The Charlotte News

Thursday, May 30, 1940


Site Ed. Note: Cash was opposed to the death penalty; thus "Chivalry" is more a reaction, rendered here partially tongue-in-cheek, to the reckless sentimentality of the South against which he rebelled and spoke out all of his life, whether it worked a fete for inconography of women or, similarly, alternately to mythologize and terrorize African-Americans--the terrorization of the latter, (and in different form, the former, too) occurring whenever one dared to violate the boundaries of the circumscribed myth laid out in rota(y)rian pluperfection. In a similar vain is "Life's Price", appearing May 15, 1940. But see also, for a full shape of Cash's opinion on the subject, the factually different scenario in "Grey Mouse", August 6, 1939.

Inevitably, we wonder what Cash would have stated editorially in 1995 when a twisted wretch of an individual drove her two children into the drink just a few miles--but many decades--from where Cash grew up, and then blamed the murder on two African-American males. In Cash's day, it might have worked that two black males, any two who happened to fit the bill, who weren't known about, or who were but were known as "trouble-makers", would be picked up, tried, convicted, and executed for the crime, just on the woman's blunt testimony. How many died this way? To the change of times, attitudes and beliefs, through generations who have seen too much tragedy surrounding racial issues, we must doff our hats, and most especially to the law enforcement personnel of Union County, S.C. who saw through the transparent tale and found the true culprit--one who wished to die, but not alone. Someone perhaps needed to impart to her simply that we all inevitably die alone.

Prior Quisling

The Career of an Early French Fifth Columnist

Fifth Columnists are not precisely a new experience for France. They were all over the place in 1914-18.

One of the most famous of them at the time, though he is now forgotten, was called Bolo--alias Bolo Pasha, who once figured on the front pages of the United States as well as those of France.

This Bolo was born at Marseilles in 1871. After 1900 he turned up in various parts of the world as a full-fledged adventurer and scoundrel. He married a number of times and served a term in French prison.

When the war broke out in August, 1914, he made his appearance in Switzerland, there renewed his acquaintance with the Khedive of Egypt who had sometime conferred the title of Pasha upon him for obscure services. Thereafter he moved about rapidly. One time he was in Spain. Another in Egypt. Another in Italy. Still another in Paris. In 1917 he was in the United States.

But now the Painlevé Cabinet had fallen before the blistering onslaught of Clemenceau--partly on the score of charges concerning "Boloism," a term invented by Le Tigre to cover the Trojan Horses of the time. Promptly M. Bolo found himself under arrest. For a moment it looked as if he would win clear. Then the United States, which had been asked by Clemenceau to investigate his activities here, appeared with damning evidence. And thereafter it turned up thick and fast.

Altogether, it appeared, he had received about $8,000,000 from the German Government, to pay for treason. Among others, the trail led to a French Senator named Humbert who had sold part of the Paris Journal to Germans, turned defeatist, called for surrender. And Joseph Caillaux.

In the opening days of 1914 Caillaux had been Premiere of France. He became involved in a dispute with Calmette, the editor of Le Figaro. One day in March Madame Caillaux walked into Calmette's office, shot him dead. Caillaux resigned.

On an April morning in 1918, M. Bolo died in front of a white-washed wall at Vincennes. Caillaux went to a French prison for three years, was exiled for five years after his release. But in 1925 he went back and, by one of those astonishing overturns which can only happen in French politics, was actually made Minister of Finance in the Cabinet in that year, and again in 1926.


Columbia Verdict Is Tender Of Murdering Ladies

Chivalry was working on all six cylinders in gallant old South Carolina Tuesday when the jury sat down to considering the case of Mrs. May Walker Burleson, and fetched in a verdict of manslaughter with recommendation for mercy.

Mrs. Burleson, the wife of an army colonel, was divorced by her husband some years ago. Afterward, the colonel married another woman. Last March the divorced Mrs. Burleson, who had been living in Texas, suddenly took train for Columbia, where the colonel and his second wife resided. Arriving, she found her way to a restaurant where the second Mrs. Burleson usually dined. There, according to the undisputed testimony, she asked the cashier to point out the second Mrs. Burleson to her. Then she walked over, shot the lady in the back, marched around and shot her again from the front.

If that is manslaughter, as the law defines it, we are utterly incapable of logic. The law says that manslaughter is the unlawful killing of a human being without malice expressed or implied.

What we had here, obviously, was cold-blooded, premeditated murder, for which the penalty in South Carolina is supposed to be the death sentence. Quite possibly the woman was insane, but the court held otherwise. Moreover, that would in no case justify a manslaughter verdict, since it is the law's position that no insane person can be held guilty of either murder or manslaughter. As for mitigating moral circumstances, they look dubious enough in view of the time which had elapsed. And there again, the law gives no latitude--holds rightly that there are no circumstances which justify premeditated murder.

In short, it is impossible to find an excuse for this verdict, save of course in the kind of chivalry which is so tender of womanhood that it feels it necessary to assure discarded wives with itchy trigger fingers that they may go right ahead without any fear of the hot seat.


Reynolds Aims His Fire at The Whole Crowd of Aliens

South Carolina, whose Legislature is in session about half the time, has taken notice of the Fifth Columnists and passed a law. That is, the House passed a bill and sent it to the Senate.

Under this bill the State would require aliens to register and would punish spying and other conspiratorial activity. And how much more sensible and discriminating that is than the bill which the United States Senate passed this week, containing the amendments submitted by Bob Reynolds.

There is no mistaking the fact that Bob's amendments were not designed primarily to keep down Fifth Column activities but to use the war scare to vent his cherished spite against aliens. That is shown by his proposal to limit the aliens which may be employed in any one interstate industry to ten per cent of its total employees.

Did he make any distinction between aliens in process of Americanization and the fuzzy-bearded, heiling, sinister kind? He did not. He lumped all aliens together, and the irony of it is that under his bill it could easily turn out that the Fifth Columnists could keep their jobs while the potential citizens among them were losing theirs.

Register aliens, to be sure, that is only sensible. Put the conspirators or suspected conspirators among them where they can do no harm. But don't create by wholesale a class of refugees in America without regard to their individual character or patriotism. That would be both cruel and senseless.

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