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termination and one of self-preservation? That he sees no choice between the murder of helpless age, of weeping women and sleeping babes, and the defence of liberty and nationality?” The pious priest gives us the first few lines of the above, leaving out the very pith and substance which clearly elucidates the difference between wars of conquest, on the one side, and defensive wars and wars for the preservation of national integrity, on the other.
Ingersoll.“ Slavery includes all other crimes. It is the joint product of the kidnapper, pirate, thief, murderer and hypocrite."
Lambert.--" How does it include all other crimes if it be the joint product of them? A product is an effect.”
An apple pie includes apples, dough, nutmeg, etc., yet is not the pie the joint product of these ingredients ? Ask your cook.
Ingersoll.—“The superior man is eyes to the blind."
Lambert.—“ His superiority does not consist in seeing for the blind, but in his ability to see. His disposition to see for the blind is evidence of his goodness.”
Then we ask is there no such thing as moral superiority ? or if there be, is it dwarfed into insignificance by the overshadowing greatness of physical power? Were those who crucified Jesus superior to him? They had the power to crucify; he, the divine will to forgive.
REPLY TO CHAPTER XII.
Liberty-Polygamy-Rousseau's Opinion of Philosophers-Philosophy and
In his twelfth chapter the Father enlightens us with a disquisition on “liberty;” and here again is exemplified how far a good, pious man may go astray to meet the exigencies of an occasion. The Father quotes : “With me, liberty is not merely a means—it is an end." Ingersoll said this and the Father pronounces the declaration “too vague.” “We are,” he says, “all in favor of liberty, as we understand it, but we do not agree as to what it is or ought to be. It is a foolish loss of time to caw over the word until we have a common idea or understanding of the thing. Do you mean by the word the liberty Guiteau exercised, or that of the Nihilists, or that of the Mormons, or that of the thief, the robber, or the murderer?"
Of course from this extract it would be inferred that the Father was in doubt as to what kind of liberty Mr. Ingersoll referred to. What will the reader think, when informed that the Rev. Lambert passed over three little words immediately preceding his last quotation, which words make the meaning plain beyond cavil, and perfectly germane to the subject ? These words are, "I abhor slavery." And he continues : “With me liberty is not merely a means—it is an end.” Here it is manifest that the liberty spoken of is the kind contradistinguished from slavery—from property-right in men, women, and children.
But because his opponent praises liberty, without specifically defining its metes and bounds, he is gruffly reproved, and told that Madame Roland said, as she was carted to the guillotine, “ O liberty! what crimes are committed in thy name !" “The Christian," says the Father, “ loves liberty as dearly as you; he would soar from planet to planet and from star to star, and drink in the immensity of the universe." Hold ! Father, do not leave us. We only ask you to stay and be human. Drink not in the immensity of the universe, but the nectar of liberty, and repay the draught with the milk of human kindness.
Madame Roland uttered an eloquent truth. But could not every victim of the accursed inquisition have said with equal truth, “O religion! what crimes are committed in thy name!" The Father, unreasonably, we think, demands a definition for almost every important word his friend, Mr. Ingersoll, employs. The word “liberty” disconnected fronı any particular subject or train of thought is a mere abstraction, but liberty as the antithesis of human slavery means next to everything. At least it implies the negation of chattel-right in man; of human flesh and soul as articles of traffic; of the right to rend and desecrate the holiest ties by tearing asunder husband and wife, parent and child; of confiding to man over his fellows irresponsible power, certain of abuse in myriads of atrocious ways.
Liberty is the right to do what one may please without intrenching on the rights of others; yet the query arises, what does intrench on those rights ? This question, as to details, the wisdom of ages has not fully answered. The ancient church held that heresy was a greater crime than murder. The church, from its own standpoint, was logical. Believing that the heresiarch by false teachings consigned both soul and body to eternal hell, was he not worse than he who destroyed
the life of the body only? Yet do you, Father, justify what the church did and what is now regarded as ecclesiastical murder? Would you, now, had you the power, restrain me, or any one, by penal enactment, ecclesiastical or otherwise, from publicly avowing“ Protestant” sentiments, or from proclaiming what you term infidel doctrines ? Though neither you nor I may be able to define liberty with an exactness which shall defy criticism-you have not attempted it; try it -yet let us come to practical questions. You profess to despise vague generalities. I shall not indulge in them. Let us see how far we agree as to what kind of liberty should be guaranteed to a people.
Do you believe in the broad-gauge religious liberty we Americans enjoy? Were the United States under Catholic domination would what we call “religious toleration” be enjoyed to the same extent by people of all shades of religious and non-religious faith as at present ? If not, to what extent abridged? Some twenty years ago or more I read an editorial in the Pittsburgh Catholic, in which the writer claimed that Catholic nations alone had the right to forbid the exercise of other than prescribed kinds of worship, for the reason that non-Catholics only believe they are right while Catholics hold their faith with the certainty of knowledge.
A year or so ago it was broadly published that a son of General Sherman, in a lecture before a Catholic institution of learning, spoke in advocacy of the inquisition. I never heard or saw a denial of the charge, though I watched the papers to see if one was made. But true or false, what say you on the subject? Your ideas may help us to a practical definition of liberty satisfactory to both of us.
We now approach a marvellous piece of assertion. We are told that as to the physical and intellectual laws man has no liberty whatever. Is it true, then, that the intellect of man, which above all things else determines his choice and shapes his conduct, has no more freedom of action than a grain of sand, or the wave that dashes on the shore and returns again to the bosom of the deep? May not man abuse his intellectual as well as his moral nature? Perhaps I do not understand the Father. I hope not, and that the reader's perception is keener than my own.
The subject of polygamy, as practised under the Old Testament dispensation, is next in order.
Ingersoll.—“We are informed by Mr. Black that polygamy is neither commanded nor prohibited in the Old Testamentthat it is only discouraged. It seems to me that a little legislation on the subject might have tended to its discouragement. But where is this legislation?”
Lambert.—“In your first article on the Christian religion you
said that the Bible upheld polygamy as the highest form of virtue. Your opponent met your assertion with a denial that the Bible so held or taught. Here a direct issue was made-a question of veracity raised. And how did you meet it? Did you stand by your statement and proceed to prove it ? Not at all. You reply by saying that the Bible did not legislate against it. This is an admission that your statement could not be sustained-a raising of the white flag."
Here, we are told, is a question of veracity. Veracity, of course, means adherence to truth. If a man lacks veracity he is untruthful; is, in short, what the Father, by necessary implication at least, often calls Mr. Ingersoll-a liar. Would his critic like to be tested by the same rule ?
Let us see. The Father says that Mr. Ingersoll asserted that the Bible upheld polygamy as the highest form of virtue. He said no such thing. What he did say was this: “But the believer in the inspiration of the Bible ... is compelled to insist that there was a time when polygamy was the highest form of