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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 1

Recapitulation to First Edition

page 67

Recapitulation to First Edition.

This shows the following result, is the offenses have been charged against the clergy, and published, and the printed report preserved by the author, who, of course, cannot vouch for the truth of the newspaper statements:
Abortion 4
Adultery 206
Assault—intent to murder 8
—intent to do great bodily harm 1
—intent to commit rape 1
—and battery 10
Attempted elopement with women 1
Attempt to seduce women 3
Abusive language 2
Attempted bigamy 5
Arson in burning houses 4
Bastardy 23
Beating wife. 10
Bigamy 28
Breach of promise of marriage 2
Buggery 3
Breach of hospitality 5
Breach of trust 2
Compounding felony 3
Compelling to marry. 1
Cruelty to animals 1
Cheating 25
Deserting wife and children, 26
"Dishonesty" 1
"Deceit" 1
"Debauchery" 2
"Died in a brothel" 1
Drunkenness 29
Dueling 1
Elopement with women 17
Embezzlement 26
Escape from prison 2
False personation. 7
"Falsehood" 3
Fighting 7
Forgery 22
Fornication 7
Fraudulent divorce 1
Fraudulent bankruptcy 1
Getting child drunk 1
Gambling 2
Gross fraud 4
"Gross Immorality" 3
His tenets were those of the last female he met" 1
"Horse racing" 1
Illicit distilling 2
Illegal marrying 2
Immoral conduct 5
Improper conduct 1
Immoralities 1
Indecent familiarities with women 2
Insulting personalities 2
Inhuman cruelty to wife and children 17page 68
Immoral assault on women and girls 29
Insulting ladies 26
Incest 6
Kissing servant girl for her spiritual welfare" 2
Keeping gambling house 1
Lascivious conduct 1
Larceny 31
Literary piracy 1
Lewdness 1
Lechery 1
Lying 12
Malicious mischief 1
Malicious trespass 1
Miscegennt'n with c'l'd woman 1
Murder—generally 8
—of wife 4
—of his child. 2
Nuisance 1
Obscene literature—publishing 1
Obscene literature—sending through mails 1
Obtaining money under false pretenses 10
Perjury 7
Poisoning starving children 1
Profanity 3
Quarreling 7
Robbery 2
Rape in general 5
on girls under 15 6
on girls under 12 7
Riot 4
Robbing Mails 1
Recklessness 1
"Resigned under charges, less said the better" 1
Swindling 14
Seduction generally 91
girls under 15,12 Slaveholder, a missionary 1
Starving children 2
Subornation of perjury 1
Suicide 11
Slander 7
Sodomy 4
Scandalous conduct 1
Too susceptible 1
Too free with the sisters 1
Unchaste conduct 1
Unministerial conduct 2
Unchristian conduct 11
Unbecoming conduct 1
Unnamed crime 3
Unjust confinement of wife in insane asylum 1
Very uncourteous conduct 1
Vulgarity 2
Vile, indecert, and profane language 1
"Wanton conduct 1
Whipped his 3-year-old boy to death 1
Total crimes committed from May, 1876 to May, 1881 917

Of these 456 have been against women in a sexual way, and 81 against women in other ways, or 544 against women especially.

Of this list of 477 criminal preachers, the denomination of but 208 has been preserved, leaving 268 not credited to any denomination. Of the 208 who are credited to denominations, the Methodists have 72; the Baptists, 42; the Presbyterians. 22, the Catholics 19; the Congregationalists, '13; the Church of England, 10; the Campbellites, 6; the Lutherans, page 69 12; the Adventists, 5; the United Brethren, 3; the Hebrew, 2; the Tunkers, 1: and the Universalists, 1.

This shows the following percentage in crime according to denomination, viz.:
Methodists, about one criminal in every 6
Baptists, about one criminal in every 11
Presbyterians, about one criminal in every 22
Catholics, about one criminal in every 25
Congregationalists, about one criminal in every 37
Lutherans, about one criminal in every 40
Protestant Episcopals, about one criminal in every 48
Campbellites (Chris.), about one criminal in every 79
Adventists, about one criminal in every 95
United Brethren, about one criminal in every 125
Hebrews, about one criminal in every 235
Universalists, about one criminal in every 477
Tunkers, about one criminal in every 477
Of the 208 criminals of whom the denomination is given, the percentage is as follows:
Methodists, about 30 per cent. Campbellites, about 3 per cont.
Baptists, 20 Adventists, 3
Presbyterians, 10 United Brethren, 1.4
Catholic, 9 Hebrew, 1
Congregationalists, 6 Tunkers. 0.5
Lutheran, 6 Universalists, 0.5
Episcopalians, 5
By this ratio of the 917 crimes committed, as shown by the above list, the different denominations have been represented by their reverend criminals as follows:
Methodist, 275 Christian, 27
Baptist, 183 Adventist, 27
Presbyterian, 91 United Brethren, 12
Catholic, 82 Hebrew, 9
Congregationalist, 55 Tunker, 4
Luthem, 55 Universalist, 4
Protestant Episoopal, 45

