The Star. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 27, 1879.
BTesterday our columns contained an iccount of, one of tho most wanton — ouo of the moßt atrocious — outrages which cculd bring disgrace open any civilised community. Christshurch has been called the CatheIral Oity ; it is also known as the city )f many churches ; and the order-loving, aw-respecting, GoD-fearing character )f our people baa stood high. That it ibould be chown — as it has been shown — that wa have in our midst a number of human beings bo lost to ihe proper appreciation of the ble6Binga of liberty which they enjoy in this free land as to perpetrate the dastardly attack of yesterday, must be regarded as truly deplorable. It has been Baid that this outrage must be looked upon as the act of a number of ignorant, phrenzied labourers, who in no way represent the sentiments of their coreligion'sts, that their assault upon a baud of unarmed and unprotected citizens marching peacefully through the public streets was of mere impulse — that, in short, there was " ho preconceived plan." Wo observe that this ia the view put forward by the Reverend Father Ginaty and the leaders of the Roman Catholic community in the city ; therefore it is entitled to be received with respect. Father Ginaty should be accorded great credit for the efforts he mado to quell the disturbance, for the kindly inteieat he has manifested for the unfortunate victims, and for his prompt repudiation of the slightest sympathy in such abominable proceedings. We do not believe for a moment, that the intelligent and respectable members of any religious body — Roman Catholic or Protestant — in this Christian land, could ever be induced to lend their countenance to any lino of conduct which, in the remotest way, tended to violence, and certainly the leaders of tLo Roman Catholics in Ohristchurch are tho very last who should adopt such a course. Upon several occasions — notably upon the visit of the Reverend Father Hennebery, when two or three thousand of that faith, wearing their colours, marched in procession upon a Sunday evening through the streets, and upon the still more recent visit of Bishop Redwood — were they enabled to make whatever public display they chose without insult. Nut the Elighteßfc approach to interference was attempted. To Buppose that they have forgotten this, or that they would ever dream of repaying it with an outrage as cruel as it was disgraceful, is too ridiculous to be entertained. Although Btrong public feeling has been excited over the recent event, we trust the common sense of the citizens generally will assert itself, and frtely acquit the intelligent and the honourable of the Roman Catholic body of all sympathy with the diabolical rowdyism of tbo9e who have brought this shame upon tho city. That the perpetrators were ignorant requires no comment, for the folly— tho sheer madness — of their proceeding is as evident as its criminality. That tho outrage was not organised — that it was an impulsi c movement arising out of sudden feelii g — that there was no preconcerted plan — remains to be proved. At present there are good grounds for believing otherwise. It certainly must be considered a singular coincidence that a similar attack should have been made in Timaru. A number of rumours are current as to previous preparation for the attack having been made at Barrett's Hotel, and of circumstances in the previous life of the proprietor, which, if well founded, would point to a strong prima facie caße of organisation having been in existence. At present, however, these are but the rumours of the streets when the whole population iB in a very excited state, and, therefore, they muat not be allowed to weigh. But the concurrent attack at Timaru is a fact, and it ia one that requires explanation. We feel 6ure that the great bulk of the intelligent people of this community/ will agree with us it is a great inisfor'tune that either Ribbon-men or Orangemen should be found amongst us; that we should have societies watching each Other narrowly; jealous of each other ; in antagonism — if not in hatred — of each other ; each claiming to be a necessity requisite to balance tho other ; both importing into this country paEßions which reflect no credit up ?n either, and which should have been dropped into the ocean of forgctfulness when tho land was left far behind wherein they bad their birth. " A plague upon both your houses," say we. l*'ew Protestants, however, are Orangemen; all Catholics are not Rib-bon-men ; and wo call upon all who value 'tiro peace, the welfare, and the honour of their adopted land, to aidj in firmly putting down every manifestation, upon either Bide, of a bitter feud which should find no place here. If men cannot bring > their hearts in this Colony to rise superior to sectarian divisions, and regard each other as Christian brothers, tbt>y\ must at least bo taught to respect the law. . If Roman Catholics follow the counsel of their priests, they will learn to bear insult, when given to them,, with becoming Christian patience and fortitude ; if any body of Protestants iq wronged, they must teach themselves tc leave the punishment for the offence ii the hands of tho duly constituted civi\ power. Religious feuds, and tho lawlessness and crime arising therefrom, are not to bo tolerated here. If Orangemen — even though smarting under great provocation — take tho law into their own hands, and attempt to repay murderous assaults with arson or violence, they will immediately forfeit the sympathy which, under tho circumstances, would otherwise bo extended to them. Let no mistake be made about this. Tho cheering and the yelling of a lot of exoited larrikins does not represent the voice of the thoughtful amongst this people. We have our free Parliament, where our representatives frame lawsfor the preservation and advancement of the whole people, and these laws most be respected and maintained. The first duty of every good citizen and true man, lies in his allegiance to the law. If the law ia defective, let it be altered in a conßtitntionnl manner. If Ribbon- men and Orangemen cannot meet in tho etreete, even under exceptional cirenmatanocs, without fly iug at each others heads and throats, then it is desirable that tho law should bo so far altered as to restrain them altogether from all chanoo %i meeting under circumstances dangerous to the public peace. In the meantime we must repeat that the great bulk of this community will Bternly re' elst the perpetration of Bcenes of vio-
lenco and bloodshed in their midst, and they are quite strong enough to secure that their will shall be respected. And here it is right that notice should be taken of the faithful efforts of the Mayor —Mr Ick, the Keeidenfc Magistrate — Mi-Mellish; Superintendent Beoham, and the police generally, who, all day yesterday and far into the early hours of tbia morning, strove to vindicate and maintain the supremacy of the law, Much ia doe to the pmdent forethought of the former ; and still more to the patience, energy, and determination of the latter in the saving of Christchurch from a possibly still greater outrage and disgrace than that which now stains the City.
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The Star. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 27, 1879., Star, Issue 3654, 27 December 1879
The Star. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 27, 1879. Star, Issue 3654, 27 December 1879
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