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[70]

4. “The relation which men sustain to each other is the relation of equality: not equality of condition, but equality of right.”

This is the form in which Dr. Wayland prefers to express the doctrine of equality.1 He explains himself thus: “Each separate individual is created with precisely the same right to use the advantages with which God has endowed him as any other individual.” From this position, as thus explained, he deduces an argument the force of which, without expressing it in so many words, is constructively made to pervade the whole performance. For his whole argument may be embodied thus: the government which places an individual in any other condition than that of political equality is an odious tyranny: the government which establishes domestic slavery does this, and is therefore an odious tyranny.

Now, the proposition, as he explains it, may be admitted as a truism; but then the doctrine of essential equality of right will not follow from such an admission: that is, social and political equality. For what if it be true that “each separate individual has precisely the same right to use the advantages with which God has endowed him?” It only follows that each one has a

1 Moral Science. Part II., Division I — Reciprocity.

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Wayland (1)
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