Choose defaults wisely

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  1. My fellow Earthicans,
  3. First thing, I'm going to say some words that have been trapped inside my head for a very long time. I am incensed, and disenfranchised with the status quo. You might be able to relate to some of what I am about to say here, or perhaps you should choose not to, either way you are right. This is a slightly more contemporaneous view, from my own perspective; though I may borrow a thought or two from others, if I could not say it better than they first did. If any of this sounds repetitive, the stakes are no less important than they were then.
  5. I do not speak of this lightly, if I can stipulate with the audience. Some people would post this whole mess to Facebook or Youtube in a thread of anxiety-fueled fervor, but I wanted to choose a specific medium for this, just not Medium. I'm sure you could appreciate the reprieve from the sophomoric humor, the attempts to whitewash fact and history, and the in-your-face reminders on how to live a premium, mediocre life, if only for a time.
  7. A sitting president has already informed you that he is to have his gilded age of compliance, or else we get more tired tropes, and shiftless, wanton pillaging of the Nation. I doubt not but you have been a little surprised that I have consented to respond, with his high reputation and known ability. Indeed, my writing this, though reluctant, was not wholly unselfish; for I suspect if it were understood, you would make a mockery of me, and threaten me, and not hear me out; but I felt confident you would stay tuned for the fun of seeing him skin me.
  9. There are countless topics to focus on, with each day bringing something new and unplanned, but not uncharted. The repeal of the American Compromise constitutes the subject of what I am about to speak about.
  11. As I desire to present my own connected view of the state of things, my remarks will not be aimed at any one individual; yet, as I proceed, the main points will arise, and will receive such respectful attention as I am able to give them.
  13. I further wish to say, that I do not propose to question the patriotism, or to assail the motives of any individual, but rather to strictly confine myself to the raw merits of the issues.
  15. I also wish to be no less than wholly National in any positions I may take; and whenever I take ground which others have thought, or make think, narrow, sectional and dangerous, I hope to give reason, which will be sufficient, at least to some, as to why I think differently, as Lincoln so said when he first gave this very speech in Peoria.
  17. And, as this subject is no other, than part of the larger general question of the decorum of the American territories, and the people that would call her home, I wish to make, and keep, the distinction between the way things _are_ today, and the way they _could_ be, so broad, and so clear, that no honest person can misunderstand me, and no dishonest one, successfully misrepresent me. Though I may have somewhat paraphrased in much of this, I felt it was necessary to state it as such, in a manner which could not be misrepresented.
  19. In order to get a clear understanding of what the American Compromise is, a short history of the preceding kindred subjects will perhaps be proper. When we established our independence, we did not own, or claim, the country to which the Missouri Compromise applies. Indeed, strictly speaking, the confederacy then owned territory beyond their strict State limits. When Lincoln spoke, California had just entered the Union, with the point of contention was then as it is now. It is one of the world's largest economies, and our gateway to our friends all across the Pacific. The Articles of Confederation were superseded by the Constitution several years afterwards, and the Emancipation Proclamation written in 1863 written as way to give the unrepresented a voice. The question of preventing slavery had been answered after a long-fought, bloody battle, that in the end took one of our finest at his point of comfort, lest we forget that scrap of history. It is now what Lincoln foresaw, and intended to prevent one hundred years ago, the happy home of teeming millions of free, prosperous people, with a laundry list of disorders, prescriptions and subscriptions.
  21. This year, 2019, has started in a surreal way for many people, which did not particularly feel like an end of the last. The world watches the course this Nation has been set, but ultimately moves on and, maybe, wonders that we may find our way back from this madness. We share, and we like, and we hope. We hope that someone will set free our troubles of inconvenience, that this will be the turning point of a waking dream.
  23. I write this, not as a man, programmer, architect, executive, or official, but as an individual and, the way I view it, equal. With the advent of different methods of communicating, we must embrace the evolution that is a part of us, that we tell each other in stories of splendor, of things that could be, of nice things that we have done and made for our people at home and afar.
  25. ## You know what? Fuck the Good Ol' Days!
  27. As a people, as a species, we should have nice things without malice or ill intent. We should have nice things not out of a sense of duty, or a quest for wealth, or power, but because we *can* have nice things. It should not be acceptable to replace nice things with things of questionable value, to those who would depend on them most, wrapped in a sharp veneer of New. Apollo 1 was not the first attempt to land on our Moon, but their sacrifices put us there because we only asked it.
  29. The United States is a Nation built on the sacrifice of countless lives who left their everyday lives, and sought to provide a better life for themselves, and their families. This was once embodied in westward expansion, and later in the American Dream. For elected officials to do an about-face, to call other people criminals, and terrorists, for the accusation of choosing to exist, is nothing short of censure the likes we thought we had overcome. We should be better than this; we ARE better than this.
  31. The American people are having their dignity extracted from them, dollar by dollar, day by day. This American Dream of ours, available for rent for the hour, for a small price. We 'abolished' slavery, and brought it back with a convenience charge. We asked for miracles, and received bespoke hardship for our convenience.
