« ForrigeFortsett »
consulted the views of the executive--that designation was equivalent to an abandonment of all our claims on the French government. No Sooner was the report laid on the table, than the vultures were fincking round their prey, the carcase of a great military establishment· men of tainted reputation, of broken fortune (if they ever had any) and battered constitutions, “choice spirits, tired of the dull pursuits of civil life," were seeking after agencies and commissions; willing to doze in gross stupidity over the public fire ; to light the public cande at both ends. Honorable men undoubtedly these were, ready to serve their country; but what man of spirit, or of self-respect, would accept a commission in the present army?
The gentleman from Tennessee (Mr. Grundy) had addressed himself yesterday exclusively to the "republicans of the house.” Mr. Randolph knew not whether he might consider himself as entitled to any part of the benefit of the honorable gentleman's discourse. It belonged not, however, to that gentleman to decide. If we must have an exposition of the Ductrines of Republicanism, he should receive it from the fathers of the church, and not from the junior ap. prentices of the law. He should appeal to his worthy friends from North Carolina, (Messrs. Macon and Stanford)“ men with whom he had measured his strength," by whose side he had fought during the reign of terror; for it was indeed an hour of corruption, of oppression, of pollution. It was not at all to his taste, that sort of republicanism which was supported on this side of the Atlantic by the father of the sedition law John Adams, and by Peter Porcupine on the other. Republicanism of John Adams! and William Cobbett !Par nobile fratrum, now united as in 1798, whom the cruel walls of Newgate alone keep from flying to each other's embrace-but whom, in sentiment, it is impossible to divide ! Gallant crusaders in the holy cause of republicanism! Such“ republicanism does indeed mean any thing or nothing."
Our people will not submit to be taxed for this war of conquest and dominion. The government of the United States was not calculated to wage offensive foreign war—it was instituted for the common defence and general welfare ; and whosoever should embark it in a war of offence, would put it to a test which it was by no means calculated to endure. Make it out that Great Britain had instigated the Indians on a late occasion, and he was ready for battle ; but not for dominion. He was unwilling, however, under present circumstances, to take Canada, at the risk of the constitution! to embark in a common cause with France, and be dragged at the wheels of the car of some Burr or Bonaparte. For a gentleman from Tennessee or Gennessee, or Lake Champlain, there may be some prospect
of advantage. Their hemp would bear a great price by the exclusion of foreign supply. In that, too, the great importers were deeply interested. The upper country on the Hudson and the Lakes, would be enriched by the supplies for the troops, which they alone could furnish. They would have the exclusive market: to say nothing of the
increased preponderance from the acquisition of Canada and that seca tion of the union, which the southern and western States had already felt so severely in the apportiopment bill.
Mr. Randolph adverted to the defenceless state of our seaports, and particularly of the Chesapeake. A single spot only, on both shores, might be considered in tolerable security--from the nature of the port and the strength of the population and that spot unhappily governed the whole State of Maryland. His friend, the late Governor of Maryland, (Mr. Lloyd) at the very time he was bringing his warlike resolutions before the legislature of the State, was li. able, on any night, to be taken out of his bed and carried off, with his family, by the most contemptible picaroon. Such was the situation of many a family in Maryland and lower Virginia,
Mr. Randolph dwelt on the danger arising from the black popula. tion. He said, he would touch this subjeet as tenderly as possibleit was with reluctance that he touched it at all--but in cases of great emergency, the State physician must not be deterred by a sickly, bysh terical humanity, from probing the wound of his patient he must not be withheld, by a fastidious and mistaken humanity, from representing his true situation to his friends, or even to the sick man himself, where the occasion called for it. What was the situation of the slave-holding States? During the war of the revolutiqn, so fixed were their habits of subordination, that while the whole country were overrun by the enemy, who invited them to desert, no fear was ever, entertained of an insurrection of the slaves. During a war of seven years, with our country in possession of the enemy, no such danger was ever apprehended. But should we therefore be unobservant spectators of the progress of society within the last 20 years of the silent but powerful change wrought by time and chance, upon its composition and temper? When the fountains of the great deep of abomination were broken up, even the poor slaves had not escaped the general deluge. The French revolution had polluted even them. Nay,there had not been wanting men in that house, witness their legis. lative Legendre, the butcher who once held a seat there, to preach upon that floor these imprescriptible rights to a crowded audience of blacks in the galleries-teaching them that they are equal to their masters ; in other words, advising them to cut their throats. Sim. ilar doctrines were disseminated by pedlars from New England and elsewhere, throughout the southern country---and masters had been found so infatuated, as by their lives and conversation, by a contempt of morality and religion, unthinkingly to cherish these seeds of self-destruction to them and their families. What was the consequence? Within the last ten years, repeated alarms of insurrection among the slaves--some of them awful indeed. From the spreading of this infernal doctrine, the whole southern country had been thrown into a state of insecurity.
