July 11, 1863

Macomb Eagle

HENRY CLAY DEAN ONCE MORE!

            This distinguished orator will address the people of this county, at

Macomb, on Monday, July 18th.

            We think there will be no disappointment this time.  Let THE PEOPLE turn out and hear him!

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How to Improve the Victory.

            The confederates having suffered a severe defeat in Pennsylvania, and also lost Vicksburg, it is within the power of the administration to make a speedy end of the rebellion.  If the object of the war is now, as was asserted by all parties at its commencement, simply to restore the Union as it was, to vindicate the supremacy of the Constitution, and leave each of the States unimpaired in sovereignty and laws, now is the golden moment to effect such a consummation.  Let the President proclaim an amnesty and publish a proposition to make peace on a simple restoration of the Union – without a provision for the abolition of slavery anywhere – and he will do more towards crushing the rebellion than the conquest of a dozen Vicksburgs, or a dozen victories like Gettysburg.  Let the President do this, and he will soon strip Lee of his army and Davis of his government.  It might create a few howls and curses from the Lovejoy republicans, who hate slavery more than they love the Union or the peace and mutual prosperity of the country; but this course would stop the shedding of blood, stop the horrors of war, stop the wasting and destruction of the country.  It would be eminently humane and christian.  Let the President make the proposition, fair and honestly, in good plain English, and he will thus atone for many a misdeed and many an error.

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→ The fund contributed by the Democracy of this State, for the relief of the sick and wounded soldiers amounts to over $60,000, and is still increasing.  Col. Wm. R. Morrison, late commander of the 49th regiment, has been appointed by the Democratic State central committee to superintend the expenditure of the money.  This is a good selection.  The money, or the necessaries which it will purchase, will go where relief is needed.  There will be no chartering of steamboats and Belle-Reynolds-drunken-pleasure-trips under the supervision of Col. Morrison.

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→ Here’s a case for the loyal leaguers.  The workmen in the navy yard at New York, it is announced, have been building the war ships with copperheaded iron bolts!  Let the leaguers get after the traitors!

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Who is Really Guilty?

            We cannot let the unfortunate shooting affair at Carthage – a full account of which will be found on our first page – pass without a word or two of comment.  Two men were severely wounded, one of whom may yet die, and the perpetrator of the crime was shot down like an outlaw.  Who is really guilty?  Is the poor man Ritter really more to blame than are the men who have told him that Democrats were copperheads, and that copperheads were traitors, who had no rights which a soldier was bound to respect?  There are a class of men, editors, speakers, letter writers, etc., who have for months been instilling the damnable falsehood into the minds of the soldiers that Democrats were traitors – no better than traitors at any rate, and that they deserved death as justly as the rebels in arms.  By the [?] of officers in command, by the unremitting falsehood of republican newspapers, and jealous exclusion of all counteracting truth, the soldiers are worked up to declaring that after exterminating the rebels, they will “clean out” the Democrats or the copperheads, as republicans please to call us.  One of these soldiers comes home on furlough, and on meeting his old friends he attempts to insult them and provoke a disturbance.  Full of the teachings of the republican journals, he brandishes a ten-inch revolver and declares it is “his business to shoot copperheads.”  This he does repeatedly, and at last commits an assault upon a sick man.  The latter appeals to the courts and law for redress, and then is developed another trait of republican instruction.  The sheriff is a copperhead and his assistant is a copperhead, and as it is the soldier’s “business to shoot copperheads,” he shoots these officers while they are performing a duty which the courts and the law devolved upon them.  Who, in view of these plain facts, is the really guilty party?  Are not those republicans, who have written, and printed, and spoken the falsehood that “it was the duty of soldiers to shoot copperheads,” accessories before the fact?  Have they not incited this weak man to outrage all decency, to commit an assault to resist the officers of the law, and to add the crime of murder to his other offences?  Is the principal who directs and incites, or the poor agent who merely performs, the greater criminal?  And yet the men who incite Ritter to these crimes, and who are persuading other soldiers to commit like offenses, are living in our midst.  Wicked and blackened as they are with [?] crime, they yet attempt to control public opinion, to dictate to political parties, to direct how patriotism shall be employed, and to prescribe qualifications for membership in the church of the Prince of Peace and good will toward men.  As surely as Ritter met with a horrible death, so surely will vengeance overtake those men who are or have been urging other soldiers to commit like offenses.

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Sensible for Once.

            It is seldom that we find anything sensible or christian in the action of religious associations when they take up political subjects.  The following deliverance from the General Assembly of the Cumberland Presbyterian church, lately in session at Alton, is such a marked exception to the general rule, and evinces so much true Christianity, that we copy it as a bright light amid much religious darkness:

On the subject of American slavery, we submit that we should not view it as if it were about to be introduced, but as already in existence.  We do not hesitate to declare that the introduction of slavery was an enormous crime – surpassed by few crimes that have disgraced the history of the world; and that there are at present great evils connected with it, and that we believe will more or less be connected with it while it exists.  As to the remedy for these, the greatest and best minds of our country and the world have greatly differed, and been much perplexed; therefore we would recommend to those who, in the Providence of God, have been placed in connection with this institution, to continue in prayer, fully to study the Word of God, to determine their duty in regard to their slaves and slavery, and to those who are not thus situated, that they exercise forbearance towards their brethren who are connected with slavery, as the agitation of this subject at the present time, in that part of the church where slavery does not exist, cannot result in any good, either for the master or slave.

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Inconsistency Unparalleled.

            It will be recollected that President Lincoln, in his Inaugural Address, in 1861, said:

“I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists.  I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.”

Had the President adhered to this declaration in good faith – had he carried his expressed determination into practice – then, much of the disaffection towards, and want of confidence in, his Administration that now exists, would have been prevented; but he seems to have forgotten this pledge so soon as he became surrounded by his cabinet and other advisers; for, in January, 1863, in his Emancipation Proclamation, he emphatically declares, as follows:

“I order and declare that all persons held as slaves in the said designated States and parts of States are and hereafter shall be Free.”

To this sudden gyration – this wonderful political somersault – is the country indebted for the continuance of the war and much of the opposition that exists towards the President, and his Administration, at the present time.  Had he but remained true to his first declared intention and not permitted himself to be seduced or driven there from by the craven-hearted demagogues by whom he is surrounded, the war probably have been terminated ere this, and the country and the people again enjoying the blessings of peace and prosperity.

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