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FREEDOM NATIONAL; SLAVERY SECTIONAL.
HON. CHARLES SUMNER,
ON HIS MOTION TO
REPEAL THE FUGITIVE SLAVE BILL,
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES, AUGUST 26, 1852.
If any man thinks that the interest of these Nations and the interest of
In the Senate, Wednesday, May, 26th, 1852, on the presentation of a Memorial against the Fugitive Slave Bill, the following passage occurred :
Mr. SUMNER. I hold in my hand, and desire to present, a memorial from the representatives of the Society of Friends in New England, formally adopted at a public meeting, and authenticated by their clerk, in which they ask for the repeal of the Fugitive Slave Bill. After setting forth their sentiments on the general subject of slavery, the memorialists proceed as follows:
“We, therefore, respectfully, but earnestly and sincerely, entreat you to repeal the law of the last Congress respecting fugitive slaves; first and principally, because of its injustice towards a long sorely-oppressed and deeplyinjured people; and, secondly, in order that we, together with other conscientious sufferers, may be exempted from the penalties which it imposes on all, who in faithfulness to their Divine Master, and in discharge of their obligations to their distressed fellow-men, feel bound to regulate their conduct, even under the heaviest penalties which man can inflict for so doing, by the Divine injunction, 'All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do you even so to them ;' and by the other commandment, • Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy neighbor as thyself.'”
Mr. President, this memorial is commended by the character of the religious association from which it proceeds — men who mingle rarely in public affairs, but with austere virtue seek to carry the Christian rule into life.
· The PRESIDENT. The Chair will have to interpose. The Senator is not privileged to enter into a discussion of the subject now. The contents of the memorial, simply, are to be stated, and then it becomes a question whether it is to be received, if any objection is made to its reception. Silence gives consent. After it is received