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Minutes and address of the State Convention of the Colored Citizens of Ohio, convened at Columbus, January 10th, 11th, 12th, & 13th, 1849.
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32. Resolved, That we contemplate with joy the successful career of the thus North Star thus far, and recommend that the colored people in particular and all friends of humanity in general, give it the best support in their power, until the ends for which it is designed shall have been accomplished.
33. Whereas there has been issued from the North star office, Rochester, N.Y., an edition of pamphlets as the Report of the proceedings of the National convention held at Cleveland, Sept. 6, 1848, but which is really merely a synopsis of those proceedings, and
Whereas twenty-five dollars has been demanded from and paid by Mr. of the Convention, for printing said Synopsis, and
Whereas said Synopsis was printed, and the money paid without any order from the Committee of Publication, therefore
Resolved, That we deem the publishing of said Synopsis under the circumstances as culpable, the Treasurer of the Convention responsible for the twenty-five dollars, and would recommend that the Secretaries of the National convention be requested to act with the Secretaries of this Convention, to publish the minutes of each Convention together, and of course to ask for money from the National Convention Treasurer sufficient to pay for printing the National Convention Minutes.
TO THE CITIZENS OF OHIO
In compliance with the vote of the above noticed Convention of your colored fellow citizens, the undersigned in their behalf essay to address you in brief upon the great topics in [which] we and you in this state are or ought to be interested.
The desire of universal man for liberty, you own acts when oppressed by Great Britain, the curse of the Black Laws in this State, and our appreciation of that curse, is our only apology for thus addressing you.
The intelligent and Christian among you admit that you and we have a common destiny. That we are children of the same great parent, and heirs of the same immortality. You admit that we are in the same government. That seventy-two years ago you helped to form it, announcing as its primal principle--all men are created equal--endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights--among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness--and that to secure these rights governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. You here asserted two important principles:--1st. That the object of legislation is to secure rights; and 2. That everyone governed, is in the sense of giving or refusing consent, a legislator, and as an inference from these, you say, the government which does not respect these two principles is not just.
In accordance with these principles you framed a United States Constitution. This you claimed as supreme law, and in accordance with it in 1802 framed a constitution for this State. To the principles thus we heartily subscirbe. We believe them just and equitable. We believe they ought to be enforced as well for us as for you. Our fathers helped to rear this temple of Liberty. Their sons, we claim, ought to be inheritors of its blessings. We therefore beg leave to state to you our and your principles, and contrasting the enactments in this state against us, with these, state what ought to be our and your conclusions.
We believe not only that "liberty is the birth-right of all, and law its defence," but we believe also that every human being has rights in common, and that the meanest of those rights is legitimately beyond the reach of legislation, and higher than the claims of political expediency. Do you admit our belief as true? We believe in the fact, the "fixed and unalterable" fact "that to secure these rights governments are instituted among men deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed." This you have taught us. Ohio law is a violation of this principle. Now for the proof.
1st. We are unrepresented. The elective franchise, one of the dearest priVileges of a free people, we are deprived of. For members of the Convention framing the Ohio Constitution, colored men voted without distinction. The question was raised in that Convention whether the colored man should still enjoy the elective franchise, and it was carried in the affirmative by a vote of 19 to 15. But ultimately, by a reconsideration, the casting vote of the
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