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The State Journal On Slavery

The State Journal On Slavery image
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The following is the snm of the expusition of the Journal in answer to our remarks some weeks sinco. We insert it at lengrh, that our readers may haveboth eides: 'Did we not spenli of our social system ns covered wilh "wounds and bruises and pntrifyingf eores from the crovvn of the head to tlie sole of the foot,:' &did we not adniit the iiiitiiutiuD of slavery to be possiby the very worst of the complicated eviJs which afflict it? Have we not repeatedly characteiizcd tfieinstitulioti as flpurely diabolical in i(8 oripin?" Bul ihê characicr of a polity pr insLilution is one thing; the du ty of individu % who me bom into it is nno! her üiinp. We venture to sny the readers of the Signal cuii eee this distinction if its editors cannot. We have said it nmst often become a christian duty ufa good rnon in asta ve stale to purchase a slave: - as where a well disposed slave who is illt realed by a cruel moster, gfoes to a benevolent noighbor tmd bess him to buy him; or in the case of nn.jntestn.te in Virginia, where (he sluves of a plantation are to be sol off at nuction, and buyers from Louisiana nnd Mississippi are preparen to purchase, nr,d the niothcrofa family of these slaves. terrified at the prospect of the separation of her childrn, begs a humano neighbor to buy them. Wil] the editors of the iSiriial condescend to leavetheir beloved tibstraction9 f'or a moment, and give us thoir j'idgrnent on this specific case, whicli is one of ver.y frequent occurrence in the Southern Stafes, or at least give their readers an opportunity to jndge ii? They represent us as saying ihat "in ceriain circumstnnces the relalion of masterand slave is a far more christian reja t ion than that of employer ond liirelmg.1' VVhat we eaid was hi.-: "The Divine merc.y nevpr forsakes the fallen, and sublime und beauiiful virtues are made oflourish in the most unpronr.sing eituations. Phe practical influence of christian principies often makes the rélatton of inasterBnd Blave a 'ar more christian rélatfon th'sn ihnt of cm)loyer and hireling, where the dim of one parij is to get greafrsi .amount of work for he least tcages, aul íhfi aim of the other lo gel he grealest amount of wages for the least cork.'' The last clauees of lïie senience which we iave italicised; and on which the who!e force of the companison dopends, they carefully mit. Caiinot the Editors of thèSirnal uner'stand tliat such misrepresentation is wrong ajid wicked; or is coneeieuce a laughing stock vith thein? Did we not dony your "allegation that Mr. 3]ay's flnves ara govevned by the cart whipT' Ve do deny it, and ask 3''oi to prove it. We are infonned tiiat his s'aves are all peoplc o!" ,'ood charucter, who need no such discipline. Int it is our delibérale opinión that nny man vhether black or white, wheüior nmster or lave who is able to work for a living and will not work at some useful tliing, arteries he cartwhip; ond we incline to think ii would be a sáltitar.jt regu!ation of poJice and a ïeathful discipline to the louferage of the and to inflict it." We are so crowdod for room, our notes on lis must be brief. The d;stinct'ion bctwecn he evil character of "the. instituí ion" of Slavery, and the duty or propriety of holding laves in accordande witii it, wc leave to our eaders. Our neighbor says they can see it. 'erhapá they can. As to the case of the sêparatiön of a slave amily, we will give our opinión on it. Our osition is that the holding of one man as property by anothér is ahcays Our neighoor of the Journal, if we now undersland iiim, conteuds it is sometimes a duty to buy men as property and ho'd tliem as such. Wé rcmark on his supposed case, J. That thereis an ambigoily in his statement. Many Abolitionists, perhaps most of hem think it right to f urdíase a slavc of the master for the purpose of his immediatc liberatior. But liere we snppose it is intended'the mrcha3cr shall hold him as property. "A slave," says Webster, "is a person who s wholly' subject to the vilr of another.1' We deny that ariy person, by paying a sum of money to a .third person, can rightfully acquire such an absolute subjectioti over another as lo make him mere property. 2. But in this case the slave himpelf as&s to be bought and held as a slave. Well, what of that? Suppose he should be so wretchedly situatcd with his former master as to afli you to kil! htm to relieve him from misery, would it be right for you tó do it? You have no more right to deprive him of liberty for a day, than you have to take his lite. Is Life of. more value than Liberty? We rnay not do evil Ihat good may come. 8. But suppose every good man should buy slave?, what would be the consequence? - Let us suppose neighbor Corselius bhouldry out !:is own principies. He ís well known as a philanthropist, allhough his defence of Mr. Clay has led him lo apologise for Mr. Clay's enormities. Supposo neighbor Corselius to fake the tour of the Union, and purchase all the elaves wlio should ask bim to purchase them. Ho might, perhaps, gather a thousand. What would he do with them9 Some are kind and tractable. Others are very vicious and unruly. He must, as a matter of course, assume despotic power over them. Tliey must be governed in some vvay, and, in default of other methods being effdctual, the lash, the paddie, the stocks, and al other neccssary instruments of govornment must be applied, as much as he tkought would bejur the good of the slaves. " He who wil Bot work at something usefuJ, deserves the cartwhip!" That they would be kindly trcated by him we belicve, though the astonishing change from mildness to cruelty consequent on tho possession of absolute power is a lesson of history Mr. Corsfilius well understands. But would his children or heirs hold these slaves purely for their good? What says al experience? Is not despotic power abused more and more? Thus our neighbor, by his Christian philanthrophy in