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agony to himself.
descend yourselves from these seats of justice, and stand be fore the higher tribunal of the world. I would not fail se much in respect to this honorable court, as to hint that it could pronounce a sentence which the community will re.
No, sir, it is not the world's revision which I would call on you to regard, but that of your own consciences, when years have gone by, and you shall look back on the sentence you are about to render. If you send away the respondent, condemned and sentenced, from your bar, you are yet to meet him in the world on which you cast him out. You will be called to behold him a disgrace to his family, a sorrow and a shame to his children, a living fountain of grief and If you
shall then be able to behold him only as an unjust judge, whom vengeance has overtaken, and justice has blast. ed, you will be able to look upon him, not without pity, but yet without remorse. But if, on the other hand, you shall see, whenever and wherever you meet him, a victim of prejudice or of passion, a sacrifice to a transient excitement; if you shall see in him, a man, for whose condemnation any provision of the constitution has been violated, or any principle of law broken down ; then will he be able--humble and low as may be his condition—then will he be able to turn the current of compassion backward, and to look with pity on those who have been his judges. If you are about to visit this respondent with a judgment which shall blast his house ; if the bosoms of the innocent and the amiable are to be made to bleed, under your infliction, I beseech you to be able to state clear and strong grounds for your proceedings. Prejudice and excitement are transitory, and will pass away. Political expediency, in matters of judicature, is a false and hollow principle, and will never satisfy the conscience of him, who is fearful that he may have given a hasty judgment. I earnestly entreat you, for your own sakes, to possess yourselves of solid reasons, founded in truth and justice, for the judgment you pronounce, which you can carry with
tik you go down into your graves; reasons which it will require no argument to revive, no sophistry, no excitement, no re. gard to popular favor, to render satisfactory to your con: sciences; reasons which you can appeal to in every crisis of your lives, and which shall be able to assure you, in your own
great extremity, that you have not judged a fellow.creature without mercy:
Sir, I have done with the case of this individual, and now leave him in your hands. I hold up before him the broad shield of the constitution ; if through that he be pierced and fall, he will be but one sufferer in a common catastrophe.
CXLVI.-THE COMMERCIAL CHARACTER OF NEW ENGLAND.
Extract from the Speech of Josiah Quincy, delivered in the House of
Representatives of the United States, November 28, 1808.
Mr. Chairman,-In relation to the subject now before us, other gentlemen must take their resposibilities ; I shall take mine. This embargo must be repealed. You cannot en. force it for any important period of time longer. When I speak of your inability to enforce this law, let not gentlemen misunderstand me. I mean not to intimate insurrections or open defiances of them ; although it is impossible to forosee in what acts that 66
oppression” will finally terminate, which, we are told, “makes wise men mad.” I speak of an inability resulting from very different causes. The gentle. man from North Carolina exclaimed the other day in a strain of patriotic ardor, “What! shall not our laws be executed ? Shall their authority be defied? I am for enforcing them, at every hazard.”
I honor that gentleman's zeal; and I mean no deviation from that true respect I entertain for him, when I tell him, that in this instance, “his zeal is not according to knowledge."
