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A petition on Negro suffrage

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A PETITION.

 

To THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESNETATIVES OF THE STATE OF KANSAS:

 

We, your petitioners, respectfully prey your honorable body to take the initiatory steps to-wards amending the Constitution of the State of Kansas, by striking out the word “WHITE,” in Articles 5 and 8.

We athus prey your honorable body, because by the word white, in the said Articles, our colored citizens are de-prived of the elective Franchise, and also of the honor of serving in the Militia of the State—grievances oppressive to them and hurtful to the State.  Because,

1st—Proscriptive and unjust laws, besides being oppressive to the weaker, are injurious to the dominant class, as they destroy that nice sense of justice among the people, which is necessary, and even vital to the existence of a republic.  For the habit of injustice towards any class confuses the moral preceptions, and makes the controlling element careless of the rights of all minorities, even when the minority may be of the dominent class.  In short, the rights of ALL are endangered, while the rights of any are denied.

2d—In politics, it is always dangerous to do violence to the genius of a government.  The founders of this gov-ernment labored for freedom, bequeathing to their children a government whose vital and animating principal was liberty.  The present unhappy condition of our country is the result of a perversion of the government from the noble ends for which it was instituted, to the base purposes of tyrany and injustice.

3d—Whatever tends to repress just aspirations in any class of citizens, is hurtful to the State, by dwarfing the manly virtues of patriotism and self respect-

Men cannot feel the full glow of patriotic love for a country that makes them the victims of exceptional and unjust legislation.

4th—In a despotism, the people endure the burthen of one Tyrant only, but where the majority oppress the minority, the victims endure the weight of many tyrants.

5th—It is a reproach to republican institutions and to our State in particular, that children of the soil—pat-riotic and devoted as any other—should be denied essential rights, while they are lavished with indiscriminate pro-fussion on others who cannot claim a common nativity, language and religion.

6th—The colored population of this State furnished as large a percentage of soldiers to the defence of the State and Union, as the white.  Their soldierly capacities have not been denied, even by those who would deny them the fruition of their valor and devotion.

Finally, we beg you to take the action implored, to the end that Kansas may be placed in her rightful position in the van of the new and grand era now at hand, when Liberty in all its fair proportions, unshorn and unrestricted, shall be the faith of a repentent and regenerated Nation.  And we, your petitioners, will ever prey.

 

J R Mouley

Jim J White

J. A. [Tomsixxxx]

C. Simon

[x. x.]  White

J. Beck

D Cofflin

W. W. Martin

M P Dilnorth

D F Ashby

M [Glen]

J. Sattler

M How Jr

Morris Robert

J A Theodor Jr

John S [Russule]

Saml. C. Putman

[xxxxxx]

[Cesalee Beck,]

Gyl, Miloan

Augustus W. Russell

[xxxx]

[xxxx x xxxx]

[xxxx xxxx]

S. M. Tucker

D L Ward

Edwin Lord

John Ray Nes

Tho. Marshall

J. G. Bailey

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