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New Jersey (New Jersey, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
ne; but nations grow and their forms of government do not keep pace with their growth, and the power gradually passes into other channels and comes from other sources, and yet the old forms continue for ages after the life has left them and people still bow down to the empty shell. The Senate survived in Rome long after the Emperor had become an autocrat. He deferred to the Senate in form, as long as it made no effort to assert itself. And so to-day we speak of Senators from Colorado or New Jersey or Connecticut, and the President of the Senate so addresses them from the chair. If he expressed the truth he would recognize them as the Senators from this, that or the other railway combination, or from such and such a trust. The old power that lay in the people of the States has become absorbed by the vast aggregations of wealth, and the vitality has passed from our politics into our economics. A revolution as great as that of Rome has taken place, and the public does not yet apprec
United States (United States) (search for this): chapter 14
country may be engaged, while infidels and skeptics and materialists outside take up the cause of Christian brotherhood. Only last week (as I write) in Philadelphia (the City of Brotherly Love) the Pennsylvania Division, United Boys' Brigade of America, in full military uniform, was reviewed by the State Commander and addressed by the reverend and distinguished chaplain. There were companies from the Presbyterian, Methodist, Congregational, Reformed, Episcopal, Reformed Episcopal and Moravia another distinct advance in that great movement towards justice of which the French Revolution and the anti-slavery agitation were episodes, shall we follow the lead of Robespierre or that of Garrison? It is quite possible that a revolution in America to-day would end as did that of 1789 in France. It will not do to pooh-pooh the idea as monstrous. Men who can shoot down prisoners and administer the water torture in the Orient might have no insuperable objection to the guillotine at home.
Greenwood (Mississippi, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
h a frank and outspoken man, and he would have been out of his element in Congress. Service is higher than office. Someone must needs be President, but to live for others is the special gift of God. The real life of the nation is not to be found at Washington. That fair city, with its marble monuments, its memorial statues, recalling so many hatreds and slaughters of the past, and its well-kept lawns and drives, reminds me of nothing so much as a beautiful cemetery-another Woodlawn or Greenwood — where all is dead, with no manufactures, no agriculture, no natural industry --peopled by nothing but the mere effigies of men and women and hiding a festering mass of corruption. Such will never be the source of any true reform. (4) The message of Garrison was based on abstract morality, and never deviated a hair's breadth one way or the other on account of any discrepancy between the exigencies of theory and those of practice. We have seen that there is sometimes such a discrepanc
Colorado (Colorado, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
hey are genuine; but nations grow and their forms of government do not keep pace with their growth, and the power gradually passes into other channels and comes from other sources, and yet the old forms continue for ages after the life has left them and people still bow down to the empty shell. The Senate survived in Rome long after the Emperor had become an autocrat. He deferred to the Senate in form, as long as it made no effort to assert itself. And so to-day we speak of Senators from Colorado or New Jersey or Connecticut, and the President of the Senate so addresses them from the chair. If he expressed the truth he would recognize them as the Senators from this, that or the other railway combination, or from such and such a trust. The old power that lay in the people of the States has become absorbed by the vast aggregations of wealth, and the vitality has passed from our politics into our economics. A revolution as great as that of Rome has taken place, and the public does n
ted would he accept release without the order of the Convention, for the Convention represented his adored People. But for this delay his life would have been saved. How can such a career as Robespierre's be explained? With Garrison's faith in the unaided power of the right, he would have had a sure clue to follow. Without that faith no man is to be trusted in such an environment. It is difficult for us to imagine the effect of bloodthirsty surroundings; and yet have we not seen in South Africa and China and the Philippines equally striking examples of it? Robespierre became finally a conspicuous incarnation of all that he most hated, and he reached this point by adopting means which he knew were wrong, to gain an end in which he profoundly believed. He dreaded most of all to be left out of the stream of eventsdropped on one side on account of his scruples, and consequently he plunged in, was sucked into the maelstrom, and died, having justly earned that reputation which of a
