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the Regular Army were pursuing their life work. The casualties among the junior officers particularly were very, very large.
A friend of mine, Mr. Sterling J. Joyner, now in this city, bad a conversation last summer In a club iu Paris with three of the French generals, outstanding generals in the French Army—General Petain, General Neville, and General Foch. In discussing the American soldiers this gentleman asked General Neville, "Just what do you think of the American soldiers and tie part they took in the World War? How were they as soldiers?" He paused a moment, aud then said, "I tell you, never in the history of the world have finer soldiers stood in the ranks of war. The only criticism I would make of them is that they were too careless of danger." [Applause.]
And that is the reason—that is one reason—why we are here to-day dealing with a measure which concerns so many wounded officers of the World War. They were not men who said, "Go." They were men who said, "Follow me." Aud for that reason the casualties among them were very large.
Mr. Speaker, I shall not take up more time of the House. I believe the House desires the opportunity to vote on this . measure. It has passed the Senate time and time again. Consideration has been put off, lo, these many years. The American Legion has indorsed it time and time again. I believe the people of America are behind this bill, and I believe the House will do itself credit by passing the Tyson-Fitzgerald bill. [Applause.!
Mr. MIOHENER. Mr. Speaker, I yield 20 minutes to the gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. Garmttt],
The SPEAKER pro temiwre. The gentleman from Tennessee is recoiniized for 20 minutes.
Mr. GARRETT of Tennessee. Mr. Speaker, it has been my pleasure to support every item of legislation which has been brought before the House of Representatives in behalf of the disabled service men of the World War, except the rider placed on the appropriation bill by the Senate in 1920 which discriminated between officers and privates in the naval service and Marine Corps. Upon this, as I shall later show, there was no opportunity for an independent vote.
I have friends, political and personal, who have most earnestly and persistently urged me to support the pending bill. I do not recall ever having had more pressure brought upon me in behalf of any measure than has been for this one. Letters and telegrams have flooded my desk, not only from my State but from the entire country, and in numerous personal contacts I have been urged to vote for it.
I should be less than frank did I fail to admit the embarrassment which these requests and—I may say in some instances— demands have caused me. But I have been unable to reconcile myself to the support of the principle involved in the bill, and I wish briefly to state the reasons for my position.
First, let us see just what the bill is. It is designated in common parlance as the World War emergency officers' retirement bill I think, however, that no frank advocate of the measure who really understands it will claim that it is anything other than a proposal to establish a system whereby disabled men of the World War who were officers will receive compensation—which up to the World War was called "pension "— according to rank. It is a pension bill based upon rank.
Under the terms of the bill emergency officers with a 30 per cent disability will receive compensation for life as follows:
Brigadier general $375. 00
Colonel „ _„ 250. 00
Lieutenant colonel 218. 75
Major 187. 50
Captain 150. 00
First lieutenant 125. 00
Second lieutenant 93. 75
The ordinary enlisted man with a 30 per cent disability will continue to receive just $30 per month.
It is needless to say to those familiar with the pension laws of the past and present that this proposal is one which will completely change the traditional national policy of preserving equality in the volunteer and emergency armies, so far as pension or compensation is concerned.
No one can tell what the cost will be with any fair degree of accuracy, but I am not now worrying about the matter of cost. The principle involved causes the question of cost to pale Into insignificance.
Let me first direct attention to the discrimination which the bill makes among the officers themselves.
The changed compensation will apply only to those officers who have a permanent disability of at least 30 per cent. Those officers who have less than 30 per cent will continue to draw on an exact equality with the private. Why should this be if we are to change the national policy and grant pension based upon rank?
We understand perfectly well what it will eventuate in. At next Congress the officers who are less than 30 per cent disabled will demand that this discrimination be removed and that their compensation be also based upon rank. If I were a supporter of this bill I can think of no legitimate reason why, should I be a Member of that Congress, I could refuse to supixjrt such a demand.
I learn from the minority report that this bill will favor 3,297 emergency officers whose disability is 30 per cent and above and will leave (5,972 emergency officers whose disability is less than 30 per cent upon the same basis of compensation as the enlisted man. It is further stilted therein that there are 69,386 enlisted men who are disabled to the same degree as the 3,297 emergency officers who are to benelit and 173,842 whose disabilities are rated at less than 30 per cent permanent.
Second, let us look to the situation as regards the dependents of those officers who were killed or died in the service and since the war. This hill makes no provision to change their situation. The dependents of those (lead officers will continue to draw compensation upon equality with the dependents of privates.
