“The People of Kansas and their Outside Enemies”, New York Daily Times, 10 July 1857,
Washington (DC) Union
New York Times
The People of Kansas and their Outside Enemies
The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print. Spelling and typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.
The People of Kansas and their Outside Enemies.
From the Washington Union, July 9.
The intervening spirit of sectionalism is the same, whether its proscriptiveness has the North or the South for the theatre of its mischievous and circumscribed action. Sectionalism affects to recognize the principle of popular sovereignty. But the recognition is generally followed by something more dangerous and offensive than opposition to all who attempt to reduce the principle to practice. The action of the extreme school of politicians, in the two sections of the Union, having for its avowed object the moulding of the domestic institutions of Kansas to suit their respective meridian notions or aggrandizement, is a case in point.
After many serious obstacles, difficulties and blunders, the people of Kansas are now peacefully engaged, under a valid law of the Territory, in forming a State Constitution, with the view of obtaining admission into the Federal Union. Before the delegates who are to frame the Constitution meet in Convention- before their individual opinions are known, or even a guess is ventured as to what action they will probably take- the outside pressure commences. From the North and the South come threats, appeals, imputations, and the basest of charges. The whole question apparently is taken out of the hands of the people of Kansas; and while they regard with aurprise, if not indignation, the impudent intrusion of outside demagogues, the sectionalists redouble their efforts to reduce them to a state of miserable tutelage. The Abolitionists of the North are opposed to the admission of Kansas into the Union upon any other terms than as a Free State. The extremists of the South will oppose her admission if Slavery is not recognized by her Constitution as one of her domestic institutions. The New York Tribune threatens: the New Orleans Delta blusters; and the Boston Liberator, and a few misguided presses in the South, cordially and fraternally unite in their denunciations of Governor WALKER whose chief offences appear to have been that he has zealously endeavored to promote the best interests of Kansas, by removing, as far as he can lawfully remove, all cause of irritation, jealousy, and complaint, and by attempting to adjust past and present difficulties in accordance with that great principle which lies at the very foundation of our liberties.
While so much officious anxiety is felt for the future of Kansas, and so much impudent dictation is used by those who conceive that they have both the right and the power to fashion her institutions, it is a source of great gratification to know that the people of the Territory, warned by their own bitter experiences, are not disposed to avail themselves of outside sympathy and assistance, but are disposed to sustain Governor WALKER, notwithstanding the persistent attacks of his Northern and Southern assailants. The statements contained in the following telegraphic dispatch have at this time a peculiar significance:
“ST.LOIUS, July 7.- A letter to the Republican says that the Democratic Convention at Lecompton is composed of a majority of Pro-Slavery men, but on the whole the Democratic Party support the views in Governor WALKER’S inaugural address, and approve the submission of the Constitution to the people. Resolutions were passed excluding all sectional distinctions, adopting the Cincinnati platform, and assuming the name of the National Democracy of Kansas, embracing Democrats from the North and South.”
We have no doubt that the people of Kansas have sufficient virtue, patriotism, and intelligence to frame a State Constitution suitable to their wants, and to manage to the best advantage their own affairs, without advice or assistance from any quarter. Ever since the organization of the Territory they have locked, and thus far looked in vain, for the time when they would be able to realize all the benefits and blessings which they were and are entitled to as members of a Commonwealth in which the great principle of popular sovereignty has all the force of a statutory recognition. But we think the day of deliverance- deliverance from the internal strife and outside machinations- is at hand, and that Kansas will be able not only now, but hereafter, to manager her own affairs in her own way, uninfluenced by the personifications of false friends, and undismayed by the threats of open foes.