Radicals Distrusting the Negroes
August 6, 1868
Hunnicutt and the Radicals are taking advantage of the loyal negroes by forcing them to listen to their advice instead of other sources that might agree with them.
Radicals Distrusting the Negroes. Hunnicutt but discloses the growing distrust of the negro amongst Radicals in imploring the colored people to stay away from Conservative and Democratic meetings. He shows timidity and fear of the independent spirit of the negro by assuring him at the outset that he is " free," and has a right to go to what public meetings he pleases. But then the tender regard Hunnicutt entertains for the "colored people," his duty as their peculiar shepherd compel him to warn them against going where they will hear anything but Radical opinions preached by Radical office-hunters - not that he fears they will be influenced to change their views - oh, no, that is the last of his fears ; but he is afraid they will be provoked, and say something that will bring on a row ! This is the hypocritical pretence of the reverend gentleman who wants no word to enter the negro ear but that which is uttered by his mouth. If the negroes cannot behave themselves now, it is because Hunnicutt and Wells have taught them bad manners. It is probable that, notwithstanding this selfish and hypocritical advice of Hunnicutt, the negroes will go to hear whom they please ; and we have no idea that they will disturb public meetings. It is much more probable that they will one day break up carpetbaggers' meetings than that they will disturb meetings of the white people of Virginia.
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“Radicals Distrusting the Negroes,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed March 26, 2019, https://reconstructingvirginia.richmond.edu/items/show/1093.