Let each individual remember that upon himself rests a portion of that sovereignty; a part of the tremendous responsibility of its exercise.
The burning, withering concentration of public opinion upon the slave system is alone needed for its total annihilation.
God has given us the power to overthrow it; a power peaceful, yet mighty, benevolent, yet effectual, ‘awful without severity,’ a moral strength equal to the emergency.
‘How does it happen,’ inquires an able writer,1
‘that whenever duty is named we begin to hear of the weakness of human nature?
That same nature which outruns the whirlwind in the chase of gain, which rages like a maniac at the trumpet call of glory, which laughs danger and death to scorn when its least passion is awakened, becomes weak as childhood when reminded of the claims of duty.’
But let no one hope to find an excuse in hypocrisy.
The humblest individual of the community in one way or another possesses influence; and upon him as well as upon the proudest rests the responsibility of its rightful exercise and proper direction.
The overthrow of a great national evil like that of slavery can only be effected by the united energies of the great body of the people.
Shoulder must be put to shoulder and hand linked with hand, the whole mass must be put in motion and its entire strength applied, until the fabric of oppression is shaken to its dark foundations and not one stone is left upon another.
Let the Christian
remember that the God of his