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minded, honest-hearted, and clear-sighted menwould go out to some of the islands (say Jamaica, Dominica, or Antigua*), not for a month, or three months, but for a year, would watch the precious protégé of English philanthropy, the freed negro, in his daily habits ; would watch him as he lazily plants his little squatting, would see him as he proudly rejects agricultural or domestic services, or accept it only at wage ludicrously disproportionate to the value of his work. We wish too they would watch him while, with a hide thicker than a hippopotamus, and a body to which fervid heat is a comfort rather than an annoyance, he droningly lounges over the prescribed task, over which the intrepid Englishman, uninured to the burning sun, consumes his impatient energy, and too often sacrifices his life. We wish they would go out and view the negro in all the blazonry of his idleness, his pride, his ingratitude, contemp
* Nearly one.fourth part of the whole adult population of Trinidad are returned by the last census as living in idleness.Lord Harris's despatch, May 18, 1852.
If we compare this with Great Britain, there are 250 persons among the poor population of Trinidad to 8 among the wealthy of Britain who are idlers. The difference is, the one race likes, and the other hates, work ; and a people who will not work must be slaves. :
tuously sneering at the industry of that race which made him free, and then come home and teach the memorable lesson of their experience to the fanatics who have perverted him into what he is,
“ Negroes, coolies, and planters - what is the position of each, and what are the rights of each ? In England it is too much the custom to regard only the first of them. Floods of pathetic eloquence and long years of parliamentary struggling have taught us to imagine that the world was made for Sambo, and that the sole use of sugar is to sweeten Sambo’s existence. The negro is, no doubt, a very amusing and a very amiable fellow, and we ought to wish him well; but he is also a lazy animal, without any foresight, and therefore requiring to be led and compelled. We must not judge him by ourselves. That he is capable of improvement everybody admits; but in the meantime he is decidedly inferior—he is but very little raised above a mere animal. The negroes know this themselves. They despise themselves. They know nothing of Africa, except that it is a term of reproach, and the name which offends them most is that of a nigger. So little confidence have they in any being who has an admixture of their blood, that no negro will serve a mulatto when he can serve a European
or a white creole. In his passion he calls the mulatto a nigger, and protests that he is not, never will be, like buckra man. These coloured people too despise themselves, and in every possible way try to deny their African parentage. They talk contemptuously of the pure blacks, whom they describe as dirty niggers, and nasty niggers, and mere niggers.”*
“A servile race peculiarly fitted by nature for the hardest physical work in a burning climate, the negro has no desire for property strong enough to induce him to labour with sustained power: he lives from hand to mouth. In order that he may have his dinner and some small finery, he will work a little ; but after that he is content to lie in the sun. This in Jamaica he can very easily do; for emancipation and free trade have combined to throw enormous tracts of land out of cultivation, and on these the negro squats, getting all that he wants with very little trouble, and sinking in the most resolute fashion back to the savage state. Lying under his cotton tree, he refuses to work after ten o'clock in the morning. “No tankee, massa, me tired now; me no want more money. Or, by way of variety, he may say, "No, workee no more; money no ’nuff; workee no pay. And so the planter must see his cane foul with weeds because he cannot prevail on Sambo to earn a second shilling by going into the corn field. He calls him a lazy nigger, and threatens him with starvation. The answer is, “No, massa, no starve now; God sent plenty yam.' These yams, be it observed, on which Sambo relies, and on the strength of which he declines to work, are grown on the planter's own ground, and probably planted at his expense; and Mr. Trollope suggests an inquiry into the feelings of an English farmer, if our labourers were to refuse work on the plea that there is plenty of potatoes and bacon to be had; the potatoes and bacon being the produce of the farmer's own fields. There lies the shiny, oily, odorous negro, under his mango-tree, eating the luscious fruit in the sun. He sends his black urchin up for a bread-fruit, and behold,' says Mr. Trollope, “the family table is spread. He pierces a cocoanut, and lol there is his beverage. He lies on the ground, surrounded by oranges, bananas, and pine apples. Why should he work ? Let Sambo himself reply. “No, massa, me weak in me belly; me no work to-day; me no like workee; just 'em little moment.""* The same experience has been earned by the
* “ Times” leading articles.
French. They emancipated their blacks when under the influence of the same delusion. The same ruin attends their colonies. A work of M. Vacherot, recently published in Paris, holds the following proposition in relation to the free black population of French Guiana :
6 The idlers should be punished by fine. The small proprietor ought to be forced to produce in the same ratio in which he would do when working on a large estate at a salary. The owner who will neither cultivate nor produce, is a vagabond to be punished. It is not enough that he remains at home — that he begs from no one; he should be compelled to make the land he owns produce its share. The landed vagabond is a greater nuisance than the wandering vagabond.”
At the time of the adoption of the Federal constitution, the condition of slaves was very different at the South from what it has since become. At that time there was no large branch of industry to engage, and their future fate was matter of anxiety. The progress of the cotton culture has changed that, and the interests of millions of whites now depend upon the blacks. The opinion of statesmen of that day were formed upon existing facts. Could they have seen fifty years into the future their views upon black employment