Article Title

Where the Responsibility Belongs.

Authors

Newspaper Title

Chicago Press and Tribune

Publication Date

10-20-1859

Publication Place

Chicago,Illinois

Event Topic

John Brown

Political Party

Republican

Region

free state

Quote

The Democratic party, however proposes toincrease the chances for insurrection, bloodshed and all the horrors of servile war, by extending the area of slavery indefinitely and by re-opening the African slave trade.

Document Type

Article (Journal or Newsletter)

Full Text Transcription

The attempt of the Chicago Times to placethe responsibility of the Harper's Ferry affairupon the Republican party, is a resort to therogue's trick of crying "stop thief, stop thief,"for the purpose of diverting attention from thereally guilty party. Holding to the doctrinesof the Revolutionary fathers and the earlierstatesmen of this country on the subject ofslavery -- that it is a moral, social and politicalevil; that it is a creature of local law, to becontrolled exclusively by the States, in whichit exists, and that its area ought not tobe extended, for its accompanying evils befastened upon our new frontier communities --the Republican party depreciates, no less thanthese worthies would have done, everythinglooking towards violent measures for theenfranchisement of the slaves of the South. Theopposition to slavery is based upon moral andeconomic considerations, and the only actionit proposes or that it would countenance, withrespect to the institution, is to confine it to itspresent limits, leaving the problem of "whatwill they do with it?" to the solution of thepeople of the slaveholding States.

The Democratic party, however proposes toincrease the chances for insurrection, bloodshedand all the horrors of servile war, byextending the area of slavery indefinitely and byre-opening the African slave trade. It wouldhave the bloody scenes of Harper's Ferryre-enacted in the new States to be carved out ofour territories, and it would transmit togenerations yet unborn the unspeakable dreadarising from constant exposure to midnightcarnage and the accompanying namelesshorrors of insurrection.

As respects the attempt of an insane oldman and his handful of confederates to excitea negro insurrection in Virginia andMaryland,it is easy to determine where the responsibilityreally belongs. That act is but a part of thelegitimate fruit of the repeal of the MissouriCompromise. In another part of this paper,in a sketch of the life of the leader of theattempted insurrection, will be found a statementof some of the wrongs heaped upon old Brownby the minions of that power at whose commandand for whose benefit the compromisewas broken down -- wrongs which entered hissoul and made him what he is -- a monomaniacwho believes himself to be a God-appointedagent to set the enslaved free. Upon theheads of those who repealed that compromiseand who sanctioned the lawless violence andbloodshed which grew out of it on the plainsof Kansas, rests the blood of those who fell atHarper's Ferry. Through a chain of events, theone inseparably connected with the other, thelast-named tragedy goes back to the first-namedviolation of plighted faith as its cause,including among its intermediate steps aseries of outrages and wrongs which takentogether, make up the blackest page of ourNational history. No one has a clearerappreciation of this fact than the Chicago Times;no one understands more clearly that thepopular verdict will accord with the historicalstatement. Hence, in its zeal to saveitself, its master, and its party fromthe consequence of their own acts, it falselylays the blame upon those whose policy it isto diminish the chances of the recurrence ofsuch tragedies, who deplore the crime wheneverit is committed as a sore calamity, andwho have no sympathy for the criminal bywhom it is instigated.. The public intelligencewill not be imposed upon by the effort of theTimes to shirk a responsibility which belongsto itself and its political associates.

Edited/Proofed by

Entered by Lloyd Benson.

Identifier

ilcpjb591020a

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Where the Responsibility Belongs.

The Democratic party, however proposes toincrease the chances for insurrection, bloodshed and all the horrors of servile war, by extending the area of slavery indefinitely and by re-opening the African slave trade.