The White Caps
Digital History ID 577
In the following speech delivered at a public meeting to discuss White Cap violence, Felix Martínez, the editor of a Spanish-language newspaper, explains the grievances underlying the White Cap movement.
Mr. chairman and gentlemen, I coincide with both speakers who have preceded me. This meeting has a two-fold object, to devise means to stop the wrongdoing, and do the right. The people are to rise in their might and squelch the land grabber as well as the fence-cutter, the fence-cutting which was begun with the plea of giving the people their rights, has, in the heat of passion, been permitted to go too far. The fence-cutters in their lawlessness must be suppressed, but the land-thief in his evil-doing must also be put down, and put down to stay. Many of you present are down on both alike. If the tax-payer and prosperous citizen of this county were to join hands and cooperate with the poor people, a conclusion would soon be reached. Politics can not be allowed to enter this question at all and it can not be traced out as the source of this trouble. It is to be traced to the landgrabber at the beginning. On the one hand you have the power of money, the rich landgrabbers, on the other hand, the physical might of the people. True, the innocent with good titles are made wrongfully to suffer on account of the land thieves. The good decision of a just judge was that the Vegas grant belonged to the town...[but] to what result? The man Millhiser is more than the community, because he is guarded by dogs. The people must be suppressed, but Millhiser, under the protection of his bloodhounds, holds the community at bay. He, and other landgrabbers are not greater than the mighty will of the people and should be ordered by the courts to vacate. Then there should be no fence-cutting, but peace.
Source: Las Vegas Daily Optic, August 18, 1890.
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