[The remainder of Mr. Randolph's speech in No. 6.]
TWELFTH CONGRESS.... FIRST SESSION.
Continuation of Mr. Randolph's Speech On the second Resolution reported by the Committee on Foreign Relations.
Men dead to the operation of moral caules, had taken away from the poor slave his habits of loyalty and obedience to his master, which lightened his servitude by a double operation ; beguiling his own cares and difarming his master's suspicions and severity ; and now, like true empirics in politics, you are called upon to trust to the mere physical strength of the fetter which holds him in bondages You have deprived him of all moral re. straint, you have tempted him to eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge, just enough to perfect him in wickedness ; you have opened bis eyes to his nakedness; you have armed his nature a. gainst the hand that has fed, that has clothed him, that has cher. ished him in sickness; that hand, which before he became a pupil of your school he had been accustomed to press with respectful affection. You have donc all this and then shew him the gib. bet and the wheel, as incentives to a fullen, repugnant obedience. God forbid, fir, that the southern states should ever see an enemy on their shores, with these infernal principles of French fraternity in the van. While talking of taking Canada, some of us were Muddering for our own fafety at home. He spoke from facts, when he said that the night-bell never tolled for fire in Richmond, that the mother did not hug her infant more closely to her busom. He had been witness to some of the alarms in the capital of Vir. ginia.
How had we shown our fympathy with the Patriots of Spain, or with her American provinces ? By seizing on one of them, her claim to which we had formerly respected, as soon as the parent country was embroiled at home.
Was it thus we yielded them affiftance against the arch-fiend, who is grasping at the sceptre of the civilized world. The object of France is as much Spanish America as old Spain herself. Much as he hated a standing army, he could almost find it in his heart to vote one, could it be sent to the allistance of the Spanish patriots.
Mr. Randolph then proceeded to notice the unjust and illiberal imputation of British attachments against certain characters in this country, sometimes infinuated in that House, but openly avowed out of it. Against whom were these charges brought ? A. gainst men who in the war of the revolution were in the councils
of the nation, or fighting the battles of your country. And by whom were they made ? By run-ways chiefly from the British dominions, since the breaking out of the French tronbles. He indignantly faid-it is infuffcrable. It cannot be borne. It must and ought, with fiverity, to be put down in this Houseand out of it to meet the lie direct. We have no fellow feeling for the suffering and opprefled Spaniards ! Yet even them we do not reprobate. Strange ! that we thould have no objeclion to any other people or governinent, civilized or savage, in the whole world. The great autocrat of all the Ruffias receives the homage of our high consideration. The Dey of Algiers and his Divan of pirates are very civil good fort of people, with whom we find no difficulty in maintaining the relations of peace and amity_" Turks, Jen's and Infidels," Melimelli or the Little Turtle ; Barbarians and favages of every clime and color, are welcome to our arms. With Chiels of Banditti, negro or mulatto, we can treat and can trade. Name, however, but England, and all our antipathics are up in arms against her. Against whom? Against thofe whole blood runs in our own veins ; in common with whom we claim Shakespeare, and Newton, and Chatham for our countrymen : whose form of government is the freeft on carth, our own only excpted ; from whom every valuable prin. ciple of our own institutions has been borrowed-Representation --Jury trial-voting the supplies--writ of Habeas Corpus...our whoic civii and criminal jurisprudence against our fellow protestants identific din blood, in language, in religion with ourselves. In what school did the worthies of our land, the Washingtons, Henries, Hancocks, Franklins, Rutledges of America learn those principk's of civil