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[88]

I fear these epithets have not been wholly misapplied. Have we not been told here, gravely and authoritatively, by some of our learned judges, divines, and politicians, that we, the free people of New England, have no right to discuss the subject of slavery Freemen, and no right to suggest the duty or the policy of a practical adherence to the doctrines of that immortal declaration upon which our liberties are founded! Christians, enjoying perfect liberty of conscience, yet possessing no right to breathe one whisper against a system of adultery and blood, which is filling the whole land with abomination and blasphemy! And this craven sentiment is echoed by the very men whose industry is taxed to defray the expenses of twenty-five representatives of property, vested in beings fashioned in the awful image of their Maker; by men whose hard earnings aid in supporting a standing army mainly for the protection of slaveholding indolence; by men who are liable at any moment to be called from the field and workshop to put down by force the ever upward tendencies of oppressed humanity, to aid the negro-breeder and the negro-trader in the prosecution of a traffic most horrible in the eye of God, to wall round with their bayonets two millions of colored Americans, children of a common Father and heirs of a common eternity, while the broken chain is riveted anew and the thrown-off fetter replaced.

I am for the abolition of this kind of slavery. It must be accomplished before we can hope to abolish the negro slavery of the country. The people of the free states, with a perfect understanding


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