If we are to change the national policy and base compensation upon rank, should we not think of the dependents of the dead as well as the votes of the living? [Applause.]
These two glaring discriminations as between the emergency officers themselves seem to me to condemn the bill.
But it is urged that Congress is only being asked to place the emergency officers upon the same basis as officers of the Regular Army, and it must be said that this has doubtless been the most appealing argument or plea which has been advanced to the enlisted men to secure their indorsement of this measure. They have been asked at their Legion meetings, "Do you not feel that your officer who went out as you did from civil life should be treated as well as the Regular Army officer?" and it was the most natural thing in the world for the enlisted man to answer "Yes." In nine cases out of ten, I dare say, the enlisted man never gave consideration to the great question of national policy involved. He compared his emergency officer, whom he may have loved, with the Regular Army officer, whom he may not have loved so much, and compared them as officers. He did not, for the moment, think to compare the emergency officer with himself on the basis of citizenship. The Unlisted man will come to think of this bye and bye, and just what, I wonder, Is he going to say to us when he does? I believe I know. He is going to say, "Those emergency officers and I went out from civil life together. We sacrifled our businesses alike; we took the same hazard; we suffered the same tortures; we returned together to civil life and became equal again in the great mass of American democracy, equal in rights before the law, though for a time that man was an officer and I a private in the ranks." And when the enlisted men have worked this out in their minds they are going to cry out In bitterness, "Our Congress has done an undemocratic thing; they have overturned the traditions of our national life lasting down through a century and a half; they have discriminated between citizens, civilians now, If you please; they have engrafted a new principle upon the practice of the Republic; they have for the first time exalted rank!" [Applause.]
But let us see, for a moment, about the retirement of the officers of the Regular Army.
That system was instituted long before any Member of this Congress sat upon this floor. But we sitting here now can at least comprehend the reason which prompted our long ago predecessors to adopt it as a governmental policy, although it may not be popular as a campaign shibboleth.
We can imagine the early proponents of the system arguing in about the following language: "Ours is not a military Nation. God forbid that it shall ever become so. We maintain but a small standing Army, but we have to have officers for this Army and good ones. Those who become officers in the Regular Army, whether by way of West Point, as most of them do, or from the ranks, as sometimes happens, are men who make this their life work, their profession. They have no other avocation. Rare indeed does the opportunity present itself for one of them to accumulate financial means. We have to have them and, in order to have them competent and efficient, their life must be devoted to the profession. Naturally provision must be made for them when their period of usefulness has passed. The private in the Regular Army enlists for a brief period and at its end is at liberty to return again to civil life, and become again of its democracy."
As to whether the logic of the argument was entirely sound there may yet be some difference of opinion, but be that as it may, the system then adopted has come down to us through many, many years, without serious effort on the part of any Congress, so far as I am aware, to abolish or materially change it.
So much for the Regular Army comparison. I submit the practice furnishes no precedent for this proposed bill.
But the insistence is made that a precedent is to be found in the treatment which has been accorded disabled officers of the Navy and Marine Corps. Let us see exactly what has been done in that regard, and how it was done.
When the naval appropriation bill of 1920. as it had passed the House, was under consideration in the Senate, an amendment was adopted by that body which carried legislation upon this subject.
It will be recalled that at the time the Budget system had not been adopted, nor had the present rule of the House been applicable to legislation upon appropriation bills. It therefore frequently happened in those days that the Senate would put legislative riders upon the supply bills, and it was within the power of the House conferees to accept such riders and make them an integral part of the conference report without returning to the House for a separate vote upon them as is now required.
That happened in this instance, and the conference report, which was a very long one covering many matters, carried this provision:
That till officers of the Naval Reserve Force and temporary officers of the Navy who have heretofore incurred or may hereafter incur physical disability In line of duty shall he eligible for retirement under the same conditions as now provided hy law for officers of the regular Navy who have incurred physical disability in line of duty. (congressional IlKconn, OGth Cong., 2d sess., vol. 59, pt. 8, p. 8002.)
Ill the Sixty-seventh Congress—act of July 12, 1021—there was a repeal of this law in the following manner:
The Senate again attached a legislative rider to the appropriation bill dealing with this subject, and as agreed to by the conferees the language was the same as above quoted, but at the end there was added the following:
Prorided, tioicrver, That application for such retirement shall be filed with the Secretary of the Navy not later than October 1, 1921.
There has been no further general legislation upon the subject/
It will be seen, therefore, that the law permitting this discrimination between the naval and marine emergency officers and the enlisted men of those organizations was in effect for just 15 months.
