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I ask you, gentlemen of the committee, to look at the Filipino seamen's problems just as you would expect others to look at it, if your own seamen were placed in the same position. I am sure that if your seamen were placed in that unfortunate position the Filipinos are today confronted with, you would make an even more passionate appeal for the favorable treatment of their conditions. I dare say that you will demand that a speedy consideration of your seamen's problems be made.
I am not here, however, gentlemen of the committee, to demand of you and of Congress that you correct the anomalous position of our Filipino seamen. I prefer to ask you to give my people what you in justice would ask others to give your own people if placed in the same unhappy position.
It is possible that while you are patiently listening to me, some of you may be asking yourselves this question: Why should I give the Filipinos the privilege that only American citizens have a right to enjoy? Perhaps you would further say to yourselves that since the Filipinos wanted to be entirely divorced from the United States, they—the Filipinos-should be made to take the responsibility and the consequences of their acts. In other words, you might say to yourselves, “The Filipinos cannot have their cake and eat it too."
To the first question, gentlemen of the committee, as to why you should especially be asked individually and collectively to grant the Filipino seamen the privilege to serve in American subsidized vessels, permit me to say to you: You are individually and collectively asked to bestow that grant to the Filipino seamen because they are in law and in all humane considerations your subjects and your wards. The Filipino seamen, just as everyone of their race, whether residing in the United States or in the Philippine Islands, are still American subjects and must remain so until the final grant of complete independence is given by Congress. They owe allegiance to the United States. In fact they owe allegiance to no other country than this country
Now I ask you, gentlemen of the committee, if it is a good law, that which deprives a subject from enjoying the rights and privileges of a subject, or is it a wise law, that which discriminates against a race who owes complete allegiance to no other flag than the American flag? Or is it a just law, that which deprives a man from the enjoyment of the pleasures and blessings of a democracy to which he has become a part?
I am sure, gentlemen of the committee, that had you known that section 302 of the Merchant Marine Act would operate arbitrarily against your very own subjects, you would not have sanctioned the passage of that act without adequate legal and humane provisions for the welfare of your subjects.
It is quite true that one cannot “have his cake and eat it too." But you must remember, gentlemen of the committee, that the Filipinos in this case are not permitted to eat their cake at one sitting. Rather, you and Congress imposed upon them that the eating should be gradual and should be done within the extended period of 10 years. The Filipinos, therefore, in this case become an exception to the rule. They can have their cake and eat it too.
The fairness of the American people and of Congress in its dealings with subjects, with friendly as well as enemy nations, made this country the most outstanding Nation of the world today. To this country, the persecuted and the downtrodden nationals of European countries have sought haven and they have found in your midst a fair welcome upon their arrival. You have welcomed them and greeted them cordially even if they had been, at sometime past, your mortal enemies. You have welcomed and assisted people who before or even after their landing on American soil are still loyal subjects of their respective countries. Your fairness, therefore, with your former enemies further convinces me that you will be more than fair in your treatment of your own subjects.
With that sense of humility and with genuine feeling of thankfulness that the Filipinos are subjects of your flag, I ask you, gentlemen of the committee, to grant to the Filipino seamen the privilege of serving in American merchant marine and fishing vessels as citizens of the United States at least until the final termination of your stewardship over the Philippines is ended, by inserting in the proposed bill now under your consideration, S. 3078, immediately at the end of section 301, page 5, after line 22, the following amendment to section 302 of the Merchant Marine Act of 1936, as follows:
Sec. 7. Section 302 of such Act is amended by adding at the end thereof the following new subsection:
“(1) Notwithstanding any provisions of this or any other Act to the contrary, any citizen of the Philippine Islands who was lawfully admitted to the United States prior to the 1st day of May 1934, and who has served upon any merchant or fishing vessels of the United States, shall be deemed a citizen of the United States for the purpose of serving, and shall be eligible to serve, on board any passenger, cargo, or fishing vessel of the United States during the period ending with the complete relinquishment of sovereignty over the Philippine Islands by the United States."
All I wanted to ask is this, and it will take only 2 or 3 minutes
The CHAIRMAN. As I understand it, a Filipino can go on one of our transports if he enlists in the Philippines, and can come to the Pacific coast, but he cannot go back on the next trip of that transport?
