Page images


was exhausted. But the tendency ought to be, Senator, to regard the family as a unit of assimilability wherever that can be done. It is the most humane method.

The CHAIRMAN. We can not accomplish the two objects of economic regulation and humanity without flexibility.

Mr. EMERY. It is impossible.

The CHAIRMAN. You can not accomplish those two things in a rigid quota law,

Mr. EMERY. I regret that the Senator from Pennsylvania is not here, because I wanted to make an inquiry with respect to the provision for administration contained in his bill. As I understand the theory of this measure, there are no nonquota immigrants, but all those who are not included within the term “immigrant defined in the bill are subject to the quota provisions.


Mr. EMERY. Now, among those who are not immigrants, for the purposes of the bill, are the following:

An alien who is eligible to cit zenship in the United States and who was born in the Dominion of Canada, Newfoundland, the Republics of Mexico, Cuba, or Haiti, the Dominican Republic, the countries of Central or South America, or the colonies or dependencies of European countries in Central America or South America.

The question that immediately arises in my mind is that since that definition includes those who are born in those countries but not those who are citizens of them, a distinction is made, based upon birth, so that a person of any nationality who is born in these countries is not subject to quota, while a citizen of those countries who is not native born must be subject to the quota from somewhere, and I wonder where. Is it the country from which he came! For in

? stance, is a Canadian, who is a citizen of Canada

The CHAIRMAN. If an Englishman came over and settled in Canada he would come under the nonquota.

Mr. EMERY. Then what would become of an American who went to Canada and settled on a Canadian farm and became a Canadian citizen?

The CHAIRMAN. I do not see that he is provided for.

Mr. EMERY. I do not know how he would get back into the United States.

The CHAIRMAN. It would be too much of a digression to go into that subject to see why the inhabitants of our sister republics in this hemisphere do not come under the quota law. As to residence in those countries before being admitted to the United States, the law has been changed from one years' residence to five years' residence before admission.

Mr. EMERY. Of course, I suppose that is largely for reasons of policy, Mr. Chairman, but I do not know how for reasons of policy you can distinguish between the naturalized citizen and the native

The CHAIRMAN. There are contending forces. The Secretary of Labor wants the quota extended to Mexico. That point has been brought to our attention.

Mr. EMERY. There is no way under the administrative provisions here by which a former resident of the United States who became a Canadian citizen could come back into this country. Nor could


citizens of Canada born in other countries be able to move into and out of the United States on business very well under this provision, because they would be quota persons. There is no exception here, Mr. Chairman, and that goes to the question of flexibility.

The CHAIRMAN. You would, however, have the view that an American citizen could not expatriate himself?

Mr. EMERY. To which principle we object when any other country declares it.

Now, there is no provision, for instance, in Senator Reed's bill for the admission of contract labor where labor of like kind unemployed can not be found in the United States, either skilled or unskilled.

The CHAIRMAN. Would the provisions of this bill repeal that provision of the act of 1917?

Mr. EMERY. They would not repeal it, Senator, but they would make them come within the quota, and that destroys the flexibility of the act, because in the present act it is provided that skilled labor, where labor of like kind can not be found in the United States, is permitted to enter upon a showing made to the Secretary of Labor.

The CHAIRMAN. I am glad you have called that to our attention.

Mr. EMERY. It is a very important matter, because it goes to the essential flexibility of the bill. For example, we have all kinds of requirements for labor in the industries. I am not speaking now in terms of economics, although we are highly in sympathy with the idea that the skilled agriculturist certainly ought to be recognized as a skilled laborer.

But here are industries representing about $32,000,000,000 of invested capital in the United States, which are largely dependent, for example, on chemical research. They are not dependent on the chemical industries, they are dependent on chemical research. For instance, the iron and steel industries, the textile industries, the ceramic industries, and so on.

Doctor Teeple, treasurer of the American Chemical Society, in a recent address called attention to this increase of dependence upon chemical research, and pointed out that in 1915 there was no potash industry here, but that by 1918 we had 44 plants, of which only one is operating, because that one plant, as he saidhad no particular advantage of location, raw material, patented process, or knowledge of the industry over many others, but its directors at the outset and its financial backers had the nerve to organize research and to put up the money for it month after month in good times and bad times.

Now, unless there is a provision in any bill which the committee may favor that will provide for the admission under contract of labor under the exceptions of the present law and outside of the quota, you will at any time be confronted with the fact that there is certain skilled labor that can not be had in the United States, and its existence is directly dependent upon the existence of the quota.

