The retribution to come.
In the dispensation of an all-wise Providence is ever that of national retribution. --Tradition, Bible history, profane history, all ages and all records, present for the contemplation of men, and, if they choose, for their benefit, examples of that inevitable retribution visited upon nations.
Amidst the diversified injuries and distresses which our ruthless invaders are bringing upon the Southern
people, we may be assured the overflowing cup of bitterness will one day be commended to their own lips.
There are at present at the North
outgivings of discord, conflicting interests and opinions, governmental tyrannies, and popular impatience of restraint and oppression — all tending to collision and rupture.
Such signs in any other nation would be more unmistakable, but even amongst Yankees they may be leading to very natural and inevitable results.
Whether they be or not, however, thus drifting we know that the retribution in store for those people must come.
If these things are not now leading directly to it, the irresistible causes will soon appear.
If no nation can be saved from the wrath it has heaped up for itself, then the nation of the North
has a day of terror before it.
Whether or not the South
may be able to carry the war into the enemy's country, nevertheless war at their own hearthstones, bloody and desolating war, is as certain as any future event.
If the United States
have steered clear of that calamity since the establishment of American Independence, (the last war with England
and the Mexican
war leaving their own territory,) they cannot expect a long continuance of such good fortune.
No nation ever has escaped it, and least of all need a nation entertain the hope of it which is carrying on such a demoniac invasion as this of the South
One of the reasons most urged by the North
against "disunion" is that it will breed continual wars.
Do they expect to escape the common curse of humanity?
Is the United States
to be the solitary spot on the globe, the single nation in all history, which has never known war at its own firesides?
Are they, above all, who are the most heartless and cruel of mankind, to avoid a doom which the most virtuous and valiant have been compelled to suffer?
Let them not expect to triumph over destiny, and over the retribution which comes upon guilty nations as well as upon guilty men. The day will come when, either from a foreign invasion or war among themselves, they will suffer all and more than we have suffered; their young men will be slaughtered at their own thresholds; their women chased from the fires of their burning homes; their peaceful citizens shot down in their own dwellings; their fields laid waste; the roar of cannon and musketry ever ringing in their ears, and the wailing of bereaved households ever rising to the heavens.
The present war but slightly touches their own sensibilities, for they care not for the slaughter of the foreigners, with whom they fill their armies.
But one day the curses which they are visiting upon this people will come home to roost in their own bosoms and gnaw their own vitals.
A just and righteous God rules the earth, who has warned the wicked not to exult because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily.
It always comes at last, and the more heavily because it has been long deferred.