A Halt Demanded

October 4, 1902


In order to "create a favorable impression and lighten [their] burdens" and be accepted by the white community, some colored people that are "strangers to the ordinary rules of politeness" must become more like "the better class of colored people".


There is no doubt about it-- determined and persistent efforts must be made by the better class of colored people to restrain and curb that element of colored people, who seem devoid of home training and a stranger to the ordinary rules of politeness. The "tough" must be made to know that he is not only injuring himself; but a large portion of our cultured, intelligent, Christian colored people, who are making a reputation for themselves and those around them.
We confess that we have no patience with those disturbers. White people have amongst them similar elements but their actions do not react upon white people in the way that they do upon colored people. If we could have in our midst a uniformly courteous element of colored people upon all occasions, they would do more to create a favorable impression and lighten our burdens than all of the speeches and dissertations that we might deliver in a year's time. We do not in servility or the yielding up of any right to which we are entitled under the law. We can maintain our contention in a respectful way. If the "New Negro" would possess himself of that "chesterfield" politeness possessed to such a pleasing degree by the Negro of the "Old School," a change would be observable and southern white friends would come to our defense in a way, known only to the southern white man, who really desires to help a citizen of color.
Their influence is often felt where their presence is unseen. God knows these are trying times; but the bragging, bullying, insulting colored man can make them no better. It should not be forgotten that the Virginia white man, "to the manor born" is the best of all the white southern product. The tide has set in steadily against us and the ablest amongst us, those endowed with brightest intellects and soundest judgments must be permitted to come to the front and do what they can to place our people in their true light before the better class of white people of this commonwealth.
We stand ready to join in the movement. Is there a response from those to whom our people look for advice, guidance and the higher elements of true leadership?
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Lower Left Quadrant

Contributed By

Brooke Royer


“A Halt Demanded,” Black Virginia: The Richmond Planet, 1894-1909, accessed January 30, 2023, https://blackvirginia.richmond.edu/items/show/1370.