English sentiment upon Butler's Proclamamation.
We have late foreign news, through the New York Herald
of the 25th Copious extracts have been made from it, which will be found in our columns this morning.
It will be seen that Butler
's proclamation was the subject of a debate in both Houses of Parliament on the 12th and 13th inst. The expressions of feeling in both Houses were such as were to be expected, and very natural to any civilized community.
What must indeed be the character of that proclamation of a Major General
which is denounced as ‘"infamous
"’ by a Minister of the British Government
— an officer whose position requires of him so much circumspection, and whose habit is to weigh deliberately every word he utters?
Both Lord Palmerston and Earl Russell denounced the proclamation of Butler
, and they but reflected the undivided sentiment of the British
public — may the civilized world.
Both of them thought it incumbent upon the Federal Government
to disavow the act of Butler
, and hoped that it would.
, thus admonished, may, through Seward
, make an explanation and disavowal of the ‘"infamous"’ proclamation.
It may be said that is now too late — that the lapse of time precludes the Lincoln Minister
from the right to disavow it — especially after the subsequent declaration of Butler
, (made after there was time for the disavowal at Washington
and his recall) that he had deliberated well on the proclamation and adhered firmly to it. But Seward
cares nothing for the propriety or the consistency of his acts.
He did not disavow the act of the arrest of Mason
, and had no idea of surrendering them until forced to do so by the demand of the British Government
The reasons which he assigned for their ultimate surrender were as imperative at the time of their arrest as they were at the time of the surrender; and any just and magnanimous Government would have released them with a good grace at once.
's malignity was gratified by their detention in the Northern Bastile
, and he determined to keep them there until the British Government
should force him to give them up. Had that Government never interfered he would have kept the Ministers
immured in his vile prison till death released them.
Now, we shall, probably, see the arch-fiend, for sake of policy, making some tardy concession to the outraged sentiment of the civilized world, since it has taken such potent form of expression, whereas, but for this, so far from censuring the cowardly and brutal Satrap who represents the Federal
despotism in New Orleans, he would have inwardly rejoiced at his cruelties, and gloated over the fact had it led to the violation of multitudes of women.
The Parliament is seconded by the press — or rather, the press of England
led off in bitter denunciation of the ‘"infamous"’ proclamation.
The New York Herald
, now the meek slave of Lincoln
, whom it ridiculed and satirized up to the eve of the day when the mob forced its editor to hoist the stars and stripes, is highly indignant at the expression of feeling by Parliament and the press with reference to the proclamation.
declares that it is all affectation, and proceeds to rake up from history instances of British cruelty, by way of offsetting the brutalism of Butler
, which it neither denies nor defends.
editor himself, dead to all sense of decency or humanity, can see nothing but affectation in all that the press and statesmen of England
say on the subject.
It hunts for a motive for a sentiment so strange to him and concludes thus:
"The real meaning of the mock humanity of Palmerston
, and the other British statesmen, is, that they desire to inflame the public mind of England
and all Europe
against the United States
, and to prepare the way for that intervention which Earl Russell intimates is only a question of time on the part of the British Government
Whatever be the ‘"real meaning"’ of the statesman aforesaid, the ‘"public mind of England
and all Europe
"’ will be inflamed against the United States
, by the act of Butler
especially, and by its brutal and cruel measures generally, in such a degree as very much to hasten the policy that is to be adopted by England
--or rather France
--with regard to the war on this continent.
It is plain, from the debate in Parliament, that had Lord Lyons received official information of Butler
's proclamation, he would have felt justified in protesting against it. The British Government, evidently, would have justified the protest, and will cause one to be made as early as possible.