Graphic Witness: Hugo Gellert
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Hugo Gellert: Comrade Gulliver

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MIDGETS

I met a Negro poet, a comrade. He had traveled in the Soviet Union and knew a great deal about us. We spent an entire evening together, mostly walking about the lower part of the city. We passed through the worldfamous Wall Street, which has a cemetery at one end . . . and a river at the other. The sidewalk is so narrow we could barely walk two abreast, and we walked in the middle of the Street. The buildings are so tall that the street is in eternal shadow. The sky is a mere streak of light above.

Suddenly a man stepped out of a doorway and confronted us.

"What are you doing here" he asked gruffly.

"We are just walking."

"You'll have to walk back to where you came from. Can't walk here." Another man appeared to reinforce him. And we were escorted out.

"Watch-dogs of the House of Morgan," was the first thing my companion said when we were left alone. "I guess it needs watching," he continued bitterly. When the stock market crashed and the little fellows were sinking, the illusion was spread by the newspapers that the bankers were doing everything possible to help them out. And they did -- they helped them out of everything they had. And on top of that, when the banks failed and the middle class lost what it had managed to salvage from the market crash -- you never heard such rumblings in your life! The Government had to make a pretense of investigating banking methods.

"J. P. Morgan, the banker, was invited to an exceedingly polite hearing. In the course of this most dignified procedure, a circus midget was dumped into Mr. Morgan's lap. Detailed accounts of the incident filled the newspapers. It was a huge joke. All America laughed.

"But the joke was on the people. The banker's lap is always filled with midgets. These midgets spin intrigue and weave the noose. They sit on the Bench and turn the switch of the electric chair. And they are so small, that compared to them that little female midget, who publicly sat in Mr. Morgan's lap, is a giant . . ."

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