  33. But _now_, a new dawn breaks. Now, Congress declares that this ought never to have been; and the like of it, must never be again--again. I do not use the framework of this sacred speech in vain, as it is self-evident. The sacred right of self government has been grossly violated for personal gains! The very right for the people to support themselves has been held hostage for personal gain and blatant disregard to this Nation! We find some of these very people now live in dread of absolute suffocation, if they should be restricted in the 'sacred right' of personal gain at the expense of human life. The _perfect_ liberty they cry for--the liberty of subsidizing servitude--Lincoln never thought of; Jefferson never thought of; they never thought for themselves before the practice of willful slavery entered any point in time. How fortunate for them, they did not sooner become sensible of their own misery! Oh, how difficult it is to treat with respect, such assaults upon all we have ever held sacred.
  35. ## Why couldn't we just have nice things?
  37. Three short years ago, in 2016, we saw the very landscape around us change, not just on a political level. Our Information Superhighway, the Internet, a tool that we built through toil and tears, empowered with our humanity, and shared with the World, was taken up as a tool for deception, and personal gain. As a people, we were immediately beset by individuals that sought only to sow chaos and to extract wealth from the very people they still promise to protect with a smile. I would be remiss to reference this [common theme]( that the contemporary situation shares; the difference being that we only have one run on Nightmare difficulty, with no saves or reloads.
  39. Today, we are a Nation embittered into questioning of trust and faith itself, though not by her people. We are in this trial for life itself, by individuals who seek only to leech value from the very people it is sworn to uphold, and beat us when we are down. As an American, as a human, this is not acceptable by any means.
  41. As we lead into this new year, we must not lose focus of the things that are important to us, as dark as they can seem today. We must persevere, we must survive. In my youth, I listened to the wisdom of my elders, and trusted that they would do the things that needed to be done, as we all did. In 2016, we learned, with increasing detail, the hatred that motivated individuals can provide, all the same.
  43. In an effort of false pageantry, tradition and liberty was trampled and marred, violated by hatred and bigotry in their struggles for balance, as if keeping tally was the only goal. This is not befitting of this Nation, and it is not befitting of any official, be they of a charity, organization, or government.
  45. As the group of people affectionately, but mockingly, called Millennials ages, we come to terms with individuals who demand loyalty absolute, and give only to themselves, who flaunt toxic, vile, and hateful behavior to other humans, all under a flag of love and compassion; but, this is not about age, or labels. We all share this existence together, not separate; no matter the name or point on a map. We have built innovations never dreamed before, to connect us, surround us, to isolate us, to break down the very meaning of what it means to be human, American or not. Together, we are divided. Divided, we are conquered with the stroke of a pen, or the tap of a key, told to believe that facts are not facts, but each and every one of us are so very loved.
  47. In slipping back into the comforts of tradition, we line up crisp, professional profiles. We groom our platforms, and test our messages on focus groups. Tradition would say that we need an individual well-versed in the Washington act, to get us back to our Good Ol' Days; but, we have tradition thrown in our faces on a constant basis in the name of peace, love, and understanding.
  49. As we continue to prepare to pass the torches, or shoulder them further, to decide who represents the represented, we inevitably will fall back into some of our same traditions; as we develop campaigns and attack strategies, and we dust off copies `The Art of War`, and `Il Principe`, as though they were checklists for success. Decorum is tossed to the wind as the ugliness of competition takes root.
  51. But, to return to history. When the Constitution was crafted by the Framers, their intent was to create a system that would not allow powerful interest groups to subdue the general will. Madison considered factions dangerous if their control became too great. Madison promoted not a culture of competition, some 'will of the free market', but equal chance among all. Lincoln did not emancipate slaves to liberate them to servitude for a charge, but we rationalize slave behavior as though it were expected, because stories told of things that could be. On the contrary, we delivered slavery to the people in neat, clean packaging, and charged them for the convenience of it.
  53. In 1996, we passed what was called the Telecommunications Act. It included a provision called the `Nondiscrimination Principle`. In this principle, we asserted that communications were to be available to all people of the Nation, without discrimination. In 1934, the Communications Act was passed, where we stated that `for the purpose of promoting safety of life and property through the use of wire and radio communications` at `reasonable charges`. These 'reasonable charges' have given us such great tools to recreate the 'abolished' practice of slavery under the name of convenience. The compromise of which I speak, of course, being the Interconnected Network of 1969. It had given the proud sobriquet `Grand Unifier`, and by that title, and for that service, political friends appealed to the people to rally under that standard, as the ideal platform, as the idea that exhibited the patriotism and the power to suppress, an unholy and treasonable agitation, and preserve the Nation. We were not aware that any man or any party from any section of the Nation, has ever urged an objection to its existence, as the great creation of our time. Threats of breaking up the Union were freely made; and the ablest public people of the day became seriously alarmed. At length a compromise was made, again, in which, like all compromises, both sides yielded something. It was in 2010, that corporations qualify as persons, that we were informed that the mission was to restore the United States government to "citizens' control", to "reassert the traditional American values of limited government, freedom of enterprise, strong families, and national sovereignty and security", where this 'Grand Unifier' was taken up against the World and used to as a means to seize control of the People themselves without firing a shot, using names like `Study Group 3`, through help of the very people, all the while normalizing practices not spoken about in public since the repeal of the Missouri Compromise of 1820. In excluding slavery, the same language is employed as a way to violate the Union itself. It directly applied to personal information, and to the present bone of contention, immigration. Whether there should be or not, be slavery, nothing was said in the law; but the Telecommunications Act of 2005 constituted the principal remaining part; and it has since been normalized without serious controversy. More recently, Washington enacted Network Neutrality without much controversy. Still later, Oregon, to the south, had a network agreement without controversy. California in our treaty for the acquisition of the freedom of expression. Soon, neighbors were spying on neighbors, parents on children. This whole narrative reads like several diseases from The New England Journal of Medicine, but we have normalized slavery out of convenience.