buying and holding slaves, would identify himself wiih the abominable "institution" that hedenounces, give it the influence of his virtues and excellent character, and transmit a large number of hurnan beings to be wholly subject to the wiil of his posterity, to the destruction of the happinose of niaster and slaves. But J3UT neighbor is a Fouricrist, and hemay 6ay tliat he does not believe in mvolunlanj sorvitude, but condemns it os one of the 'bruises'' of the social systein, and after fulfilling his Christiaii duty of buying slavcs, lie would treat them on different principies. We .iuswer,that if his different treatment amounted to cmaticipation, he is on the same ground we are, and there is no controversy betvveen us. [f it did not nninunt to cmancipation, he would still be u despotic, irresponsible slavelioldcr, witli uil the consecuiences resul ting irom the relation that we have mentionei!. The Chrisüun Scriptures, avoiding all abstractions, have laid down the duly of every masler in two precepts, which are in substance these: 1. Use no threatening or coerción to your servants. 2. Give unto them that which is just and equál. When cvery tlaveholtlor will conform to these requirements, we will not be very een sorions about other things. - And now as tq Mr. Clay's slavesi The Editor of the Journnl is not sorry that Mr. Cltiy holcis sjavès. We thjnk very many of his readers . feel diiïerently about it. They would rejoice lo hearlhat Mr. Clay, like his noinesake, had emancipatod them all - that they were receiving daily wages - thet the children were being eilncated, ond al] of them were improving asf'rce and intelligent citizens. The backneyed politiciuns might not be pleased with snch a result. Mr. Corselius tn'ght not. But we believe the great majority of hie readers would. Tlicy will vote fur Mr. Clny, we allknow, wbethnr slaveholder or not; but they had rather vote for an emancipationist tlmn for a breeder and holder of slitvés. Mr. Clny's plantation presente none of theehccring rcsuitd of emancipación, or mental or moral improvement. The old readers of the Signal will doubtless recollect the graphic description of Ashland, in 184!, given by J. C. Fuller, an English Quaker, of much respectability. We will make a brief extract to refiesh the memory of our neighbor of the After relatinghisconversation wiii several slaves who sa id tiiey u-ere purchased n Washington by Mr. Clay, he says in reference to an old wotnan wbo had been the uolher of eome eixieen slaves: "The hut in wliich this souree of wealth i yes is neitlisr as good, nor as well jloored as my stable. I Uien turned awoy into the orchard, where severa! slaves wëre pnjjaged in ncking fruir, r.nd usked ofte of the young nen if they were taught-to read on tljc p!nitation. "Nj." Uaving eeen all I wanled, I made for t he mansión, and found the man was there wno had just been sent for. Iluving a whip under his arm, 1 told bim I need nót ask who he wae, eeeing he carned his bad y e of diuhority wilb hirn. lie aekad if I wanted to seë the importen cattle. I said yes, when ie replied that they had but litile, and that was all out from that Mr. Chiy's souf liave the most, and as there was no fuíl blooaed, supposcd it was not worih Keeing. I said it coukl not bc. Thëy then made out that there was two Aill blooded ealve.?, but'I was satisfied with wliat I had seen, and onhjiuantcd to fccl in my own hand the ivrtght of a SHORT -HANDLED BUT I'ONDEROUS WHIP, U'llicll ts pop?esso said was his ndincr wbip, bnt that it had been bruken - and Qtiiat itauswered two pnrpofep, that of a ridmtr wliip. and "OCCASIONALLY TO WHIP THEM OFF," alluding to the Slaves .".J} Here is the teslitnony of Mr. Clay's own nred man lo the fact that hisslaves are "occasionalJy" at least governed by thecaTt wtiip - or, if you objfet to the phraso, by "a. shorthandled bvt ponderous wkip.' That this use of the whip was distinctly understood from his cnversation by Mr. Fu'ller, is evident rron his reílcctious .vhjíjh he subjoins as folows: "What, my frienrl, is to be learned from these gleaniitigs at Ashland - from the doings of our mutual friend Joseph John Gurnëy's "dear frirnd,"' IlenryClu)!! Why, that he buys iiu-nan kind, male and female, on the spot, which of all others under heaven, ouglit to be freetlonvs own ground, and wliich ought not o be tainted with the tread of a slaves foot, or cursed by his preeence.:' "We also learn that Henry Clay keefis immortal ininds, made in God's owi: image, and destined like ourselves, and like himself, to endlces htippiness or misery - tbat he leeeps such in mental bondage - m Eg-ypüan darknessü WliHt ure we to expect of a man who can buy, sell, or barter humanity? And wfiat is huinnnity? Is it not God"s creation, and designed to be Christs' by redeinption? If it be so, wliat is its value? Eslimate the suflèring in the Garden of Gethsemane, and 'the death and su Sering on Calvary's cross; if the alonement there made, and the triumphant resnrrection and glorious nsernsion of our Redeemer enn be to the ful! ex tent o pp recio led while in this mortal coil, the question can be answered. And shall the tï!an who does this, and dollies anoiher ivilh unlimiled, irre$ponsihlepoiver - placing tjnt his hand a ávhip with WniCU HE MAY LACÉRATE WOMAN's FLESH woman. God's last, best ei ft to man" - lashher toa, and in her diüy toiJ, lash kertohecome a willing sacrifice to Jus lusLs - shall such a man who is considered heir presinnptive to the President al chaír, be sustained by American Aboliiionists? Heaven forbid ! God and a!l nature cries against it." Is there.any thing cheering to humanity in this diecription of Ashland? Yet Mr. Clay is "opposed to every scheme of emancipation whatever, wtjetlier gradual or imniediate," ond exulliugly proclaims, in the presence of asscmbled thousands - "nr si-aves are fat and sleekü" This is the candidate our neighbor prefers f'rom among all the talented edand irreproachablestatesmen which rnay be fouud in his own party 1


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