within the limits of Virginia
; and there, whether we perceive the fact or not, the war already rages.
In that State there are about five hundred thousand slaves to about one million of whites; and as at least as many slaves as masters are necessary to the constitution of slave society, about 500,000 of the white population are in legitimate relation to the slaves, and the rest are in excess.”
Hence we see the propriety of Mr. Mason
's letter, in which he declared that all those who would not vote for secession must leave the State
, and thereby you get clear of the excess of white population over slaves.
They must emigrate.
“Like an excess of alkali or acid in chemical experiments, they are unfixed in the social compound.
Without legitimate connection with the slave, they are in competition with him.”
The protest continues:
And even in this State, (South Carolina,) the ultimate result is not determined.
The slave condition here would seem to be established.
There is here an excess of 120,000 slaves; and here is fairly exhibited the normal nature of the institution.
The officers of the State are slave-owners, and the representatives of slave-owners.
In their public acts they exhibit the consciousness of a superior position.
Without unusual individual ability, they exhibit the elevation of tone and composure of public sentiment proper to a master class.
There is no appeal to the mass, for there is no mass to appeal to; there are no demagogues, for there is no populace to breed them; judges are not forced upon the stump; Governors are not to be dragged before the people; and when there is cause to act upon the fortunes of our social institution, there is perhaps an unusual readiness to meet it.
It is probable that more abundant pauper labor may pour in, and it is to be feared that, even in this State, the purest in its slave condition, democracy may gain a foothold, and that here also the contest for existence may be waged between them,
It thus appears that the contest is not ended with a dissolution of the Union, and that the agents of that contest still exist within the limits of the Southern States.
The causes that have contributed to the defeat of slavery still occur; our slaves are still drawn off by higher prices to the West.
There is still foreign pauper labor ready to supply their place.
Maryland, Virginia, Kentucky, Missouri, possibly Tennessee and North Carolina, may lose their slaves as New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey have done.
In that condition they must recommence the contest.
There is no avoiding that necessity.
The systems cannot mix; and thus it is that slavery, like the Thracian horse returning from the field of victory, still bears a master on his back; and, having achieved one revolution to escape democracy at the North, it must still achieve another to escape it at the South.
That it will ultimately triumph none can doubt.
It will become redeemed and vindicated, and the only question now to be determined is, shall there be another revolution to that end? * * * * * *
If, in short, you shall own slavery as the source of your authority, and act for it, and erect, as you are commissioned to erect, not only a Southern but a slave republic, the work will be accomplished. * * * *
But if you shall not; if you shall commence by ignoring slavery, or shall be content to edge it on by indirection; if you shall exhibit care but for the republic, respect but a democracy; if you shall stipulate for the toleration of slavery as an existing evil, by admitting assumptions to its prejudice, and restrictions to its power and progress, you reinaugurate the blunder of 1789; you will combine States, whether true or not, to slavery; you will have no tests of faith; some will find it to their interest to abandon it; slave labor will be fettered; hireling labor will be free; your Confederacy is again divided into antagonistic societies; the irrepressible conflict is again commenced; and as slavery can sustain the structure of a stable Government, and will sustain such a structure, and as it will sustain no structure but its own, another revolution comes; but whether in the order and propriety of this, is gravely to be doubted.
In another part of this protest, I find this paragraph:
If the clause be carried into the permanent Government, our whole movement is defeated.
It will abolitionize the Border Slave States--it will brand our institution.
Slavery cannot share a Government with democracy — it cannot bear a brand upon it; thence another revolution.
It may be painful, but we must make it. The Constitution cannot be changed without.
The Border States, discharged of slavery, will oppose it. They are to be included by the concession; they will be sufficient to defeat it. It is doubtful if another movement will be as peaceful.
In this connection, let me read the following paragraph from De Bow
“All government begins by usurpation, and is continued by force
. Nature puts the ruling elements uppermost, and the masses below and subject to those elements.
Less than this is not government.
The right to govern resides in a very small minority; the duty to obey is inherent in the great mass of mankind.”
We find by an examination of all these articles that the whole idea is to establish a republic based upon slavery exclusively, in which the great mass of the people are not to participate.
We find an argument made here against the admission of non-slaveholding States into their Confederacy.
If they refuse to admit a non-slaveholding State into the Confederacy
, for the very same reason they will exclude an individual who is not a slaveholder, in a slaveholding State, from participating in the exercise of