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alism has since arisen upon this same subject, is that warning a weapon in your hands agaiast as, or in our hands against you? : Could Washington himself speak, would he cast the blame of that sectionalism upon us, who sustain his policy, or upon you, who repudiate it? We respect that warning of Washington, and we commend it to you, together with his example pointing to the right application of it.
But you say you are conservative-eminently conservative-while we are revolutionary, de. structive, or something of the sort. What is conservatism? Is it not adherence to the old and tried, against the new and untried ? We stick to, contend for, the identical old policy on the point in controversy which was adopted by "our fathers who framed the government und der which we live ;" while you with one accord
eject, and scout, and spit upon that old policy, and insist upon substituting something new. True, you disagree among yourselves as to what that substitute shall be. You are divided on new propositions and plans, but you are unanimous in rejecting and denouncing the old policy of the fathers. Some of you are for reviving the foreign slave-trade, some for a con. gressional slave code for the Territories : some for Congress forbidding the Territories to prohibit slavery within their limits ; some for main. taining slavery in the Territories through the judiciary ; some for the" gur-reat pur-rinciple" that " if ono man would enslave another, no third man should object," fantastically called " popular sovereignty;" but never a man among you is in favor of Federal prohibition of slavery in Federal Territories, according to the practice of “our fathers who framed the gove ernment under which we live." Not one of all your various plans can show a precedent or an advocate in the century within which our gov. ernment originated. Consider, then, whether your claim of conservatism for yourselves, and your charge of destructiveness against us, are based on the most clear and stable foundations.
Again, you say we have made the slavery question more prominent than it formerly was. We deny it. We admit that it is more promi. nent, but we deny that we made it so. It was not we, but you, who discarded the old policy of the fathers. We resisted, and still resist, your innovation ; and thence comes the greater prominence of the question. Would you have that question reduced to its former proportions ? Go back to that old policy. What has been will be again, under the same conditions. If you would have the peace of the old times, re. adopt the precepts and policy of the old times.
You charge that we stir up insurrections amocg your slaves. We deny it; and what is your proof? Harper's Ferry! John Brown !! John Brown was no Republican; and you have failed to implicate a single Republican in his Harper's Ferry enterprise. If any member of our party is guilty in that matter, you know ito or you do not know it. If you do know it, you are inexcusable for not designating the man and proving the fact. If you do not know it, you are inexcusable for asserting it, and espe. cially for persisting in the assertion after you have tried and failed to make the proof. You need not be told that persisting in a charge which one does not know to be true, is simply malicious slander.
Some of you admit that no Republican de signedly aided or encouraged the Harper's Ferry affair, but still insist that our doctrines and declarations necessarily lead to such re. sults. We do not believe it. We know we hold no doctrine, and make no declaration, which were not held to and made by “our fathers who framed the government under which we live." You never dealt fairly by us in relation to this affair. When it occurred. some important State elections were near at hand, and you were in evident glee with the belief that, by charging the blame upon us, you could get an advantage of ths in those elec. tions. The elections came, and your expecta. tions were not quite fulfilled. Every Republi. can man knew that, as to himself at least, your charge was a slander, and he was not much inclined by it to cast his vote in your favor. Republican doctrines and declarations are ac companied with a continual protest against any interference whatever with your slaves, or with
you about your slaves. Surely, this does not encourage them to revolt. True, we do, in common with “our fathers who framed the government under which we live," declare our belief that slavery is wrong ; but the slaves do not hear us declare even this. For anything we say or do, the slaves would scarcely know there is a Republican party. I believe they would not, in fact, generally know it but for your misrepresentations of us in their hearing. In your political contests among yourselves, each faction charges the other with sympathy with Black Republicanism ; and then, to give point to the charge, defines Black Republican. ism to simply be insurrection, blood, and thun. der among the slaves. "
Slave insurrections are no more common now than they were before the Republican party was organized. What induced the Southampton insurrection, twenty-eight years ago, in which at least three times as many lives were lost as at Harper's Ferry? You can scarcely stretch your very elastic fancy to the conclusion that Southampton was.“ got up by Black Re. publicanism.! In the present state of things in the United States, I do not think a general, or eren a very extensive, slave insurrection is possible. The indispensable concert of action cannot be attained. The slaves have no means of rapid communication ; nor can incendiary freemen, black or white, supply it. The explosive materials are everywhere in parcels ; but there neither are, nor can be supplied, the in. dispensable connecting trains.
Much is said by Southern people about the affection of slaves for their masters and miso tresses, and a part of it, at least, is true. A piot for an uprising could scarcely be devised and communicated to twenty individuals before some one of them, to save the life of a favorite master or mistress, would divulge it. This is the rule; and the slave revolution in Hayti was not an exception to it, but a case occurring un. der peculiar circumstances. The gunpowder plot of British history, though not connected with slaves, was more in point. In that case, only about twenty were admitted to the secret : and yet one of them, in his anxiety to save & friend, betrayed the plot to that friend, and, by consequence, averted the calamity. Occasional poisonings from the kitchen, and open or stealthy assassinations in the field, and local revolts extending to a score or so, will continue to occur as the natural results of slavery; but no general insurrection of slaves, as I think, can happen in this country for a long time. Whoever much fears, or much hopes, for such an event, will be alike disappointed.
In the language of Mr. Jefferson, uttered many years ago, “ It is still in our power to direct the process of emancipation and deportation peaceably, and in such slow degrees, as that the evil will wear off insensibly, and their places be, pari passu, filled up by free white