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OPINION

THE NEGRO IN POLITICS.

There is still some discussion in both the colored and white press concerning the colored vote more particularly with regard to Mr. Roosevelt. Harper's Weekly says that Mr. Roosevelt has dropped the subject because the Southerners did not "nibble at the bait," and continues:

"That indicates the other reason why Roosevelt himself has not been discussing his new plan with the colored brother. If it has not helped him in the South, it has positively and substantially weakened him in the North—and he knows it. Unhappily, there are conscientious and honorable people in his motley following, and not a few of them are of the anti-slavery strain. Such people have not approved, or pretended to approve, his sudden desertion of the Southern Negro after all his loud declaration of friendship for them. Neither could they perceive the slightest basis in reason or morals for his distinction between Southern Negroes. There is none. The only basis for that distinction was and is political.

"The maneuver has failed - failed completely and ignominiously. It is the worst kind of failure, for his act is not bitterly denounced, it is not raged at, it is laughed at. A demagogue can thrive on denunciation and hatred, but ridicule and indifference are fatal."

The Southern papers have been spurred to new arguments because of Roosevelt's Southern trip. The Birmingham Age-Herald cannot forget the past:

"The South, and particularly Alabama, cannot forget his attitude toward the Republican party of the State right after Alabama adopted her present constitution, at which time he was President. He declared that it was his purpose to support the building up of a white man's party in Alabama, and taking him at his word the Republicans met in convention—the most enthusiastic convention in the history of the party in this State—and it was addressed by a special envoy from the President in the person of Judge Pritchard of North Carolina. The Negroes were not allowed to even look on. A very short while after the President proceeded to cut off heads of every officeholder that participated in the 'lily-white' movement, and the federal patronage again fell into the hands of the regulars and Booker T. Washington.

"The colonel, therefore, should not feel peevish if the people of Alabama are a little bit inclined to be from Missouri regarding his sudden conversion to a white man's party in the South."

The Atlanta Journal in an editorial entitled "Go Home, Colonel," says, among other things:

"If you fancy that the pharisaic pose you have recently assumed on the Negro question will win you this section's support, you are pitiably deceived. You have straddled this issue in both the North and the South, fraternizing with the Negro there and execrating him here.

"Do you think we are so stupid as not to see through this two-faced and impudent game?

"Did you not bid might and main for the support of the Negro delegates at Chicago?

"Would you ever have pretended this sudden change of heart had you succeeded in capturing the machinery of that party as you violently strove to do?

"Why is it, colonel, that you never awoke to the corrupting influence of the colored delegates from the South until you found that they would no longer serve but would embarrass your political schemes?

"The whole country knows that no Republican ever went further or stooped lower than you for these same Negro delegates when you needed them to run your particular machine."

The colored ministers of Cincinnati have 


OPINION      19 

been asking ex-Senator Foraker about the situation, and Foraker says that the "Bull Moose is flirting with the Lily Whites."

President Taft in a recent interview says:

"Had the colored delegates from the South to the Republican national convention yielded to the influences the newspapers said were dangled before their eyes, the Progressive party leaders might have viewed differently their fitness for participation in the Progressive party's convention.

"It occurs to me that instead of the Southern colored Republicans being declared as disqualified to participate in the activities of the new party, the very fact of their loyalty to a cause they had been elected to represent in our national convention should have commanded them to the Progressive party's leaders.

"A race which in fifty years has reduced its illiteracy from 95 to about 30 per cent. is certainly deserving of more respectful consideration than it received from the Progressive party leaders."

It must have been taken some urging to force Assistant Attorney-General Lewis into the ring against his first love, but he certainly struck heavily in his Ohio and New Jersey speeches:

"The disfranchisement of eight millions of citizens in the South, from party representation in the new party, was the worst blow that the race received in the last fifty years, because ours is a party government; because it is the only means through which the citizen can make his ideas of government prevail; and when he is denied his representation there he is denied a fundamental right, a right most essential to his liberty and his happiness.

"I sat in the gallery of the coliseum at the birth of the new party. I saw men and women work themselves into a frenzy of enthusiasm. I heard the magnificent keynote of Senator Beveridge, when he said: 'We stand for a nobler America. We stand for an undivided nation. We stand for a broader liberty and a fuller justice. * * * We stand for mutual helpfulness instead of mutual hate. We stand for equal rights as a fact of life instead of a catchword of politics. * * * We battle for the actual rights of man.'

"For an hour and a half the great orator developed his theme. I listened to the strains of music of 'John Brown's Body' and the 'Battle Hymn of the Republic.' My heart sank within me when I thought that there were men outside clamoring for admission who were denied on account of their race and color. Since all men did not include Southern Negroes, I could not feel that John Brown's soul was marching there. When that vast audience sang the 'Battle Hymn of the Republic,' 'as Christ died to make men holy let us die to make men free,' I felt that human cant and hypocrisy could go no further; it had reached its fitting climax." 

COLERIDGE-TAYLOR

The death of Coleridge-Taylor has brought much comment on his work. Almost without exception the praise has been universal. Of course, Phillip Hale, the dyspeptic and somewhat erratic critic of Boston, had to have his usual fling at the Negro.

Musical America says of Taylor:

"In the musical circles of Great Britain he was a force and a power, a name which with that of Elgar represented the nation's most individual output in the domain of choral music, at any rate. His 'Hiawatha,' which has made his name better known than anything else he has written, is a work that will last for many years to come. So, too, his 'Atonement,' perhaps the finest passion service of modern times. * * * Though surrounded by the influences that are at work in Europe to-day, he retained his individuality to the end, developing his style, however, and evincing new ideas in each succeeding work. * * *  His untimely death at the age of 37, a short life—like those of Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin and Hugo Wolf—has robbed the world of one of its noblest singers, one of those few men of modern times who found expression in the language of musical song, a lyricist of power and worth, and, what is perhaps most significant, the ablest musician the Negro race has yet produced."

Arthur M. Abell, the well-known reviewer of Berlin, Germany, says of the composer in the Musical Courier:

"As the first and only Negro composer of real importance, his death constitutes a great loss to his race, but it is also more than that; it is a loss to the musical world at large. For Coleridge-Taylor was a composer of noteworthy achievement and still greater promise. Even Berlin will feel his loss, for
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