• Last updated on November 11, 2022

Although the Supreme Court overturned the conviction of union leaders on criminal contempt, it clearly indicated the Court’s lack of support for labor unions.

The American Federation of Labor (AFL) supported the striking employees of Buck’s Stove and Range Company by organizing a boycott of the manufacturer’s products. The company got an injunction against the boycott, and the union planned an appeal. The AFL published the company’s name on a list of companies engaging in unfair practices, and the company responded by seeking to cite the union leaders with criminal contempt. The Supreme Court unanimously reversed the criminal contempt citation on a technicality. However, in his opinion for the Court, Justice Joseph R. LamarLamar, Joseph R.;Gompers v. Buck’s Stove and Range Co.[Gompers v. Buck’s Stove and Range Co.] rejected the union’s claim that its publication of the list was a legitimate exercise of free speech and strongly indicated the Court’s support for the rights of employers against labor unions.Speech, freedom of;Gompers v. Buck’s Stove and Range Co.[Gompers v. Buck’s Stove and Range Co.]Labor;Gompers v. Buck’s Stove and Range Co.[Gompers v. Buck’s Stove and Range Co.]

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