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It follows that in the passage of one of the bills before you you leave to the courts the decision, and since finally the courts must decide it is the part of wisdom, since we can find no other way, to pass one of these bills and leave it to the courts for judgment.

In the final analysis Government has no reason for being except the protection of the people who constitute it. All things else submerge themselves into that. A government which fails to protect the people who constitute it to that extent is no government at all. It has no authority except that derived from its people. It practices a wrong except it protects them. It does injustice to them if it neglects to protect them and indeed they do injustice to themselves when they submit to that lack of protection. I am brought to say this because it has been stated by better men than I that among certain rights which are inalienable are the rights to live and the pursuit of happiness, and so forth.

If this right to life is inalienable, it seems to me it must follow nobody has a right to take it. No law permits any man to take it. Every man is within his right when he protects it. He then lives up to the law of man and the law of God. When men receive no protection from government, it seems to me it must follow that they are entirely within their rights, they obey the law, they make a certainty of that which is inalienable, when they themselves protect themselves. Further, to ask Government to protect life is a concession to government, indicative of our loyalty and its neglect. Why need we ask anybody to protect that which is inalienable, that which is ours? If I must seek help in its protection, it is because the thing is not inalienable at all, and if it is inalienable it is my duty to protect it. No man can take it, nor can one justly expect me to sit quietly by and let any man or Government attempt to take it or see it taken. Now, if I am wrong in this, the wrong lies in the fact that it seems to me a Government which fails over a long period to protect human life is a Government which neglects the essence of its functions. I am sure, though I have said I know nothing about law, that the Government which can step into a State to imprison a man for stealing a postage stamp or selling a drink of liquor or for the denial of the right to vote-provided one is not black—that Government can stop the murder of men. Then the question is, does the Government desire to do it? If the Government desires to do it, it will do it.

If I have made the point plain, the contention I make will resolve itself into this: Except something is done for us by the source of power, we will feel that we are without help; we will feel that we can expect nothing; we will feel that the Government is opposed to us; we will feel that protection lies in self. We can not feel otherwise except we see put into practice the ideals so commonly preached. It boots us nothing to hear about democracy when we never see it practiced; we feel the preacher is a hypocrite, and we have no reason for feeling anything else. If that belief continues, it is bound to make us feel, and all negroes will eventually get to feel, that we have no help except self. Then the question with me is, are you going to permit us to be driven to the conclusion that after all protection lies in self and resort to arms in defense of self is the only measure of hope we have? I thank you.

idea of lynch law in the South, the poor whites of the South is better than the best Negro. Then these white people go man hunting as they do possum hunting or fox hunting or bear hunting or deer hunting. That is what we are up against to-day, and I beg you to consider that matter. I want to get at the fundamentals of it because underlying lynch law is just that attitude of the whites in the country towards colored people.

STATEMENT OF DR. WILLIAM H. WILSON.

Dr. WILSON. I speak as a member of the local branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Mr. Chairman, I heard read here this morning a statement from one of America's foremost lawyers, which gave me occasion for thought, and made me feel that to say what I shall say in the way of random remarks will best cover the situation in so far as it is possible for me to cover it. That remark was from Mr. Storey. It was in the nature of a prophecy, a prophecy which will eventuate in all probability except there is taken some action by this Government which will have for its purpose the prevention of its eventuation. Mr. Storey was quoted as stating that if the practice of lynching is continued in this country it could end only in civil war. The statement does not come from me; it comes from one of America's leading lawyers. I am bound to concur in it. I am aware that one of two ways to stop lynchings is to stop the things which cause it. The other way is to stop it by force, which America displays no inclination to do. The things which cause it are the things which have for their purpose and intent the preachment that negroes are less than other men, that negroes must accept less, have less, enjoy less, be less, and thus they are less, and therefore, they can be lynched. It is possible that men might say we are unlike you, but we feel and know that we have sensibilities, that we have consciousness; we have those things which tend to make us feel that except we get out of of life what you get, we are less than you, and you are practicing upon us those things which you will not practice upon one another. Then if it is impossible that all white men be made to forego those things which tend to make us less than men, lynching can not be stopped.