It will further be seen that this legislation was never considered by the House, or so far as the records show, by any committee of the House, as an independent piece of legislation. Both times it was placed upon the naval appropriation bill by the Senate as a rider, and came in the conference report, which under the rules had to be voted upon as a whole and without amendment.
The proviso inserted in the 1921 act acted as a repeal of the law of 1920, as of date October 1, 1921, and is the last expression of Congress upon the subject.
I am indebted to the gentleman from Nebraska [Mr. SimMons], one of the distinguished ex-service men of the House who is opposing this legislation, for the information that during the 15 months the law was in operation there were retired under its provisions 228 naval officers and 56 marine officers, and he further informs me of the significant fact that each and every one of these 284 men was in the service at the time he was retired.
The emergency Army officers whom it is proposed to favor hy this bill were discharged long ago and are now in civil life. The naval and marine officers who benefited hy the legislation quoted were retired from the service itself.
I doubt if this fact has been known to any considerable number of the emergency Army officers and their friends who have so earnestly appealed for this discriminatory legislation. They have honestly thought that a precedent had been set, when, as a matter of fact, Congress actually repealed the law by limiting its tenure to October 1, 1921. And so whatever of precedent there was has been wiped out, and we are at lilx-rty to consider the legislation upon its merits alone.
I may say in passing that it is proposed in this bill to restore the naval and marine officers to the status they had for the 15-month period, and that is quite logical from the standpoint of those who favor discrimination between officers and enlisted men.
I return now to the principle underlying the proposed legislation. Ours is a democratic government founded upon a constitution designed to insure equality before the law. True to the fundamental spirit of such a Nation we have never maintained a large standing Army. When we have had to
defend ourselves with anus we have drawn our soldiers from civil life. It was their own country they were asked to defend—theirs in possession and their children's in heritage. They have never failed to respond and lift the sword of America to the heavens as it shimmered with glory in the sunlight—the fine sharp sword of democracy. LApplaa.se.] Some became officers, most remained privates. At the end of each emergency those who survived returned to civil life and the every-day duties of the work-a-day world, and officer and man, released from the necessary rigors of military discipline ami relations, became again equal as citizens.
Two young men went forth from the same town, the same business house, the same law office, the same farm. One became an officer, the other a private. They suffered alike; they were wounded upon the same battle field or contracted the same dread malady in the service. They were discharged together. Together they went back to the same business house or law office or farm, and to the extent that their physical condition admitted reengaged in the work of life. Do you tell me that I can by any process of reasoning justify voting to give one of them $150 per month and the other only $30 as compensation for the disability each suffered? I have been unable to find the justification.
The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman from Tennessee has expired.
Mr. MICHENER. I yield to the gentleman two minutes more.
Mr. GARUETT of Tennessee. I know, Mr. Speaker, it is now and then hinted privately that there must have been some sort of mental superiority in those who became officers. This is never publicly urged, but privately it will be said many of them made greater sacrifices of business, and so forth, than did the privates. There may be instances in which this was true, but after all, sir, each sacrificed his all, each offered his all, each dared his all. I submit that Congress can not search among the 4,000,000 men called to the colors and reach any just conclusion as to relative sacrifices and sufferings.
Remember this principle of retirement was not adopted for emergency officers of the Spanish War, the Civil War, the Mexican War, the War of 1S12, or the Revolutionary War. It has remained to be demanded for the first time now. Are we ceasing to be a democratic Republic?
I trust no one will for a moment entertain the thought that I speak with any feeling toward the emergency officers save one of profoundest respect and gratitude. I should l>e most happy to support the bill did I not feel the principle involved to be inconsistent with the very fundamentals of our democratic Nation. [Applause.]
Mr. MICHENER. Mr. Speaker, I yield five minutes to the gentleman from South Carolina [Mr. Stevenson]. [Applause.]
Mr. STEVENSON. Mr. Speaker, I will start exactly where my distinguished friend left off. He referred to two young men going out from the same town, suffering the same hardships, coming back, and one being discriminated against in favor of the other. That is exactly what inspired me to introduce the first bill looking to this relief, the first one that was ever conceived or ever introduced into this Congress.
