A discourse pronounced at the Capitol of the United States: in the Hall of Representatives, before the American Historical Society, at their second annual meeting, January 20, 1837 (Google eBook)

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Printed by P. Force, 1837 - United States - 63 pages
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Page 53 - ... to cherish earnestness of purpose, resoluteness in conduct ; to apply hard and constant blows to real abuses rather than milkand-water remedies, and encourage not only bold, free, and original thinking, but determined action. In such a cause our fathers were men whose hearts were not accustomed to fail them through fear, however formidable the obstacles. Some of them were companions of Cromwell, and imbued deeply with his spirit and iron decision of character, in whatever they deemed right :...
Page 52 - ... but with the restraints and salutary influences of the allies before described, these storms will purify as healthfully as they often do in the physical world, and cause the tree of liberty, instead of falling, to strike its roots deeper. In this struggle the enlightened and moral possess also a power, auxiliary and strong, in the spirit of the age, which is not only with them, but onward, in every thing to ameliorate or improve.
Page 9 - ... libellers. Let it then become a prominent part of our duty as members of this society, to strip from the statue of Truth all such meretricious and false disguises. Let it not be said of us, when inquirers for facts, as Aristophanes describes the Athenians, " No matter what the offence, " Be 't great or small, " The cry is tyranny, conspiracy.
Page 55 - At such a crisis, therefore, and in such a cause, yielding to neither consternation nor despair, may we not all profit by the vehement exhortations of Cicero to Atticus : " If you are asleep, awake ; if you are standing, move ; if you are moving, run ; if you are running, fly...
Page 52 - ... do in the physical world, and cause the tree of liberty, instead of falling, to strike its roots deeper. In this struggle, the enlightened and moral possess also a power, auxiliary and strong, in the spirit of the age, which is not only with them, but onward, in every thing to ameliorate or improve. When the struggle assumes the form of a contest with power in all its subtlety, or with undermining and corrupting wealth, as it sometimes may, rather than with turbulence, sedition, or open aggression,...
Page 52 - We less need new laws, new institutions, or new powers, than we need, on all occasions, at all times, and in all places, the requisite intelligence concerning the true spirit of our present ones ; the high moral courage under every hazard, and against every offender, to execute with fidelity the authority already possessed ; and the manly independence to abandon all supineness, irresolution, vacillation, and time-serving pusillanimity, and enforce our present mild system with that uniformity and...
Page 50 - What inferences should philosophy and our sober judgments draw from their history ? Is it not manifest that the danger now to be guarded against is one arising rather from too little than too much control on the part of the Government ; too little rather than too much reverence for the constitution, the supremacy of the laws, and the sacredness of personal rights as well as those of property , and if not an undue homage to mere wealth, still too great presumptuousness from the enjoyment of such unexampled...
Page 52 - ... useful education and sound morals, with the wise description of equal measures and just practices they inculcate on every leaf of recorded time. Before their alliance the spirit of misrule will always in time stand rebuked, and those who worship at the shrine of unhallowed ambition must quail. Storms in the political atmosphere may occasionally happen by the encroachments of usurpers, the corruption or intrigues of demagogues, or in the expiring agonies of faction, or by the sudden fury of popular...
Page 51 - ... in the brief period of about half a century. On the contrary, it behoves us to look our perils and difficulties, such as they are, in the face. Then, with the exercise of candor, calmness, and fortitude, being able to comprehend fully their character and extent, let us profit by the teachings of almost every page in our annals, that any defects under our existing system have resulted more from the manner of administering it than from its substance or form. We less need new laws, new institutions,...
Page 52 - ... have resulted more from the manner of administering it than from its substance or form. We less need new laws, new institutions, or new powers, than we need, on all occasions, at all times, and in all places, the requisite intelligence concerning the true spirit of our present ones ; the high moral courage under every hazard, and against every offender, to execute with fidelity the authority already possessed ; and the manly independence to abandon all supineness, irresolution...

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