Posts Tagged ‘Voting Requirements’

Man or Ass?

January 21, 2012

Image from Old and Welsh

Reconstruction, Negro Suffrage, &c. [excerpt]

Our fathers, in the adoption of the Constitutions of most of the States, required a property qualification before granting the right to vote. But this was a very mistaken and mischievious distinction, and experience soon convinced all reflecting men that there were thousands of intelligent and very worthy citizens, who from one cause or another, never acquired sufficient property to entitle them to vote, and who where, therefore, denied that privilege, while on the other hand, there were multitudes of those who possessed wealth, who were so depraved and ignorant that they were totally disqualified to vote understandingly, even on the most common and simple political issues of the day.

Benjamin Franklin explosed this humbug most thoroughly when he asked the question, if a man could not vote without owning an ass, and could vote if he did — whether it was the man or the ass which really voted?

Alton Weekly Telegraph (Alton, Illinois) Jun 16, 1865