Two young men in business in the same block in a neignlxwing town, but not in my district, went to a training camp together; they were trained together; they were graduated as second lieutenants together, and they went to France together; but one took his commission as a provisional lieutenant in the Regular Army, and the other took his commission in the National Army. In the course of that terrible conflict the man who took his commission in the National Army, on the 8th of November, just before the armistice, in leading his men to the front, as he had been doing ever since the pusli began, lost his right arm and was disabled in such a way that he could not follow his occupation in life. The young man who took his commission as a provisional lieutenant in the Regular Army was assigned, 1 believe, to the Quartermaster's Department, and he had the misfortune to fall off a truck and injure his knee, and lie came home with a stiff knee. I was called on by friends of the young inan who had lost his ami and who was at Walter Reed Hospital to go out to see him, and. being a friend of his people and of himself, I went out to sec him. and then I found they were both there. I'.ut what was the situation? The young man with the right arm gone, the young man who had been facing German bullets while the other was in the Quartermaster's Department, was receiving compensation at the rate of $15 a month for the loss of his right arm, while the other was eligible for retirement, and did retire, at $125 a mouth for a stiff knee.
Now, when you talk about equality you must look at both ends of the proposition. [Applause-.] Gentlemen, you can not require absolute and rigid equality wlu-n you come to dual with human rights, human passions, and human suffering. You have got to remember that tbere is humanity in us and in (lie people of this country. I came back here and introduced the bill H. R. 6688, in the Sixty-sixth Congress, providing:
That any officer who has served in the mililavy forces of the United States during the war with Germany and who does not belong to the Regular Army shall have the right, provided they have Incurred disabilities while in the service during the said war, to be retired on the same terms and on the same compensation as like officers of the Regular Army.
I asked for equality between that young man with his right arm gone and the young fellow with a stiff knee.
What did I meet? They said, "It will never do to retire such men; the retired list is a sacred list, in which are written only the immortals who belonged to the Regular Army, and we can not have that." I said, "All right, give us the same compensation," and I introduced H. II. 1083,"), which provided:
That any officer who fans-served in the military forces of the United States during the war with Germany and who does not belong to the Regular Army and who incurred disabilities while in the service during the said war, shall be entitled to the same compensation ns like officers of the Regular Army receive on being retired for an equal disability.
In other words, I did not put them on the retired list, but I gave them a. square deal, and that is all I asked.
In the next Congress I introduced the bill again, got a favorable report, and got u rule for its consideration, which Hon. I'hilip P. Campbell, then of Kansas, kept in his pocket until Congress adjourned. This is what was known as a pocket veto. The bill was numbered 15804 and the report was No. 1284, .Sixty-sixth Congress, third session. Then the Veterans' Committee was appointed and I surrendered the Held to it, but have never lost interest in the subject and take great pleasure in its prospective passage.
The SPEAKER. The time of die gentleman from South Carolina has expired.
Mr. MICHENER. Mr. Speaker, I yield 10 minutes to the gentleman from Connecticut [Mr. Tit.non].
Mr. TILSON. Mr. Speaker, I might well say, as the gentleman from South Carolina said when taking the floor, that he would begin where the gentleman from Tennessee left off, that I also might well begin where the gentleman from South Carolina left off. The gentleman from South Carolina described very feelingly how he found on two cots in the Walter Reed Hospital a Regular Army officer and an emergency officer. I should like to pass on with him to the next cot where we should probably find a private soldier who had left home at the same time as the other two, who had endured the same service, and who had incurred the same disability. Then I should like to make the same comparison between the emergency officer and the enlisted man that the gentleman from Tennessee so eloquently and so convincingly made as he emphasized the discriminatory features of this bill in its present form.
I am very glad to take the time that I shall use in speaking on this bill on the adoption of the rule, because one suggestion I shall make bears directty upon the proper procedure in the consideration of the bill. Rather than vote the bill up or vote it down I think the best course to pursue now is to recommit the bill to the Committee on World Wnr Veterans' Legislation for a very thorough and drastic revision, eliminating its most glaringly discriminatory features. It is a most unpleasant duty for any of us to be forced to vote against a bill providing compensation for disabled soldiers. We have not been in the habit of doing that in this House, but on the contrary where the disabled soldier is affected we have all vied with each other in making a generous response to bis needs. I say that it is a very disagreeable duty, if it should become such, for anybody to vote against reasonable compensation for disabled soldiers, and so we have voted with gladness and satisfaction for such compensation when the occasion has been presented to us.
In this instance, however, as this bill now reads, in order to vote for compensation, justifiable in some instances, we must vote for compensation which is not justified for others if measured by the same standards.
