The African slave trade in the British Parliament.
--In the House of Commons, on the 25th, Mr. Cave
moved the following resolutions: 1st.
That the means hitherto employed by England
for the suppression of the African slave trade have failed.
That this failure has mainly arisen from having endeavored, almost exclusively, to prevent the supply instead of to check the demand.
That the remedy is not to be found in countenancing immigration into those countries where slavery exists, but in augmenting the working population of those where slavery has been abolished.
That, therefore, while repressive measures should be continued and even rendered more effective, every possible encouragement and assistance should be given to the introduction of free immigrants, and especially of settlers from China
, into the British West India
Lord John Russell
said that the Government
had done all in its power to arrest the slave trade, and to a great extent its efforts had been successful.
That it had not been more so was owing to the American Government
, which denied the privilege of search in time of peace.
He regretted that the American Government
, for the sake of the republic, (which he hoped would always continue so,) had not been induced to remove this great blot upon its flag, which protected nine-tenths of the slave trade.
He quite agreed with the general objects of the resolutions, but as he could not see their practical advantage, he moved the previous question.
feared that the Southern Confederacy would re-establish the slave trade.-- He hoped that the Government
would never recognize a Southern Confederacy without an express stipulation against the revival of the slave trade.
He suggested that the slave coasts should be taken under the protection of England
, which would enable her cruisers to arrest the slave-dealers as privateers.
After some further remarks from various gentlemen, Lord Palmerston said the House
was much indebted to the member who had raised this discussion, who must feel that if he objected to the working of his resolution there was no practical difference between him and the Government
; but it was a calumny to the country to say that it encouraged the slave trade after the great, and, indeed, successful efforts she had so long made to put a stop to it. The noble Lord
, in the most indignant language, condemned the shameless and profligate conduct of Spain
, and complained strongly of the policy of the United States
, who, from a mistaken sense of national honor, allowed the prostitution of their flag to the purposes of the slave trade.
He hoped that Mr. Cave
would be satisfied with the result of the discussion, and not press his resolutions.
agreed to withdraw the resolutions.