Page images
PDF
EPUB

shant 10-18-33

30966

THE DEMOCRAT.

“ THEY HAVE RIGHTS WHO DARE MAINTAIN THEM.”

VOL. IV.-No. 94.

SEPTEMBER, 1886.

PRICE TWOPENCE.

The Outlook.

of the British nation. Mr. Parnell's AmendIt is clear that nothing but a cordial union ment to the Address declares at once against between English and Irish Radicals can save evictions and land purchase. It seems imposthe country from legislation which will be sible that anyone with a vestige of humanity in monstrously unjust and permanently disastrous. his bosom can fail to give it support. The Government intend to enforce the exaction

The English and Irish Peoples. of rents which are admitted to be excessive, and

Although the outlook for the present is dark, in doing so they are encouraged by Lord Har

it is cheering to see how Irishmen are recogtington, who urges them to carry out this policy nising that the British aristocracy and not the without even the exercise of discretion. Lord British people have been their oppressors in Salisbury has declared that the chief object of the past

. The Nation, with which is associated the proposed Commission of Inquiry is to facili

the

memory of many a noble Irishman, puts tate arrangements for land purchase, and he this truth into eloquent words. After thankcontends that purchase must be made on the

ing Mr. Davitt for his conduct at the Chicago basis of the rents fixed by the Land Commis- Convention, the Nation says:

-“ The English sion, even if these rents cannot possibly be ob- democracy must get a fair chance of dealing tained from the produce of the soil. It is justice to Ireland. There is no record of blood interesting to note the coolness with which and outrage to rise up between us and them. these noble and wealthy landowners contem- Their masters have been our tyrants ; but as plate delay. Of course they can wait, and in they have dragged these men from their seats the case of landlords it is literally true that of power in England, so will they with the wise everything comes to those who wait. But let instinct of a democracy destroy their tyranny us remember that everything goes from those here. They have only now learned their first who are evicted. Their improvements which lesson in the history of Irish wrong; let them represent years of labour go at once to the

not be turned aside by our rash deeds from owner of the soil

, who has done nothing for learning the whole story. We are the unshrinkhis tenant but exact rent. Out goes the hard, ing enemies of British rule here ; but we have working occupier with nothing but rags, and no enmity towards the people of England; we without food for his wife and children, expelled have rather a great trust in their sense of from the small home he has created by his own justice.”

justice.” Once English and Irish Radicals efforts which, poor as it is, afforded some learn to work hand in hand the reign of privishelter from the bleak winds, a shelter which lege and caste will speedily end. is now altogether denied to him. These are the Irish outrages which the Government are Why Rents are Excessive and Impossible. urged to continue with unceasing severity, and We are assured by the most reliable authoin which they are to employ the whole power rities that the value of the corn crops in the

United Kingdom does not exceed fifty-eight stables to the number of nearly 200, and only millions per annum, whereas the agricultural £4 has been realised.” So writes the newspaper rent paid to landlords is more than sixty correspondent who has accompanied the evictmillions. The total produce of the land ing army against the hapless Gweedore peasanis found to be worth two hundred and thirty try--people whom Lord Salisbury, doubtless, millions, so that the rent paid exceeds the whole considers as quite capable of satisfying the value of the corn crops, and comes to more than landlords' demands. The descriptions of the twenty-four per cent. on the whole produce of operations of the crowbar brigade in Gweedore the land. The farmers who pay these enor- are simply heart-rending. In one case the mous rents have to compete with men who buy tenant, a widow of 90 years, lay in a prostrate the best land in America for a pound per acre, condition by the fireside—she was dying. Her and with the producers in India, who pay from emaciated form bore testimony to the privaone shilling to one and sixpence per acre rent. tions she had undergone. The priest interceded The cost of transport having been greatly re- on her behalf, and at last persuaded the evictors duced, it is now impossible to carry on agricul- to allow her to remain in her wretched cabin ture with such competitors under a burden for the few days that remain to her. But even exceeding twenty-five per cent. in actual money then a scene has to be enacted which makes payment, and probably inflicting injury to the the blood of every honest man boil in his veins. extert of another twenty-five per cent. in ob- The poor, withered creature has to be carried structions, which the arbitrary actions of land- outside the door of her cabin in order that the lords impose upon progress. The simple fact formality of taking possession may be effected. is that the British farmer cannot win a race The man who is responsible for these proceedwith a landlord on his back.

ings must be a fiend in human form. And

while deeds such as this are being done the Indoor Protection.