As the gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. Garrett] so thoroughly demonstrated, this Is not in any sense a retirement proposition. Retired from what? These former officers are not now in the service, and most of them have not been for about nine years. They are all in civil life again, most of them back at their old vocations. By no legitimate stretch of the imagination can this bill be called a retirement bill. It is purely and simply a disability service pension. But on what is it based? Purely on runk and nothing else. It is certainly not based on thi- degree of the disability suffered. Under this bill the second lieutenant suffering from a disability of 30 per cent receives
$93.75 per month, as I am informed. The second lieutenant with a total disability receives no more, just $93.75. Is this fair? A colonel having incurred a 30 per cent disability will be placed-on the compensation nil! for life at $250 per month. He may recover his health completely, but there is no way provided in this bill for ever getting his name off the pay roll. And what about another colonel? I have one now in mind. One of the finest and most, unselfish men that ever breathed, whose health was "completely destroyed in the Great War, a case of total disability. Does he receive more? No; he receives just the same as the other. Can anyone justify deliberately creating such inequality? I can not.
Mr. BLACK of Texas. Will the gentleman yield?
Mr. TILSON. Yes.
Mr. BLACK of Texas. I just want to say that the gentleman is correct in his statement that this is a compensation bill instead of a retirement bill. I received a letter from a doctor in Texas urging me to support the bill. I looked up the iiinority report which has been Bled on this bill, and he is listed as now drawing $16.50 per mouth, and will immediately draw $187.50, according to the report that has been filed.
Mr. TILSON. Fellow Members, we can never justify this bill at the bar of equity, justice, or square dealing, and I predict now that any who vote for it out of a sincere desire to adequately compensate worthy men for disabilities incurred will have difficulty in making answer in the years to come when one of the millions of enlisted men who gave themselves just as freely to the service of their country as did their officers, who endured the same hardships and suffered the same degree of disability, comes to one of us and says, "For a disability equal in degree to my own you have given an officer $150 or $187.50 or $250 per month, or perchance, if he were lucky enough to wear the star of a general, $375 per month for life; what are we to expect in the way of compensation?" What can we say?
Mr. CONNERY. Will the gentleman yield?
Mr. TILSON. Yes.
Mr. CONNERY. While the distinguished gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. Gahketi] and the distinguished gentleman from Connecticut are worrying about the enlisted man, why do they not bring the enlisted man up to where all of these officers are?
Mr. TILSON. A general officer, I believe, is to receive, under this bill, $375 per month. Does the gentleman from Massachusetts undertake to say that we should place every man who served in the military or naval forces of the United States during the war and incurred a 30 per cent disability, or who hereafter may be declared to have a 30 per cent disability, on the compensation rolls for the rest of his life at $375 per month? It would be necessary to do this if there is to be equality.
Mr. CONNERY. No; but I say that $150 a month would be a little fairer than $30 a month.
Mr. TILSON. There might be some difference of opinion as to what it would be practicable to do for so large a number of men, but I am willing to go with the gentleman as far as is practicable and reasonable if for equal disability we give equal compensation regardless of rank.
In the early days of this Republic, borrowed from older countries, it was the rule to make a difference between the pensions allowed to officers and to enlisted men. As our great Republic grew and we developed a policy of our own we abandoned the principle of discriminating in pensions according to rank, and after the Civil War it was entirely abandoned—and who were instrumental in its abandonment? The very officers who, having served in the Army, came to this House and served here in very great numbers. Their sense of fairness to the enlisted men who served with them and under them caused them to be in large measure responsible for giving up forever, I hope, the idea of pensions based on rank.
Mr. CONNERY. I would like to ask the gentleman another question. I was an enlisted man. I was not an officer, but an enlisted man
Mr. TILSON. The gentleman was a good and valiant soldier whichever he happened to be.
Mr. CONNERY. I thank the gentlemaa>
Mr. TILSON. But in my judgment he ought not to be entitled, in case of disability, to any greater compensation if he had been a major general than what he should be entitled to as an enlisted man. This fs my view of it. [Applause.]
Mr. CONNERY. Does not the gentleman believe that these emergency officers who, as everybody knows, fought the war in the trenches, should get equal justice with a man who perhaps stood on the deck of a battleship or who fought a tough war out in Kansas City and is now getting retired pay?
Mr. TILSON. The gentleman has reference, I suppose, to a few Navy and Marine officers who were retired under a rider carried on a Navy appropriation bill which was in effect for only 15 months and was then repealed.
Mr. CONNERY. I am referring to the Regular Army and uot to the emergency officers.
Mr. TUCSON. The gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. Garrett] so thoroughly explained the difference between the status of the Regular Army and the emergency officers that it needs no further explanation.
