previous next
[508] from their midst. When he sent forth his apostles, he said unto them, “When they persecute you in one city, flee ye into another.” Was there any cowardice in this conduct, or in this advice?
Why don't you go to the South?

If we should go there, and fall—as fall we certainly should —martyrs to our zeal, our enemies would still call us, what we then should deserve to be called, fanatics and madmen. Pointing at our mangled bodies, they would commence their derisions afresh. “Poor fools!” they would exclaim— “insane enthusiasts! thus to rush into the cage of the tiger, with the certain knowledge that he would tear them in pieces!” And this, sir, would be the eulogy which they would pronounce over us!

Why don't you go to the South?

Because it is essential that the beam should first be cast out of the eyes of the people of the free States, before they attempt to cast out the mote in the eyes of the people of the slave States. Because they who denounce fraud, and cruelty, and oppression, should first become honest, and merciful, and free, themselves. “Thou that sayest, a man should not steal—dost thou steal?” Thou that preachest, a man should not be a slaveholder—art thou a slaveholder? “Physician, heal thyself!”

Why don't you go to the South?

Have I answered the question satisfactorily? If not, sir, you will help me to additional reasons for our staying here at the North, in my answer to another question which is iterated on all occasions—viz.

What have we to do with Southern slavery?

This question is put, sometimes with reference to legislation —at others, it refers to moral obligation. I answer, then, that we, the people of the United States, have legislated on the subject of slavery, and we have a right to legislate upon it, within certain limits. As to our moral obligation, it belongs to our nature, and is a part of our accountability, of which neither time nor distance, neither climate nor location, neither republican nor monarchical government, can divest us. Let there be but one slave on the face of the globe—let him stand on one extremity of the globe, and place me on the other—let every people, and tribe, and clime, and nation, stand as barriers between him and myself: still, I am bound to sympathize with him —to pray, and toil, and plead for his deliverance—to make known his wrongs, and vindicate his rights. It may not be in my power, it may not be my duty, directly to emancipate him;

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
United States (United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: