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cracy nor Christianity will justify the of men one from another on grounds of means or the ends it proposésa
mere belief, instead of regarding it as a As to the former, unless we have universal spiritual economy, identical grossly mistaken the fundamental prin- with all that is truthful and loving in the ciples of a true State, and a trae Church, hearts and minds of men. Of course, the very idea of a secret organization is all they who take the narrow view of it, at war with both-at war with the grand will find little in its idea or functions to humanitary aims, their open, manly, rebuke the spirit of exclusivism or sefrank, and comprehensive character.) cresy in any of its manifestations; but Democracy is a theory of society, which they who take the larger view, who see Tests the liberty of all men upon a footing in all the designs of Christ a truth and of perfect equality, and bounds its sym- goodness commensurate with the unipathies only by the good of the whole verse, will shrink instinctively from every people. It contemplates nothing less scheme which proposes to work underthan the Commonwealth, or, as the word ground like a mole, or to bottle up the truly signifies, the common weal. It overflowing graces of the Creator withcan entertain, therefore, no very friend- in the limits of its own sect or party. ly feeling for any scheme of action which Christianity must work for all men, in falls short of that exalted and impartial the openest and directest way, or cease scope. Universal in its nature, it has no to work at all. We have abundant evioccasion for concealments or stratagems, dence of this in its earlier history, in its Its methods are open and above-board, disastrous deflections into gross ecclesiasbecause its objects are not private nor tical impositions, and need not dwell exclusive, but public. What has it to upon that head. In this country, at fear from the broadest daylight—the in- least, it must exhibit a spirit as broad, tensest scrutiny of the sun-or even the generous, and as frank as the spirit of our purer search of God's own steadfast eye? political organization, or fall disgraceBut scorning whatever is sinister, every- fully behind. “Its doors must be,” as thing indeed which approaches the enig- an able writer has said, “ as wide as the matical, the obscure, or the indirect, how doors of our political house, or we shall can it tolerate the dark works of an present the disreputable picture of a agency unknown to it—an agency which body larger than its soul, or of a Church skulks like owls and bats at the first less celestial than its corresponding glimmer of the morning, and which, lika State.”. If Democracy, then, disowns the pestilence, walketh in darkness ?) every sinister and partial organization, Democracy says to its children, “I am every scheme less Catholic and transpaopen, honest, and free! In the old rent than itself, how much more must a world, beneath the sensitive and grinding genuine Ohristianity ? feadalisms of Church and State, there As a doctrine, in the second place, may be reason for those who meditate what does Know-Nothingism propose ? good purposes to plot in secret and ma- The political disability of vast numbers tare their benevolent plans under the of men, on the ground of race or reliwings of silence, but with me there can gion. Can anything be more intolerant, be Do such need. Let your thought be narrow, or bigoted? Did the old priestly known, and who is there to harm you ? or warlike tyrannies which man has Open your hearts, that their good wishes been writhing under these centuries may profit all! Why reserve anything back, lend themselves to a meaner dounless it be evil? why muffle and hide minion than this would assert for our your tracks, if you go about good Are young Republic? The fetid and defunct there wolves and beasts of prey to eat dynasties which have become a loathyou up the moment you are exposed ?" some remembrance to men, which were
In the same way, the church, in the terrible fungi in their day, and a retrue idea of it, can have no sympathy proach for ever, grew from roots like with any object less broad than the good these it is now proposed to plant in our of all men, nor with methods less open soil. We that have made it our song than its own universal charities. An ever since we were born, that here huawful mistake has been committed in manity had at last found a home, that considering the church as having an in- here all the antiquated distinctions of terest or policy apart from the interest race, nationality, sect, and caste, were
policy of the human race, in con- merged in the single distinction of manverting it into an ecclesiasticism, for the hoodi-that here man was to be finally incalcation of creeds, and the separation recognized as man, and not as Jew or Gentile, as Christian or Mohammedan, out are the only persons seriously afas Protestant or Catholic - we, who fected by them, but that is a woeful have made the world ring with self- mistake. He that commits injustice, glorifications of the asylum of the op- he that perpetrates meanness, suffers pressed of all creeds and nations of the from it as badly as he that is the direct city of refuge to all the weary exiles of victim. Curses, like young chickens, freedom, “whom earth's proud lords in says the familiar old proverb, always rage or fear, drive from their wasted
come home to roost. Debar the halfhomes,” we, are now asked to erect million of emigrants who annually political barriers, to deal out political reach our shores from the elective franexcommunication as narrow, as mean, as chise, and what would be the effect? selfish, and as unwarrantable as ever Why, the growth, in the very midst of debased the elder governments.
