Friday, March 04, 2011

08Aug1881, Bradlaugh's Oath

LONDON, August 8th-14th, 1881.
—I think it was last week that Bradlaugh made a horrid scene at the House. His line is to insist on trying to take his seat by force; so he had to be stopped in the lobby and hustled downstairs by main force, fighting hard. The plea put forward by himself and all his backers irritates me to death: to listen to them, one would suppose he was the victim of intolerance and religious tests. Whereas the one and only point in question is whether an oath, taken by a man who has explicitly, in black and white, declared, a propos of the very oath in question, that its solemn words have no meaning for him, is a valid oath at all.

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