A Catholic blacksmith and son of Irish immigrants from Canada, James Burke began his political career when he was almost 50, becoming a champion of the poor, labor, and ethnic newcomers. Rising to prominence at the start of the 20th century as Burlington's progressive mayor, you might think he would cherish the right of dissent no matter who was speaking. Yet Burke sometimes revealed a tendency to drown out his opposition.
His most infamous moment of intolerance came on September 3, 1909. In the midst of battles with corporate power, he used police power to deny the freedom to speak to a woman whose philosophy he abhorred, one of the most famous radicals in the country -- Emma Goldman.
For the complete essay: A Progressive Censors Red Emma