Of Filibustering, Annexation, And Polishing Savages Off The Face Of
Creation There Has Been A Great Deal, And Who Can Deny That
Humanity Has Been The Gainer?
It seems to those who look widely
back over history, that all such works have been carried on in
obedience to God's laws.
When Jacob by Rebecca's aid cheated his
elder brother, he was very smart; but we cannot but suppose that a
better race was by this smartness put in possession of the
patriarchal scepter. Esau was polished off, and readers of
Scripture wonder why heaven, with its thunder, did not open over
the heads of Rebecca and her son. But Jacob, with all his fraud,
was the chosen one. Perhaps the day may come when scrupulous
honesty may be the best policy, even on the frontier. I can only
say that hitherto that day seems to be as distant as ever. I do
not pretend to solve the problem, but simply record my opinion that
under circumstances as they still exist I should not willingly
select a frontier life for my children.
I have said that all great frontier men have been unscrupulous.
There is, however, an exception in history which may perhaps serve
to prove the rule. The Puritans who colonized New England were
frontier men, and were, I think, in general scrupulously honest.
They had their faults. They were stern, austere men, tyrannical at
the backbone when power came in their way, as are all pioneers,
hard upon vices for which they who made the laws had themselves no
minds; but they were not dishonest.
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