(Editor’s note: This article was originally on the Libertynet website.)
That the whole human race is essentially one, and “of one blood GOD formed all nations,” has been attested both by Scripture and by science. The Righteous Government Department of FATHER DIVINE’S Peace Mission stands for and actually produces such an organization of society. It is founded upon the recognition of the Brotherhood of Man and the Fatherhood of GOD. Its Watchword is “Peace,” and it actually establishes Peace among the nations by eradicating prejudice, segregation and division from among the people and promoting the welfare of every living creature. From this angle we emphatically protest against the persecution of the Jews in Germany and all other countries, and the oppression of all minorities.
This Movement stands for and demands an equal opportunity for every individual without regard to race, creed or color, in accordance with the declaration made in the Constitution of the United States, that all men are created equal. It stands for the Life and Teaching of JESUS THE CHRIST exactly as HE lived it.
We realize that the division of society into political nations has led through the ages to continuous warfare and widespread poverty and distress. Therefore we do not identify ourselves with any nation or people, but we do endorse and support the Constitution of the United States as the Foundation for all governments to build upon. Under the Constitution of the United States, all men can worship GOD according to the dictates of their own conscience, and are guaranteed the right to individual liberty. This has been indicated by FATHER DIVINE as a Divinely established Order for the coming of the Kingdom of GOD on earth.
On every hand however tendencies can be seen that are undermining the individual liberty and equal rights guaranteed by the Constitution. They are creeping in behind prejudicial and discriminatory laws and ordinances; through the New Deal legislation, and through such laws that deprive the individual of the right to sell his goods for little or nothing if he chooses; through the compulsory insurance laws; the intimidation of workers by the labor unions; the laws imposing compulsory medical treatment, and the like. Concerning the preservation of the Constitution from these reactionary tendencies, FATHER has recently said:
“There is an issue today observed, that had not been observed so vividly as it is now. . ..Laws and by-laws of practically every kind have arisen through the prejudiced representatives of politics among the politicians, that are actually undermining the Constitution of our great country. Just think of laws that are not according to the Constitution, and brought about under the Constitution, which are in complete violation of the Constitution. If GOD would allow it to continue, they would eventually undermine the Constitution completely, and the government of our civilization would be a failure.”
INSURANCE IS AGAINST RELIGIOUS BELIEFS
On these issues we stand uncompromisingly for the rights of the common people, and FATHER’S Activities continue silently and unceasingly to eradicate such autocracy. Much of it has already been eliminated. HE is speaking continually in deeds and in actions more than in words, but at various times HE vividly stresses these issues to the masses in words. Concerning the compulsory insurance issue, HE has spoken emphatically. When one of HIS followers and her bondsman, operating a small industry, asked FATHER the question, Must we take out compensation insurance as four of us in the shop will have to sign up as partners? If we do not, they will not give us licenses. FATHER replied:
“We will have what we want to have just the same, if we have to get it just the same as the bootleggers and moonshiners do. If they do not give us the right to do what is right without compensation insurances, we will break the law. If they do not allow us to have licenses by the law without taking out insurances, we will run our industries without the law; we will break the law and do it anyhow without any licenses they just as well to know we will not take out any insurance compensations.
It is not justifiable to try to force someone against their religious belief, and our religious belief is that we should not take out insurances, and we will not do it. We are willing to get licenses as required by law for anything that is necessary to have licenses for, in a legal way, for the maintenance of the city government, but in regard to insurance compensations and such as that, we will not tolerate it, for it causes men to mistrust GOD, and is not according to our Teaching, and is in violation of our religious belief.
For this cause we take a stand in opposition to such, but we will get licenses if they choose to give us licenses according to the regulation of the law . . . for the maintenance of the city government and up-keep of the other necessities official duties, etcetera, for the city but not insurances to mistrust GOD and visualize disappointments, failures, accidents and disasters. As far as taking out insurances, we will not tolerate it, and I would tell the President so.
COMPULSORY MEDICAL TREATMENT TYRANNICAL
On another occasion, when the question of compulsory medical treatment was brought to an open issue by the authorities. FATHER addressed HIS audience thus:
According to the law of our state in which we are now living, it is a misdemeanor for a mother or a parent of children under the age of sixteen, not to have a physician, when the cases have been diagnosed as essential for a physical examination and for a physical operation. But I put forth a commandment as for a legal proceeding, to go in the statute books parallel with that which for parents sets up their obligation and a penalty for not having a physician.
