mens patient. Confine him, but as medical treatment. Bind him, with no personal hatred of him in the ascendant. And, in confinement, so far from torturing him, treat him as are treated, or as ought to be treated, all sick and infirm, with the best food, with the best lodging, with kindness, with care, with love.
This, I say, is rational treatment.
It seems to me that the theory you advocate can produce nothing but what we see now.
The people at large, for that purpose, if for no other, a voluntary association, hanged the Chicago men. The people believed with undoubted sincerity that they were in danger from violence on the part of the victims. They investigated the justice of their belief by means which they thought adequate. They resisted by retaliatory violence.
How can you by your principles blame them?
It seems to me, too, that the simple proposition is that to compel by violence is to govern, and that Anarchists, who protest against government, should begin by saying: We will govern nobody. We will do no violence.
If you care to print this, I ask one thing: Make no verbal criticisms. I am not a Christian, nor a teleologist, nor a moralist, and any slips of language must not be construed to mean that I am. Another thing I ask, subject to your approval. Do not refute me in the same issue. Perhaps I am wrong. If so, I wish to change my opinion. You, I assume, are as ready to change yours.
But it will take a little time for either of us.
John Beverley Robinson.
If I could see that my silence for a fortnight could help either Mr. Robinson or myself to a change of opinion, I would certainly grant his last request. But it seems to me that, if either of us is open to conviction, such would be the very course to delay the change. I change my opinion when an argument is opposed to it which I perceive to be valid and controlling. If it does not seem to me valid at first, it rarely seems otherwise after mere waiting. But if I try to answer it, I either destroy it because of its weakness, or cause, its strength to be made more palpable by provoking its restatement in another and clearer form. I should think the same must hold in Mr. Robinson's case, if he is writing his mature thought; if he is not, I should advise him to let it mature first and print it afterwards. There is, no doubt, something to be said in favor of allowing intervals between statements of opposing views, but solely from the reader's standpoint, not from that of the disputants. Such a plan encourages thought and compels the reader to frame some sort of answer for himself pending the rejoinder of the other side. But in the conduct of a journal this consideration, important as it is, is not the only one to be thought of. There are others, and they all tell in favor of the
method of immediate reply. First, there is the consideration