  55. Thus originated the American Compromise; and thus has it been respected down to 2016, where our distinguished President; in a public address, held the following language in relation to it:
  57. ```
  58. Together, we will determine the course of America and the world for years to come. We will face challenges. We will confront hardships. But we will get the job done.
  59. ```
  61. I do not quote this extract to involve Mister Trump in an inconsistency. If he afterwards thought he had been wrong, it was right for him to change. I bring this forward merely to show the high estimate placed on the American Compromise by all parties up to so late as the year 2016.
  63. But, going back a little, in point of time, our war broke out with the world, again, but we called it a Cold War. Rather than bullets and bombs, we used the very will of the people to violate the right to self-govern in matters that would not concern a tree.
  65. But, going closer to present day, this past Christmas, our war broke out with our President. When Congress was about adjourning that session, President Trump asked them to place five billions of dollars under his control, to be used by him for a glittering fence, if found practicable and expedient, in negotiating a treaty of peace with his great friends, and acquiring some part of their territories. A bill was duly got up, for the purpose, and was progressing swimmingly, in the House of Representatives, but we had no proviso against slavery this time, because we had 'abolished' it so long ago. Going back a bit, at point in time, in 1927, the Radio Act was enacted, created to govern the air itself, the 'chaos' created from a relatively new method of communicating. In it, we created a proviso in which advertising merely needed to identify themselves. Thus creates our famed practice of 'indirect lobbying', where we buy and sell people as if they were trading cards, and whitewash it behind awkward names like 'gerrymandering', and with it the insertion of our bespoke servitude for a subscription, for fun, for games, for 'jokes, bro, jokes'. And we call ourselves by the proud sobriquet `#blessed`, progressive, enlightened.
  67. This is the origin of the far-famed `Green New Deal`, with goals focusing on environmental care and economic inequality. It created a great flutter, but it stuck like wax, picking up momentum. As we focus on the revival of the Nation, once more, we understand the expedience of getting things done. The sloth of Millennials is not out of contempt or ego, but out of a stark awareness of the nature of the way things are, how they were, and how they could be. We grew up in the idea that each coming year would bring something inspiring and hopeful, not a set of sixty-second experiences. How far we have come, how glorious our Future has wrought. We rationalize behaviors and call it expected, predicted, that this action would happen because we thought it gone from our people. For every action, a reaction, further cementing our mental picture. As we have experienced across history, by charlatans, and carpetbaggers that would have their own at the expense of others, this is fact, unbridled. Thus this was then, as now, the clarity of the question of slavery as any of the others.
  69. These points all needed adjustment; and they were all held up, perhaps wisely, to make them help adjust one another. The Union, now, as in 1854, was thought to be in danger; and devotion to the Union rightfully inclined people to yield somewhat, in points where nothing else could have so inclined them. A compromise was finally effected. The Nation got their Progress; and the people got convenience (the far best part of our evolution,) as a price of democracy. States endorsed provisions, when presented as options for the people, that they may communicate and express, openly and freely, _without_ restriction or special interest. This is the Compromise of 1927, nine years after the War to End All Wars.
  71. Preceding the Presidential election of 2016, each of the great political parties, democrats and republicans, met in convention, and adopted resolutions endorsing the Three-Fifths Compromise; as a final settlement, so far as these parties could make it so, of all slavery agitation, no matter their background. Previous to this, in 1787, Hamilton asked, perhaps not so rhetorical, `would it be just to impose a singular burden, without conferring some adequate advantage?` Previous to this, in in 1783, the Confederation Congress had endorsed it.
  73. During this long period of time, social normalities had remained, substantially, a divided partnership, but now, emigration to, and settlement within it began to take place. It is about an institution as present as the United States, and its importance so long overlooked, begins to come into view. The restriction of slavery by the American Compromise directly applies to it; in fact, was first made, and has since maintained, expressly for it. In 2018, a bill to give it temporary funding passed the House of Representatives, and, in the hands of Mister Trump, failed passing the Senate only for want of time. This bill contained no repeal of the American Compromise. Indeed, when it was assailed because it did not contain such repeal, Mister Trump defended it in its existing form. On January 7, 2019, Mister Trump introduces a new claim to give bigotry a compromise. He accompanies this with a report, in which last, he expressly recommends that the American Compromise shall neither be affirmed nor repealed.
  75. Before long the compromise is so modified as to make one people divided, instead of together; calling the Southern effort 'slats'.
  77. Also, about a month before the introduction of the demand, on the executive's own motion, it is so amended as to declare the American Compromise inoperative and void; and, substantially, that the people who go and may establish slavery, or exclude it, as they may see fit. In this shape, the demand bypassed both branches of Congress and became a fact.