Dr. Gancy. It all depends on how he came over. If he was signed up as a seaman on the transport, he can go back.
The CHAIRMAN. That is, he can make the round trip on the transport?
Dr. GANCY. That is right.
The CHAIRMAN. But if he came over here and then left the transport and at some later time be wanted to reenlist and go the other way, he could not do it?
Dr. Gancy. That is right.
All I want to ask of you gentlemen of the committee, outside of the privilege of inserting my short brief in the record, is this: That in the consideration of the Merchant Marine Act you will remember that approximately 3,000 Filipino seamen have served loyally the American merchant marine and the American shipping industry. Now, because of the passage of the 1936 Merchant Marine Act and because of the inclusion in that particular act of a section requiring that such men are ineligible to serve because they are not, in the common acceptation of the term, American citizens. They were discriminated against, because of oversight, possibly, or because of failure, as I said, of some of our leaders now here in Congress and in the Philippines to take an interest in behalf of our people here. They were so busy about independence that they have neglected the social and economic questions involved.
I am submitting to this committee an amendment to section 302 permitting Filipinos to serve in the American merchant marine vessels, at least during the transition period, because I do not see any justice, gentlemen, in having a group of people that are subject to the call to arms, subject to all your laws, and owing complete allegiance to the United States-we owe no complete allegiance to any other country; this is the only country, really, that we owe allegiance to and during the next 10 years, at least, if, unfortunately, the United States grants the Philippines the freedom they have so long lobbied for-I say, I do not see any justice in excluding these people from the provisions of the bill.
I say that in fairness to the people who have been here and been a part of your merchant marine, who really are good stewards and good independent boys. I think many of you have been served by them. Many of you Senators have been waited upon by Filipinos, and I think you have found them very, very loyal. I do not know of any other people who would be as good an addition to the American mercbant crews as the Filipinos, because they are really loyal and grateful to the people of the United States.
Our country is not much of a country to speak of when it comes to a show-down in an international crisis with complications such as we have now. I think every Filipino will be very willing to give to the United States what they have sworn to give, unqualified and undivided allegiance.
You would not expect all of them to have unqualified allegiance if you take away from them the very privilege that as subjects they are entitled to. We cannot vote here because we are not permitted by the law to vote. But we at least must be given, in justice and equity, some privilege to serve in the American merchant marine vessels without being classed as aliens, because it hurts. It is not only a matter of employment; it is a matter of principle. We are classed as aliens, but we are not aliens.
Those are questions, gentlemen of the committee, that I submit to you. Whether or not you are in favor of Filipino independence, whether or not you believe that Filipinos are capable of governing themselves, the question still remains that during the transition period, as fixed by the law, in the 8 remaining years, you have still some moral and political obligation to these people in the United States, who came here previous to the passage of the law and are entitled to the privileges they have enjoyed before the passage of the law. So I ask that the committee consider an adequate provision, and
Senator ELLENDER (interposing). Before you read your amendment-you are familiar with the bill that I introduced?
Dr. GANCY. I am, Senator.
Senator ELLENDER. How does your bill compare with the one I introduced?
Dr. Gancy. There are certain differences. It is practically a copy of your bill, Senator. The only thing that I have stricken out in the bill is the provision that the Filipinos must show their intention to remain in this country.
Senator ELLENDER. Yours provides that they can remain forever?
Dr. Gancy. It does not have that particular proviso. It provides that they show their intention to remain. The Labor Department have questioned it already and said, “How can you show your intention to remain?" We never made any declaration when we came here. We came as free agents. We did not declare ourselves to have to come here to remain. Of course under the quota basis now for aliens to which the Filipinos are subjected we have to make our intentions clear.
The CHAIRMAN. Of course the Filipinos can serve in the steward's department on passenger ships, and they can serve on nonsubsidized ships in any capacity.
Dr. Gancy. That is right.
The CHAIRMAN. So the Filipinos are deprived of serving on subsidized vessels?
Dr. Gancy. That is right. The matter that is involved, Senator Copeland, is much deeper than the question of employment. It is a question of principle, that if the American subsidized vessels refuse to admit Filipinos, it follows, therefore, that the other nonsubsidized boats will also take the same view.
