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STAGGERING HUMANITY

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STAGGERING HUMANITY For every pro-Boer preacher throughout the land, for every ill-styled Free Church Council so satiated with political prejudice as to heed not the voice of their brethren in South Africa, who must know the cir- cumstances better than those at home, for the Silas Hockings and the Page Hopps, for every discontented Irishman, for the seething section of the Irish Parliamentary party, for the Welsh pro-Boor members, from the reckless Lloyd-George to our astute county member, for every editor whose imagination has run riot, for every man and every woman considering them- selves entitled to the appellation of Chris- tian, even for the shadier units of human nature who only in the catalogue, in the words of our great master of literature, go for men- for all these we provide a subject ect for a sermon, for a political address, for a a fireside chat, or a loading article. The text is to be found in the deaths column of the Standard published last Tuesday, and it as follows :— AteLACULAN.-()ti Christmas Day, shot in the Market Square, Harrisuiith, Orange Free State, South Africa,.for refusing to fight against his own countrymen, John MoLachlan, junior, age 30, eldest son of John McLacidau, of Wandsworth, and grandson of the lute John MoLachlan, of Lambeth." At the outset of this war President LT R KRTTGER is reported to have said that he intended to stagger humanity." This man, who prides himself on his religious virtuousness, who lavs to his soul the flattering unction that, he is one of the elect, who reads his Bible and pretends to hold direct communion with Ll the great Almighty, is thus fulfilling his promise to stagger humanity. On Christ- mas day, when the religious world joined together in singing the song of the angels —" Peace on earth and goodwill to men "— in the Market Square at Jrlarrismith John McLACHLAN, patriot, was foully murdered for refusing to shoot his countrymen. A more cold blooded act, a fouler murder, a more monstrous violation of all that passes for civilisation was never known. It may have had its parallel in modern times, but never in the annals of a nation claiming to be civilised. For similar outrages we must go to savagest of the savages, to the lowest grade of human animals on God's earth. It is easy to say that this bloody deed was not the deed of KRUOER, that his was not the finger which pulled the trigger and sent the Mauser bullet through the brain of our countryman, but ihe cannot escape a moral responsibility for the acts of his subordinates. This is not an isolated instance of a murder, it differs from the others only in being more premeditated, more cold blooded, but it ranks with those other murders, the white flag murders, the murders of our women and their babes who died as the result of Boer brutality in the railway trucks on their way out of the ¡ Transvaal—it ranks with all these in form- ing the figures on the escutcheons of the South African Republic and the Orange Free State. It is not necessary for us to remind our readers of how at the commencement of this campaign old men on the confines of the grave, and women on the verge of confinement, were huddled together in open trucks, treated worse than cattle, with the rain and hail beating down upon them, of how Boer soldiers, drunken and filthy, gloated over the sufferings of these poor creatures, laughed at their misery, spat in their faces, flashed the flame from Mauser i-ifies over their heads, flogged them with with the cruel sjambok, and murdered the men on the slightest pretext, of how they heeded not the sufferings and furnished no covering to protect from the beating rain the poor women who gave birth in those open trucks and lived but long enough to see the newly born babe gasp its last, then to die themselves in the greatest agonies which women can know—there is little need for us to remind our readers of these acti of a pro- fessedly Christian people acting at the dictation of a man who claims to rank with the saints. But we put these incidents in line with those of the white flag, of the murder of the soldier who resented the insult to las captured orlicer, of the violation of the red cross, the murder of good sisters and nurses who went out to tend the sick and wounded, of the treachery of the hostile forces, and lastly with the murder of JOHN MOLACHAX, and ask whether any person in his sane senses can still defend a nation of men guilty of such acts. We ask further how they can reconcile even with the lowest conception of; Christianity their rlofence of the Boers as compatible with the teachings of Christ and His Church. If incidents such as these fail to overcome political bias or affect their conception^ of Christianity, let them take that conception home and nurse it. For it is sickly indeed. We blush, too, that, as churning to repre- sent either the views of the people of this country or any phase of religious teaching, there should be found ant> .jom sides with these savages nnd affect Trig to believe that the progress of civinsauon or of Christianity will not be advanced as the result of this war. We are glad to thin*, however, that thev stand alone m a 111t 18 world of affectation of their own creation, and that this is not: the spirit v» .nc.i per- meates the great majority of the people and, thank heaven, of our army. We are proud that upon this country should lall the dnty of ending the rule of such tyrants, and hopeful when Ave think that at the eiose of this war, even though the rivers may run with blood in the attainment of that end, a different rule shall prevail in that land where the blood of our heroes shall have purchased the precious heritage of human freedom. We have the keenest sympathy with John McLachlan, senr., of Wands- Ii: (" t C' ? "0 sure he is proud when he recalls to mind how that sou died. And we are proud, how that sou died. And we are proud, justly proud, that there should be men amongst our nation whose training of their sons is such that they would rather forfeit, life than ignobly keep it. -+-

NOTES BY THB: WAY.

YEOMANUY AND VOLUNTEER NOTES.

WELSHPOOL.\

CASTLE CAEREINION.

TRKWEli'X.i '

LLANFYLLIN.

BYRWYDD.

LLANIDLOES.

EVERY WEAK MAN,

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