the community, of a vast disfranchised That a preparatory residence and disci- class—of an immense body of political pline should be required of foreigners, be- lepers—of men having an existence apart fore their incorporation into the State, is from their fellow inen, not identified reasonable; the extent and nature of with them, not incorporated with sosuch social quarantine may also be con- ciety; and consequently tempted on all ceded to be a question for discussion; sides to conspire against it, to prey but the total exclusion of aliens froin upon it, and to keep it in disorder, citizenship for the future, is so monstrous Coming here ignorant, vicious, unruly a meapness that one is loth to entertain aliens would remain ignorant, vicious, the conception. It is such an utter and and unruly; for they would have few unequivocal surrender of nearly every of the strong motives which they now peculiarity of our institutions, that it have to become orderly and estimable would not merely lay all the new citizens. They would remain outside of comers under ban, but denationalize our- those educational influences, which are selves! The cry is, “ America for Ame- the glory as well as salvation of free insti. ricans," and we agree to it heartily, but tutions, the jury, the ballot, the legiswhat is America, and who are Ame- lative assembly, etc., and which render it ricans? He is not a Jew saith the so important to us to extend those inapostle, who is one outwardly -- and fluences to all who are members of our America, in the same sense, is not a cer- societies. We have already, in the midst tain measurable area of territory, nor the of us, one class of outcasts, in the poor American every miserable biped that and degraded free blacks, and that, we happens to be born upon it. America, is should think, sufficient to appease any. the cognomen of a nation of men, and body's malignity, without striving to not of a collection of arable acres; and raise up another from the Germans, the Americans are not simply the individual Irish, or any other nation. Indians, negroes, and whites, who first It is scarcely possible, however, to saw light between Passamaquoddy and believe that the Know-Nothings conPensacola, but all who are Americans in- template such an extreme errer as the wardly–who are built up on the Ameri- entire exclusion of future aliens from can idea, who live in the true sentiment political life. It must be a calumny of of democracy, whose political “ circum- their enemies, or a product of suspicion cision is of the heart, in the spirit and aggravated by fear. At any rate, we not in the letter, and whose praise is are certain that the late political tournot of men but of God.”
These are billons which have sent such swift conthe true Americans, wherever they sternation and dismay into the hearts of chanced to be born - whether Turk, the old political foxes, have not been Russian, Milesian, or Choctaw, and are caused by any affinity for such a project infinitely to be preferred to the unthink- We have too much respect for our feling and virulent natives, whose Ameri- low-citizens to suppose it; but we ascanism sinks no deeper than their skins; cribe these extraordinary movements to and had no existence before their flabby other sources. They are a result of a little bodies were first swaddled. Ame- double reaction-firstly against the exrica to the Americans, surely ;-not cessive cultivation of foreigners by the to the spurious, skin-deep, apparitional demagogues; and, secondly, against tho Americans, but to the real men worthy miserable folly and corruption of the of the name!
