The Truth As It Is Spoken

March 22, 1902


The Planet criticizes the Constitutional Convention members for a lack of justice and “following a dark and torturous way.”


The Petersburg, Va., Index Appeal in its issue of the 16th inst says:
After nearly one year’s consideration of the subject, the Constitutional Convention is in a greater muddle over the suffrage problem now than it was at the beginning. It has apparently put aside the grandfather’s clause folly as something too preposterous to affront the common sense of the public with, but it has gone to wrangling over the kindred follies of an understanding clause and a property qualification clause. The reports from Richmond tell us that as a result of the adoption of the property qualification condition there was great confusion in the Democratic Conference. And well there might be, for the measure is a step backwards of a hundred years and is an assault upon every essential principle of true Democracy. It is anachronism in the politics of Virginia in the Twentieth Century. With such a feature incorporated in the new Constitution, the Convention will not dare to submit that instrument to the ratification of even a restricted electorate, such as Mr. Glass proposes.
It concludes as follows:
All this trouble comes from the attempt to do by indirection and in violation of law, and right, and justice, what could be done directly in a plain, easy, lawful, rightful, and just way. It is amazing that the ablest and most learned men of the State will deliberately shut their eyes to the plain and safe course which lies directly before them, and persist in following a dark and torturous way which is beset on every hand with doubt and difficulty and danger.
All that the exigencies of the times demand, all that the conditions of the State require, all that the people of Virginia expect is that the Constitutional Convention will frame a suffrage law based upon true manhood and compliance with the requirements of an honest and intelligent citizenship. That ought not to be a difficult task.
But what is the use of further comment? We doff our hat to the Index Appeal.
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Brooke Royer


“The Truth As It Is Spoken,” Black Virginia: The Richmond Planet, 1894-1909, accessed April 23, 2024,