A little imagination can go a long way. Just when it seemed that the issue of trade union democracy was to be smothered by the fatuity of the CIO-AFL Ethical Practices Committee, and general indifference, Herman Benson came along with a creative idea that has done much to regenerate an interest in democracy in the labor movement. More precisely, what he has done is give heart to those rank and filers and local leaders—the “Jimmy Higgins’s” on whom the vitality of the unions must ultimately rest— who are committed union men, and who as committed union men believe that freedom cannot be sacrificed without sacrificing the union as well.
Assisted by a few friends like Jim Peck, one of CORE’s leaders, and an occasional dollar bill from others, Benson got the idea—so simple that its bigness is only now becoming apparent to more than a few—that local reformers could hang on and fight better if they were assured of moral, financial, and legal support. ...
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