Friday, December 09, 2005

As American as Apple Pie

The idea of the suicide bomber as a weapon to redress real (or imagined) social injustices is much older than contemporary Muslim fanaticism. I’ve been reading “Murdered by Capitalism”-- A Memoir of 150 years of Life & Death on the American Left—by John Ross and ran across a reference to American Radical Lucy Parsons.

What caught my eye was this quotation from Ross’s book:

“’Learn the use of explosives,’ Lucy Parsons would preach. She exhorted the homeless to strap on a bomb and take out a Capitalist rather than throw themselves into the Chicago River in despair. ‘Every dirty, lousy tramp must encamp on the steps of the palaces and shoot, stab, or bomb the splendiferous elites who lounged therein.’ That’s verbatim from Lucy’s To Tramps!.”

A brief biography of Parsons can be found here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

And then there's a monument to Navaho women who used suicide as a weapon right here in Arizona.

At Canyon de Chelly, "Where two jumped off." A sandstone cliff overlook, seems a pair of US soliders were standing a little to close to the edge, and a pair of navajo women ran at them, grabed 'em and shoved.

If I remember right, it was about a 750 foot fall. Ouch!