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A PLEA FOR CAPTAIN JOHN BROWN

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Author Topic: A PLEA FOR CAPTAIN JOHN BROWN  (Read 485 times)
Mindwarp
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« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2009, 04:46:24 pm »

I hear many condemn these men because they were so few. When were
the good and the brave ever in a majority? Would you have had him wait
till that time came?- till you and I came over to him? The very fact
that he had no rabble or troop of hirelings about him would alone
distinguish him from ordinary heroes. His company was small indeed,
because few could be found worthy to pass muster. Each one who there
laid down his life for the poor and oppressed was a picked man, culled
out of many thousands, if not millions; apparently a man of principle,
of rare courage, and devoted humanity; ready to sacrifice his life
at any moment for the benefit of his fellow-man. It may be doubted
if there were as many more their equals in these respects in all the
country- I speak of his followers only- for their leader, no doubt,
scoured the land far and wide, seeking to swell his troop. These alone
were ready to step between the oppressor and the oppressed. Surely
they were the very best men you could select to be hung. That was
the greatest compliment which this country could pay them. They were
ripe for her gallows. She has tried a long time, she has hung a good
many, but never found the right one before.

  When I think of him, and his six sons, and his son-in-law, not to
enumerate the others, enlisted for this fight, proceeding coolly,
reverently, humanely to work, for months if not years, sleeping and
waking upon it, summering and wintering the thought, without expecting
any reward but a good conscience, while almost all America stood
ranked on the other side- I say again that it affects me as a
sublime spectacle. If he had had any journal advocating "his cause,"
any organ, as the phrase is, monotonously and wearisomely playing
the same old tune, and then passing round the hat, it would have
been fatal to his efficiency. If he had acted in any way so as to be
let alone by the government, he might have been suspected. It was
the fact that the tyrant must give place to him, or he to the
tyrant, that distinguished him from all the reformers of the day
that I know.
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