That is the particular point that I wanted to direct the attention of the committee to, because that flexibility is the most vital thing in the bill, as we see it. But we want to commend very heartily the recommendation of the Secretary of Labor for a provision for a penalty for unlawful entry into the United States, which does not exist to-day. We hope your committee will cure the unfortunate situation which exists by which an alien person who makes an un

[ocr errors]

lawful entry has the same right to his first papers as the alien who makes a lawful entry. In many of the States of the Union a man is admitted to vote on his first papers. So we have the unfortunate situation that an alien person who effects an unlawful entry and conceals it is in the exercise of the franchise on an equality with an alien who made a lawful entry. And then, certainly, no alien who is permitted to enter the country because of his exempt status ought to be permitted to remain here if he loses the status which gives him his exemption. That is a condition that ought to be made in the law.

Further so that you will understand how we approach the matter, we call the attention of the committee to the following statement by our committee:

Your commttee urges in conclusion that every employer should endeavor to make more efficient use of the existing labor supply by developing and applying, wherever practicable, labor saving devices, improved training methods, stabilizing production, and supporting the practical proposal of the Secretary of Commerce to allocate all but essential public work to seasonal or other periods of lessened employment.

And, finally, Mr. Chairman, we believe it to be the duty of every employer in the United States in the community in which he lives to do his part toward aiding in instructing alien employees in gaining a knowledge of our customs, and laws and country. And in relation to that I want to say that in most of the large plants a systematic instruction in English is carried forward, and every aid of that kind is given. We firmly believe that while a judge can naturalize an alien only the people among whom he lives can make him an American.

I thank you, Mr. Chairman.

(The subjoined statement on behalf of the Railway Business Association by Frank W. Noxon, secretary, was submitted at this point by Mr. Emery for the record:)


[Statement before the Senate Committee on Immigration on behalf of the Railway

Business Association, railway supply manufacturers, March 8, 1924, by Frank W. Noxon, secretary. ]

The Railway Business Association has menibers in nearly every State, manufacturers of railway equipment, material, and supplies and industrial and electrical engineers serving the roads. At the annual meeting November 8, 1924, the association adopted the following resolution:

" We renew our recommendation that the law provide admission of immi. grants limited by quality of applicants instead of by their number."

We urge a high standard. The existing average character of our citizenship should be raised. One method is selective recruting abroad. To this end we urge you to adopt a policy designed to admit qualified individuals wherever found. Strong newcomers are the best stock for leadership in assimilating the national groups in this country. They are even more essential in repairing the decay which afflicts older stocks in every country when not replenished from peasant sources. We can exclude undesirable without denying ourselves the vital requisite of bringing in desirables. Race and religion should have no place in our thought. We need all the good individuals we can get.

The United States has been no exception to the law of nature that the older stocks fail. Survival of a civilization depends upon maintaining generation after generation the development of a stratum leading the simple life and producing leaders and the parents of leaders in every field of the national activity. The United States has a special problem in this respect. Americans are free

to advance or transfer from one stratum to another. The supply of vitality is drained off fast. Race suicide with us is not a prediction but a fact. The mental and moral inferiority of the second generation among families who have had what we call advantages is the occasion for painful observation and pessimistic forecast. The social problems of the day are among the older stocks.

Certainly we are shortsighted to depend upon Americanization of the national groups under nonimmigrant auspices and leadership. The best of it is being done under leaders within these groups, which is essentially American. Men fresh from Europe coming into their national groups here have a special qualification. They are familiar with conditions abroad. This gives them a basis of comparison. They like America better. They attribute the superiority of conditions to superiority of institutions. They are enthusiastic for the institutions which bring about the conditions. They do not take the condtions for granted or lightly support proposals to tear down the institutions. Revolutionary leaders in the United States have been largely natives, sometimes of recent but often of older stock, and having in the main Nordic names. The immigrant groups usually reject their leadership. The decided drift, persistent through several presidential elections, is for the States with the highest foreign-born percentage of the population to cast the lowest socialist percentage in the vote and vice versa. Groups of nationals follow not native agitators, professional or leisured, but their own solid men. The assailants of representative government were mostly born in America, often to riches, or have been here a long time, in any case forgetful of our advantages and reckless about blasting away the foundations. Most of the newcomers whom these seek to mislead are industrious in their vocations, steady in their tendencies and looking for examples to the ablest and most successful of their people. These successful men are gradually assimilated into the community life. This furnishes an example and, an ambition to the whole group. To cut off the supply from a given country will keep out undesirables, but this can be done by quality restrictions without excluding those in every country who wish to come and whom we badly need. We require a steady increment of selected desirables from every available source to bring up the level of the national groups, and to replenish the stratum of simple solid citizens who will have solid children and provide material for leaders in every field of our American life. Increasing the number from Germany and Great Britain will strengthen us but it will not leaven the Italian-Americans.

