, the engineers of eight connecting lines (which lines were joined as defendants in the bill) undertook by concerted action, as members of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, to which all belonged, to assist the strikers. The chief executive officer of the Brotherhood, P. M. Arthur, being authorized by a by-law of the organization to take this course when circumstances seemed to him to make it advisable, notified the superintendents of the eight connecting lines that the engineers on their lines would quit work if required to handle Ann Arbor freight; the immediate purpose being to compel these lines to reject Ann Arbor freight to the loss of the Ann Arbor, and the ultimate purpose of course being to enable the Ann Arbor strikers to prevail in their contest with the railroads. There was no malice in fact, no violence, no fraud. This bill was then brought and it was alleged therein that the conduct of the engineers of the connecting lines and of Mr. Arthur was a violation of the Interstate Commerce Act.* By this act all railroads doing an interstate business are required to grant to all connecting lines equal facilities without discrimination, and a penalty is added against railroads, or persons within their employ, who violate any of the provisions of the act. The court was therefore asked to enjoin the employes on the connecting lines from discriminating against the Ann Arbor by refusing to handle its freight, and to enjoin Mr. Arthur from promulgating or keeping in force any order requiring or commanding such discrimination of the employes. The court granted the injunction as prayed for and explained its views at length in two opinions,t that of Judge Taft being especially able and clear. Any intention of compelling an employe to remain in his employment is disclaimed. He may quit if he thinks best, although to do so is a violation of his contract, and the other party must be left to his suit for damages. But so long as the employe remains in his employment, the law can compel him to do his whole duty; and part of his duty, when employed on an interstate line, is to grant equal facilities to connecting lines. By refusing to do this he subjects himself to the penalty mentioned above, and when his refusal is in concert with others in order by this unexpected act to compel the railroad which employs them to discriminate against other lines, he is guilty of a criminal conspiracy, and not only that, but of a conspiracy to violate a law of the United States, which makes him liable to a further and more severe penalty. By promulgating the order to quit, Mr. Arthur aids and abets the criminal discrimination of the men, as well as being similarly engaged with them in a conspiracy to procure the officials of the connecting lines to violate the act. Mr. Arthur and the men are moreover civilly liable to the * Act of February 4, x887. t Fed. Rep., May 9, 1893, pp. 730 and 746. 29 30 ANNALS OF THE AMERICAN ACADEMY.
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