Pointing to the fact that the Colonization Society had transported only thirteen hundred emigrants to Liberia
in thirteen years, while the slave population had increased half a million during the same period, he added:
‘And yet, such is the colonization mania, such the implicit1 confidence reposed in the operations of the Society, that no demonstration of its inefficiency, however palpable, can shake the faith of its advocates. . . . My complaint is, that its ability is overrated to a disastrous extent; that this delusion is perpetuated by the conduct and assurances of those who ought to act better—the members of the Society.
I complain, moreover, that the lips of these members are sealed up on the subject of slavery, who, from their high standing and extensive influence, ought to expose its flagrant enormities, and actively assist in its overthrow.’
In the condition of the free colored people, who were despised and persecuted in the Northern
cities no less than in the Southern
the editors of the Genius
naturally took a deep interest, urging the establishment of schools and the formation of temperance societies among them;3
and Mr. Garrison
wrote thus in their vindication:
‘There is a prevalent disposition among all classes to traduce4 the habits and morals of our free blacks.
The most scandalous exaggerations in regard to their condition are circulated by a thousand mischievous tongues, and no reproach seems to them too deep or unmerited.
Vile and malignant indeed is this practice, and culpable are they who follow it. We do not pretend to say that crime, intemperance and suffering, to a considerable ’