149. MOTHER JONES: Sit down and read
RELATED COMIC: Books Are Awesome by Carl Sagan
Mary Harris “Mother” Jones (1837-1930) was an activist and union organiser who led strikes and helped establish reforms for miners throughout America in the early 20th century. She was known for her toughness, leadership and wit.
As quoted by miner Fred Mooney, from the book Mother Jones – The Miners’ Angel by Dale Fetherling:
“She could permeate a group of strikers with more fight than could any living human being. She fired them with enthusiasm, she burned them with criticism then cried with them because of their abuses. The miners loved, worshipped, and adored her. And well they might, because there was no night too dark, no danger too great for her to face, if in her judgement “her boys” needed her. She called them her boys, she chastised them for their cowardice, she criticized them for their ignorance. She said to them, “Get you some books and go into the shade while you are striking. Sit down and read. Educate yourself for the coming conflicts.”
Jones’ most famous quote is still used by union workers today: “Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living.”
– It took me over two years, but I finally gave my two nieces starring roles in a comic. Angie (8) and Talia (5) are already voracious readers (Angie is hooked on Tintin at the moment) and I’m sure they’ll kick AUTHORITY, IGNORANCE and PREJUDICE’s butts as they grow older.
– Hope you all have a fun and safe Easter holiday weekend!