Handbills are now appearing in reaction to the Killings at Harpers FerryVirginia some examples
we’ve seen this
After Harpers Ferry shooting, Plantation owners blame GOP rhetoric for
Richmond Herald Politics Oct 29, 1859
I’m not kidding: who in the Beltway press corps has the eggs to ask Harriet Stowe if the release of Uncle Tom’s Cabin got people killed in Harper’s Ferry?
Laura Chapin Oct 29, 1859
Tonight & always I stand with Virginia Landowners & I stand against terrorist and the lying political opportunists who tacitly encourage it
Andy Richter October 28 1859
Democrat Members of Congress were united in condemning the rhetoric of abolitionists following the John Brown Raid in Harper’s Ferry in which 7 people were killed including 1 Marine and 10 wounded (not counting casualties among the raiders)
It is offensive and outrageous that some politicians are now claiming this tragedy has nothing to do with the toxic environment they helped create,” Democrat chair David Allen Smalley said in a statement released today.
Smalley singles out Abe Lincoln and Salmon Chase by name, accusing them of “using this tragedy to repeat false claims about Slavery,” and says it’s not enough to denounce the tragedy without also stopping their rhetoric against slaveholders nationwide.
Other State Pols have chimed in Governor of Virginia Henry A Wise had this to say in an interview with Harper’s Weekly
Harper’s Weekly: I do want to ask you a final question here. we now know that John Brown referenced Slavery and Whippings when he was arrested. Prominent Plantation owners are calling this domestic terrorism. Do you agree with that assessment?
Henry A Wise: Well, certainly it’s — it is a form of terrorism, and maybe in some way, it’s a function of the inflammatory rhetoric that we see on all — I mean, so many issues now, there are abolitionists, and, you know, public forums where they really focus on trying to get people to that point of boiling over and just intense anger.
And I think maybe it’s time to look at, how do we tone down some of that rhetoric? Obviously, no one is going to try and reduce free speech in this country, but that rhetoric clearly is — if people are in some way emotionally unstable or psychologically unbalanced, that intensity of rhetoric sometimes seems to pull a trigger in their brain that they lose contact with what reality is.
Harper’s Weekly: So, are you calling — just to sort of see what you’re saying here a little more clearly, are you calling for changes in newspapers and broadsheets?
Henry A Wise: No, no, I’m not — I’m in no way trying to limit free speech.
I think that the — our community, right, the United States of America, ought to begin a discussion looking at, how do you begin to tone back the inflammatory rhetoric that, in some ways, it might be good for, I don’t know, selling newspapers and advertisements or whatever, but, in some way, it is inflaming people to the point where they can’t stand it, and they go out and they lose connection with reality in some way and commit these acts of unthinkable violence.
I’m not saying that we restrict people’s freedom of speech, nowhere, nowhere near that. But I think we should have a discussion of, you know, at least urging caution when we discuss some of these issues, so that we don’t get people to a point of going out and committing senseless violence.
Harpers also talked to rumoured GOP Presidential Candidate Abraham Lincoln for comment
Harpers:I do want to begin with this shoot-out that took place on at the Armory in Harpers Ferry.
You heard that law enforcement is now telling Harpers the shooter has anti-slavery, anti-government views. And he referenced whippings following the attack. The Association of Plantation Owners of the Virginia put out this following statement.
It said: “We share the concerns of many Americans that extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism in this country.”
What do you make of this argument, Congressman?
Abe Lincoln:Regardless of why Brown did it, what he did is domestic terrorism, and what he is did is absolutely abominable, especially to those of us in the abolitionist movement, because there’s nothing about any of us that would condone or in any way look the other way at something like this.
And there’s no excuse for killing other people, whether it’s happening on the Plantation, inside their slave quarters, where many millions of blacks die, or whether it’s people attacking Plantations.
We ought to value life. Every life truly does have worth and value. And this is an incredible tragedy. And I don’t know of anybody who will say anything other than just outright condemnation for this horrible, horrible, despicable act of murder.
Harpers Weekly: Plantation Owners seems to be — well, it is blaming the rhetoric that popped up following the Publication of Uncle Tom’s Cabin and various speeches by Sojourner Truth & Fredrick Douglas. And they say the rhetoric really has created this environment where this happened.
Do you agree with that?
Lincoln:I don’t know of any Abolitionist leader, any — if you can tell me one, please correct me, but I don’t know of anybody who has suggested violence toward Slaveholders or some act of violence toward their plantations. I have not heard that, not from one single anti-slavery person.
I have heard universal condemnation, whether it’s from the National Era publishers of Uncle Tom’s Cabin , whether it’s from pro-emancipation advocates. And I consider myself one of them. I know of nobody who has ever suggested that Plantations be the target of some type of violent attack.
So, I think that’s a little bit disingenuous on the part of Plantation Owners to blame people who have a strong philosophical disagreement with the enslavement of human beings and with the selling of black Americans to say that we would like to retaliate by sending some madman into a Slave Territory to kill people.
God knows that’s not what anybody would want. And this person, apparently, from everything we know, very unstable person, and just a terrible tragedy, especially for that Marine and his family.
Harpers:This shooting has certainly revived the debate over slavery. You support banning slavery by declaring that a black slave is a person that has rights under the Constitution.
Can you explain under your plan what the criminal penalty would be for a Slaveholder if they attempted to hold a slave?
Lincoln:I have often said, Brianna, that there are two victims with Slavery. One is the Black Slave who loses his freedom, and the other is often the landowner who feels he has no other option.
Finally the leading pro-slavery Paper in the Capital had this to say
To many Pro Slavery advocates, it seemed only a matter of time before something like this happened.
Ever since the publication of the novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin , by an antislavery author accused Plantation Owners of mistreating slaves , threats against slaveholders had escalated to unprecedented levels, slave traders say. They stepped up collaboration with the Federal authorities and local police and stiffened security at Plantations. But on Sunday, their worst fears came true: A group of men walked into the Armory in Harpers Ferry Springs and opened fire.
Maybe it’s just me but it seems I’ve heard all of this before somewhere.
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