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He said, we must now oppose the farther encroachments of Great Britain by war, or formally annul the declaration of our independ ence, and acknowledge ourselves her devoted colonies. The people whom I represent will not hesitate which of the two courses to choose and if we are involved in a war to maintain our dearest rights, and to preserve our independence, I pledge myself to this House, and my constituents to this nation, that they will not be wanting in valor nor in their proportion of men and money to prosecute the war with effect. Before we relinquish the conflict I wish to see Great Britain renounce the piratical system of paper blockade ; to liberate our captured seamen on board her ships of war; relinquish the practice of impressment on board our merchant vessels ; to repeal her orders in council ; and cease in every other respect to violate our neutral rights, to treat us as an independent people. The gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Randolph) has objected to the destination of this auxiliary force; the occupation of the Canadas and the other British possessions upon our borders, where our laws are violated, the Indians stimulated to murder our citizens, and where there is a British monopoly of peltrý and fur trade. I should not wish to extend the boundary of the U. States by a war, if Great Britain would leave us to the quiet enjoyment of independence; but considering her deadly and implacable enmity, and her continued hostility, I shall never die contented until I see her expulsion from North America and her territories incorporated with the United States. Strange that the gentleman would pause before he would refuse this force, if destined to keep the degroes in subordination, who are not in a state of insurrection as I understand, and he will absolutely refuse to vote this force to defend us against the lawless aggressions of Great Britaiña nation in whose fayor he has said so much.
But he has a dislike to the Canadian French ; French blood is. hateful to him. I have no doubt but the Canadian French are as good citizens as the Canadian English or the refugee tories of the revolution, nor have I any doubt but a great majority of that vast community are sound in their morals and in their politics, and would make worthy members of the United States.
But open the sacred pages of the journals of the Congress of 1774 and 1775, who commenced and conducted to victory, the American revolution-pages 54 and 100 of the first volume, and we shall find letters addressed to the inhabitants of Canada and the province of Quebec-containing in many pages the language of affectionate respect, and in the warmth of patriotism inviting them to unite against British tyranny, to make the cause of quarrel common, and inviting them into the union of the States, upon the principles of equality:The encroachments of Great Britain were dictated in the most vivid colors, and then they say, "we shall consider the violation of your fights a violation of our own, and you are invited to accede to the confederacy of the States.” Thus the patriots of the revolution stiled the inhabitants of the British provinces friends and fellow-suffer
ers in 1774, although they were a handful of men compared to their present numbers, and only ten years had elapsed from their first incorporation with the British dominions, and nothing but the want of physical power and means prevented their independence in "76. The misfortunes of our arms at Quebec, and in that quarter, are well known. These overtures of the old Congress did not stop here ; after the articles of contederation had been adopted the door was left open for the reception of the Canadas and the hope was not lost until British arms rivetted the chains of slavery upon them, which at that time could not be broken. Now, sir, these people are more enlightened, they have a great American population among them, and they have correct ideas of liberty and independence, and only want an opportunity to throw off the yoke of their task masters.
Let us not think so meanly of the human character, and the human mind. We are in pursuit of happiness, and we place a great value upon liberty as the means of happiness. What, then, let me ask, has changed the character of those people, that they are to be despised? What new order of things has disqualified them for the enjoyment of liberty? Has any malediction of Heaven doomed them to perpetual vassalage? Or will the gentleman from Virginia pretend to more wisdom and more patriotism, than the constellation of patriots who conducted this infant Republic through the revolution ? In point of territorial limit, the map will prove its importance. The waters of the St. Lawrence and the Missisippi interlock in a number of places ; and the Great Disposer of human events intended those two rivers should belong to the same people.
