Press enter after choosing selection

Fugitive Slaves--stealing

Fugitive Slaves--stealing image
Parent Issue
Public Domain
OCR Text

Th o N. Y. Evangolist haa un arlicle on that part of the Address to Slaves, which advises thcm totake all along ihoir route, wbat tnay be necessaiy for thcir escape. Afier showing that Slavery is a local law, and of no moral obligation on ihe elavo, und that the sluvo may rightfully ubo vioIcnceü' he can escalo in no oiher way, ii proceeds : 'The elave starts from Virginia, wiih whoso law, xnaking hun the proper ly oí liis muelef, ho is by ihe iavv of naiurcand of God, necessnriiy ai war. So long aa ho is wiüun the Louuds of Virginia, lie is in an enemy'ö land. lie has a lighl ü' bis niaster, anned with the iiutbonty oí an unnghtcous luw, ia pursumg hirn, loeeize upon a. borse bclonging to one ofhis euennes und use it for nía purpose. It' he comes to a river, and findsa. boal belonging to one ofhis eneniies, he has a right to seize it and row hiniself over, thereüy faciUtaiing bis owu escape and impedin he pursuit of hiá merciless foe. líe has tbe eame rigól lo bis fligbt ihrough Penn sylvaniaandNew York, tt ihose í'ree íátales lave pledged themselves to Virginia ihai ihcy will catch Lint and reatore bitn lo slavery if they can. Such a contraci des fcxist. lie is uoi, iherefore, freo frum the reach of 6kve law, unlil lie ís euluel} jeyond the boumJd of the United Slaies. Henee, he is in an cneniy'e country, "ali along bis route" unlil be has reuched a suil i ree from the coutaminating law oi siiavery, and blcssod with ihe ujunicipul recognuion of ibe great primary authonty of nuiural law under wbich bebas acied. Such are tbe principies, we presume, un which lho Convenlion founded the dirtction given lo ibe slave. 'i'hey do nol advise ihem to iusurrection or plunder, uor to the laking uf their enetn's gouds beyond xvkat is absolutehj essential to effect llieir purpose of pcaccful escape. ll muy be said lliai iheee principies, ii carried oul, would juslify insurrectiun. Ín reply lo this, we recur to the statements we made in tbe cuse of the Creóle. We ihen said ibat there were only two consideralions wlucti obliged - we inighthuvc eaiü justifiüd- men in submiuing toslavcry. Ono was, the prospect ol deliveiuuce by patiënt waiimg; und the otiici was, he irnpossibility oí' it by insurreclion Such is the condition of the alavés ai tbc soulh. The principies con'espond enlirely wiih the principies of the law of nature and of ifcvelatiou. We are not to seek redress for any wrongs, bowever greal by vioience, 6o long as it caif pössibly be oblained by peaceful means. jSieither are we to inflict injuries on our oppvessors whicb can do us no good. and only gratii} our revenge. Even ihe man whuee life is aesaulled, rnusl retreat as be can, aaü takc every possible means to preserve it befort be takes the life of the assailant. Ye when all these fail, and the final metboc will succeed, the right of eelf defence which Blackslone declares can never be laken away by thü laws of Society, remaius and justifies just so much, use o force as is absoluleiy, then, such be ihe nature of ïhe prin ciple, and such be the peculiar position o ihe eiave, ihe right to escape, tind to uvai himselfof the property of hid enernies fo tho purpose of escaping, seems 10 be ui original right, lying back of all the foundations of meum and tuum, or of the divis iou of gouds, which resls ulone on municipal law. Such tuking of goods us ihe Couvcntion recommend, is, tuerelurc entirely free of theguill ot' theft, boih by ihe law of Nulure, and the unchangeabie iaw of God. Tho question, therefore, Is iu sin to steai? which ihe New York. Odserver ruises in view oí' ibis cuse, doe not belong lo the eutiject. The Conveution have not auifionzed thefi, tf ihe abovc argument id valid. Js it a sin ïo gteal? Let tliut quesliun be repeatcd. la it a sin to lak'e so much food as need lo sali&fy the gnawings of extreme hunger'? Dlacksione decides thaL il is? Is il then a sin to takc a whole man, body and mind, and force him irom hia nativo country, and seil him as the pioperly of auother? ís il a sin to pay liial thiüfand robber his price, and then carry oul ihe deed? Ja it a sin to oppropriate the whole of tiiat slave's labor according as we picase? la it u sin to luy our claim upon his childreu and his childreu's children? Is it a sin to carry out ikal robher'ö claim, by sel ling theslave,or his wife, or his chüdren, to ihe highesi bidder lor the sake of gain? ld it a sin io frame iniquity by a law, and lo establiüh a syslcm of legislalion authonzing these enormilies? Is it a sin to sanction and tolérate such conduct ajjd such laws in ihe church ot God ? Is it a sin for religious men and religious papers te apologize for these aboininations? We copea ihe question, Is it a sin to STEAL? Let thal question re3ound far and wide, unlil it penetrales the pirlor of every slavebolder, iho heari of every slave drjver in every coitos iiold, the bosorn of ev cry Southern legislalor, the hulU ofui govcrnnient, and the aUars of crery church? lo it a sin lo eteal, and Baactiun. Ptctiling - to rob, and eunction robbery?' - Let those "few religious papers" whioh are etili willing to wipe the feet of the eluveholder, prepare to nswer.


Signal of Liberty
Old News