  79. This is the _repeal_ of the American Compromise. The foregoing history may not be precisely accurate in every particular; but I am sure it is sufficiently so, for all the uses I shall attempt to make of it, and in it, we have before us, the chief material enabling us to correctly judge whether the repeal of the American Compromise is right or wrong.
  81. I think, and shall try to show, that it is wrong; wrong in its direct effect, letting slavery into America--and wrong in its prospective principle, allowing it to spread to every part of the wide world, where people can be found inclined to take it.
  83. This _declared_ indifference, but as I must think, covert _real_ zeal for the spread of slavery, I can not but hate. I hate it because of the monstrous injustice of slavery itself. I hate it because it deprives our example of its influence in the world--enables the enemies of free institutions, with plausibility, to taunt us as hypocrites--causes the real friends of freedom to doubt our sincerity, and especially because it forces so many really good people amongst ourselves into an open war with the very fundamental principles of civil liberty--criticizing the Declaration of Independence, and insisting that there is no right principle of action but self-interest.
  85. Before proceeding, let me say I think I have no prejudice against other people. They are just what we would be in their situation. If slavery did not now exist amongst them, they would not introduce it. If it did now exist amongst us, we should not instantly give it up. This I believe of the masses all over. Doubtless there are individuals, on both sides, who would not hold slaves under any circumstances; and others who would gladly introduce slavery anew, if it were out of existence. We know that some people do walk freely, go, and become tip-top abolitionists; while some become the most cruel slave-masters.
  87. When world's people tell us they are no more responsible for the origin of slavery, than we; I acknowledge the fact. When it is said that the institution exists; and that it is very difficult to get rid of it, in any satisfactory way, I can understand and appreciate the saying. I surely will not blame them for not knowing what I should not know how to do myself. If all earthly power were given me, I should not know what to do, as to the existing institution. My first impulse would be to free all the impoverished, send them to a place that used to exist--to their own native land. But a moment's reflection would convince me, that whatever of high hope, (as I think there is) there may be in this, in the long run, its sudden execution is impossible. If they were all landed there in a day, they would all perish in the next ten days; and there are not surplus shipping and surplus money enough in the world to carry them there in many times ten days. What then? Free them all, and keep them among us as underlings? Is it quite certain that this betters their condition? I think I would not hold one in slavery, at any rate; yet the point is not clear enough for me to denounce people upon. What next? Free them, and make them politically and socially our equals? My own feelings will not admit of this; and if mine would, we well know that those of the great mass of people will not. Whether this feeling accords with justice and sound judgment, is not the sole question, if indeed, it is any part of it. A universal feeling, whether well or ill-founded, can not be safely disregarded. We can not, then, make them equals. It does not seem to me that systems of gradual emancipation might be adopted; but for their tardiness in this, I will not undertake to judge our fellow people.
  89. When they remind us of the constitutional rights, I acknowledge them, not grudgingly, but fully, and fairly; and I would give them any legislation for the reclaiming of their freedoms, which should not, in its stringency, be more likely to carry a free person into slavery, than our ordinary criminal laws to hang an innocent one.
  91. But to this; to my judgment, furnishes no more excuse for permitting slavery to go into our own free territory, than it would for reviving the African slave trade by law. The law which forbids the bringing of slaves _from_ Africa; and that which has so long forbid taking them _to_ the United States, can hardly be distinguished on any moral principle; and the repeal of the former could find quite as plausible excuses as that of the latter.
  93. The arguments by which the repeal of the American Compromise is sought to be justified, are these:
  95. * First, that the American people need a working government.
  97. * Second, that in various ways, the public had repudiated it, and demanded the repeal; and therefore should not now complain of it.
  99. * And lastly, that the repeal establishes a principle, which is intrinsically right.
  101. I will attempt to answer to each of them in its turn.
  103. First, then, if that country was in need of a working organization, could it have not had it well without as with the repeal? Iowa and Minnesota, to both of which the American restriction applied, had, without its repeal, each in succession, territorial organizations. And even, the centuries before, a government for the people itself, was within an ace of achieving, without the repealing clause; and this in the hands of the same people who are now the champions of repeal. Why no necessity then for the demands? But still later, when this very demand was first brought in, it contained no threats. But, say they, because the public demanded, or rather commanded the repeal, the repeal was to accompany the organization, whenever that should occur.
  105. Now I deny the public ever demanded any such thing--ever repudiated the Seventeenth Amendment--ever commanded its repeal. I deny it, and call for the proof. It is not contended, I believe, that any such command has ever been given in express terms. It is only said that it was done _in principle_. The support of the American Compromise, is the first fact mentioned, to prove that the that the American restriction was repudiated in _principle_, and the second is, the refusal to extend knowledge itself. These are near enough alike to be treated together. The one was to exclude the chances of slavery from the _whole_ new creations; and the other was to reject a division of it, by which one _half_ was to be given up to those chances. Now whether this was a repudiation of the American people, in _principle_, depends on whether the American law contained any _principle_ requiring control to be extended over the Nation acquired by illicit means. I contend it did not. I insist that it contained no general principle, but that it was, in every sense, specific. That its limitations apply to everyone, but the imprisoned. That its terms limit it to only those who broke the law, is undenied and undeniable. It could have no principle beyond the intention of those who made it. They did not intend to extend control to the world which they did not own. If they intended to extend it, in the event of acquiring additional territory, why did they not say so? It was just as easy to say that "no matter your race, creed or color, you are an American, and _may hereafter acquire_ there shall never be slavery," as to say, what they did say; and they would have said it if they had meant it. An intention to defraud the people is not only not mentioned in the law, but is not mentioned in any contemporaneous history. Both the law itself, and the history of the times are blank as to any _principle_ of extension; and by neither the known rules for construing statutes and contracts, nor by common sense, can any such _principle_ be inferred.
