CLOSE—ON FATHER BARRY
He stands over the body of Kayo Nolan, which lies on the pallet and has
been covered by a tarpaulin.
I came down here to keep a promise.
I gave Kayo my word that if he stood up to the
mob I'd stand up with him all the way. Now
Kayo Nolan is dead. He was one of those fellows
who had the gift of getting up. But this time they fixed
him good— unless it was an accident like Big Mac says.
Some people think the Crucifixion
only took place on Calvary. They better wise
up. Taking Joey Doyle's life to stop him from
testifying is a crucifixion— Dropping a sling on Kayo
Nolan because he was ready to spill his guts
tomorrow— that's a crucifixion. Every time the
mob puts the crusher on a good man— tries to
stop him from doing his duty as a citizen— it's a
And anybody who sits around and lets it happen,
keeps silent about something he knows has happened—
shares the guilt of it just as much as the Roman soldier
who pierced the flesh of Our Lord to see if He was dead.
Go back to your church, Father.
Boys, this is my church. If you don't think
Christ is here on the waterfront, you got another
guess coming. And who do you think He lines up
Every morning when the hiring boss blows his
whistle, Jesus stands alongside you in the shape-up.
He sees why some of you get picked and some
of you get passed over. He sees the family men
worrying about getting their rent and getting food
in the house for the wife and kids. He sees them
selling their souls to the mob for a day's pay.
What does Christ think of the easy-money boys
who do none of the work and take all of the gravy?
What does He think of these fellows wearing
hundred-and-fifty-dollar suits and diamond rings—
on your union dues and your kickback money?
How does He feel about bloodsuckers picking
up a longshoreman's work tab and grabbing
twenty percent interest at the end of a week?
How does He, who spoke up without fear
against evil, feel about your silence?
Shut up about that!
You want to know what's wrong
with our waterfront? It's love of a lousy buck. It's
making love of a buck— the cushy job— more
important than the love of man. It's forgetting
that every fellow down here is your brother in
But remember, fellows, Christ is always with you—
Christ is in the shape-up, He's in the hatch—
He's in the union hall— He's kneeling
here beside Nolan and He's saying with all
If you do it to the least of mine,
you do it to me! What they did to Joey, what they
did to Nolan, they're doing to you. And you. And
YOU. And only you, with God's help, have the
power to knock 'em off for good!
(turns to Nolan's corpse)
He makes the sign of the cross.
(from On the Waterfront, writtten by Bud Schulberg)