Eastphalia, US

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
Home Vintage Political Cartoons In The Hen House, 1953

In The Hen House, 1953



McCarthyism was in full swing by the time 1953 rolled around.  Pulitzer prize-winning conservative illustrator Reg Manning, as you might expect, fell on the anti-Communist side of the debate.  Communists could be found under every bed, around every shadowy corner -- and no place was more concerning than in leadership in labor unions.  The steelworkers unions were the biggest 'threat', due to their enormous impact on both the U.S. economy and on the defense industries: if Communists were making the tanks and guns that we were sending overseas to shoot at other Communists, how could they be trusted?

They could be trusted if they signed an Anti-Communist affidavit, of course!  Illustrator Manning wasn't so convinced, though: surely a wolf (or a Communist bear, in this case) could lie on the affidavit, making them free to further their socialist agendas away from the scrutinizing eyes of Congress?

As we've learned after the fall of McCarthyism, the negative influence of Communists in labor unions was never the nation-destroying power the Conservative movement held it to be...but that feeling has never quite gone away, as the latest anti-union movement in Tennessee's Volkwagen manufacturing plant has shown.