Quotes

The Cry Wolf Quote Bank chronicles the false predictions and hyperbole by opponents of these laws and protections.  While the issues and specific policies change over time, the rhetoric and themes remained the same.  You can search the Quote Bank for what opponents said to prevent these laws from passing. Using the drop down menus on the right their statements by issue, by specific law, by who said it and by the core themes they evoke.   Elsewhere on the site, you can find articles, studies, and other material that debunks their claims. 

E.g., 2019-11-20
E.g., 2019-11-20

[Those killed in factory fires are] an infinitesimal proportion of the population.

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Robert Dowling, NYC real estate man, and voice of business on the Factory Investigating Committee. Only date available: 1913.
01/01/1913 | Full Details

[Against the bill recommending occupancy limits depending on the number of exits provided and the [number of floors] While we are in favor of a restricted occupancy…we believe that the bill in the form proposed will work great disadvantage to our trades, requiring manufacturers almost to double their area capacity in order to employ the usual amount of people that their business demands. We respectfully submit that any such procedure would not only be of great injury to the trade, but to the state, by forcing a number of these establishments to remove their factories to other states.

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From a memorandum submitted by the Needle Trades Associations to the Factory Investigating Commission. Only date available: 1913.
01/01/1913 | Full Details

We would consider it a grave injustice to ourselves as well as to the bakers and the public at large if the bakers in our city were unfairly discriminated against in their struggle for existence either by conditions such as they could not reasonably hope to contend against, or by making it possible for bakers of other localities to determine their business here in their home market by more favorable terms. This, we believe, will be the effect of section 116 of the proposed law, which prohibits the establishment of future cellar bakeries.

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J.C. Bogart, New York Flour Club (they represented over 80 percent of firms in the flour business). Only date available: 1913.
01/01/1913 | Full Details

If you pass this bill, it will not be ten years certainly; I believe it will not be five years until practically every cellar bakery in New York city will be out of business.

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Frank P. Hill, representative of the New York Retail Bakers’ Association. Only date available: 1913.
01/01/1913 | Full Details

If in the candy business, people engaged in this line in other states who come to New York for their product are unable to receive it, they will take their trade away from the State of New York and give it to other states where this work can be produced in greater volume possibly at a reduced price.

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Alfred J. Talley of the Confectioners Association for the State of New York. Only date available: 1913.
01/01/1913 | Full Details

They are not over-intelligent…They formed habits of living that they carried with them to their work, and that made it very difficult indeed to correct them.

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Arthur S. Summers, a manufacturer of dry colors.
03/01/1912 | Full Details

The chief cause [of lead poisoning among color workers] used to be the careless habits of the men, in not properly washing themselves after handling the lead materials, eating their lunches with their hands covered with the stuff…

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Arthur S. Summers, a manufacturer of dry colors.
03/01/1912 | Full Details

[On why they don’t have medical inspections of their workers] In every case where the men have claimed to have been infected or affected by the lead they were intemperate men…[Meaning:] A man that drank a good deal of beer. …the other men who worked longer at it, who don’t drink, are not affected by it.

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Clarence F. Shipman, foreman at the Splitdorf Magneto Company (lead).
03/01/1912 | Full Details

The only tendency toward illness comes to men who are intemperate in their habits. In every case of poisoning I have heard of, the man was an exceedingly hard drinker….Where the men are temperate in their habits I never found a case…

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Arthur S. Summers, a manufacturer of dry colors.
03/01/1912 | Full Details

The rent is very high, and you can’t recent a place above ground in New York city to establish a bakery. If you can’t have a bake shop in a basement in New York City, you can’t have a bake shop here, that is all, unless people will pay prohibitive prices for bread; And we hear a great deal now about the high cost of living.

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Mr. Frank P. Hill, baker.
03/01/1912 | Full Details

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