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General Idea Of A Slaveholding Community

General Idea Of A Slaveholding Community image
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Slavery ís a continualion of the state o war. Il 8 truo that one of the Combalanti is subdued and bound ; but the war is no terminated. If I do not put the captive u death, this apparent clemency does noi arise from any good wil! towarda him, 01 any extinction on my part of hostile feelings and intentions. lepare his life mereJy because I expect to be able to put him toa use more advantageous to myself. - And if tho captive, on the othor hand, feigns 8ubmt88ion, still he is only watching for an opportunity to escape my grasp and, if possible, to inflict upon me evils as great as those to which I have subjected him. War is justly regarded, and with the pro grees of civilization it comes every day more and more to be regarded, as the very greatest of social calamities. The introduction of slavery into a community ajnounts to an eternal protraction of that calamity, and a universal diffusion of it through the whole mass of society and that too, in its most ferocious form. When a country is invaded with a hostile army, within the immediate neighborhood of the camp, itbecomes imppossible to make any effectual reeistance. Howover fierce may be the hate with which they look upon the invaders, the inhabitants within the range of their scoutin parties are obliged to submit. They are made to furnish wood, forage and provisions; they are forced to toil in the entrenchment of the camp; their houses are liable to be ransacked and plundered, and their women to be subjected to the lusts oí the soldiers. Uponcertain emergencies, the abiest bodied among them will be arm - ed, surrounded by foreign squadrons, and obliged to fight against their own coantrymen. But,though plundered without mercy, and liable to the mostfrightful injuries yet,as their services are valuable, and even necessary to the invaders, they must be aliowed to retain the means ofsustaining existencej and if,under all the discouragements to which they are subjected, they neglect or refuse to cultívate their fields, they must be driven to work at the point of the bayonet, lest the invaders might suffer from their negligence, and fall short of forage and provisions. Now, every plantation in the slave States is to be looked upon as the seat of a little camp, which overawes and keeps in subjection the surrounding peasantry, The master claims nnd exercises over hisslaves all the rights of war above des2ribed,and othersyet more Oonsider, too, that this infliction is not limited to a single neighborhood, aa in the case of an invading army, but is scattcrod and djffused over the whoie extent of the country; nor is it temporary, as in the other case, but constant and perpetual. It ia by taking a view like this, that we are enabled to form a primary, general outline idea of the social condilion of a slaveholding community.