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they escape the destruction that overtook the Indian, it is because there are too many of them. The conqueror, in old times, when there was a surplus of subject-populations, enslaved them. We take them into our tutelage. The idea of tutelage readily passes into a conception of our wards as permanently inferior, but economically useful; it breeds the notion of servile races. tion of human equality has broadened. It is no longer a question of a black skin, but of any skin except white; so true is it that a prejudice against one race is a prejudice against all races, and will finally prove so.
I am not going to dispose of the negro-question to-night; but I mean to state a few matters of what seem to me elementary truth.
I say nothing of the denial of negro-rights by lynching. That is a mere brutality. We are shamed in the face of civilized nations as no other of the group, except Russia, has been shamed for centuries; but though the impeachment of our humanity is patient, tragic, and terrible, I do not believe that the brutalities of recent years are a drop in the bucket in comparison with what the negro-race suffered under slavery in old days. They are sporadic; they are blazed upon by the pitiless publicity of all the world; they are outlawed, and resemble acts of brigandage. I note only the extension of lynching to white men and the spread of the habit of burning negroes to Northern States. You cannot calmly watch a fire in your neighbor's house; it will leap to your own roof. You cannot wink at crime in your neighbor's dooryard; it will soon be in your own.
The denial of negro-rights by the nullification of the constitutional amendments is a graver matter. I have only this to say, that no student of history can be surprised at a
diminishing respect for a constitution that does not maintain itself as the supreme law of the land honestly abided by. Phillips stated the true principle: “The proper time to maintain one's rights is when they are denied; the proper persons to maintain them are those to whom they are denied.” I devoutly hope that the negroes will so grow in manhood as to be their own saviours in the fulness of time, as our own fathers long ago wrenched the rights that are now our dearest possession, from the hands of unwilling masters.
I should have much to say of negro-education, were there time. The principle is plain. Demand the same schools for negroes as for white men. There is a tendency to restrict negro-education to industrial pursuits. It is the same spirit which advocates vocational schools for the children of the laboring classes. It is no longer a question of the black serf, but of the economic animal of any color. I believe in manual training for all children; I believe in vocational schools; but these latter are, as it were, the professional schools of the workers, and should bear the same relation to a moral and mental training, preparatory to or associated with them, that professional schools bear to the college. The first thing to teach a child is that he has a soul; the first thing to give a boy is an outlook on a moral, intellectual, and esthetic world; not to endow him with that is to leave him without horizons, a human creature blind and deaf, centered in the work of his hands and in physical conditions -- an economic animal. In the educational tendencies to which I refer, there is too much of man as an economic animal; the negro is no more so than the white man.
Give the negroes, then, the same schools as the whites; give the sons of the laboring classes the same schools as all other children of the state - citizen schools. Man is an economic animal, but he is not primarily that; and he should not be educated primarily with a view to that, but to his being a man. The workers should always be jealously on their guard against any principle of caste. The interests of the negroes will finally be found to be permanently identical with those of the working class everywhere, and labor should never acquiesce in any social view or arrangement which contemplates the laboring mass of men with hands lifted and shoulders bowed to receive the burden from a higher class more fortunately endowed to be their masters. You can acknowledge your inferiority to others in acquirements, capacity, efficiency; but you cannot acknowledge inferiority in your being. You may lay the humblest tasks upon yourself, as saints and sages besides Milton have done; but you must yourself lay them on. If our economic system necessarily embodies a principle of caste, why, then, as Phillips said, "let it crack.” Let it go the way of many another institution that once seemed all powerful and of the very substance of necessity, to the heap of old shards:
“For what avail
unless the man be free? I deplore the temper which acquiesces in the conception of permanent servile classes in the state, educated to be such, and the spirit of deference thereto, on whatsoever ground it may be based. It is not by deference that men win their rights. It is not by denying their own share in the spiritual nature of man and their participation in the high heritage of
state - I but he cated alie
civilization that men mount in that realm and possess themselves of that good.
There is one other point. A race is judged, with regard to its capacity, like a poet, not by its normal and average product, but by its best. That is the rule. I suppose that the most immortal oration of Wendell Phillips, as a formal production, is that on Toussaint L'Ouverture. I can remember the hour and the place when in my boyhood I discovered Shakespeare, Byron, Shelley, Carlyle, Scott, Tasso, Virgil, Homer; but there are some names I seem always to have known; the Bible, Washington, Whittier, Milton, William Tell, Algernon Sidney, Garibaldi, Toussaint L'Ouverture mix their figures with the shadows of my very dawn of life. I suppose I owe Toussaint L'Ouverture to Phillips. The speech is a marvelous example of oratorical art, and will be treasured through generations by negroes as the first eulogy of a man of their race. No one who has read it can ever forget its peroration, when the orator, sinking to his close, like the sun setting in the sea, seemed to fill the earth with light, and touched with his glory the mountain-peaks of history, summits of human achievement, Phocion, Brutus, Hampden, Lafayette, Washington, John Brown, and high over all poured his light on Toussaint L'Ouverture - high over all, not in arms, letters, or arts, but in moral greatness, which all men agree is the supreme excellence of man. There is one thing that latitude and longitude do not bound, nor geography, nor climate, nor ancestry, nor poverty, nor ignorance, nor previous condition of barbarism - one capacity, at least, common to mankind, moral power. Who of us has not, at some time or other, stood amazed and reverent before some simple human act, among the humble, in which the soul shone forth, as if disappareled of its poor belongings, in its own nature? I believe that the race which is thus capable of moral power can scale all other heights. It may be that the negroes, considered with a view to their social utility, like all other masses of men, are capable only of an economic service; that is the main task of mankind; but beware of closing the gates of mercy on those young ambitions, those forward instincts, the prayers and struggles of the waking soul of a race. Give the negroes a true university — a white man's university. The trials and discouragements of genius are an old and sad story in our own annals. Think what the burden must be that rests on negro efforts. I say these things with no desire to trouble the waters, as indeed I have no right. I know that negroeducation is in conscientious and devoted hands. But these were things dear to Phillips's heart; they are a part of the sacred heritage he entrusted to those who were touched by his spirit and should follow his leading.
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It is obvious that I regard negro-rights as a part of a larger matter, gradually fusing with the attitude of public thought toward all race questions. The revolutionary principle of human equality flows now in a world channel. I am more concerned with the future of the backward nations, and our part therein. Something might be said in behalf of the integrity of their own ideals by one who, like myself, knows no absolute truth, and looks on all institutions as human - the house of life which generations and races build for themselves out of their own hearts and thoughts for a temporary abiding place. But the notion of the integrity of the soul of humanity, one and the same in all races, involves that of their union in one civilization, since truth is