old political parties. We are apt to suppose, in projecting It cannot be denied that for some these exclusions, that the persons shut years now, both whigs and deinocrats have prostrated themselves before the principled demagogues, who wheedled alien-voters, in a servile and disgraceful them into excesses, are the offenders who way. Holding the balance of power, as should bear the brunt of the punishment. the latter did, between the two parties, Let all those, too, who hereafter appeal to there was no end to the concessions, the the citizens under any other name that Rummeries, and the substantial douceurs, Americans, come in for a share, and then too, by which they were courted. Hon- we shall have “America for the Ameri ors and offices were heaped upon them cans," in the truest and best sense of the with a profusion, which recalled the phrase. début of some popular actress, and the In the late irruptions of Know No. showers of bouquets which greeted her thingism, which have come over the old from her adoring friends. It was better parties like an avalanche from the Alps, to be an Irishman, or a German, than whelming rider and horse, captain and a Dative American; a Mac or O', to one's cattle, in a common ruin, we are dis name, was the handle which lifted him posed to rejoice. We should do so, with to fortune-and an unpronounceabla & joy unfeigned, if we were sure that German patronymic was a passport to the effects of the bouleversement would all kinds of political favor. "No ticket be confined to the flatulent old hacks, was a complete ticket which did not con. the queasy and prarient old bawds, who tain a sop, in the shape of a candidate have so long had the control of the old to the Irish interest or the German in parties. We should be glad to see them terest, and the suppleness with which and their machinery-their caucuses and senators and governors bent thomselves primary assemblies, and regular nominain that direction, set new lessons in the tions-pitched like rotten wood into the art of fawning-gave new formulas for pit; we did laugh indeed, “ many a time the preparation of adroit lies. Is it ? and oft,” during the last fall, as we saw wonder, then, that the Americans them how invisible hands were pricking one selves, shoved so wholly into the shadow, after another of their windbags, and alshould get a little tired of the game lowing them to exhale, amid looks of More especially, when the same influen- blank astonishment on the part of those ces, which introduced the foreigners into whom their gassy contents had often political office, were likewise introducing floated into office; but we fear that the them into so many private places of success of the Know Nothings may emolument and trust ? Not at all! throw them into the hands of these Bat the foreigners were not to blame very men, or if it does not, that their for it, or, at least, for nothing beyond & intoxication may carry them to lengths little natural presumption occasioned by which we shall have to deploro. their good luck. The dastardly and un
CURSITE AND DISCURSIVE.
Alick, that quaint introverted contenis due to our friends and the public plation of yours--that self-centered habi
that we narrate to them the late con- tude of mind which evolves bouquets of versation in our private office) between artificial flower-fancies, however life-like, ourselves and Alick M. Payne.
would be useless. That you can construot Payne is young. He is bitten with a unheard-of sentences—can juggle with Eng. scribblo-mania. He is also rural-rural in lish until you create, out of its hard mathe extreme; as will be sufficiently evident terial, dishes as foreign to its normal state when we add that he has plunged headlong as were the Frenchman's five piquant soupe into the great whirlpool of New York- and thirteen varieties of entremets, to the and is yet circulating therein—with a view horsetail and the old shoe from which he of accumulating immense riches, on the compiled them,—will never help you. He strength of having sold three articles to the failed disgracefully in the wild endeavor publishers of a Magazine.
to make a sirloin of beef out of his subjectWe knew him erst, in his native wilds ; matter. No more could you, from such and now, in the first proud flush of his ex- mental labor as you have most used, deal pectations, while he was debating whether as a master and leader, with the literature he should accept the editorial chair of a of the nation. What! have you the strength leading periodical (we faintly suspected and the wisdom to read MS. scrawled, scribhim of meditating our own ejection from bled, or blotted, at the rate of a thousand our place), or publish a volume of essays articles, and thirty thousand pages a-year ; (entitled, What I don't know Anything to judge which of them are best suited to About), he came to us to chant his little the current popular demand, and at the poem in advance.
same time to improve the popular mind ; We eradicated, in the first instance, his to let down easily the nine of every ten editorial expectations. He cad delineated who are refused, with sweet and sonder with enthusiasm the infinite ascending declinatures, such as shall soothe the rage series of his triumphs. Able editorials; of the disappointed great, and the anguish trenchant criticism; fresh thoughts ; opera ; of the disappointed small; to put your arts; literary circles; the best society ; he heart under a Pharaonic dispensation of displayed a paradisaic picture, all sunshine hardness; to steel yourself alike against the and foreground, without a middle tint or a cries of the needy girl or the starving boy shadow.
who have poured out their poor souls on The considerations which we laid before paper, that their best thoughts may haply our aspiring friend were very simple and bring them a few dollars to scare away very obvious.