In an emergency every able-bodied man of proper age who is needed should be a soldier, every one should do his bit. It is his duty as a citizen. The Regular Army is entirely different. There is no analogy whatever between the Regular Army and the emergency officers. The conditions are entirely different .and we should not confuse matters by attempting to put the Regular Army and the emergency officer on the same basis. The condition of actual war changes the situation completely, and no man, in my judgment, should have retirement privileges for having served in an emergency.
Mr. CONNERY. Will the gentleman yield?
Mr. TILSON. Yes.
Mr. CONNERY. I have heard it said it is going to be a difficult, thing to have to explain to the enlisted man why we voted for an emergency officers' bill. I think we would have a harder time explaining to the enlisted man why we give retirement to a. man in the Regular Army who stayed back at Chaumont and fell off his horse and hurt his knee and deny this to a man who fought in the froiit-line trenches and was disabled in line of duty.
Mr. TILSON. Retirement in the Regular Army is a story that goes back into our history of maintaining an Army in time of peace. It has l>een found necessary, or at least those who have gone before us as legislators have thought it necessary, to have a system of retirement in order to get and keep good officers, but it should not serve as a precedent and ought not In* considered even as analogous to the service of an emergency officer in time of war. [Applause.]
The SPKAKEH. The time of the gentleman from Connecticut has expired.
Mr. MICHENER. Mr. Speaker, I move the previous question on the resolution.
The previous question was ordered.
The SPEAKER. The question is on agreeing to the resolution.
The question was taken, and the resolution was agreed to.
RETIREMENT OF OFFICERS AND FORMER OFFICERS OF THE WORLD WAR
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. Mr. Speaker, I move that the House resolve itself into the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union for the consideration of the bill S. 777, and pending that I ask unanimous consent that the time for general debate be equally divided between the gentleman from Mississippi [Mr. Rankin] and myself.
The SPEAKER. The gentleman from Ohio moves that the House resolve itself into the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union for the consideration of the bill S. 777, and pending that asks unanimous consent that the time for general debate be equally divided, one-half to be controlled by himself and one-half by the gentleman from Mississippi [Mr. Rankin]. Is there objection? There was no objection. The motion was agreed to.
Accordingly the House resolved itself into the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, with Mr. Laguakdia in the chair.
The CHAIRMAN. The House is in Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union for the consideration of the bill which the Clerk will report. The Clerk read as follows:
S. 777, 70th Cong., 1st Spss.
An act making eligible for retirement, under certain conditions, officers and former -officers of the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps of the United States, other than officers of the Regular Army, Navy, or Marine Corps, who incurred physical disability in line of duty while In the service of the United States during the World War Be it enacted, etc.. That all persons who have served ns officers of the Army, Navy, or Marine Corps of the United States during the World War, other than as officers of the Regular Army, Navy, or Marine Corns, who during such service have incurred physical disability in line of duty, and who have been, or may hereafter, within one year, be, rated In accordance with law at not less than 30 per cent permanent disability by the United States Veterans' Bureau for disability resulting directly from such war service, shall, from date of receipt of application by the Director of the United States Veterans' Bureau, be placed upon, and thereafter continued on, separate retired lists, hereby created
as part of the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps of the United States, to be known as the emergency officers' retired list of the Army, Navy, or Marine Corps of the United States, respectively, with the rank held by them when discharged from their commissioned service, and shall be entitled to the same privileges as are now or may hereafter be provided for by law or regulations for officers of the Regular Army, Navy, or Marine Corps who have been retired for physical disability incurred In line of duty, and shall be entitled to all hospilallzatlon privileges and medical treatment as are now or may hereafter bs authorized by the United States Veterans' Bureau, and shall receive from date of receipt of their application retired pay at the rate of 75 per cent of the pay to which they were entitled at the time of their discharge from their commissioned service, except pay under the act of May 18, 1920: I'rorided. That nil pay and allowances to which such person!) or officers may be entitled under the provisions of this law shall be paid solely out of the military and naval compensation appropriation fund of the United States Veterans' Bureau, and shall be in lieu of all disability compensation benefits to such officers or persons provided in the World War veterans' act, 1024, and amendments thereto, except as otherwise authorized herein, and except as provided by the act of December 18, 1022: Provided further, That all persons who have served as officer* of the Army, Navy, or Marine Corps of the United States during the World War, other than as officers of the Regular Army. Navy, or Marine Corps, who during such service have incurred physical disability in line of duty, and who have heretofore or may hereafter be rated less than 30 per cent nnd more than 10 per cent permanent disability by the United States Veterans' Bureau for disability resulting directly from such war service, shall, from date of receipt of application by the Director of the United States Veterans' Bureau, be plared upon, and thereafter continued on, the appropriate emergency officers' retired list, created by this act, with the rank held by them when discharged from their commissioned service, but without retired pay, and shall be entitled only to such compensation and other benefits ns are now or may hereafter be provided by law or regulations of the United States Veterans' Bureau, together with all privileges as are now or may hereafter be provided by law or regulations for officers of the Regular Army, Navy, or Marine Corps who have been retired for physical disability incurred in line of duty: And proridcd farther, That the retired list created by this act of officers of the Army shall be published animally in the Army Register, and said retired lists of officers of the Navy and Marine Corps, respectively, shall be published annually in the Navy Register.
