DEBATE OF FEBRUARY 22, 1888.Resolved, that the Blair Educational Bill ought to pass.
Brief for the Affirmative.R. T. Paine, Jr. and J. M. Gitterman.
Best References: Blair in Cong. Rec. Feb. 9, 1886, p. 12, 38; Memoir of Peabody Educational Fund, 1880.
I. Political arguments: 1 (a) Illiteracy in the South.- Blair in Record, Jan. 27, '88, p. 272. (b) Want of southern interest in negro education.- Rep't of S. C. Sup't of Education. (c) Impoverishment of South.- Brown in Cong. Rec., Jan. 19, '88, p. 566. (d) Insufficiency of school appropriations.- Rep't of La., Ga., N. C. school commissioners, 1886. 2. Uneducated voters harm the State.- Aristotle's Politics; Nation, 48, 51.
II. United States ought to educate its manumitted poor (per Reserved Pamphlets), Charleston News and Courier, 1887; Brown in Rec., June 19, 1888, p. 566.
III. The bill is constitutional.- U. S. Const., Art. 1, Sec. VIII, amendments 14, 15; U. S. Supreme C't decisions in Greenman vs. Juilliard (Knox's U. S. Notes, App.); Bancroft's Plea for the constitution.
IV. It will not hurt the South, Not a government interference with the State system.- Evarts in Cong. Rec., Feb. 1, 1888, p. 892. The proposed assistance temporary.- Jackson in Cong. Rec., Feb. 16, '86, p. 1486; Pugh in Cong. Rec., Feb. 3, '88, p. 919; Call in Cong. Rec., Feb. 9, '88, p. 1104.
Brief for the Negative.G. W. Cram, C. L. Griffin.
Best single reference: "A Bill to Promote Mendicancy" (pamphlet issued by N. Y. Evening Post).
I. The passage of this bill would fail to accomplish the object desired, because more than two-thirds of the illiterates in the South are too old to attend school.- Tenth Census of U. S., Vol. I., pp. 919-925.
I1. The percentage of increase of educational facilities in the Southern States compares favorably with that in many of the Northern States.- Report of U. S. Commissioner of Education, 1884-85, pp. 54-76.
III. (a) The peculiar social and physical conditions in the Southern States must be taken into account in considering the illiteracy there and the best remedy for it. (b) Legislation in regard to education, to be effective, must be local, not national; and it must be supported by public opinion.
IV. The prospect of federal aid has already, in some places in the South, diminished local exertion in support of schools; and the result of the aid proposed by the Blair Bill would be to dwarf the energies of the States.- Saulsbury in Congressional Record, Vol. 17, part II., pp. 1945-1946; Senator Ingalls, abid., pp. 1640-1641.
V. The South is able and willing to support her own schools.- Plumb in Congressional Record, Vol. 17, Part II, pp. 1694-99; Congressional Record, Jan. 18, 1888, pp. 399-403.
Other references: Vest in Record, Jan. 10, 1888, pp. 314-320; Hawley in Boston Herald, Feb. 15 and 16, 1888.