Krasnow Scrapbooks -- February 02, 1916On the Russian Aid Society in Melrose Park, Ill.
This article brings to the attention of the Russian reader the struggle for power in the above mentioned society and the struggle between its reactionary and progressive members. It tells of the lull in this struggle after a period of excitement over the preposterous acts of the officers, who struck the names of the members from the rolls without giving any reason for such acts, and forcibly removed members from meetings in like fashion. But then a general meeting was held to elect officers, to report on the latter half of 1915, etc. (January 23, 1916).
The rule of this society was not to read at a general meeting the individual monthly report with all its petty details; this time, however, 2by request of the majority, these reports of the past months were read. The nonsense in which this leadership indulged was astounding. Here is one example: "At an affair one member gives his hat to the wardrobe, the worker there does not collect the dime for it, this member therefore, causes moral and material damage to the organization."
The matter is chewed over and argued for more than thirty minutes without arriving at a conclusion, yet nothing at all is said about $5 which disappeared from the buffet cash book, or that the affair given by the organization resulted in a $4.95 deficit. On the whole, as this meeting clearly demonstrated, the organization barely makes ends meet, has only $4 in the treasury, although it was fortunate not to have death benefits to pay, and of the sixty members only two received sick benefit for nine weeks each, $4 per week.
The writer laments the fate of this organization which "was conceived 3as an expression of democratic tendencies, turned republican later, but is now of purely monarchistic passions."
"Instead of marching towards a bright future, changing an autocratic system, we are now inducting just such a system into our organization," since "a resolution was adopted at this meeting that the chairman of the organization be vested with unlimited power, and is to preside over every meeting."
II D 1, I C, I E
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