I ask this House, is there no control to its authority ? is there no limit to the power of this national legislature ? I hope I shall offend no man, when I intimate that two limits' exist-nature and the constitution. Should this House undertake to declare, that this atmosphere should no longer surround us, that water should cease to flow, that gravity should not hereafter operate, that the needle should not vi. brate to the pole,-sir, I hope I shall not offend,-I think I u may venture to affirm, that, such a law to the contrary notwithstanding, the air would continue to circulate, the Mis. sissippi, the Hudson, and the Potomac, would roll their floods to the ocean, heavy bodies continue to descend, and the mys. terious magnet hold on its course to its celestial cynosure.*
Just as utterly absurd and contrary to nature is it to attempt to prohibit the people of New-England, for any considerable length of time, from the ocean. Commerce is not only associated with all the feelings, the habits, the interests, and relations of that people, but the nature of our soil, and of our coasts, the state of our population, and its mode of distribution over our territory, renders it indispensable. We have five hundred miles of sea-coast, all furnished with har. bors, bays, creeks, rivers, inlets, basins, with every variety of invitation to the sea, with every species of facility to violate such laws as these. Our people are not scattered over an immense surface, at a solemn distance from each other, in lordly retirement, in the midst of extended plantations and intervening wastes : they are collected on the margin of the ocean, by the sides of rivers, at the heads of bays, looking into the water, or on the surface of it, for the incitement and the reward of their industry. Among a people thus situated, thus educated, thus numerous, laws, prohibiting them from the exercise of their natural rights, will have a binding effect, not one moment longer, than the public sentiment supports them. Gentlemen talk of twelve revenue cutters, additional, to enforce the embargo laws. Multiply the number by twelve, multiply it by an hundred, join all your ships of war, all your gun-boats, and all your militia, in despite of them all, such laws as these are of no avail when they become odious to public sentiment.
* Pronounced sin o sure, the north stas
CXLVII.-THE PRINCIPLES OF FEDERALISM.
Extract from the Speech of James A. Bayard, on the Judiciary Bill,
delivered in the House of Representatives of the United States, February 19, 1802.
Mr. Chairman,-The honorable gentleman from Virginia wandered to the very confines of the Federal administration, in search of materials the most inflammable and most capable of kindling the passions of his party.
He represents the government as seizing the first moment, which presented itself, to create a dependant monied interest, ever devoted to its views. What are we to understand by this remark of the gentleman? Does he mean to say, that Congress did wrong in funding the public debt? Does he mean to say, that the price of our liberty and independence ought not to have been paid? Is he bold enough to denounce this measure as one of the Federal victims marked for destruction? Is it the design to tell us, that its day has not yet come, but is approaching; and that the funding system is to add to the pile of Federal ruins? Do I hear the gentleman say, we will reduce the army to a shadow ; we will give the navy to the worms; the mint, which presented the people with the emblems of their liberty and of their sovereignty, we will abol. ish-the revenue shall depend upon the wind and waves, the judges shall be made our creatures, and the great work all be crowned and consecrated by relieving the country from an odious and oppressive public debt? These steps, I presume, are to be taken in progression. The gentleman will pause at each, and feel the public pulse. As the fever in. creases, he will proceed, and the moment of delirium will be seized to finish the great work of destruction.
Mr. Chairman,-The honorable member from Virginia has thought himself justified in making a charge of a serious and frightful nature against the judges. They have been represented as going about searching out victims of the se. dition law. But no fact has been stated; no proof has been adduced; and the gentleman must excuse me for refusing my belief to the charge, till it is sustained by stronger and better ground than assertion.
If, however, Mr. Chairman, the eyes of the gentlemen are delighted with victims-if objects of misery are grateful to his feelings, let me turn his view from the walks of the judges to the track of the present executive. It is in this path we see the real victims of stern, uncharitable, unrelenting power.
It is here, sir, we see the soldier who fought the battles of the revolution ; who spilt his blood and wasted his strength to establish the independence of his country, deprived of the reward of his services, and left to pine in penury and wretchedness. It is along this path that you may see helpless chil. dren crying for bread, and gray hairs sinking in sorrow to the grave! It is here that no innocence, no merit, no truth, no services, can save the unhappy sectary, who does not be. lieve in the creed of those in power. · I have been forced upon this subject, and before I leave it, allow me to remark, that without inquiring into the right of the President to make vacancies in office, during the recess of the senate, but ad. mitting the power to exist, yet that it never was given by the constitution to enable the chief magistrate to punish the in. sults, to revenge the wrongs, or to indulge the antipathies of the man. If the discretion exists, I have no hesitation in say. ing, that it is abused when exercised from any other motives than the public good. And when I see the will of a Presi. dent precipitating from office men of probity, knowledge, and talents, against whom the community has no complaint, I consider it as a wanton and dangerous abuse of power. And when I see men who have been the victims of this abuse of power, I view them as the proper objects of national sympathy and commiseration.