Sheep magazine Archive 2: issues 10-17

AlfRodchenko

Lefty online magazine: issue 10, May 2016 to issue 17, November 2016

US ELECTIONS:

BEFORE BERNIE SANDERS

CAME EUGENE DEBS

Bernie Sanders is not the first person to define themselves as a

socialist and make a big electoral impact in the US.

Charlie Kimber looks at Eugene Debs and Upton Sinclair

Eugene Debs, was jailed twice – once for leading a strike, once for speaking

out against imperialist war. He was the most successful socialist to stand for

US president, winning 6 percent of the national vote in 1912 and nearly a

million votes in 1920 when he was in prison.

21

Debs was a revolutionary who used elections to develop a political movement

based on the struggles of working people. After the 1917 Russian Revolution

he declared, “From the top of my head to the soles of my shoes, I am a

Bolshevik.”

Born in 1855 to migrant parents, he left school at 14 and worked on the railways. He

was active in the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen union and became an

official. In 1885 he was elected to the Indiana state assembly as a Democrat. Debs’

experience in 1888 of a bitter strike broken by scabbing and repression convinced

him of the need for a union that reached out to “unskilled” workers.

MAY DAY 2016

More magazines by this user
Similar magazines