Sec. 2. No person shall be entitled to l>enefits under the provisions of this act except he make application as hereinbefore provided and his application is received in the United States Veterans' Bureau vrithin 12 months after the passage of this act: Provided, That the said director ..shall establish a register, and applications made hereunder shall be entered therein as of the actual date of receipt, in the order of receipt in the Veterans' Bureau, and such register shall be conclusive as to date of receipt of any application filed under this act. The term "World War," as used herein, is defined as including the period from April 0, 1917, to July 2, 1921.
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the House, nine years of energetic action have elapsed on the part of the American Legion, composed of 90 per cent of enlisted men, to right a wrong. What is the wrong? Why, the United States Government and Congress, realizing in 1917 that this country had an emergency to meet, passed an act and invited into the Army men of mature years, men of responsibility, men who had acquired positions in life and experience which would fit them to become officers of a great emergency army. Preference was given by law in selecting officers to those who were 31 years of age and over.
Equality for all officers and enlisted men was promises in the selective service act of May, 1917. This equality has l>een granted to all classes of enlisted men and to eight of the nine classes of officers. The disabled emergency Army officers alone have been denied the fulfillment of this promise, made by the Congress 11 years ago.
Section 10 of the selective service act of May, 1917, provided as follows:
That all officers and enlisted men of the forces herein provided for, other than the Regular Army, shall be in all respects upon the same footing as to pay, allowances, and pensions as officers and enlisted men of corresponding grades and length of service, in the Regular Army.
How that has been evaded is a matter of public scandal, which the American Legion with its overwhelming personnel of enlisted men is seeking to set right. It is not a matter of discrimination between officers and enlisted men, but a discrimination between officers where enlisted men are not concerned. All enlisted men have been treated the same.
Retirement for officers was provided originally by the act of Congress of August 3, 1801. Wliy? To eliminate superanminted and Inefficient officers in the time of the Civil War. The gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. Garrktt] has shown that he Is unacquainted with and actually opposed to the settled policy of our democratic but noncommunistic country, from the Revolutionary War times down. It gives an opportunity to set this Congress right. The Republican floor lender evidently knew that the gentleman from Tennessee was In error when the latter stated on the floor of the House that it was against the policy of this country to discriminate between officers and enlisted men. This is the first open communistic and socialistic utterance that I have heard for many a long day on this floor.
Mr. DAVIS. Will the gentleman yield?
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. I will.
Mr. DAVIS. Did I understand the gentleman from Ohio made reference to the gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. Garrett]?
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. To the statement he made.
Mr. DAVIS. I challenge that statement as being unjustified and unwarranted.
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. I am glad to meet that challenge, and I will show how it is easily justified and absolutely warranted. The Uuited States Army was composed of officers and enlisted men. It is necessary that the officers be chosen because of riper years, greater experience, and training. The officers are paid more. There is always a necessary discrimination. Officers have ever been chosen for responsibility because they had responsibilities; the enlisted personnel was chosen under the draft net because of their lack of responsibilities. In the World War the officers average 12 to 15 years older than the enlisted men.
Men were taken for officers who had wives and children, who find made a success in life, and who had positions of responsibility, who had already demonstrated their fitness for command.
The personnel of the third camp was made up exclusively of enlisted men already in the service.
SELECTION OF OFFICERS
Here are some extracts from a War Department memorandum of June 4. 1917, which instructed officers of the regular service on the methcxls they were to follow in selecting candidates for the officers' training camps. These show the emphasis placed upon age, experience, and character:
To provide officers for • • • the National Army the War Department has adopted the policy of commissioning all new officers of the line (Infantry, Cavalry, Field and Coast Artillery) purely on the basis of demonstrated ability after three months' observation and training in the officers' training camps. Thus the appointment of officers of the new armies will be made entirely on merit and free from all personal or other Influences.