The CHAIRMAN. I see. We will bear that in mind. Did you put your amendment in the record ?
Dr. GANCY. Yes, sir; it is incorporated in the record. I thank you for the kindness you have shown me.
(The witness withdrew from the committee table.)
STATEMENT OF E. L. OLIVER, VICE PRESIDENT, LABOR'S NON
The CHAIRMAN. You are from the Labor's Non-Partisan League?
Mr. OLIVER. My initials are E. L. Oliver, vice president of Labor's Non-Partisan League. I have been for the last 15 years intermittently and for the last 10 years exclusively, engaged in the handling of labor disputes, labor activities, under the Railway Labor Act; that is to say, under the Transportation Act of 1920, under the act of 1926 and the act as amended in 1934.
The CHAIRMAN. You were acting there officially?
The CHAIRMAN. But your present organization is nongovernmental; is that right?
Mr. OLIVER. Yes, sir. Labor's Non-Partisan League is a political organization composed of individuals and, for the most part, labor organizations, although there are farm and other organizations with similar objective affiliated with the league. It is a national organization with branches in each of the 48 States of the Union, and with city and county branches and branches organized in congressional districts.
The CHAIRMAN. Where is your office here?
Mr. OLIVER. I will comment on it from two standpoints: First, from the general standpoint of its applicability to the maritime industry; and second, with respect to its specific provisions.
The CHAIRMAN. You are speaking, particularly of title X, the labor section?
Mr. OLIVER. Yes.
The CHAIRMAN. And it is to that you are addressing yourself specifically?
Mr. OLIVER. Yes, sir. The provisions of title X are an attempt to take over practically completely the provisions of the Railway Labor Act of 1934. The set-up in the law resulted in many years, certainly not fewer than 40 years, of collective bargaining in the railway industry. The law was a result of an evolution which applied provisions of the statute to the necessities of the industry. A great many of the things in the law grew out of the peculiar problems of the railway industry.
To attempt to take it as a whole and apply it to any other industry would probably be impossible. Certainly there is no reason to argue from the experience in the railway industry that the same provisions, particularly when they are expressed in identical language, would operate in any other industry. I would say that any other industry that did not have a long history of relatively successful collective bargaining, with such machinery as is proposed in this bill, could be successful. It is predicated upon the existence of strong national organizations and upon the existence of agreements, almost upon the existence of practically standard agreements throughout the country, In the absence of any such a situation the provisions of the law. would not be of any material assistance in the settling of labor controversies.
With respect to the specific provisions, section 1002 makes applicable to the maritime employers and employees all provisions of title I of the Railway Labor Act, with the exception of certain parts of section 2, section 3, and section 10.
Later on in the act section 3 is referred to; that is, section 3 of the Railway Labor Act is referred to in section 1005 of the bill, and in that section of the bill section 3 of title I of the Railway Labor Act is made specifically applicable. It has been excepted from the earlier section and incorporated in the later section.
The paragraphs of section 2, which are included, are three which were left in the act of 1934 as a result of the experience under the 1926 act. They relate primarily to the so-called "yellow dog" contract and to company unions and other unfair labor practices which had prevailed up to that time in the railway industry. Those three paragraphs are specifically excluded.
Section 3 of the act which is referred to and some of its language incorporated in this bill has a specific significance in the railway industry. The Railway Labor Act defines grievances and other disputes to be handled by the adjustment board in a fairly specific way. That is to say, the term “grievance” means a dispute which arises where an agreement exists, and disputes which do not relate to basic wages, rules, or working conditions, but rather to the application of agreements in existence.
The term "grievance" generally does not mean that in the maritime industry or in any other industry in which there was any relatively complete organization. The term "grievance" would normally be construed to include unsatisfactory wages or long hours or the discharge of men for union activities, a great many types of complaints which would not in the railway industry be considered as a grievance under the terminology of the law.
The testimony by the Chairman of the Maritime Commission, on page 28 of the printed document which I have, says (reading):
It should be emphasized that this act does not prohibit the use of labor's most important weapon, the strike. It merely provides in the public interest that such weapon shall not be employed until reasonable efforts have been made by