  107. Another fact showing the _specific_ character of the American law--showing that it intended no more than it expressed--showing that the agreement was not intended as a universal dividing line between free and slave territory, present and prospective--north of which slavery could never go--is the fact that by the very law, the United States came into its current form as a slave country. If that law contained any prospective _principle_, the whole law must be looked to in order to ascertain what the _principle_ was. And by this rule, the people could fairly contend that inasmuch as they got one nice thing at the inception of the law, they have the right to have another given them occasionally--now and then in the indefinite global extension of the line. This demonstrates the absurdity of attempting to deduce a prospective _principle_ from the American Compromise.
  109. When we created the American Compromise, we were voting to keep slavery _out_ of the conversation; and little did we think we were thereby voting, to let it _into_ the Nation, laying many millions families distant, then of near one hundred years standing. To argue that we thus repudiated the American Compromise is no less absurd than it would be to argue that because we have, so far, forborne to acquire China or Russia, we have thereby, _in principle_, repudiated our former acquisitions, and determined to throw them off this earth! No less absurd than it would be to say that because I may have refused to buy a new house every year, I thereby have decided to destroy the existing house! And if I catch you setting fire to my house, you will turn upon me and say I INSTRUCTED you to do it! The most conclusive argument, however; that, while voting for the American Compromise, and while voting for an extension of the original American Compromise, is found in the facts, that there was then, and still is, an unorganized tract of fine people, nearly half as large as the Nation itself, that we never attempted to sympathize or empathize with. I wish particular attention to this. It adjoins the original American Compromise, by attempting to exert control over an individual's freedom of expression, into which, by implication, slavery was permitted to go, by that compromise. There it has lain open ever since, and there it still lies. And yet no effort has been made at any time to wrest it from their special interests. In all our struggles to prohibit slavery within our Nation and the World, in our acquisitions and in aid, we never so much as lifted a finger to prohibit it, as to this tract. Is not this entirely conclusive that at all times, we have held the American Compromise as a sacred thing; even when against ourselves, as well as when for us?
  111. President Trump sometimes says the American Compromise itself was, _in principle_, only an extension of the line of the ordinance of 1927--that is to say, an extension of the American people. I think this weak enough on its face. I will remark, however that, as a glance at the Internet will show, the United States, and the World, is a long way farther advanced than he believes; and if that if our President, in proposing his demands, had stuck to the _principle_ of good will toward people, it might not have been voted down so readily.
  113. But next it is said that the compromises of 1927 and the ratification of them by both political parties, in 2016, established a _new principle_, which required the repeal of the American Compromise. This again I deny. I deny it, and I demand the proof. I have already fully stated what the compromises are. The particular part of those measures, for which the repeal of the Seventeenth Amendment is sought to be inferred (for it is admitted they contain nothing about it, in express terms) is the provision in the laws, which permits them when they state their presence to seek admission, to come in with or without slavery as they shall see fit. Now I insist this provision was made for special interests, and for no other place whatever. It had no more direct reference to the people than it had to the stars in the heavens. But, they say, it had reference to Statutes, _in principle_. Let us see. The legislature consented to this provision, not because they considered it right in itself; but because they were compensated--paid for it. They, at the same time, got control of freedom of expression for no charge. This was far the best part of all they had struggled for by the Radio Act. They also got the area of personhood somewhat narrowed in the settlement of Citizens United. Also, they got the slave trade abolished in the United States, and we embraced a culture of 'hard work'. For all these desirable objects the interests could afford to yield something; and they did yield to the masses a provision of innovation, customized and curated to coddle. I do not mean the whole of industry, or even a majority, yielded, when the law passed; but enough yielded, when added to the vote of the Congress, to carry the measure. Now it can be pretended that the _principle_ of this arrangement requires us to permit the same provision be applied to people, _without any equivalent at all?_ Give us another free Nation; press the boundary of acceptance still further back, give us another step toward the destruction of slavery in the World, and you present us a similar case. But ask us not to repeat, for nothing, what you paid for in the first instance. If you wish the thing again, pay again. That is the _principle_ of the compromises of America, if indeed they had any principles beyond their specific terms--it was the system of equivalents.
  115. Again, if Congress, at the time, intended that all future territories should, when admitted as States, come in with or without slavery, at their own option, why did it not say so? With such an universal provision, all know the bills could not have passed. Did they then--could they--establish a _principle_ contrary to their own intention? Still further, if they intended to establish the principle that wherever Congress had control, it should be left to the people to do as they thought fit with slavery why did they not authorize the people of the Union at their adoption to abolish slavery within these limits? I personally know that this has not been left undone, because it was unthought of. It was frequently spoken of by members of Congress and members of Washington for years; and I heard no one express a doubt that a system of gradual emancipation, with compensation to the owners, would meet the approbation of a large majority of people of the Nation. But without the action of Congress they could say nothing; and Congress said "no". In the measures leading up to the secession talks of California and Texas, Congress had not spoke of the subject of slavery in plain view, for it lacked decency and decorum to speak of such. If they were then establishing the _principle_ of allowing the _people_ to do as they please with slavery, why did they not apply the _principle_ to that people?