One effect of discrimination against certain nationals and religionists is to drive together on this side the corresponding groups; retarding, not accelerating, assimilation. No country can safely proclaim a third of its population undesirable. Minorities are becoming potent.

On the economic aspect, we speak only of the phases with which our members are familiar. in their own business. From material to finished product, industries a large part of whose product is consumed directly or indirectly by the railways are estimated to employ when busy about as many men as the railways themselves, or something near 2,000,000. These en loyees range from unskilled common laborers to those most highly skilled in the shop, in the office and in selling, and further on to the supervisory and executive forces, This army of men is engaged in promoting the advance of civilization and raising the standard of living in the United States. Progress in that direction requires progress in rail transportation. Progress in rail transportation rests upon the existence of cognate industries, constantly moving forward toward new levels of excellence in serving the railways.

Take an illustration. One of the blackest blots on our civilization, one of the most deplorable obstructions to improvement in the living standard, is periodical unemployment. One of the causes in the past has been the breakdown of railroad facilities. Industrial and agricultural prosperity at times overwhelms the railroads, bringing about congestion of freight. Industry is shut off from supplies and material. Farms and industry can not reach market. Labor is unemployed. Suppose one of the deficiencies was in locomotive power. This could be increased by enlarging the percentage of locomotives in good order. The requisite would be the more rapid installation of modern machinery in the shops and roundhouses to speed up repairs and a supply of labor to operate them.

There we have a definite task—to postpone or avoid an industrial shut-down accompanied by industrial unemployment. The requirement is faster repair of locomotives. Better equipped shops, if manned, will do it. But men are essential to make the machine tools. The machine tool builder employs skilled

mechanics. In Europe such work descends from father to son, generation after generation. Boys are born to it and die in it. In America the mechanic's son does not become a mechanic. He goes to high school and takes a white-collar job. Where are the mechanics to come from? They are developed from unskilled labor. But certainly if American boys can not be tempted into skilled trades they will not do rough labor. There only one source-Europe.

Something has been said about the substitution of machinery for labor in order that we might stop immigration wi 100 industrial distress. Such subsituation is wide spread and rapid. But the machinery comes from the machine tool builders. And how can the country progress toward larger use of machinery if the works where it is invented, developed, and made, find themselves. (ut off from their supply of unskilled labor and hence their supply of skilled labor also?

What has been said about machine tool builders applies to every branch of the railway equipment industry. If the supply of qualified immigrant labor is to be curtailed this industry will suffer a loss in productive capacitynot only in quantity production but in the development of mechanical progress for railway advance in safety, efficiency, and economy. To permit the industry ä supply of qualified workers wherever found in Europe will furnish the basis for development of men capable of promotion to every grade, mechanical or official.

Upon the energy and drive, the character and skill of these railway equipWent and appliance industries depends the quality of their service to the railways and hence the part played by rail transportation in the advancement of civilization and the elevation of living standards among all our people.

The CHAIRMAN. Now, Mr. Kinnicutt, we will hear you.


Mr. KINNICUTT. Mr. Chairman, I notice that there are a great number of witnesses here. I just wanted to ask if I might have a little more time than you indicated. If your committee is to adjourn now, I would like to know if I could have a little more time to-morrow morning. I have a matter which I think touches one or two of the questions before the committee that are really, perhaps, of major importance; nothing that is academic at all. I have some figures here that I think will interest the committee. I think I should like to have 25 or 30 minutes; but I will try to reduce it to 20 minutes.

The CHAIRMAN. We have had a pretty long session to-day. I will give you an opportunity in the morning.

Mr. PATTEN. Mr. Chairman, I have some statements here which I desire to make to the committee. It seems that it will be hard to find time to present them. Might I hand them to the reporter, to be incorporated into the record ?

The CHAIRMAN. That may be done.



Mr. PATTEN. I appear on behalf of the Patriotic Order Sons of America, whose traditions and principles go back to the Sons of America of 1776. The order is a patriotic, fraternal, beneficial organization. It cares for its sick, buries its dead, looks after their widows and orphans, provides insurance, is a strong advocate of

« PreviousContinue »