But it has been denied that British influence had any agency in the late dreadful conflict and massacre upon the Wabash; and this is said to vindicate the British nation from fo foul a charge. Sir, look to the book of the revolution : see the Indian favages in Burgoyne's army urged on every occasion to ufe the scalpingknife and tomahawk, not in battle, but against old men, women and children ; in the night, when they were taught to believe an omniscient eye could not see their guilty deeds; and thus hardened in iniquity, perpetrated the fame deeds by the light of the fun, when no arm was found to oppose or protect ; and when this crying fin was opposed by Lord Chatham in the House of Lords, the employment of these Indians was justified by a speech from one of the ministry. Thus we fee how the principles of honor, of humanity, of christianity were violated, and justified in the face of the world. Therefore I can have no doubt of the influence of British agents in keeping up Indian hostility to the peo. ple of the United States, independent of the strong proofs on this occasion ; and I hope it will not be pretended that these agents are too moral or too religious to do the infamous deed. So much for the expulsion of Great Britain from her dominions in North America and their incorporation in the United States of America.
The gentleman from Virginia fays we are identified with the British in religion, in blood, in language, and deeply laments our batred to that country who can boast of so many illuftrious characters. This deep rooted enmity to Great Britain arises from her infidious policy, the offspring of her perfidious conduct towards the U. States-her disposition is unfriendly, her enmity is implacable, she fickens at our prosperity and happiness. If ob. ligations of friendship do exist, why does Great Britain rend thofe ties afunder, and open the bleeding wounds of former confiets? Or does the obligation of friendship exist on the part of the U. States alone? I have never thought that the ties of re. ligion, of blood, of language and of commerce would juftify or fanclify insult and injury-on the contrary, that a premeditated wrong from the hand of a friend created more sensibility, and deterved the greater chastisen ent and the higher execration. What would you think of a man, to whom you were bound by the most facred ties, who would plunder you of your substance, aim a deadly blow at your honor, and in the hour of confidence endeavor to bury a dagger in your bosom? Would you, sir, proclaim to the world your affection for this mifort ant of fociety, after this conduct, and endeavor to interest your audience with the ties of kindred that bound you to each other ? So let it be with nations, and there will be neither furprile nor lamentation, that we execrate a government so hostile to our independence--for it is from the government that we meet with fuch multiplied injury, and to that object is our hatred directed ; as to individuals of merit, whether British or French, I presume no person would accuse the people of the United States of such hatred to them, or of despising individuals, who might not be inftrumental in the maritime despotism which we feel-And this accounts for the veneration we have for Sidney and Ruffel, statesmen of whom the gentlemen has spoken ; they are fatal examples why we should love the British government. The records of that government are now stained with the blood of these martyrs in freedom's caufe, as vilely as with the blood of American citizens, and certainly we shall not be called upon to love equally the murderer and the victim. For God's fake let us not again be told of the tits of religion, of laws, of blood and of customs which bind the two nations together, with a view to extort our love for the English government and more especially, when the fame gentleman has acknowledged that we have ample cause of war against that nation-let us not be told of the freedom of that corrupt government whose hands are washed alike in the blood of her own illuftrious statesmen, for a manly opposition to tyranny, and the cit. izens of every other clime. But I would enquire into this love for the British government and British institutions, in the gross without any discrimination. Why love her rules? Why kiss the rod of iron which inflicts the stripes without a cause? When all admit we have just cause of war, such attachments are danger. ous, and encourage encroachment. I will venture to say, that our hatred of the British government is not commenfurare with her depredations and her outrages on our rights, or we should have waged a deadly war against her many years past. The fub. ject of foreign attachments and Bricith hatred has been examined at considerable length. I did not intend to begin that discusfion, but I will pursue it, and tho' I make no charge of British atiachments, I will at all times at every hazard defend the admin. istration and the republican party against the charge. of foreign partialities, French or Spanish or any other kind, when applied to the measures of our government. This foreign influence is a dangerous enemy : we thould destroy the means of its circola. tion among us like the fatal tunic, it deftroys where it touches. It is infidious, invisible, and takes advantage of the most unsur. pecting hours of social intercourse. I would not deny the good will of France nor of Great Britian to have an undue influence a. mong us. But Great Britain alone has the means of this indu" ence to an extent dangerous to the United States. It has been said that Great Britain was fighting the battles of the world that the stands against universal dominion threatened by the arch find of mankind. I thould be forry if our independence depended upon the power of Great Britain. If, however, the would act the part of a friendly power towards the Unied States, I thould never wilh to deprive her of power, of wealth, of honor, of prof. perity. But if her energies are to be directed against the liberties of this free and happy people, against my native country, I should not drop a tear if the falt anchored ille would sink into the waves, provided the innocent inhabitants could escape the deluge and find an asylum in a more favored foil. And as to the power of France, I fear it as little as any other power. I would oppose her aggressions under any circumstances as soon as I would British outrages.
