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Yielding our freedoms: Ending the Hutterite threat

Most of the posts in this series have focused on the activities of the South Dakota Council of Defense. But it had no inherent mechanism to enforce its legal authority. When “the Russian colonist problem” brought the Council in conflict with religious principles, it turned to the courts, often considered the last bastion for the […]

Yielding our freedoms: The ‘Russian Colonist’ menace

One of the issues the South Dakota Council of Defense devoted “considerable time” to during its World War I existence was what it called the “Russian Colonist problem.” Evidently, these outsiders claimed their religious convictions forbid participating in or supporting a war. Given the U.S. was at war with Germany, though, the Council said such […]

Weekend Edition: 4-25

Interesting Reading in the Interweb Tubes

‘Have You Ever Thought About Killing Someone?’ (“Being turned on by your own death is a fetish that causes both moral and legal problems.”)

Legal Pleading of the Week

To F*ck This Court And Everything That It Stands For (“F*ck you, old man. You’re a joke. Your court’s a […]

Yielding our freedoms: Deutsche verboten

Words can be dangerous. You know, “the pen is mightier than the sword” and all that. But entire languages? During World War I, plenty of people thought speaking German was anti-American. Many states, including South Dakota, thought it so unpatriotic that they banned the language.

As I noted previously, the South Dakota Council of Defense […]

Weekend Edition: 4-18

Interesting Reading in the Interweb Tubes

Binge Reading Disorder (“When you encounter so many sentences a day, even if they are well constructed, intelligent, and seemingly memorable, how do you actually remember one intelligent thought when a thousand others are clamoring for your attention?”)

What Does Gun Violence Really Cost? (“Even before accounting for […]

Yielding our freedoms: Meet the State Council of Defense

As noted in the last post, concern about American “preparedness” after the First World War started led to a variety of government action. One was the formation of the Council of National Defense, which was to coordinate industries and resources “for the national security and welfare.”

Although created in August 1916, the Council wasn’t […]