free to address ourselves to any modifications in the system of African
slavery which may be demanded to adapt it to the progress of civilization.
Regarding the whole subject in this light, the duty of thoroughly investigating it seems to me to be laid upon the country as a moral necessity.
It is useless to talk of “delicacy and humiliation,” in the presence of such fruits as a false philosophy has already borne plentifully throughout the land.
As your chosen instructor, I owe you a service.
I dare not give up your minds to the dominion of Wayland
's Philosophy, (your text,) nor to any other text on this subject, now known to the country.
I propose to lead your way in exploring the mine of truth
which we may assume to underlie the system of African
We may look with confidence to reach these results:
1. That the philosophy of Jefferson
is false, and that the opposite is true, namely, that the great abstract principle of domestic slavery is, per se
, right; and therefore it is not in the use but in the abuse of this principle that we are liable to sin, and thereby incur the Divine displeasure.
2. That we should have a Southern literature.
Our schools must be supplied with correct text-books on this subject.
The poison which our texts now contain must be distilled from them by the learned of the land.