The Significance of the Limitation of Armaments Conference, December 12, 1921 (summary)



Jane Addams Speaks on Washington Conference in Schenley High School.


Jane Addams of Hull House, Chicago, speaking on the subject of “The Significance of the ‘Limitation of Armaments’ Conference,” moved a crowd of more than 1,600 people, mostly women, in the Schenley High School last night, to pass unanimously resolutions urging “the utmost limitation of armament possible at this time.” This telegram to President Warren G. Harding was sent by the chairman of the meeting, the Rev. Lewis B. Whittemore, associate rector of Calvary Episcopal Church:

“A meeting of 1,600 citizens of Pittsburgh, held in Schenley High School December 12, sends greeting to the President. A resolution was unanimously passed urging the adoption of measures leading to the utmost limitation of armaments possible at this time.”

The resolution was adopted on motion of Sidney Teller, resident director of the Irene Kaufmann Settlement.

Viewpoints of Peace Explained.

Miss Addams in her address told of the different viewpoints of various classes of the people of the world in regard to universal peace and disarmament. She explained that the tax-paying and property-holding classes were wont to regard the scrapping of the navies of the world as a reduction of taxation and the automatic furnishing of money to meet distress throughout the world. This class of speculators upon the financial returns from disarmament were doomed to disappointment, as it had been estimated that the reduction in war material planned would only mean a 4 [percent] reduction in taxation. This reduction, she explained, would mean that people would pay $19 in taxes instead of $20. She explained that it was feared that people would be so disappointed in this slight reduction in taxation that they might even go to war again for a greater reduction of taxes.

In sharp contrast to the attitude of the property holders of the world whose one thought seemed to be reduction of taxes through peace. Miss Addams eloquently described the attitude of the peasant and laboring classes of the world who, weary of war, wanted peace at any price, and were endeavoring to forget and efface age-old prejudices and differences in their whole-souled yearning to be rid of war.

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