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African Methodist Episcopal Church Review, Vol. 6, Num. 3
                           EDITORIAL.                          375

federal boards are to appoint registrars in each precinct or electoral district, and
under this federal supervision and control, the registration and determination of
the qualifications of voters is to be conducted.  These registrars are to be clothed
with all the powers of United States marshals while engaged in the discharge of
their duties. The bill also provides for a state board of canvassers, which shall
be invested with the power of going behind the returns and refusing to count the
votes in counties, when fraud and intimidation have been alleged, upon the oath of
any one of the candidates It is further provided that these federals election offi-
ces, which shall be appointed by the President, upon the receipt of a petition
signed by one hundred qualified electors, are to be exempt from arrest or inter-
ference by the state authorities

  Mr. Houk is a southern man, and this bill is not intended as a
"direct blow at the rights of the states," but an effort to stop the
states from their high-handed work of depriving the United
States of its "rights" in certain quarters,  Had the "concession"
policy never been resorted to, such a bill as this would not have
become necessary. This turn which affairs are about to take
is a perfectly natural thing. The government has permitted a
section of the country to defy its declarations, as long as it can
afford to do so. If the present congress is wise, and has profited
by past experience, it will pass Mr. Houk's bill; and so much
the more, because Mr. Houk comes from that portion of the
country for which the bill is intended.
  The writer, speaking of the condition of the Negro, says: "He
is not satisfied, and we are not satisfied about him. He remains
where he was, and for the most part what he was." That the
Negro is not satisfied must be known to all, and there is abundant
cause for his dissatisfaction; but that he remains even for the
most part what he was, is in direct contradiction to known facts.
  It is a wonder that any man who writes so learnedly upon the
subject, as the author of the book in question, and who seems
so anxious to deal with facts as he does, should be so blind as
not to see the almost phenomenal progress that the Negro has
made in twenty-five years. It would not do us any good to
over-estimate our advancement; to the contrary, it would do us
much harm.  But when a person, or a set of people do well in
any given direction, it is the grossest injustice to hold them up
before the world as having practically done nothing. It is not
only unjust, but it misleads the honest seeker after truth. In
dealing with this important question, nothing is gained by dis-
guising facts. Impartial testimony as to the Negro's advanc.
ment since his freedom is not wanting. Men of unquestioned
veracity, Democrats as well as Republicans, who have visited the
South and have carefully looked into the condition of the coloredl
people, declare that their progress far exceeds all reasonable
  Let me call attention to another assertion by the writer con-
cerning the Negro's condition. "The women, as a rule, work as
hard as the men in both town and country. Few Negro families
are as well fed, or as well clothed, or as well off in point of gen-
eral comfort as they were when slaves."
  This statement is astonishingly untrue. What can the author


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OHS/National Afro-American Museum & Cultural Center Serial Collection

African Methodist Episcopal Church Review, Vol. 6, Num. 3

Volume:  06
Issue Number:  03
Date:  01/1890


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