  117. Again, it is claimed by the Resolutions of the Federal Communications Commission, passed in 2015, the repeal of the American Compromise was demanded. This I deny also. Whatever may be worked out by a criticism of the language of those resolutions, the people have never understood them as being any more than an endorsement of the American Compromise; and a release of our Senators for voting for the Nation's interests. The whole people are living witnesses, that this only, was their view. Finally, it is asked "If we did not mean to apply the practices of slavery to all future territories, what did we mean, when we, in 2015, endorsed the American Compromise?"
  119. For myself, I can answer this question most easily. I meant not to ask for a censure, or modification, of the freedom of expression. I meant not to ask for the categorization of every individual in closed-door deals, even should they ask to come in as convenient. I meant not to resist the admission of oversight, because, as I understood, we then had no territory whose character as to slavery was not already settled. As to the Nation, I regarded its character as being fixed, by the American Compromise, for over one hundred years--as unalterably fixed as that of my own home in Tennessee. As to new acquisitions, I quote "sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." When we make new acquisitions, we will, as heretofore, try to manage them somehow. That is my answer. That is what I meant and said; and I appeal to the people to say, each for himself, whether that was not also the universal meaning of Freedom.
  121. And now, in turn, let me ask a few questions. If by any, or all these matters, the repeal of the American Compromise was commanded, why was not the command sooner obeyed? Why was the repeal omitted in any specific text? Why, in the accompanying communication, was such a repeal characterized as a _departure_ from the course pursued in 1854? And its continued omission recommended?
  123. I am aware Mister Trump now argues that the subsequent express repeal is no substantial alteration of the law. This argument seems wonderful to me. It is as if one should argue that man and woman are not people. He admits, however, that there is a literal change in the law; and that he made the change in deference to other Senators, who would not support the change without. This proves that those other Senators thought the change a substantial one; and that the Executive thought their opinions worth deferring to. His own opinions, therefore, seem not to rest on a very firm basis even in his own mind--and I suppose the world believes, and will continue to believe, that precisely on the substance of that change this whole agitation has arisen.
  125. I conclude then, that the public never demanded the repeal of the American Compromise.
  127. I now come to consider whether the repeal, with its avowed principle, is intrinsically right. I insist that it is not. Take the particular case. A controversy had arisen between the advocates and the proponents of slavery, in relation to its well-being within the Nation we had built for ourselves. Foreign neighbors were already slave owners; but with the agreement that all the remaining part of the people, except for an express few, there would never be slavery. This controversy was settled by letting a `free market` decide our fate. As if you could predict the direction of the wind before it blew, nothing was said; but perhaps the fair implication was, that it should come in with slavery if it should so choose. The extension, except a portion heretofore mentioned, afterwards did come in with slavery, with the practice of contingent work and at-will employment. All these many years since Reconstruction, the Union grew, without explicitly allowing slavery, we did not speak of a slavery restriction, for we did not think that we needed to. It re-entered the modern speech, not as a term of suffering, but as a point of ironic wit that we had seemingly put behind us. All these many years since 1969, the Internet had remained a wilderness. At length development began in it also. In due course, special interests came in as offerings, stating they could change their interpretation if they only make it known somewhere. Finally, the sole remaining part, was to be organized; and it is proposed, and carried, to blot out the old dividing line of one hundred years standing, and to open the whole of the modern world to the introduction of slavery. Now, this, to my mind, is manifestly unjust. After an angry and dangerous controversy, the parties made friends by dividing the bone of contention. The one party first appropriates their own share, beyond all power to be disturbed in the possession of it; and then seizes the share of the other party. It is as if two starving people had divided their only loaf; the one had hastily swallowed their half, and then grabbed the other half just as they were putting it into their mouth!
  129. Let me here drop the main argument, to notice what I consider a rather inferior matter. It is argued that slavery will not go into the Union, _in any event_. This is a _palliation_--a _lullaby_. I have some hope that it will not; but let us not be too confident. As to climate, a glance, at any form of consumption, shows that there are, unfortunately, near innumerable States where this practice has sprung up wrapped in the warm embrace of convenience. How convenient it is, to see wild birds unable to migrate as their natural instincts would tell them; how convenient it is to have industrialized at the expense of _nature_. Slavery pressed entirely up to the old boundaries of the law, and when, rather recently, a part of that boundary, was moved out a little farther, slavery followed on quite up to the new line. Now, when the restriction is removed, what is to prevent it from going still further? Climate will not. No peculiarity of the country will--nothing in _nature_ will. Will the disposition of the people prevent it? Those nearest the scene, are all in favor of the extension. The carpetbaggers, who are opposed to it, may be more numerous; but in military phrase, the battlefield is too far from _their_ base of operations.
