THE UTAH TROUBLE.
The situation of affairs in Utah is anom-alous. We can look over the mountains to our Territorial neighbors, and see what can be done by a people who organize for mischief under the influence of religious superstition. It would seem that all that is necessary for any band of law-breakers to do in order to escape the consequences of their crimes, is to preach the righteous-ness of those crimes on Sunday from their pulpits. This is enough to invest the en-tire transaction with the sacredness of re-ligious worship and entitle it to protection instead of punishment. What would be a felony if committed by one person, is merely a peculiar mode of worship when done by another person. Who can sup-pose for a moment that any other com-munity could have perpetrated all the outrages upon civilization and upon the laws of the United States, which have been perpetrated by the people of Utah, and could still stand in open defiance of the power of the Government? What other people could daily commit all the crimes from petty theft to polygamy and even murder, and that under the sanction of those highest in actual local authority, without bringing upon themselves the whole power of the General Govern-ment, if necessary, to compel submis-sion? But the earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof, and these Latter Day Saints are his chosen agents to gather in that fullness and garner it up in the Lord's storehouses, of which Brigham Young is the principal keeper. Therefore they go forth to pluck and plunder and slay the gentiles who do not choose to re-cognize their authority as the Lord's har-vesters. From the Danites-organized murderers—who take charge of such jobs as the Mountain Meadow massacre, down to the petty thieves and pickpockets, all appear to be in perfect accord. And whenever by some untoward circumstance they are driven into a corner, or embar-rassed in the execution of their nefarious enterprises, the Territorial Legislature comes to the rescue, and passes whatever acts the emergency seems to call for, re-gardless of the question whether or not such acts are in, harmony with the organic law of the Territory. This is not just as it should be, it is true ; in fact, it is a bad state of things ; but then it is only a way these people have of worshipping God, and certainly everybody has the right in free America to "worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience." This is the very corner-stone of our free institutions, and to remove it would bring the entire structure in ruins about our heads. These people must be let alone so long as they murder and rob and swear falsely, and set the laws of marriage at defiance simply as acts of religious duty !
It is about time this shallow sham of religious toleration were ended. Suppose a Hindoo mother coming to these shores should conclude to feed the sacred-crows of the Wallamet on the flesh of her little girl baby, as an act of religious devotion, would she be allowed to do so? Why not? Is it worse to feed crows on girl-babies than to feed coyotes on whole car-avans of immigrants ? Is it worse than to spill the blood of peaceable citizens on the streets of a city? Those who tolerate this should not be shocked by that.
It is the existence of just such a state of affairs as this, that has at last brought about an open rupture between Governor Woods and the Legislature of Utah. The Governor has always insisted upon the enforcement of the laws in that Territory the same as in other Territories. But every attempt at their enforcement has been thwarted. The officers of the law—Marshal, Attorney-General, Libra-rian, Territorial Auditor—in fact, all the administrative officers—are cho-sen by the Legislature, by methods wholly at variance with the organic act; the juries are selected in such irregular manner that their acts are held by the Courts to be illegal and void. So the administration of justice is rendered im-possible, and crimes can be committed with the most perfect impunity. This has been the case for years, and yet no rem-edy has been provided by Congress, or the remedies provided have not been applied by the National Executive. It is not desirable to precipitate an actual Conflict with the Mormons. Peace is to be preferred by all means; but there is some-thing due to the majesty of this Govern-ment, and there is much due to the citi-zens of the United States who choose to go to into Utah, and do not choose to be-come parties to the crimes that have made Utah a shame to our whole country. Governor Woods will merit the plaudits of the entire American people if he per-sists in his demand for a better enforce-ment of the laws—peaceably if possible, forcibly if necessary—till the barbarism that prevails in Utah under the false name of religion, and is protected by false sentiments on the subject of religious tol-eration, shall be destroyed root and branch.
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