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Proceedings of the National Emigration Convention of Colored People Held at Cleveland, Ohio, On Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, The 24th, 25th, and 26th of August, 1854

1854 Cleveland OH State Convention 70.pdf

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68

of that State, which doubtless will be carried into effect; when there is no doubt that a clause will be inserted, granting the right to hold slaves at discretion in the State. This being done, it will meet with general favor throughout the country by the American people, and the policy be adopted on the State's right principle.—This alone is necessary, in addition to the insufferable Fugitive Slave Law, and the recent nefarious Nebraska. Bill—which is based upon this very boasted American policy of the State's right principle—to reduce the free to slave States, without a murmur from the people. And did not the Nebraska Bill disrespect the feelings and infringe upon the political rights of Northern white people, its adoption would be hailed with loud shouts of approbation, from Portland to San Francisco.

That, then, which is left for us to do, is to secure our liberty; a position which shall fully warrant us against the liability of such monstrous political crusades and riotous invasions of our rights.— Nothing less than a national indemnity, indelibly fixed by virtue of our own sovereign potency, will satisfy us as a redress of grievances for the unparalleled wrongs, undisguised impositions, and unmitigated oppression, which we have suffered at the hands of this American people.

And what wise politician would otherwise conclude and determine? None we dare say. And a people who are incapable of this discernment and precaution, are incapable of self-government, and incompetent to direct their own political destiny. For our own part, we spurn to treat for liberty on any other terms or conditions.

It may not be inapplicable, in this particular place, to quote from high authority, language which has fallen under our notice, since this report has been under consideration. The quotation is worth nothing, except to show that the position assumed by us, is a natural one, which constitutes the essential basis of self-protection.

Said Earl Aberdeen recently in the British House of Lords, when referring to the great question which is now agitating Europe:— "One thing alone is certain, that the only way to obtain a sure and honorable peace, is to acquire a position which may command it; and to gain such a position every nerve and sinew of the empire should be strained. The pickpocket who robs us is not to be let off because he offers to restore our purse;" and his Grace might have justly added, "should never thereafter be entrusted or confided in."

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