Can it be possible that the most orthodox are the most criminal, and vice versa? Are men nearer pure page 70 as regards crime the further they get from the orthodox belief? It seems so. Of this list of crimes, there are 670 felonies. Of the definitions or distinctive names given to the various offenses 33 are names given by the several church courts where the reverend scoundrel was tried, perhaps with a view to hide the real offense, of course in the interests of religion. There were a great number of these, but by diligent inquiry the compiler has been able to ascertain generally that "unchaste conduct" meant a gross and beastly assault by the "divine messenger" upon and against a lady's chastity; and that "unministerial conduct" meant either adultery, rape or seduction committed against some susceptible sister who had confided in the lecherous "sky-pilot." Whenever the true state of facts were ascertained, the crime was set down by its right name.

The author has a large list of crimes, published within the last five years, committed by these reverend gentry, where the name of the reverend is not given. Could the name be ascertained, the above ist would be largely increased. It is presumed the names were suppressed out of respect to the "sacred office" of the clerical scoundrels.

These data are almost entirely taken from a belt of the United States between Canada and North Carolina; almost all from Canada to Maryland, and from the Atlantic to the Western plains—that is, from the great "intellectual belt" of the nation, where most of the great secular and religious journals are published, and a section of the greatest mental and physical activity and of the greatest wealth. This "belt" com- page 71 prises not one-fourth of our area and not one-half of our population.

There are in the United States about seventy thousand priests and preachers; these data are drawn from about thirty five thousand.

It is safe to say that not one half of the published accounts of preachers' crimes have been seen and the account preserved by the author.

Eminent writers on crime estimate that but one crime out of sixteen is detected and traced to the criminal. There is no probability that half of those which are ascertained are ever published, even when there is no superstitious excuse for keeping it from the public.

All these suggestions then assist the reader at arriving at a correct estimate as to the amount of criminality which exists among our "guides to holiness" For instance, if 35,000 preachers in the "intellectual belt" of the United States commit 917 crimes in five years, 70.000 preachers in the whole United States commit 1,834 crimes; if the author has collected but one half of the number published, then 70,000 preachers have committed 3,668 in five years; if but one crime out of sixteen is traced to the criminal, then the 70,000 preachers have committed 29,344 in the United States in the last five years; and even that list must be again doubled if but one-half of the instances of discovered crime are published.

Let any one bring his own knowledge of circumstances to bear upon this subject. Could the most careful research discover and compile more than a moiety of the crime committed? Of the crime com- page 72 mitted in our great cities, how much sees the public prints? Of the drunkenness and debauchery so openly and commonly committed in one large city, how much is published? And you must recollect that the preacher hides his crimes carefully, and his compeers and parishioners assist him to conceal it; while the night-brawler, petty thief, and drunken wretch are under police surveillance.

Is there not food for thought here? Is it not tome the eye of the legislator, the magistrate, the policeman, the detective, the parent, the public, was turned toward this cesspool of pollution? Is it not time the journalist published his note of warning? Is it not time to investigate without superstition, without fear, without favor, and expose and punish without mercy the men, who, having no excuse of want, of friendliness, of homelessness, of want of confidence, who assume to be the very elite of society and the very elect of God, commit more crime as a class than ten times their number in any other class of society, than even the most poverty-stricken, famished, houseless, homeless, friendless, ignorant, degraded, imbecile or idiotic class of the human family?

The commission of crime depends—first, upon the criminal desire of the felon; second, upon the incentive; third, upon the opportunity to commit the crime.

As to the first, the foregoing record shows that the desire to commit crime is greater in this class of persons than in any other. With a full knowledge of our civil, criminal, and moral cede these gentry knowingly, wickedly, and wilfully commit more crime than page 73 ten times thirty their number in any other class of people. Nor can the plea that the crime was the result of ignorance be interposed with them, as it can be in nearly one-half of the cases where crime is committed by the illiterate and foolish. Then the fact that of these 917 crimes committed by these "ministers of God," 537 have been committed against women, 456 against the morality, chastity, and decency of women certainly evinces a criminal desire among these 35,000 "holy men" unparalleled in any other class of men.

