A Nasty Dilemma
SIR, — As one who works in a factory, may I point out some of the difficulties when trying to teach my non-Catholic workmates what the Church teaches on Social Principles.
1. Extraordinarily high rents charged by a prominent and wealthy Catholic who owns some of the worst slums in this city, i.e., back-to-back houses, the rent for which is 18/6 per week—three times more than similar or better houses in our parish owned by non-Catholics.
2. Another prominent business man who is a director of one of the biggest and worst slave-driving concerns in this city. This modern factory where as much work as possible is done by the (belt) system and the Bedaux system. employing hundreds of girls and youths between the ages of 14 and 21 years, earning a wage which is disgraceful—girls earning about 17/to 20/and youths 17/to 30/per week. From this they have to pay 1/or more per day travelling expenses.
Now when I speak to my non-Catholic workmates on Catholic social principles, and the rights of the working man, they just taunt Me about these two prominent and wealthy Catholics.
When I try to point out to them that they are not obeying the Church's teaching, they point out that they attended such and such a demonstration or function with some of the Catholic Hierarchy, and so I have to give way because I cannot find au answer to these facts.
L. GRADY. bk/266, Garrison Lane,
Small Heath, Birmingham, 9.
Weep if is I r up that any Catholic employer W110 l'UtU ntari y and for personal gain exploits his employees in el fashion which (I'MrflthetS the I COO?? y of the Church, on Picini t terN $hvuld be el3 repa diatPd in the role of public Calholir personage as would be a Catholic openly tiring in adultery, it must be remembered that it is in practice extremely hard to ascertain, the full state of affairs. Such an employer may for example be lighting to stave off bankruptcy and to armil putting a large number of employees out of work. In practice it would be extraordinarily imprudent for Bishops to puss judgment on prominent Catholic employers without instituting long enquiries for whom they hare neither the organisation nor the money.— Editor].