The Vallandighamers and the "Niggers."
The Democracy have for a long time been subject to periodical attacks of Negrophobia. In this State they have immediately proceeding every election been peculiarly afflicted with these returns; and when they are under the distressing mania, no amount of argument or reasoning can convince them that they are not to be at once served up, in all manner of dishes, soup, stew, fricassee, a la mode, etc., etc., as food for the voracious negro. In whatever direction they turn, the inevitable "eboshin" leers at them with horrid menace. If they walk the streets, they see him at every corner lying in wait to gulp them down at a swallow. Even in their sleep, images of wooly heads and ivory teeth haunt them with importunate gestures. It is impossible to dispel the terrible hallucination which takes possession of them. As long as the fit is upon them, their ravings are those of veritable madmen. So soon, however, as the election is over and they have been outvoted at the polls, they quietly subside and become as rational as ever.
One of these distressing attacks is at the present time making sad havoc with the senses of our Vallandigham friends; and as the canvass progresses it is likely to be quite as virulent as usual. The "nigger, the everlasting nigger," is again grinning and making faces at them, and they imagine, as they have been imagining for the last decade of years, that unless they are elected to all the fat offices in the State, Illinois will at once be completely at the mercy of the negro. It is the same old trouble with them over again. The Constitution and laws say that negroes shall not be allowed to immigrate to this State; and they demand that the same shall be enforced. This is the unceasing burden of their ravings; and they are calling upon every one they meet to execute the law. Now, we have no fears on the subject, but if they are so uneasy lest the negro is going to get the upper hand of them in this State, it is their duty to enforce the law themselves. Its provisions are plain and easily understood. We quote a couple of sections of the law:
SEC. III. If any negro, or mulatto, bond or free, shall hereafter come into this State and remain ten days, with the evident intention of residing in the same, every such negro or mulatto shall be deemed guilty of a high misdemeanor, and for the first offense shall be fined the sum of fifty dollars, to be recovered before any justice of the peace in the county where said negro or mulatto may be found. Said proceedings shall be in the name of the people of the State of Illinois, and shall be tried by a jury of twelve men. The person making the information or complaint shall not be a competent witness upon said trial.
SEC. IV. If said negro or mulatto shall be found guilty, and the fine assessed be not paid forthwith to the justice of the peace before whom said proceedings were had, it shall be the duty of said justice to commit said negro or mulatto to the custody of the sheriff of said county, or otherwise keep him, her or them in custody; and said justice shall forthwith advertise said negro or mulatto, by posting up notices thereof in at least three of the most public places in this district, which said notices shall be posted up for ten days, and on the day and at the time and place mentioned in said advertisement, the said justice shall, at public auction, proceed to see said negro or mulatto to any person or persons who will pay said fine and costs, for the shortest time; and said purchaser shall have the right to compel said negro or mulatto to work for and serve out said time, and he shall furnish said negro or mulatto with comfortable food, clothing and lodging during said servitude.
It will be seen, that all that these Vallandigham monomaniacs have to do is, to turn common former against the audacious negro, who thus ventures to set foot upon the sacred soil and breathe the free air of Illinois, and they will remedy this "high misdemeanor" at once.
It is true the proceeding does not necessarily remove the contraband from the State, but instead of starvation, it secures him "comfortable food, clothing and lodging." Not only this, but our Vallandigham friends are likely to make first rate wages out of their honorable occupation. We quote the seventh section of the act:
SEC. VII. In all cases arising under the provisions of this act, the prosecuting witness, or person making the complaint and prosecuting the same, SHALL BE ENTITLED TO ONE-HALF OF THE FINE SO IMPOSED AND COLLECTED, and the residue of said find shall be paid into the county treasury of the county in which said proceedings were had; and said fines, when so collected, shall be received by said county treasurer, and kept by him as a distinct and separate fund, to be called the "charity fund;" and said fund shall be used for the express and only purpose to relieving the poor of said county, and shall be paid out by said treasurer upon the order of the county court of said county, drawn upon him, for that purpose.
It will be seen from this, that by turning common informer, they secure a contingent interest in one half the fine which is imposed. The inducements altogether are such that we are astonished our rabid Vallandighamers do not go at once into the business of catching and selling the emancipated slaves of their rebel friends in Dixie. We apprehend, however, that the negromania which possesses them is not so much the result of repugnance to having the contrabands come into the State as it is their opposition to the traitors being deprived of their property. It is the President's proclamation of freedom which on the present occasion, is the ground of their lamentations. They are opposed to every and any "military necessity" which looks to hurting the rebels in a vulnerable and vital point.