the hunger-fiend, and the imperial frost of “Let us suppose, dear friend,” said we, scorn, or the imperial lightning of wrath “ that you are, in the single respect of from the eminent man whose calm stateability, competent to fill a chair, such, for ment (mentioning what little amount is to instance, as that which we occupy. Sup- be remitted for the article, and in what pose that you have the requisite power. number it is to stand) is answered, that Have you the training that you need, to you don't think his composition suitable to use it? Do you imagine that you compre- the present occasion of the Magazine ? hend the forces of whose lines of action Beloved friend, the daily avalanche of your own line of action must be compound- material would crush you as to quantity, ed? Don't answer. I asked for rhetorical
and scare you to death, as to quality and effect; not to get any response from you. variety. Consider only the fearful fag-end And, above all, don't keep smiling in that of our contributions. Crazy men's poems, supreme manner, and manipulating the covering a quarter of a ream of (approprilittle ginger-colored fog upon your upper ate) foolscap, in light yellow ink and an lip. Listen, now, to the words of experience indistinct style of lettering, as if written by -while we delineate to you the duties of a palsied man, with weal saffron tea ; interthe place we hold-what, in holding such minable concrete tediousness—whose highly an one, you would be necessitated to do. respectable concocters, like Dogberry, have
For the performance of such duties, it in their hearts to bestow all of it on us, it they were as tedious as a king-dribbling you were intending to occupy the place of over a century, or half century of pages; your speaker. watery essays, collegially pun-speckled, An infinitesimal shadow of consciousness read before a students' society, or radiating fleeted across the face of the audience. the thick darkness of seventeen-year-old Alick had in dreams pressed our thronephilosophers from before a village lyceum; an editorial king. wonderful sonnets, odes, lyrics, and dithy- Our aims are three; and conflicting: we rambics, with lines daly capitalized at the would stand the truest type and exponent beginning, separated into groups of from of American thought; that is, of a national one to seventeen and a fraction, and shadow. intellect far the most gigantic and active; ing forth all conceivable phases of human of a national intellection the strongest and passion, from the inarticulateness of idiotic most vivid, the most unbounded, discursive, drivel and flat ultra-Mosaic meekness, joyous and free, that has ever stirred upon around the ring to the inarticulateness of the earth. chaotic maniacal fury; such has been the We desire--and this aim, as higher and lowest class of matter offered ; and the nobler yet, may confront or overbear that quality of the remainder has varied through other high and noble one-to exist in this all the grades of excellence, up to the prose
free Western land as a power ; wielding and poetry of the leaders of American such influence as we may, on the side of all literature.
that is Right and True, irrespectively of I barely allude to the additional duty of
individuals or organizations. "doing the books." Four to ten per diem;
Lastly, we desire to please the public strictly miscellaneous in assortment; either
taste. This we must do, in order to mainwith tedium to be read, for a fair and valu
tain our existence. But in order to mainable criticism, or dishonestly to be skimmed
tain our self-respect, we must do it subject for a pretentious or useless one. You, who
to the dominant exigencies of the former are honest, would consume the midnight two purposes. gas, and fritter away your golden hours in
You, therefore, editorially instaurated, cursory, exhausting and useless investiga
oh, steam-engineering Alick! can, we suptions, to tell people who write what they
pose, do the work. And you can proceed, kave done well or ill, and people who read
in steam-enginary impassibility, to condemn what to buy. That is right, Alick; criti- and refuse all that is too flat or too sharp, eisen should do that, honestly and bravely, notwithstanding the poverty, grief, or fame or it should do nothing ; but the daring of the writer ; nor shall your cylinder encraft must steer between eddies and whirl- gine-heart be touched by anger or sorrow pools.
--scared by the gibbering ghosts, or the You smile-happily rather more feebly remonstrating personalities of the rejected. than at first; nor do you get fondle the
“ Their necromantic forms in vain ginger-colored fog. What? you always
Haunt you on the tented plain.” did like hard work; and pride yourself, if apon anything, upon that precise quality Yea; suppose. of grebbing? Yea? Listen further, oh, But, having selected the compositions " wash neophyte "—that is only the exoteric which seem to you the best, can you immystery of our craft.
partially apply the other tests? Will not You are competent to judge the judges article A be too heavy, B too long, C too to proceed apodictically and ex-cathedrally provoking, D too irreligious, E too vulgar! in estimating the greatest, and in not un- Not for your own calm and self-centered der estimating the smallest, of our literary judgment, passionless Alick-but for “ peomen and women? Granted, presumptuous ple.” People, you know, are such singular Alick, for this occasion only; and now, people. They won't see; can't see; see receive a second blow.
through inverting glasses. And if you You know what are the aims of the provoke, or frighten, or stupefy, the “ list" periodical under our charge—a mind so shortens. elear and an ambition so pure and lofty Can you, Alick of the fairy fancies, comas your own could not entertain lower ones. prehend this wicked, reckless, impetuous, We will classify them in a trine division, jolly, keen, calculating, gober, benevolent. and the product of the analysis may, if you affectionate, religious American people ? choose, stand as the ideal purpose of Ame- Can you administer to such brain-fevered rican periodical literature. Or, sappose customers a cup which shall cheer but not