Eugene Debs speaking before a crowd next to a Pullman train car, the manufacturer of which was a strike target due to unfair treatment of workers.
Spellbinding orator and labor leader Eugene Victor Debs became a socialist while jailed in the late 19th Century. He went on to become a presidential candidate five times in the 20th Century — the last time, in 1920, running from a prison cell (he had landed there for opposing World War I).
American Socialist/ Eugene Victor Debs Film trailer
San Diego State University professor and artist-in-residence Yale Strom has directed a new documentary, American Socialist: The Life and Times of Eugene Victor Debs. The documentary has photos of Debs orating in San Diego and leaders of the Wobblies (Industrial Workers of the World) speaking for free speech at a rally. Debs had been a founder of the Wobblies, whose brutal treatment by the San Diego establishment in the early 20th Century is one of the disgraces of the city’s history.
The documentary will have its Southern California premiere at the San Diego Jewish Film Festival: February 11, 11 a.m., at the Edwards San Marcos Stadium 18 (1180 W. San Marcos Boulevard); and February 13 at 5 p.m. at the Edwards Mira Mesa Stadium 18 (10733 Westview Parkway).