Source: Truth Seeker
Source type: magazine
Document type: editorial
Document title: none
Date of publication: 12 October 1901
Volume number: 28
Issue number: 41
|[untitled]. Truth Seeker 12 Oct. 1901 v28n41: p. 645.|
|penal colonies (anarchists); McKinley assassination (public response: criticism).|
|C. C. McCabe; Goldwin Smith.|
|In the original source, the editorial includes 13 misspelled words, all resulting from a replicated typographical error. This problem has been corrected below.|
The plan of deporting a certain school of thinkers
and non-thinkers and confining them on some remote island in the Pacific ocean
[sic] is commented upon by Prof. Goldwin Smith as one of the proposals which
“bespeak the excitement of the time.” One would think that the advocacy of this
scheme would be confined to that class of persons whose minds are divided on
the question whether the criminal now confined in the Auburn prison should be
turned over to a mob for execution or officially tortured with fire before being
drawn and quartered. Such, however, appears not to be the case. We note that
the editor of one of our Freethought exchanges reprints with evident pride a
letter which he wrote to a Chicago daily proposing that not only the anarchists
but the social radicals be marooned as aforesaid. Unfortunately that plan of
dealing with the exponents of unpopular ideas lacks not only merit but originality.
It was conceived and advocated many years ago by a certain Chaplain McCabe of
the Methodist communion, who dreamed of isolating all Freethinkers in a place
which he named Ingersollville.
We quoted from the Christian Advocate not long ago the fact, which the editor characterized as remarkable, that “the same men who were victims in the churches from which they were expelled or from which they went out, on coming into power in the new sects, have oppressed with equal vigor and mercilessness those who were subject to them.” It seems there are others, not religionists, to whom the same course recommends itself.
Professions sometimes fail in a crisis, as witness the abandonment of their principles, on alleged grounds of high expediency, by the looting missionaries in China. It will be a good test of the sincerity of Freethinkers’ professed belief in mental freedom if at this time they refrain from renouncing them and joining the popular clamor for unconstitutional methods in dealing with certain retailers of doctrines they cannot approve.
These are the times that try men’s sense.