Second—as to the incentive, our theory is this: Among the illiterate, ignorant., and semi-idiotic classes there is an almost entire belief in the gods, devils, saviors, redeemers, and saints which the priesthood have invented, and in their heaven and hell, offered as a bribe and terror to the evil-doer. Although these bribes and terrors do not in the main elevate and ennoble mankind, yet to some extent they have restrained crime in the unlettered and imbecile classes, through superstitious fear. On the other hand, the "divine teachers" of these dogmas generally have no belief therein; and being accustomed to obtaining fat livings, gorgeous attire, lives of ease and indolence, and unmerited confidence and adulation from their dupes, it becomes like second nature to them to gratify every lust, desire, passion, prejudice, hate, covetousness, and ambition. Generally, well knowing that the creeds they leach are false, they come to look upon all legal and moral restraint as an abridgement of their rights, and upon all morality and virtue as a sham. Of course there are those among them who have page 74 learned but little of anything, and that little only what would confirm their superstitious fears and hopes, who have never allowed themselves to investigate the truth, and who have given a blind, unreasoning adherence to the doctrines of salvation through the atonement. These firmly believe that they can escape the just reward of their evil deeds by means of that "scapegoat;" can avoid the penalty for crime and again become "pure" through the great "bankrupt court" of "remission of sins." This branch of the tribe of "sky-pilots" are even more dangerous than the hypocritical ones. Once fully convince a man that he can by a "death-bed repentance" "shove by justice" and in nine cases out of ten he will commit any crime as fearlessly as does the wild Malay, who rushes amuck through the streets with his gleaming knife cutting down his fellows on every hand until he too is struck down, firmly believing that when he is killed his soul will at once ascend to paradise. Accordingly, the honest divine falls into temptation and gets up besmirched with crime; at once falls upon his knees, receives the holy "unction" and gets up "washed white as snow."

Third—as to the opportunity to commit crime, the "servant of God" has much the advantage of the servant of toil. He is to some extent entrusted with money because of his "holy orders." He is generally tolerated everywhere because of his "sanctity." He becomes the instructor of youth by virtue of his "nearness to God." He recommends persons to places of trust by virtue of his position as their pastor. He recommends Mrs Winslow's snoozing syrup by virtue page 75 of his experience as a "child of immortality" (of course he never takes pay for such services). He assumes to introduce himself to anyone and anywhere, even to a lady stranger, insisting upon taking her by the hand as a "messenger from Jesus," a familiarity she would resent on the part of an honest tiller of the soil. He enters our homes without invitation and while a stranger, and volunteers advice upon all earthly subjects of which he knows but little, and upon all heavenly subjects, of which he knows nothing.

The assumed position of a preacher as a "spiritual adviser" peculiarly places him in a position to commit crimes against morality, chastity, and decency. The danger of "pastoral visits," so strikingly exemplified in the Beecher-Tilton scandal, has become almost imminent. During the middle ages, in Switzerland and other countries, a new priest could not hear the private confession of females until he had selected and kept one or more mistresses; but even such a salutary provision would hardly have sufficed to keep some of the gentlemen of our list within bounds.

The lazy, overfed life led by most of our clergy superinduces lust, and the chances they have are shown to have been largely improved; over 400 cases of beastly lechery out of 917 cases of crime exemplifies the fact.

The ratio of crime in our general population is 3.1 in 1,000, including the clergy. This list shows 29 crimes committed by each 1,000 "sky-pilots," and these only so far as we have collected them from the printed reports; if but half have been collected, there have been 58 crimes committed by each 1,000 preach- page 76 ers in the last five years; if but one crime in sixteen has been published, there have been 928 crimes committed by each 1,000 preachers in the "intellectual belt" of these United States. The only question is, do clergymen conceal their criminality as effectually as do other criminals.

These data are taken exclusively from accounts published in newspapers. The abbreviation became necessary on account of the multitude of priestly villains. Some of the details are shocking. We have preserved the printed report and can furnish the same to inquirers.

The ratio of criminals in American population is 2.7 to the 1,000, including the clergy. The above list shows that out of 35,000 preachers 477 are criminals, or 13.3 to the 1,000. Making the same allowances as before, for want of data, the number becomes 26.6 to the 1,000; and if but one crime out of sixteen is discovered in this amply protected and shielded class, then out of every 1,000 "ministers of the most high" 425 are criminals, as against 176 to the 1,000 in all classes, including the preachers, measured by the same rule as to discovery, etc.

Now, although we know that there are many clergymen who are good and honest men, and who conscientiously teach the mythology of Christianity and are earnestly striving to benefit mankind, yet the conviction is forced upon us that as a class they are the most hypocritical and criminal class of men; that their knowledge that their savior is a fabled myth, common to religious enthusiasts in all ages and all lands, and that they obtain their fat livings solely on account page 77 of the ignorance and superstition of their dupes, makes them per se criminally inclined.