If for any cause MY Spirit and MY Mind, and MY Impersonal Presence, cannot reach your afflicted or sick children or those that are concerned and heal them, you can have a physician and should have one. But remember, the physicians must guarantee the cure and guarantee the life and health of the individual. . . . This is a law within a law and I put it forth as a rebuttal to that of medical science. If they will try to bind mankind in their ruling, they must be subject to a ruling also.
The physicians and doctors must guarantee a cure, and a complete cure, and the lives of the individuals. If not, they will be held responsible, and sued for the death of the person or persons. Remember, this is Righteousness and justice and Truth, and we must have it. If we cannot get justice on the side of the common people, we will not give it to the officials. The law is not worth a dime, that is not giving equal rights on either side. The movement is right, but there is another side to it that has been overlooked, and I AM here for the common people. For the masses collectively and universally, I stand.
Thousands of people are homeless, thousands of them are motherless and fatherless, yea, even family less. It is indeed Wonderful! Whole families have died by operations. Whole families have been forced to have physicians and still they died, after the physicians and hospitals had taken all their money. It is indeed Wonderful!
When the physician takes charge of you physically, he must guarantee your health and complete happiness and cure from that affliction and all of the diseases for which they are treating you if GOD will permit. This is not confined nor bound to this state alone, but any state or country that makes it punishable by law for a person not to have a physician. Hence, this amendment I request for the statute books, as applicable to any person or persons that would be so involved, and to all that are concerned, wheresoever such laws are enacted.
We are unalterably opposed to such unjust laws and such infringements on the rights of the common people, and we ask all legislators and all right thinking people to cooperate with us in breaking them down.
UNIONS ARE OPPRESSIVE AND UNJUST
But there is a far more important issue by which the rights of millions are being undermined. We refer to the oppression and intimidation of workers by the labor unions. This we will not tolerate. The unjust and autocratic rule these officials and organizations have usurped over the masses, must cease.
Extracting hard-earned money from the workers in the form of heavy membership fees and giving them nothing in return; fining them for the slightest violation of union rules; attempting to regulate the personal affairs of individuals on the jobs; limiting union workers to so many hours a day and five days a week, yet giving them no assurance in return of even that amount of work such outrages must cease. A rule that does not work both ways cannot be endorsed. Righteousness, Truth and Justice must be observed by all. Speaking to thousands of HIS followers in New York City on this subject, FATHER DIVINE said Personally:
At this juncture I further wish to convey a thought to the public at large, for which I may have an occasion to call together about fifty thousand for the purpose of universally establishing same, and that is this: Practically all of the different unions, they think they have dominion over the people, and force them to work or force them not to work. and yet give them nothing. I have risen to put it down.
Every union in the United States of America must deal justly among the people, or else I will strike on them! just as they have been striking, I will call the laborers together to strike on the unions. It is indeed Wonderful! If you belong to a union, the unions must have a law to see that you get so much work, if you must pay your union dues. If they cannot and will not guarantee you five days’ work a week, why then you should withdraw from the unions. It is indeed Wonderful! That is the mystery-that is, if you desire to have the victory!
Why should the unions try to control the people and put them in slavery? They must deal justly, and it may undoubtedly be a battle on hand. In the places where they work in different factories, talking about the unions coming in and snatching men and women up from their work, when they are working, getting an honest living! It is Wonderful! I will call a strike on the unions, if they will not deal justly. That is what I will do! I will call a strike on the unions! They have oppressed the widow and the orphan and the hireling in his wages long enough. It is indeed Wonderful! Going under the name of unions, and will not guarantee work for the people.
COUNTRY BELONGS TO GOD NOT TO UNIONS
Every union that tries to bind the people and put them back in slavery and prohibit them from working when they are trying to get an honest living, if they do not pay their dues, how dare they put their hands on an individual! Now tell them I said keep their hands off! This country does not belong to the unions it belongs to GOD. It is indeed Wonderful! The very idea, talking about going into men’s shops where they have paid for, and paid taxes in this city, and pulling men and women out of the jobs. I will put a stop to it! Now tell them I said it, and I mean it!
