“The force of union conquers all,”, said Homer. This self-evident truth is obvious to all of us, being as readily accepted as that two and two make four.
We can find innumerable cases in history wherein if it were not for the greater unity of one side a different outcome would have resulted and probably would have changed the whole course of future events. Take for instance the World War. The combined unity of the Allies resulted in the breakdown of an omnipotent and domineering foe. On the other hand we can readily see the results of the antithesis of unity — dissension. The Civil War serves as a ready example. During those momentous years confusion reigned supreme, useless strife every-where, the once glorious union rendered asunder, a chaos such as only a Milton could describe seemed to be the only end. The people, according to sociologists and psychologists, strive for that which is pleasure producing, and since unity offers much more pleasure than dissension, we are let to attain a basis of union, but the road is rough and weary, as the theorists forget to take into account the reppeling action of some of our still existent antagonistic animal instincts and other inherent and innate impulses.
The reason for all this theorizing about unity is to bring forth a plea to the Lemko people at this opportune time offered by the publishing of the “Lemko Almanac”. The plea in substance is to warn the Lemko people, especially the younger element, as they are the rulers of tomorrow, to look ahead and see that the unorganized state in which our people find themselves will lead them into nothing short of oblivion, into such a state that the name “Lemko” will be forgotten and the wonderful traditions of our dear ancestors cast into the devouring mouth of the gone and forgotten Past.
But need this be? Any sensible person will immediately answer in the negative. Then what is the solution of such a state of affairs? Why, it is unity, organization, consolidation, of course, or call it whatever your fancy desires.
The advantages of unity can readily be seen by considering two men who are so progressive as to unite in promoting a certain cause or interest. In this state of unity the wants of neither are any greater, in most respects, than they would be were they alone, but their strength, which is the criterion of unity, is far superior to the strength of two seperate men.
What is the incentive to unity? I should immediately say that it is “adversity”. You can pick out instances from the lives of great men which show that they had formed the dearest friendships in times of strife and stress. This immediately causes me to recall a quotation I read which has firmly lodged in my mind and which states that “The firmest friendships have been formed in mutual adversity, just as iron is most strongly united by the fiercest flame”.
Since space does not permit I shall not elaborate further but shall leave the reader enter into profound thought and meditation over this matter, with the hope that it shall be the means of arousing interest and bringing forth action. Our people are more or less in a state of oppression and we must organize in order to promote their welfare, to put them on a level with other classes, to make the name “Lemko” potent with good meaning. Our salvation is “union”, so unite, as it is just as Benjamn Franklin said of the American people, “We must all hang together or assuredly we shall all hang separately”.