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in the twelfth century Pope Alexander the Third became the guardian of the oppressed, and wrote: "But since Nature created all free, no one by condition of Nature was subjected to slavery"; and he might have learned also how even Pope Leo the Tenth, in the midst of his luxurious life, making his pontificate a carnival, declared that "not the Christian religion only, but Nature herself, cries out against the state of Slavery."1
But how could our Chief Justice, belonging and faithful to the Roman Church, forget the testimony of that Church as presented by Balmés, the remarkable Spanish writer, in his work entitled "Protestantism and Catholicity compared in their Effects on the Civilization of Europe"? Here is found an eloquent vindication of the Church, which, according to its defender, rejected the assumptions of the Chief Justice. The famous bull against the slave-trade by Gregory the Sixteenth, in 1839, sets forth what was done to this end by Paul the Third in 1537, by Urban the Eighth in 1639, and by Benedict the Fourteenth in 1741, casting "the most severe censures upon those who venture to reduce the inhabitants of the East or West Indies into slavery, buy, sell, give, or exchange them, separate them from their wives and children, strip them of their property, take or send them into strange places, or deprive them of their liberty in any way, to retain them in slavery, or aid, counsel, succor, or favor those who do these things under any color or pretence whatever, or preach or teach that this is lawful, and, in fine, coöperate therewith in any
1 Bancroft, History of the United States, Vol. I. pp. 163, 172.
way whatever."1 But, in face of this arraignment by successive pontiffs, where is the Chief Justice? Thus does his own Church testify against him.
Here I suspend the testimony, leaving several famous countries unvisited. But there is enough for conviction; nor is argument needed. The witnesses. are before you, excellent and unanswerable, in long array, witnesses from our own country, witnesses from England, witnesses from Scotland, witnesses from France, witnesses from Holland, witnesses from Spain, witnesses from Portugal, witnesses from Italy, witnesses from the Catholic Church, all rising up to testify against that "opinion" which the Chief Justice announces as "fixed and universal in the civilized portion of the white race," against that "axiom in morals as well as in politics" which he says "no one thought of disputing, or supposed to be open to dispute." They rejected his "opinion"; they disputed his "axiom." Did he forget? or, for the sake of Slavery, did he pervert judgment? But such forgetfulness was akin to such perversion. And when it is considered that this was to put Slavery in the National Constitution, it was nothing less than a criminal falsification; nor should ignorance be an excuse.
Plainly, the Chief Justice who could do this deserves no marble bust by vote of Congress. His comprehensive office was Justice; his special duty was Liberty. But these he sacrificed, making Law and Constitution hideous. The old maxim of Law cries out against him: Impius et crudelis judicandus est,
1 Balmés, Protestantism and Catholicity (London, 1849), Note XV. § 7, p. 378.
qui Libertati non favet. Such is the terrible judgment. Again the Law speaks: Execrandus est, qui Libertati non favet: "Accursed is he who does not favor Liberty." This is the ancient voice of the Law, older than Constitution and Declaration of Independence, which must not be disobeyed.
NO RECONSTRUCTION WITHOUT THE VOTES OF THE BLACKS.
REMARKS IN THE SENATE, ON THE RESOLUTION RECOGNIZING THE NEW STATE GOVERNMENT OF LOUISIANA, FEBRUARY 24, 25, AND 27, 1865.
FEBRUARY 18th, Mr. Trumbull, of Illinois, Chairman of the Committee on the Judiciary, reported the following resolution, which, at the request of Mr. Sumner, was read:
"Resolved, &c., That the United States do hereby recognize the Government of the State of Louisiana, inaugurated under and by the Convention which assembled on the 6th day of April, A. D. 1864, at the city of New Orleans, as the legitimate Government of the said State, and entitled to the guaranties and all other rights of a State Government under the Constitution of the United States."
The admission of the State, as here proposed, had the favor of President Lincoln. It was earnestly opposed by Mr. Sumner, as not republican in origin or form, and furnishing no security for the rights of colored persons.
February 23d, on motion of Mr. Trumbull, the Senate proceeded to consider the resolution, when Mr. Sumner moved the following substitute:
"That neither the people nor the Legislature of any State, the people of which were declared to be in insurrection against the United States by the Proclamation of the President, dated August 16, 1861, shall hereafter elect Representatives or Senators to the Congress of the United States, until the President, by proclamation, shall have declared that armed hostility to the Government of the United States within such State has ceased, nor until the people of such State shall have adopted a Constitution of Government not repugnant to the Constitution and laws of the United States, nor until, by a law of Congress, such State shall have been declared to be entitled to representation in the Congress of the United States of America."
February 24th, Mr. Lane, of Kansas, moved that the resolution be made the special order for the next day at one o'clock. In the debate on this motion the following colloquy occurred.
MR. SUMNER. If we are to make any special order for to-morrow, I think it should be the bill which the Senate has most maturely considered, and on which it is most prepared to vote, known as the Railroad Bill, in charge of my friend from Michigan [Mr. CHANDLER]. The Senator from Illinois [Mr. TRUMBULL] came forward with his measure
MR. CONNESS. Will my friend permit me — I know he willto him not to waste the fifteen minutes we have left in discussing the order of business, but let us take a vote? ....
SEVERAL SENATORS (to Mr. SUMNER). Give up.
MR. SUMNER. Senators say, "Give up." That is not my habit.
MR. CONNESS. We know that. [Laughter.]
MR. LANE (of Kansas). Will the Senator from Massachusetts permit me to withdraw my motion?
MR. SUMNER. If the motion is withdrawn, I have nothing further to say. MR. LANE. I withdraw the motion.
The motion to postpone was not pressed, and the resolution came up in regular order. After an elaborate speech against it by Mr. Powell, of Kentucky, Mr. Howard, of Michigan, obtained the floor, when his colleague, Mr. Chandler, moved to proceed with the bill to regulate commerce among the States, known as the Railroad Bill. In the debate that ensued, Mr. Sumner spoke of the latter bill as "a reality," and called the resolution "a shadow." Mr. Doolittle, of Wisconsin, vindicated the resolution as "the great measure of this Congress," and said, "It is not for the Senator from Massachusetts, with all his boastful friendship for Freedom and free States, to join hands with the Senator from Kentucky, and undertake to prevent the recognition of the free State of Louisiana." In reply, Mr. Sumner said :—
HIS measure, I say, Sir, is a shadow. So far as
it is calculated to exercise any influence, it is to bring disaster. Sir, I do not stand here as a prophet, and I will not at this moment, on this incidental question, be carried into debate; but I warn the Senator from Wisconsin, as he loves Human Freedom, ay, Sir, as he represents a State dedicated to Freedom, to hesitate, before he throws his influence on the side of such a proposition, opening the way to an ominous future.