It is well, at times, to turn our attention from the bloody battle fields, all covered with smoke and slaughter, and from political conflicts which beget bitter animosities and domestic strife, and contemplate those faculties of man which ele vate and ennoble him, and scatter happiness throughout society. There is no one word in any language so full of meaning, aye, and of feeling too, as our simple monosyllable—LOVE. It is "the king of words," expressing all the pure and holy emotions that animate the bosom of humanity. That one word implies all that makes Heaven bright, and beautiful, and bless-ed ; all that made Paradise blissfull; all that makes life bearable. Love is a synonym of God—inspiring man with pure feelings and holy hopes. What, then, shall we think of those who pervert the meaning of this word, and in its name seek to gratify their base desires ? And yet there are associations in various portions of our country whose practices and beliefs should make even the cheek of hardened shame to tin-gle, which are called "Free Love Associations." They steal the brightest livery of Heaven to serve the lowest and the meanest devil in.
These Free Love Associations are so danger-ous, so utterly repugnant to every feeling of chastity and decency, that we scarce know how to speak of them without shocking the ears of delicacy. But this Free Lovism is an evil of such frightful magnitude, and it has assumed so bold and defiant an aspect, that the press should speak out fearlessly and emphatically, without regard to the fine sensibilities of the squeamish.
Our readers all know that the Mormons, re-strained by the virtuous feeling as well as the rigid laws of the States, sought the wild wilder-ness as a home, where, unmolested, they might revel in their beastly lust. All have revolted at that sad state of morality, though it was far re-moved from our observation. But how must the heart of society sicken to know that in the very centre of intelligence and refinement, or-ganizations have been formed, if possible more infamous, disgusting and brutish, than even Mormonism. In Wisconsin, and in the City of New York, there are associations of men and women which recognize no marriage vows, which scorn virtue, and spit in the very face of chasti-ty. These people believe in and practice pro-miscuous intercourse between the sexes; the men change their wives as often as they do their shirts; and the women, whether they have hus-bands or not, rush into the arms of any liber-tine whom caprice or passion may cause them to fancy. We may feel deep pity for the poor, shivering outcast, who, homeless and friendless, is driven by ghaunt famine treading on her heels, to make a market of her chastity; and we may have keen sorrow for the warm-hearted and confiding maiden, who, with her blood on fire, listens and is led astray by her destroyer. But for these creatures who deliberately riot in their own in-famy, and who, while wallowing in the filth of sensuality, seem to glory in their shame and impudently claim to justify their course ;—for these, who are lower and more degraded than the very brutes they imitate, we have no other feeling than intense disgust. We detest and abhor them, because, having the forms and the intellects of men, they debase themselves, and lower humanity by boldly advocating the most beastly indulgences. And they prostitute the sacred name of love, and by it designate their outrages against law, against decency, and against society. We trust the lash of the law will soundly scourge all who join these unholy orders, and that the public will not wink at these heinous offences, nor be deceived by assumed and false names.
"Nor suffer the majesty of Love to be likened to the mean-ness of desire;
For Love is no more such, than Seraphs' hymns are dis-cord;
And such is no more Love, than AEtna's breath is sum-mer."
These Free Love Associations undermine the foundations of society, and tend to make a fear-ful ruin of the temple of our happiness and hopes. In the garden of the heart there are many bright, beautiful and precious flowers, whose gay tints gladden, and whose perfume gives delight; but, like a mildewed blast, the poisonous breath of these associations comes, and all the flowers droop, wither and die. True love is the silken band that binds our hearts to-gether in kindness, amity and sociability; it is the golden cord let down from Heaven to draw us thither; but this foul demon would break the band and cut the cord, and let man run wild without any tender and humanizing attachments, without any inspiring or cheering hope. It is the bright North Star set over the throne of God, to guide man on his journey upward, but this giant monster would quench it, and light a fire which can only dazzle, and scorch, and burn. Shall chastity, the brightest gem in wo-man's coronet of virtues, be torn out and tram-pled in the mire? Shall her heart loose its sus-ceptibility of warm, tender and holy love ?—Shall all the purity and virtue which adorn so-ciety be remembered only to be scouted and scorned by brutal debauchees? Let all those who profess to love reform, and those who see and feel the enormity of this late iniquity, sound the alarm, and cease not from their la-bors until this monster vice is crushed.
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