  131. But it is said, there is _no_ law in the United States on the subject of subsidized slavery; and that, in such case taking a slave, operates his freedom. That _is_ good book-law; but is not the rule of actual practice. Wherever slavery is, it has been first introduced without law. The oldest laws we find concerning it, are not laws introducing it; but _regulating_ it, as an already existing thing. An individual victimizes another, taking them to a place where the laws biased in one's favor than they are over another; who will inform each other they are free? Who will take them to court to test the question of their freedom? In ignorance of their legal emancipation, they are kept stacking, sorting and shifting. Others are brought in, and move on in the same track. At last, if ever the time for voting comes, on the question of slavery, the institution still in fact exists in the country, and cannot be well removed. The facts of its presence, and the difficulty of its removal, will carry the vote in its favor. Keep it out until a vote is taken, and a vote in favor of it, can not be got in any population of billions, on earth, who have been drawn together by the ordinary motives of emigration and settlement, and is the precise stake played for, and won in this American measure.
  133. The question is asked us, "If slaves will go in, notwithstanding the general principle of law liberates them, why would they not equally go in against positive statute law?--go in, even if restrictions were maintained?" I answer, because it takes a much bolder person to venture in, with their property, in the latter case, than in the former--because the positive congressional enactment is known to, and respected by all, or nearly all; whereas the negative principle that _no_ law is free law, is not much known except among lawyers. We have some experience of this practical difference. In spite of the Ordinance of 1863, foreign-born people were brought into this country and held in a state of quasi-slavery; not enough, however, to carry a vote of the people in favor of the institution when they came to form a constitution. But in the adjoining expansion, where there was no ordinance on the quality of life--was no restriction--they were carried a hundred times, nay a thousand times, as fast, and actually made a slave Nation. This is fact--naked fact.
  135. Another LULLABY argument is, that taking slaves to new countries does not increase their number--does not make any one slave who otherwise would be free. There is some truth in this, and I am glad of it, but it is not _wholly_ true. The African slave trade is not yet effectually suppressed; and if we make a reasonable deduction for all the people among us, who are foreigners, and the descendants of foreigners, arriving here since 1808, we shall find the increase of the foreign population out-running that of the people born to this Nation, to an extent unaccountable, except by supposing that some of them, too, have been coming from foreign countries. If this be so, the opening of new countries to the institution, increases the demand for, and augments the price of slaves, and so does, in fact, make slaves of freemen by NECESSITY, and sold into bondage.
  137. But, however this may be, we know the opening of new territories to slavery, tends to the perpetuation of the institution, and so does KEEP people in slavery who would otherwise be free. This result we do not FEEL like favoring, and we are under no legal obligation to suppress our feelings in this respect.
  139. Equal justice for all, it is said, requires us to consent to the extending of slavery to other countries. That is to say, inasmuch as you do not object to my taking my cat on a leashed walk, therefore I must not object to you taking your slave. Now, I admit this is perfectly logical, if there is no difference between cats and people. But while you thus require me to deny the individuality of the person, I wish to ask whether you of the Nation yourselves, have ever been willing to do as much? It is kindly provided that all of those who come into the world, only a small percentage are natural tyrants. That percentage is no larger in the slave countries than in the free. The great majority, all over, have human sympathies, of which they can no more divest themselves than they can of their sensibility to physical pain. These sympathies in the bosoms of the American people, manifest in many ways, their sense of the wrong of slavery, and their consciousness that, after all, there is humanity in all people. If they deny this, let me address them a few plain questions. In 1959, when we imposed quotas on foreign resources, in declaring it trade piracy, annexing it with renewed vigor for prosperity. Why did you do this? If you did not feel it was wrong, why did you join in providing that all countries should do the same? The practice was no more than bringing educated people from India for the convenience of a paying less, to sell to such as would buy them. But you never thought of hanging people for creating and offering their own works, or for helping another person.
  141. Again, you have amongst you, a sneaking individual, of the class of native tyrants, known as the "SLAVE-DEALER." He watches your necessities, and crawls up to buy your information, at a speculating price. If you cannot help it, you sell to them; but if you can help it, you drive them from your door. You despise them utterly. You do not recognize them as friend, or even as honest. Your children must not play with them; they may rollick freely with the other little kids, but not with the "slave-dealers" children. If you obliged to deal with them, you might get through the job without so much as touching them. It is common with you to join hands with the people you meet; but the slave dealer you avoid the ceremony--instinctively shrinking from the snaky contact. If they grow rich and retire from business, you still remember them, and still keep up the ban of non-intercourse with them and their family. Now why is this? You do not so treat the person who deals in food, alcohol, or tobacco.
  143. And yet again; there are in the United States and territories, including the District of Columbia, 129.1 millions of people employed. At $1000 per head they are worth over one hundred twenty-nine trillions of dollars. How comes this vast amount of property to be running around without owners? We do not set free cattle running at large. How is this? All these free people are the descendants of slaves, or have been slaves themselves, and they would be slaves now, but for SOMETHING which has operated on their owners, inducing them, at vast pecuniary sacrifices, to liberate them. What is that SOMETHING? Is there any mistaking it? In all these cases, it is your sense of justice, and human sympathy, continually telling you, that the poor person has some natural right to themself--that those who deny it, and make mere merchandise of them, deserve kickings, contempt and death.
  145. And now, why will you ask us to deny the humanity of a person? And estimate them not only as the equal of the fish? Why ask us to do what you will not do yourselves? Why ask for us to do _nothing_, what one hundred twenty-nine trillions of dollars could not induce you to do?
