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Slave Representation: For The Signal Of Liberty

Slave Representation: For The Signal Of Liberty image
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The Consütuüon ot the Umled Staies provides that the number of Representaties to Congress from the several States shall bc 'n proporlion to the number of inbabitants in each State; bul the slaves aro not counted as other inhabilanlp, ycl they are counted in determininL the number of Representatives from the S'.ave States in thismanner: every five slaves sre counted the same as, or equal to three free perBons. Consequent, a State inhabiied by 500,000 slaves and 100,000 frec persons jg en'itled toas rnany Representativos as a free State inhabiied by 400,000 free persons; beca use the 500,000 slaves, by the Constitution count 300,000 free peop'.e, whüe the 100,000 free persons in the Slave Slatcs count the same as 100,000 free persons in the free Siates. The slaves o not poll any votes, nor does any on e poll Bny for tiiem. There are nó more votes polled in a slave State thiui therc would be jf the slaves were not counted; but therc are more Reprcsentativeson the ticket to be voted, than there would be tf thé slaves were nol counted. To make the subject plain, Iet us compare the business of apnorlioning and electing Representativos to Congress in a free and a slave State. In Michigan, tbere are, we wül suppose 180, 000 mhabitants; which, al 00,000 as the basis of representalion, will cntiile. the State to send three Representativos lo Conoress. Let us suppose that the Stateof Arkausas s inhabiled by iÜO slaveholders who holcl, each, 300 si ives, amounlqit to 300,000 in all, these by the t tutïonare to be countcd as 180,000 free persons: add the 100 slaveholders, and ihe i representative population of Arkansas is 180,100, vviücli wilt enlitle her to threc , Ropresetitatives; ihe same as Michigan. The cunsequence i?, that lOOslaveholders inhabitiug the State of Arkansas and owning the rest of the inhabitants, would possess as much power in the House of RepjLjntaiives, as all the people of Michigan. Priie practical result of this provisión of the Conslitution is, llmt there are aboul 25 Representativos in Congress from the slaveholding States more ihan there would be if'-he sla ves vvere not counted. These slaves are regarded by the laws of the Otates and by tho inhabitanis of the slavebolding Siates as properly, and yet ihcir ownerá, in iheir associatcd capaciiy as the öovereign peoplc of a State, have the power to usethem for the purpose of enlarging the number of their Representatives ] inCongress: whiie no property of any description is r.llosved lo be the basis of representation in a non slaveholding State. Henry Clay esiimates the average value of Slftves at $400 eacli, and the whole ölavc property of the nation at tvveive huna'red millions pf dollars. This prodigious monopoly semls its Renresentaiives iutc the National Legislalure every yearand there votes away the libeles of theNatioa, as it does the liberiies of those on whose value it is based. It ïhere tells the Iaborer3 of the North that their petilions to their own Represent;itivessupplicatin mercy for the slave within the National domain, shall nol be heard, and unblushingly pvophecies, that in 25 years theii condilion shall be tike that of the south. erti slave, reduced to pr óper'.y, and addcdlo the iwelve hundred milhons. lt then lells them that the iVee cilizen of ihe Nortb. ifa colorea1 ma:i, mr.y be scized in the District of Colombia, and so!d into slavery tor the crime of hs color, and that all their supplications to Cyngresa for redress of . grievances of this nalure shall remain unheard and unread. The representativos of this slave property then vote nway the money that is earned by Northern labor to ilefray the oxpenses of Florida wars to enabíe the slaveholder to catch his ruaaway slaves, while if ye, Northern men, who furnish most of the money for this purpose, were the slavc9 who had fled from slavery, you would think the nation bound by all" the duiies of Christianity to prol-eet you instead of rcturning you to slavery, or giviug oppoitunity to your oppressors to pursuc you.Now gentlemen, farmers and mechamos of the North, are these things right? Do you approve of them? If not, wil) you let J your Representativos, when they go to Washington, undersiand that jou desire them to look to your interests and not protect the interests of slavery ai your expense; that it is their duty to look for al' foreim market for your vheat instead ot assisting the slaveholder to hunt his negroes with blood hounds at your expense, and o find a foreign market for his tobáceo, while your wheat remains unso.d?- Why should you not be entiüed to as mucn political power on account of your property in your horned cattle, as your southern neiehbors now have on account of their nroperlyin human cattle? Why should not the non-slaveholding States send a number of Represcntativcs to Gongress to be elected upon a property basis, which shall bear the same proportion to the present number of representaties that the .' property representatives of the slaveholding States bear to all the rest of the representatives of the slaveholding States.-If the soulh insiston having their pvopcrty jepresented bccause they choose to invcst it in slaves, there is no good reason why the Norlh should not have theirs represented, because thcy choose to mvest it in cattle. If a piece of properiy called a ] slave, worlh 400 dollars, ought to be j íesented in Congres, there is no good reason why four pieces of property, each called a horse, worth 100 dollars ought not bc, ntitled to representation on an equalfooting with tho 400 dollar picce. In both ;ases, it is only property Üiut is represen ed. The slavo has no inore voice in the ote his master gives ihun ihe horst; has n the votes hisowner gives, neither is the ondition oí theslave more regarded in the aws enactcd by Congress than tho condion of the horse. In the District of Columbia under the ery doors of the capitol he is mprisoned, nanacled, hand-cuffed and whipped at the mercy of his owner, and by tho law of Congress reppecling the surrendering of iigitive slaves, he is treated wholly os roperty. Now if these things are nol as :iey should be, there is no reason uhy hcy should not be pet right by stich an mendinent of the Constitituliou as.will give to the North a property represenation, or take away that now possesed by the South, utilesa you are dis- )osc(l a? you have been wont to dn, to yield obedience to the twelve hundred million monster when, as usual, heshiill raise his jloody old head, and cry aloud, "you are ny subjeets and you must obey my cornmands, you must not alter the Constitution, ,'ou must regard my interesta as paranoutit to all oiher inïeres's, and you must do nothing without first consulting me." - We have been oppressed and insultcd in this way long enough. Let us meet these insuient demands with the spirit of Northern fieemen, who Unow their riglUs and who uiil show by their actiuns lh,at they dare maintnin them.BaoTiiEit Trbadwisll wr.lei froin Jatkion, Nov. 12th: "As lar as I have learned our friendsin he Stiuo evcry where feel well satisfied ind encouraged at the large increuse of miï liberiy vote. But 1 have not the least doubt (hat had :he liberiy friends all been seusonably and thoroughly organized for action: - an ampie sup)ly of tickets timely distributed and due eftbrts nvide to get the stay at home folks at the pulls &.c, it mjght iiave tnade say 1000 difl'erence in the libcrty vote ir. the Slate. Should this be tho general impression, (and I think it wil! bc) il is hoped it will have the happy effect to induce us all hencefortli to be on the alert commending the important claims of' the cause oí" líber1.}' to a!l classes of community. If the liberty standard shall be kcpl perpendicular and uncompronjising, with the blossing of Ileaven, we shall have not b tig tu l'ear for the ultímale deliverance ui' the slave and our long polilically bcfoo'e.l and slavcry-iidden country, the predicions of ihe enemies of liberiy to thü cunlrarystanding. I would fain Irusl in a benignatu providcnce Ihal the tree of Iiberty, plantod in our soil in 1840 is striking its roots decp enocgh and broa il enough to rear n ti;unU i with branches, amply suiticient lo shielci our country froin every tlark pro-sluvery j storm tliat may arise fr'oqi boneatb the NürtherfPor Soiuhcrn horizon."