Prime Minister of England has the audacity to We have it on the authority of Lord Salis- prate of the immorality of the Irish peasantry. bury that it costs £3,800 per annum to protect

More Horrors. the Earl of Kenmare, which has to be paid

There are more horrors to come. John by the unhappy ratepayers. When a man

In his cabin

Sweeney is now the victim. irritates his neighbours to such a degree that it requires 38 policeman to guard him in his there is but one room, and his wife, a weak, movements, he should either pay the cost of sickly woman, has a three weeks' old baby in

her arms. Husband, wife, and five children, the process or a cheaper plan should be adopted. If an able-bodied man cannot main

too young to know the evil that has come tain himself by his industry, we forthwith upon them, are thrust into the road, the door shut him up in the workhouse.

The same

is barred, and they may die for want of food course should be adopted towards those who and shelter for aught the landlord or his satel

lites Such is the work done daily in are unable to protect themselves against the chronic indignation of their neighbours. The

Ireland in the name of British law. A GovernEarl of Kenmare now costs the country

ment which permits such work is a band of seventy-five pounds per week. He might be brigands. Irishmen have grasped the fact that kept quite safe in the workhouse during the from Lord Salisbury no quarter is to be exsame period for eight shillings.

pected. The Compensation for Disturbance Bill was introduced at a time when famine was

stalking through Ireland. The man who is Legalised Murder.

now at the head of affairs characterised it as “Sixty evictions have already been executed, the measure of a mind not strongly impressed affecting as many as eighty families, by an with reverence for the rights of property, and armed force of officers, sergeants, and con. who desired to make his own path smooth by

care.

feeding wild beasts whom he is not strorg Argyll's whilom factotum states that he reenough to tame.” Lord Salisbury has again signed his office because he found his Grace declared war against the Irish peasantry, had resolved to clear the people away, and

rather than be a party to wholesale evictions Outrages.

he took the step in question. He adds pathe“ The distinction between Davitt and the tically, “My zeal to uphold the Luke's tempersons of whom Congressman Finerty is re- perance policy may very probably have presentative is not one of much value to Eng- exceeded my discretion at the time.” Most lishmen. If Davitt advises Parliamentary agi- true. tation instead of dynamite it is not in the least

Oban Unprotected. because he wishes to save Englishmen's skins, The removal of police from Oban to assist but simply because he thinks the former in the buccaneering expedition to Tiree seems method is more likely than the latter to suc- to have been taken advantage of by the ne'erceed in effecting the erection of Ireland as an do-weels of that town. At a meeting of the independent State." So says the St. James's Town Council, Councillor Munro said :-“ It is Gazette, which evidently has a judicious appre- a gross injustice that Oban should have been ciation of the wisdom and probable efficiency of left for more than a week in charge of two Michael Davitt's recommendations. A more policemen, who were strangers. The drunks unjust and mendacious charge of indifference had taken advantage of this state of affairs, and to human suffering was never made. Michael had been having a high old time of it. He Davitt has striven nobly to keep the cause he could not say how many ribs had got broken loves free from outrage, and has done more on Saturday night. The policemen themselves, than any living man to sow the seeds of good he believed, had got several broken.” Apart will between the English and Irish peoples. from the performances of the “drunks,” the His action at the Chicago Convention is alone matter will be a serious one for the ratepayers a sufficient answer to such a calumny as this. of Oban, who will have to contribute to the The privileged classes know full well that out- expenses of the expedition. Indignation is felt rages committed by the poor people who have in the town at the idea of people being combeen driven to desperation by oppression pelled to pay the cost of sending a force to are the most effective arguments for “reso- harry the Crofters of Tiree in the interests of lute ” and unjust government, and it is such a man as the Duke of Argyll. Doubtless to be hoped that Michael Davitt and other his Grace considers it of more importance that able supporters of the people's cause will his rents should be exacted than that “law and succeed in their efforts to keep the peace in order” should be maintained in Oban. spite of all provocation. The people can then use on their own behalf a power far more

The Cost of Landlordism. effective than outrages against their op

Apart from the money exacted in the shape pressors,

of rent, the cost of landlordism in Ireland is Argyll and Whisky.

far greater than most people imagine. The The Anti-Whisky Manifesto issued by the wholesale evictions in Donegal, in which 150 Duke of Argyll's late factor in Tiree has been policemen and bailiffs, and sixty cars were emrepudiated by the Duke, who says the late ployed, has cost no less than £100 a day, factor issued it without his authority, and that although the total yearly rental involved is though “his motive may have been a good one only £150. A tradesman, to whom a legitimate the action he took shows I did not remove him debt was due, who applied for an army to aid a moment too soon.” The late factor retorts him in obtaining his money would be laughed that he was not "removed," but resigned his at, but landlords, who give nothing in return office ninç years after the publication of the for what they receive, nave all the "resources Anti-Whisky Edict. This, nowever, is not all. of civiliartion " placed at their disposal, at the

« PreviousContinue »