Christian, how do you like this showing? "Man of God," what have you got to offer? This is rather a new departure, is it not? What are you going to do about it? It will do little good to sigh for the good old days when Christianity ruled supreme, when you could at once invoke the aid of the axe, rack, the stake, the fagot, the thumbscrew, the iron boot, and the tongues of fire. The ghost of the murdered past will not answer your call. Thanks to the advance of Free-thought and to the legislative care of Washington, Jefferson, Franklin, Paine, and other Infidel compeers, there is a bound set to your despotic sway. What can you do? Of course you can beseech an all-merciful deity to burn the author forever hereafter; but as he seems willing to take the chances of the hereafter, and as your faith in that divine institution called hell has of late been fearfully shaken—thanks to the humanizing efforts of Infidels which has in a measure civilized your creed and stripped your God of half of the horrible attributes you had given him—even that sweet solace is hardly commensurate for the occasion. Then what can you do? Why, it is terrible to know that any one dares hunt up and classify and publish to the world the crimes committed by the reverend "followers of the meek and lowly Jesus!" It has always been an-exclusive right belonging to the priesthood to charge all crime upon Infidels; to assert from every "coward's castle" in the land that but for unbelief in the cleansing power of the blood of a person who they claim died some eighteen hundred and forty- page 78 eight years ago there would be no sin, no crime. It is a rather strange experience to have the tables turned, and to have an expose that shows a fearful balance of crime against those who so earnestly believe and teach the all-potent curative and preventive properties of the aforesaid blood.

Again we ask, what will the privileged class do about it? And, being a Yankee, allow us to answer our own question. We have no way to judge of the future but by the past. In the past these brassy gentry, with solemn-visaged falsehood, have from every coward's castle in Christendom answered all the arguments, facts, and figures adduced by skeptics by maligning the character of the reasoner or mathematician, especially if dead. "Unworthy to blacken the shoes of their opponont, they blackened his character." All this being more congenial to the taste of the ordinary follower of the meek and lowly Jesus than fair investigation and candid argument.

With the ghoulishness of hyenas they have dug into the grave of Thomas Paine, and covered the honored dust of the noble and defenseless dead with cesspool filth, calumny, falsehood, vituperation, hatred, and slander.

"In the arsenal of the church, which once bristled with magazines of destruction, there remains but one weapon—slander." Col. Ingersoll will one day be served as was Thomas Paine, for uttering such a thought. "Once a donkey kicked a lion. The lion was dead.'

This, then, is what will be done. From every pulpit will belch a stream of slander to hide by the cry of page 79 "Stop thief!" the reverend purloiner of female virtue, the ravisher of children, the murderer of wife and children, the beater of helpless women and babes, and the "meek follower of Jesus," who whipped his three-year-old boy to death for not correctly saying the "Lord's Prayer."

Well, after all this is done, will that establish the innocence of the murderer of Mary Stannard—of the seducer of Mrs. Tilton? Will that prove beyond a reasonable doubt that ministers never commit crime? No! but the "galled jade winces" just the same, and he whose corns are trod upon is apt to cry out.

The reason for this expose is apparent. For ages all crime has been charged to Infidelity. Once it was a brave man who dared announce disbelief in the myths of Christianity. "To him who had braved the church every door was shut, every knife was open." Even in our day it was to be shunned as a pest and to be ostracized from society to announce a disbelief in the "immaculate conception." From every pulpit the skeptics were charged with all the crime that darkens the face of civilization. Rev. E. L. Bayliss—now, unfortunately for him, languishing in the penitentiary of Michigan for seduction of Brother Phenix's wife and eloping with her, deserting his wife and children—while "evangelizing" in the Baptist church at Waverly, Iowa, invited all skeptics to come and hear his convincing arguments against Infidelity! Many came The buffoon took for his text "Let him that is unholy be unholy still, and him that is filthy be filthy still," and poured a tirade of abuse upon ladies and gentlemen of the best society. He said: "Let them alone: page 80 come out from them. From skeptics comes all the crime that darkens the face of civilization." The skeptics were convinced that he was a cowardly slanderer, and arose and left, leaving him empty benches to talk to. He can hardly claim that the short time he remained so contaminated him that he shortly afterward had to expiate it in state prison.

Allow us, then, to make the following offer: There are of Freethinkers—including Atheists, Infidels, Spiritualists, etc.—about seven millions in the United States; there are about seventy thousand priests and preachers. Now, we make the following offer: We we will give ten dollars apiece for crimes committed by any of these classes of Freethinkers within the last five years, and will take the report thereof as published in the newspapers; provided, the preachers will give us one dollar apiece for the same evidence of crimes committed by reverends. Thus we offer ten dollars for one, and give them seven millions to draw their data from while we have but seventy thousand.

In the language of the far West, "Put up or shut up!"

The author will continue to publish these records from year to year. Will friends be be kind as to clip from papers such items, together with name and date of the paper, and send them to us for insertion in future editions?

If a wrong has been done by inserting a name in this list which should have been omitted, as where some paper has maliciously published a falsehood against any one, we shall be only too glad to make reparation, our object being to do exact justice to all, without fear or malice.