• • * Also. In connection with these camps, It is to be noted that mature and experienced men are needed to nil the higher grades (first lieutenant, captain, major, and a few lieutenant colonels).
* * * In order to obtain the experienced class of men desired preference will be given to men over 31 years of age, other things being equal. Because of the anticipated large number of applications, It will probably be difficult for men under that age to qualify except in instances where the applicant has preeminent qualifications or unusual military experience.
CHARACTER OF MEN DESIRKD
Since the special object of these camps is to train a body of men fitted to fill the more responsible positions of command In the new armies, every effort will be made to select meu of exceptional character and proved ability In their various occupations. While it is desired to give full opportunity for all eligible citizens to apply, no man nwd make application whose record la not in nil respects above reproach and who does not possess the fundamental characteristics necessary to inspire respect and confidence.
While on the other hand those who were called for service under the draft act to wrve in the enlisted persounel of the Army were those with least responsibilities. Those were exempt who had responsibilities, and ouly those were taken who were foot
loose, who had no reasonable ground for exemption. Of the 400,000 who applied for training to be made officers in the two first training camps, only 44,588 were commissioned, less than oneeighth, while of those summoned under the draft act an enormous majority were rejected because of family ties and responsibilities.
ENLISTED SITUATION DIFFERENT
The World War enlisted men were chosen for their lack of responsibility. Out of each 350 men who passed the required physical examination for service. 250 men received exemption because they had dependents, and 100 men were accepted for service through their lack of dependents. It was the desire of the Congress that the enlisted personnel be men without family obligations, and that the spirit of this desire was fulfilled is shown by the foregoing exemptions granted to those who had passed the physical examination.
The final report of the provost marshal general of the Army to the Secretary of War, dated July 1">, 1019, shows in Table 4, page 24, that 2.780,570 men were actually inducted into the service during the World War, us compared to Table 2, page 20, of the same book, which shows that C.9G4.229 men received exemption from their local boards because of dependency.
This means that for every 100 men actually inducted into the service 250 meu were exempted because of dependency.
This action wns in line with that portion of the selective service act which authorized the President to exempt among others the following:
Those in a status with responsibilities to persons dependent upon them for support which renders their exclusion or discharge advisnblp.
It Is apparent from this act that Congress desired its fighting forces to be made up of men without family responsibilities. The figures quoted show that this wish was followed by the local boards.
One of the chief reasons for the difference in pay of officers and enlisted men of all armies and for all wars has been because of the difference in their ages and resiKmsibilities. These same responsibilities continued after the emergency officers were disabled and crippled. If this difference in pay was proper when the emergency officer was well and sound, how much more necessary to continue it after he has been permanently disabled and thus prevented from earning a livelihood for the family which was dependent upon him prior to his war disability.
A FALLACY EXPOSED
Occasionally opponents state they can not see the justice in a disabled officer receiving a higher rate of compensation for his disability than a disabled enlisted man. They cite as an example of tliis two brothers of approximately the same age, just out of college, one attending an officers' training camp and obtaining a commission, the other enlisting and serving in the ranks. Both become equally disabled in the service. Why should one receive a higher rate of compensation for his disability than the other? This is the stock argument advanced by opponents.
There would l>e justice in this argument provided it were typical of the situation. It is not typical. The fundamental merits of the legislation are due to the fact that this illustration is very far from the true situation.
The officers were older than the enlisted men by an average of 12 to 15 years. They were In inldcarcer in civil life. A large proportion of them were married and had families dependent upon them. Many of these officers could not have accepted commissions but for the pay which they received as officers; otherwise they would not have been able to support those dependent upon them while they were in the service.
Mr. GREEN. Mr. Chairman, will the gentleman yield?
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. Yes.
Mr. GREEN. I know that one place in the bill we are about to work a hardship on some officers.
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. That is another mistake.
Mr. GREEN. In other words, some of them get $100 a month now, and under this new retirement they will get only $93.75 a month. I would like to see that corrected.
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. The gentleman from Connecticut [Mr. Tilson] made a mistake. In the first place, no one need come under this bill unless he chooses.
Mr. GREEN. He can remain at the hundred dollars under the other, if he desires?
Mr. ROY G. FITZGERALD. Yes; but a second lieutenant under this retirement bill will not get merely $100. He will get $100 and something, because he will be retired under the pay act which was in force at the time that he was injured aud disabled.