Table of Contents:
Garibaldi is coming to assist them in their work of reducing the South to slavery. They are of opinion that Fremont's emancipation proclamation will elicit his special sympathies upon the Northern side. We believe that Garibaldi will find work more congenial to him nearer home; but it is a matter of little consequence. As a leader of Italian volunteers in the cause of Italian liberty he worked wonders, because he represented the popular sentiment and passion of oppressed Italy, and was the champion of a cause which, in many respects, resembled that of the South--the deliverance of a Southern clime and a gallant people from Northern oppressors and invaders. The Italian volunteers who composed his legion resembled in many respects our Southern volunteers--they were composed of the very clite of Italy: the nobility, the gentry, the professors, the educated men. Indeed, it is said that almost every man in the rank and file of Garibaldi's volunteers was an educated gentleman. The immense enthusiasm of those volunteers prevailed against the heaviest odds, and scattered Austrian regulars to the winds. It was the cause, the materials of which his legion was composed, and their magnificent patriotism, rather than any remarkable military genius of Garibaldi, that gave them such extraordinary success. But what would Garibaldi have been opposed to such volunteers, if led by a patriotic Italian of equal military skill? Precisely what he would be if he were to enlist in the cause of Northern despotism against our glorious Southern volunteers, led by such military genius as now directs our Southern armies.--Opposed to Italy, or as the soldier of despotism anywhere, he would be a very ordinary person. What gave Garibaldi his peculiar value and eminence in the Italian contest was simply that he was the right man in the right place. But when he appears in such a role as that to which he is invited by the New York journals, he degenerates from a patriot to an adventurer, and from the dignified position of Liberator of Italy becomes at the best a Don Quixote, who will find, in undertaking to redress the imagined grievances of all mankind, that he has began a crusade which can only end in loss of reputation and grievous personal discomfiture. If the truth were known, this boast about inviting Garibaldi is to no one more mortifying than the regular officers of the old army, who cannot fail to see in such stuff an imputation upon their own intelligence and efficiency which must sting them to the quick. Besides, how shameful, how unspeakably contemptible, in journals which are eternally boasting that they outnumber the South three to one, ransacking the whole earth and calling upon somebody and everybody to help them whip that one! It is like three lubberly school-boy bullies, assaulting a gallant little schoolmate, and crying out incessantly at the top of their voices to the bystanders to come and take their part against the manly little fellow, who, solitary and alone, is simply defending himself!--If the world can show a more disgusting want of chivalry and courage, we know not where it can be found.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.