The ties of religion, of language, of blood, as it regards Great Britain, are dangerous ties to this country, with her prefent hostile disposition. Instead of pledges of friendship, they are used to paralyze the Arength of the United States in relation to her ag. greffions. There are other ties equally efficacious. The num. ber of her commercial traders within our limits, her agents, &c. the vast British capital employed in our commerce and our monied institutions, connected with her language, ancestry, customs, habits and laws. These are formidable means for estranging the affections of many from our republican institutions, and produce ing partialities for Great Britain. Now I shall attend to the charge of partiality in our measures towards France. It is an infinua. tion not founded in fact, and can only exist in the imagination of those who may insinuate it. We are not driven to mere declara. tions—the truth of the assertion is bottomed upon the Itatute records of the United States, and we appeal to the character of eve ery measure relative to foreign relations since the adoption of the embargo, in confequence of the violation of neutral rights upon the high feas. The direct object of the Berlin and Milan decrees was the ruin of all trade to British ports and the object of the orders in council was the destruction of all commerce to French ports and ports from which the British flag was excluded.
The laws laying an embargo, which was the first precautionary measure on the part of the U. States, contained a provision by which the President was authorised to fufpend its operation as to Great Britain upon a repeal of the orders in council and as to France upon an extinguishment of the Berlin and Milan decrees. The authority was precisely the fame to either power, the instructions to our ministers were precisely the same, the offer to fufpend the embargo was tendered to both belligerents upon the self fame conditions. This offer was rej-cled by both nations, and their aggressions continued. Congress, yielding to the clamors of the disaffected, repealed the embargo and substituted the non-intercourse, which also contained a diplomatic provision vefting the President with power to fufpend its operation as to the belligerents when they should cease to violate our neutral rights.
The offer was made it was rejected by France, and her depredations increased-Great Britain accepted the offer, which produced the arrangement with Mr. Erskine.
Erskine's arrangement was executed with fidelity on the part of the executive of the United States. The proclamation which announced the arrangement suspended the non-intercourse as to Great Britain, and it continued as to France. Under thcfe circumstances Congress convened an extra feffion. It was a new era for opposition. The day of jubilee was announced-00 gloom, every countenance smiled, every heart seemed glad ; parties were forgotten ; war with France and peace with England dawned upon us. We were all Americans ; and the gentleman from Virginia introduced a resolution approbating the fidelity of the President in discharging his high duties to the nation. A real friend to that individual who presides over our destinies by our consent. I was happy to find his political enemies acknowledging his wisdom, his impartiality, and his integrity. I knew the Prefident had discharged his trust faithfully. Though I followed in the rear ranks, I did not interrupt this new order of things. But our retrograde movement from the embargo to the nonintercourse and Erskine's arrangement went to London at nearly the same time ; the English ministry perfidiously rejected that arrangement which had been executed on our part, and which was fo advantageous to Great Britain ; the orders in council, so good a shield for plunder, were considered of more value than our nonintercourse. I will not dwell upon the scene this disavowal produced, nor upon the attempt to censure the President for the punic faith of Great Britain, by those who had approbated his conduct. The folid column was again broken, and we have never had the pleasure since of seeing an undivided front opposed