On an Imprisoned Presidential Candidate

What if I told you about a man who ran for the office of President of the United States from his jail cell?

And what if I told you that this man said he was wrongly imprisoned despite the fact that he supposedly “broke laws” that were “unjust” in the first place?

What if I said that this man had been sentenced to ten years in prison for urging a crowd to anarchy and for whipping them into a frenzy to launch an attack against the US Government?

What if I told you that this man’s speeches were filled with rhetoric where he told crowds that the rich and powerful were out to get them, that the rich were attacking them by attacking him?

And what if I said the man used the charges against him to raise funds that financed his campaign and that most of his raised money came from the poorest people in America?

And what if this man promised that, if he were elected president, that he would instantly pardon himself?

And what if he promised the poorest people of America that, if they supported him, that no longer would they be making products for the wealthy elite, and no longer would they be fighting the wars of the wealthy elite, and no longer would American dollars be spent on the international pet projects of the wealthy elite?

Well, what if I said this man ran for president in ’20…and lost?

Would you like to guess who this man might be?

Make that 1920.

His name was Eugene V. Debs, and, while serving a 10-year sentence for sedition, he won 1,000,000 votes for president while running as the candidate of the Socialist Party of America.


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