There is one other way and that way is force. I am not a lawyer. I am simply a practitioner of medicine, knowing little about it, and less about law, but it seems to me I know this—where men want to do a thing they will do it. Where a thing ought to be done and men see that it ought to be done a way is found to do it. If we had all the constitutional lawyers in America here to-day, none of them could tell you more than I about Federal jurisdiction, except they could cite specific details, and decisions. All they could tell you would be their opinion. They could give you no judgment on the result of your act and their opinion might be no better than mine because in the final analysis judgment must come from another source. The fact that they might tell you that judgment has always been different from what it may be in a given case does not imply that judgment will remain different. Men's minds change and decisions which have gone differently heretofore may go as they should in the future.

It follows that in the passage of one of the bills before you you leave to the courts the decision, and since finally the courts must decide it is the part of wisdom, since we can find no other way, to pass one of these bills and leave it to the courts for judgment.

the protection of the people who constitute it. All things else submerge themselves into that. A government which fails to protect the people who constitute it to that extent is no government at all. It has no authority except that derived from its people. It practices a wrong except it protects them. It does injustice to them if it neglects to protect them and indeed they do injustice to themselves when they submit to that lack of protection. I am brought to say this because it has been stated by better men than I that among certain rights which are inalienable are the rights to live and the pursuit of happiness, and so forth.

If this right to life is inalienable, it seems to me it must follow nobody has a right to take it. No law permits any man to take it. Every man is within his right when he protects it. He then lives up to the law of man and the law of God. When men receive no protection from government, it seems to me it must follow that they are entirely within their rights, they obey the law, they make a certainty of that which is inalienable, when they themselves protect themselves. Further, to ask Government to protect life is a concession to government, indicative of our loyalty and its neglect. Why need we ask anybody to protect that which is inalienable, that which is ours? If I must seek help in its protection, it is because the thing is not inalienable at all, and if it is inalienable it is my duty to protect it. No man can take it, nor can one justly expect me to sit quietly by and let any man or Government attempt to take it or see it taken. Now, if I am wrong in this, the wrong lies in the fact that it seems to me a Government which fails over a long period to protect human life is a Government which neglects the essence of its functions. I am sure, though I have said I know nothing about law, that the Government which can step into a State to imprison a man for stealing a postage stamp or selling a drink of liquor or for the denial of the right to vote-provided one is not black—that Government can stop the murder of men. Then the question is, does the Government desire to do it? If the Government desires to do it, it will do it.

If I have made the point plain, the contention I make will resolve itself into this: Except something is done for us by the source of power, we will feel that we are without help; we will feel that we can expect nothing; we will feel that the Government is opposed to us; we will feel that protection lies in self. We can not feel otherwise

boots us nothing to hear about democracy when we never see it practiced; we feel the preacher is a hypocrite, and we have no reason for feeling anything else. If that belief continues, it is bound to make us feel, and all negroes will eventually get to feel, that we have no help except self. Then the question with me is, are you going to permit us to be driven to the conclusion that after all protection lies in self and resort to arms in defense of self is the only measure of hope we have? I thank you.

BOARD, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR ADVANCEMENT OF COLORED PEOPLE.

Mr. THOMAS. Mr. Chairman and members of the Judiciary Committee, I represent the legislative committee of the local branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. The first point I wish to make is that it is the duty of this committee and Congress to pass this bill and put it up to the court. Then if the court reads away a bill which is designed to give men protection for their lives in this country the blood is on their hands and not upon the hands of the Congress of the nation. You have abundant precedent for doing any such thing. For 130 years and more you have been passing bills that have been read away one after another by the supreme judiciary of the land. You passed the Missouri Compromise in 1820. There were men of great legal learning in Congress on both sides of the question, and it stood for 37 years until Chief Justice Taney under the domination of the slave power read it away, so we had the benefit of it for 37 years, and then how did they read it away? They read it away by the obiter dictum. The Supreme Court has always been able to sidestep an issue when it means justice to black men, and they read a lengthy and learned opinion upon the slave question and said the case was dismissed for want of jurisdiction, that Dred Scott was a thing and had no standing before the court. That is what we ask them to do to forward the ends of justice. Charles Sumner's civil rights bill stood for 40 years and we received inestimable benefits until the Supreme Court again found a way to read away that. So this committee will be divided upon the constitutionality of this bill, and the Supreme Court of the United States will be divided. As some of its members have said, “The only reason we are right is because we get the last guess.”