liberty which were fo nobly allerted by their wisclom and valor. And American resistance to British usurpa. tion had not been more warmly cherished by these great men and their compatriots; not more by Wafhington, Hancock, and Henry, than by Chatham and his illustrious associates in the British Parliament. It ought to be remembered, too, that the heart of the English people was with us. It was a telfish and corrupt ministry, and their servile tools, to whom we were not more op posed than they were. He trusted that none such might ever ex. ist among us for 100ls will never be wanting to subferve the pur. poses, however ruinous or wicked, of kings and ministers of Itate,
He acknowledged the influence of a Shakespeare and a Milton upon his imagination, of a Locke upon his understanding, of a Sidney upon his political principles, of a Chatham upon qualities which, would to God! he possessed in common with that illuf. trious nan ! of a Tillotson,
a Sherlock, and a Porteus, upon bis religion. This was a British influence which he could never thake off. He allowed much to the juft and honest prejudices growing out of the revolution. But by whom had they been sup. prelud when they ran counter to the interests of his country? By Washington. By whom, would you listen to them, are they molt keenly felt ? By felons escaped from the Jails of Paris, Newgate and Kilmainham, since the breaking out of the French rev. olution--who, in this abused and infulted country, have set up for political teachers, and whose disciples give no other proof of their progress in republicanism, except a blind devotion to the most ruthless military despotism that the world ever faw. Thele are the patriots, who fcruple not to brand with the epithet of tory the men (looking towards the feat of Col. Steuart) by-whole blood your liberties have been cemented. These are they, who hold in such keen remembrance the outrages of the British armies, from which many of them were deferters. Ask these self styled pat. riots where they were during the American war, (for they are for the most part old enough to have borne arms) and you strike them dumb their lips are closed in eternal silence. If it were allowable to entertain partialities; every confideration of blood, language, religion and interest would incline us towards England: and yet, shall they be alone extended to France and her ruler, whom we are bound to believe a chastening God fuffers as the fcourge of a guilty world ! On all other nations he tramples.com he holds them in contempt-England alone he hates ; he would, but he cannot defpife her_fear cannot despise ; and shall we disparage our ancestors ?
-hall we bastardize ourselves by placing them even below the brigands of St. Domingo? With wbom Mr. Adams had negociated a sort of treaty, for which he ought to have been and would have been impeached, if the peo. ple had not previously paffed sentence of disqualification for their service upon bim. This antipathy to all that is English must be French.
But the outrages and injuries of England_Bred up in the prin. ciples of the revolution, he could never palliate, much less de. fend them. He well remembered flying with his mother and her new born child, from Arnold and Phillips and they had been driven by Tarleton and other British Pandours from pillar to post, while her husband was fighting the battles of his coun. try. The impression was indelible on his memory and yet (like his worthy old neighbor, who added seven buck shot to every cartridge at the battle of Guilford and drew a fine fight at his man) he must be content to be called a tory by a patriot of the last importation. Let us not get rid of one evil (fuppofing it poffible) at the expense of a greater-mutatus mutandis, fuppole France in poflèffion of the British naval power and to her the Trident must pass should England be unable to wield it--what would be your condition? What would be the situation of your sea-ports and their fea.faring inhabitants? Ask Hamburg... Lubec!-Ask Savannab? What ! fir, when their privateers are pent up in our harbors by the British bull.dogs, when they receive at our hands every rite of hofpitality, from which their enemy is excluded--when they capture within our own waters,