Who are they that you should pay money to anyway? What have they to do with it? . . . Talking about a man cannot work unless he belongs to a union, and then joining the union, and they will not give him work to do! If the union does not guarantee five days to the week work, according to their regulations, according to other workers’ five day week, why I will withdraw you all from the unions. I mean what I AM talking about! . . .
We are going to have work! We are going to have work with or without the unions, and if the unions interfere, we will withdraw from the unions and we are going to work anyhow! That is what we are going to do! I hope there are some representing every union under the sound of MY Voice every union in the United States of America; I want them all to hear it.
If the labor unions that limit workers to five days a week will guarantee the workers five days’ work each week, and will guarantee to pay them what they are demanding from the employers when they call them out on strike, we will endorse them. Otherwise. we will not tolerate them.
In the cause of Righteousness, justice and Truth, we demand that such infringements on the Constitutional rights of the people be eliminated. We request the lawmakers to make laws and provide machinery to enforce the laws, to safeguard the rights of the common people, and we ask all law-abiding and right thinking persons to cooperate in observing all righteous and just laws.
We do not mean to say that men can be made righteous, just and truthful by law, for
‘It is not by power nor by might, but by my spirit, says the LORD.’
It was not the law that caused millions of people to return stolen goods, to pay up old bills, to become honest, competent and true and be law-abiding citizens when they were just the opposite before they knew FATHER DIVINE; it was HIS Spirit and Mind entering into them. However, the time is at hand for Righteousness, justice and Truth to be legalized and for those that are unrighteous, unjust and untrue and will not observe the righteousness of the law, to be designated as criminals Therefore, we demand the following:
Planks For Principles Section
1. Immediate repeal of all laws, ordinances, rules and regulations, local and national, in the United States and elsewhere that have been passed contrary to the spirit and meaning of the Constitution of the United States and its Amendments.
2. Immediate legislation in every state in the Union, and all other states and Countries, making it a Crime to discriminate in any public place against any individual on account of race, creed or color; abolishing all segregated neighborhoods in cities and towns, making it a crime for landlords or hotels to refuse tenants on such grounds; abolishing all segregated schools and colleges, and all segregated areas in churches, theaters, public conveyances, and other public places
3. Immediate destruction by both nations and individuals of all firearms and instruments of war within their borders, saving those that are used for law enforcement. (The true followers of FATHER DIVINE will refuse to fight their fellowman for any cause whatsoever.)
4. Legislation making it a crime for any newspaper, magazine, or other publication to use segregated or slang words referring to race, creed or color of any individual or group, or write abusively concerning any.
5. Repeal of all laws or ordinances providing for compulsory insurance, employers’ liability, public liability, or any other form of compulsory insurance
6. Abolishment of capital punishment in all states and countries.
7 Legislation in every state and country where laws or ordinances now exist requiring children or adults to submit to vaccinations, operations or treatment by physicians the new legislation to impose equally binding obligations upon the medical authorities and the physicians. From the moment the authorities or physicians take charge of the patient physically, they must guarantee a complete cure, and guarantee the life of the individual. or be liable for damages in the event of his death.
8. Legislation to abolish lynching and outlaw members of lynch mobs in all states and countries.
9. Legislation making it a violation of the law to withhold any kind or classification of work from any civil service employee on account of race, creed or color, provided he or she is qualified to do such work.
10. Immediate return to owners of all stolen goods or their equivalent, not only by individuals but by nations; this to include all territories taken by force from other nations.
11. Legislation making it a crime for any employer to discharge an employee, even though a subordinate, when even circumstantial evidence can be introduced to show that it was on account of race, creed or color.
12. Legislation establishing a maximum fee for all labor union memberships, causing them to accept all qualified applicants, and give them equal privileges regardless of race, creed, color or classification; also providing that any labor union which limits the hours and days of work per week, must guarantee at least that much work per week to its members, and if it calls a strike, pay its members while they are out of work, the full amount they are demanding from the employers; otherwise all obligations for dues must cease.
13. Immediate repeal of all laws and ordinances, governmental rules and regulations requiring individuals to designate themselves as being of a race, creed or color in signing any kind of papers; this to apply especially to immigration, citizenship, passport or legal papers.
14. Legislation making it unlawful for employers of skilled or unskilled, technical or professional help, to have different wage scales or salaries for what they term different races, creeds or colors, or to discriminate in any way in the hiring of help.