So do not let Congress sit down and say, “We doubt the constitutionality of it, hence we will give these 12,000,000 suffering people no relief.” That is not justice. Supposing it is ultimately read away. Why can not we, after the passage of this bill, put a constitutional amendment to the States? We can even get Southern men to get the legislatures of those States to ratify it because several of these Southern governors have thundered in trumpet tones against lynch law and some of them have been manly enough to call out the militia and uphold the law. We can get 45 States, I dare say to ratify a constitutional amendment. We have the eighteenth amendment to the Constitution and the constitutionality of it has been debated. We have just added the nineteenth, which is a forward movement in democracy, and makes for the moral betterment of this country. There are still doubts of its constitutionality, and although it is now in operation the Supreme Court has yet to rule upon it. Ought the men of this Congress, although there was a difference of opinion about the constitutionality say, "No, we will throw prohibition over." I claim that the 19 amendments to the Constitution compared in importance to this are like a farthing candle compared with the sun.

Mr. GRIMKE. You are speaking of the eighteenth amendment, prohibition ?

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Mr. THOMAS. The nineteenth is going through; the woman suffrage amendment is going through. Eighteen of them are forward movements in democracy, and one, the eighteenth, prohibition, is a great moral wave. So, as I say, we should not quibble over constitutionality. Put it up to the States and put it up to the Supreme Court. Everybody knows that the Supreme Court and every other court takes cognizance of public opinion. If the awakened conscience of the nation condemns mob violence, any court in the land will reflect a righteous public sentiment. Anyhow, let us do our duty.

As I say, we have two ways of getting at this, by a law and by constitutional amendment, and both of them should be tried, and, gentlemen, do it for this reason, above all things, for the tremendous moral effect it will have upon this nation to have the Congress of the l'nited States, the Congress which boasts of being the greatest legislative body in the world, declare that lynch law is murder, that lynch law is causing us to relapse back into barbarism and that primitive state of society which makes every man his personal avenger. It will have a tremendous effect upon mobs of the South and in the North where lynchings occur, because after you start lynching negroes, and you have found it to be true, you will wind up by lynching white men and lynching women and children.

The power to do one carries with it the power to do the other. Let us pass this law. It will have a tremendous effect upon the South and these lawless elements in the North, and it will show to

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something more than mere rhetoric, and until we have gotten to the point where we do that they are rhetoric. Democracy is not rhetoric. Democracy is life. So let us vindicate the good name of the nation by showing the world, which is cognizant of what we are doing over here in spite of our boasts heralded about the world. We heard a great deal about democracy in Paris, but the 333 delegates that sat at the peace table knew what was going on here. It has been my privilege to wander over a goodly portion of the globe. I met representatives of the four corners of the earth in the shadows of the pyramids, and there where we were engrossed in the study of bygone days, these people went away from that and talked to me of the lynchings and of my submerged group of 12,000,000 Americans.

We colored people are jealous of the good name of this country, and as I wandered from country to country and different people expressed disgust with the many barbarous crimes to which we are subjected here it filled my heart with pain. Mr. Grimke has referred to the lynching of these people in Elaine as the shame of Elaine. It is America's shame. Germany, the most cruel nation in war that the world has seen, never committed an atrocity in war that these people have committed in days of peace, not against enemies, but people who loved them, people who wanted to live for America, people who are law-abiding and simply groaning under their oppression. I say we can find a way to stop this sort of thing, and the moral effect it will have upon the Nation, for mob law can not stand up against the moral indignation of the world. The foreign nations all condemn it, because lynching is an American institution, and here it abides alone; everywhere else on earth it is condemned. So, as I say, the lawless

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