New York (New York, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
s folly of the coronation ceremony, and our judges and senators do not sit in solemn conclave to determine who shall carry the king's saltspoon or warming-pan in procession, but we have kept the most dangerous feature of all, the coronation oath — the oath of office. It was this oath taken by George III which cost his country dearly. We upset the tyranny of George III, but the tyranny of the oath still flourishes. The late Senator Tim Campbell, a local politician of some fame in the City of New York, once astounded the legislature by exclaiming during an acrimonious debate, What is a little thing like the Constitution between friends? There was a certain elemental truth in this statement. Laws and constitutions are made for men, and not men for laws and constitutions. It is no wonder that Garrison denounced the legal obstacles which stood in his way. The Abolitionists were ready to revolt, passively, against the government, and the convention in Massachusetts demanded the sece
Connecticut (Connecticut, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
grow and their forms of government do not keep pace with their growth, and the power gradually passes into other channels and comes from other sources, and yet the old forms continue for ages after the life has left them and people still bow down to the empty shell. The Senate survived in Rome long after the Emperor had become an autocrat. He deferred to the Senate in form, as long as it made no effort to assert itself. And so to-day we speak of Senators from Colorado or New Jersey or Connecticut, and the President of the Senate so addresses them from the chair. If he expressed the truth he would recognize them as the Senators from this, that or the other railway combination, or from such and such a trust. The old power that lay in the people of the States has become absorbed by the vast aggregations of wealth, and the vitality has passed from our politics into our economics. A revolution as great as that of Rome has taken place, and the public does not yet appreciate the fact.
Quincy, Ill. (Illinois, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
of a counter movement which will bring in again the supremacy of the party of reaction. The best mental exercise for reformers is to accustom themselves to the idea of dispensing with the use of physical force, and of commending their cause to the higher powers of influence, persuasion and truth. And Garrison was the true prophet of such a peaceful method. He had the genuine spirit of reform which we might do well to accept from him as an inheritance. He was, indeed, to use his friend Quincy's words, uttered as early as 1838, one of those rare spirits which heaven at distant periods sends upon the earth on holiest missions. He was, as all such men are, in advance of his time,--too great . . to be a representative man at present, as Harriet Martineau declared, but, she added, his example may raise up a class hereafter. Such an example is indeed full of inspiration for those who see in the world around them many evils not altogether unrelated to those against which Garrison stru
China (China) (search for this): chapter 14
eformed Episcopal and Moravian churches, and one company from Holy Trinity Church was named after the Prince of peace ! What would William Penn and the early Moravians have said of it? And Episcopal missionaries have introduced the Brigade into China, a nation which looks down on war. If lovers of peace leave the church as the Abolitionists did, they may find more Christianity without, and they will not be without good precedents for their action. There is something petrifying and deadening er of the right, he would have had a sure clue to follow. Without that faith no man is to be trusted in such an environment. It is difficult for us to imagine the effect of bloodthirsty surroundings; and yet have we not seen in South Africa and China and the Philippines equally striking examples of it? Robespierre became finally a conspicuous incarnation of all that he most hated, and he reached this point by adopting means which he knew were wrong, to gain an end in which he profoundly beli
Massachusetts (Massachusetts, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
ome fame in the City of New York, once astounded the legislature by exclaiming during an acrimonious debate, What is a little thing like the Constitution between friends? There was a certain elemental truth in this statement. Laws and constitutions are made for men, and not men for laws and constitutions. It is no wonder that Garrison denounced the legal obstacles which stood in his way. The Abolitionists were ready to revolt, passively, against the government, and the convention in Massachusetts demanded the secession of the North. The Constitution of the United States was a covenant with death and hell, and there must be no Union with slave-holders. Thoreau issued a personal declaration of independence and seceded by himself from the Union. He filed the following document with the town clerk: Know all men by these presents that I, Henry Thoreau, do not wish to be regarded as a member of any incorporated society which I have not joined. Essay on the Duty of Civil Disobedie
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