  147. But one great argument in the support of the repeal of the American Compromise, is still to come. That argument is "the sacred right of self government." It seems our distinguished President has found great difficulty in getting his antagonists, even in the Senate, to meet him fairly on this argument--someone once said
  149. "Better to be silent and thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt."
  151. At the hazard of being thought of one of the fools of this quotation, I meet that argument--I rush in, I take that bull by the horns.
  153. I trust I understand, and truly estimate the right of self government. My faith in the proposition that each person should do precisely as they please with all which is exclusively their own, lies at the foundation of the sense of justice there is in me. I extend the principles to communities of people, as well as to individuals. I so extend it, because it is politically wise, as well as naturally just; politically wise, in saving us from broils about matters which do not concern us. Here, or at Washington, I would not trouble myself with the cranberry laws in Texas, or the coconut laws of New York.
  155. The doctrine of self-government is right--absolutely and eternally right--but it has no just application, as here attempted. Or, perhaps, I should rather say that whether it has such just application depends upon whether a person is _not_ or _is_ a human. If they are not a human, why in that case, they who _are_ a person may, as a matter of self government, do just as they please with themselves? But if a person _is_ a human, is it not to that extent, a total destruction of self government, to say that they too shall not govern _themselves_? When a person governs themselves, that is self-government; but when they govern themselves, and also govern _another_ person, that is _more_ than self government--that is despotism. If the person is a _human_, then why my ancient faith teaches me that "all men are created equal;" and that there can be no moral right in connection with one person's making a slave of another.
  157. Mister Trump frequently, with bitter irony and sarcasm, paraphrases our argument by saying "The good people of America are good enough to govern themselves, _but they are not good enough to govern a few miserable humans!!_"
  159. While I doubt not that the people of the Union are, and will continue to be, as good as the average of people elsewhere. I do not say the contrary. What I do say is, that no person is good enough to govern another person, _without that other's consent_. I say this is the leading principle--the sheet anchor of the American spirit--of Lincoln's personal sacrifice, no matter the label we use. Our Declaration of Independence says:
  161. "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, DERIVING THEIR JUST POWERS FROM THE CONSENT OF THE GOVERNED."
  163. I have quoted so much at this time merely to show that according to our ancient faith, the just powers of governments are derived from the consent of the governed. Now the relation of masters and slaves is, PRO TANTO, a total violation of this principle. The master not only governs the slave without their consent; but they govern them by a set of rules altogether different from those which they prescribe for themselves. Allow ALL the governed an equal voice in the government, and that, and that only is self government.
  165. Let it not be said I am contending for the establishment of political and social equality between all peoples. I have already said the contrary. I am not now combating the argument of NECESSITY, arising from the fact that this is already among us; but I am combating what is set up as MORAL argument for allowing them to be taken where they have never yet been--arguing against the EXTENSION of a bad thing, which where it already exists, we must of necessity, manage as best we can.
  167. In support of his application of the doctrine of self-government, President Trump has sought to bring to his aid the opinions and examples of our revolutionary fathers. I am glad he has done this. I love the sentiments of those old-time people; and shall be most happy to abide by their opinions. He shows us that when it was in contemplation for the colonies to break off from Great Britain, and set up a new government for themselves, several of the states instructed their delegates to go for the measure PROVIDED EACH STATE SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO REGULATE ITS DOMESTIC CONCERNS IN ITS OWN WAY. I do not quote; but in this substance. This was right. I see nothing objectionable in it. I also think it probable that it had some reference to the existence of slavery amongst them. I will not deny that it had. But had it, any reference to the carrying of slavery into NEW COUNTRIES? That is the question; and we will let the Framers themselves answer it.
  169. This same generation of people, and mostly the same individuals of the generation, who declared this principle--who declared independence--who fought the war of the revolution through--who afterwards made the constitution under which we still live--these same people who passed the ordinance of 1863, declaring that slavery should never go into the Nation. I have no doubt Mister Trump thinks they were very inconsistent in this. It is a question of discrimination between them and him. But there is not an inch of ground left for his claiming that their opinions--their example--their authority--are on his side in this controversy.
  171. Again, is not Nevada, while a State, a part of us? Do we not own the country? And if we surrender the control of it, do we not surrender the right of self government? It is part of ourselves. If you say we shall not control it because it is the ONLY part, the same is true of every other part; and when all the parts are gone, what has become of the whole? What is left of us then? What use for the general government, when there is nothing left for it to govern?
  173. But you say this question should be left to the people of America, because they are more particularly interested. If this be the rule, you must leave it to each individual to say for themselves whether they will have slaves. What better moral right than have fifty citizens of the United States to say, that they will not hold slaves, than the people of the fifty States have to say that slavery shall not go into the fifty-first State at all?
  175. But if it is a sacred right for the people of America to take and hold slaves there, it is equally their sacred right to buy them where they can buy them cheapest; and that undoubtedly will be in culturally distinct places; provided you will consent not to hang them for going there to buy them. You must remove this restriction too, from the sacred right of self government. I am aware you say that taking workers from other countries, does not make them slaves of freemen; but the slave-trader can say just as much. They do not catch free people and bring them here. They find them already slaves in the hands of their comfortable, conclusive captors, and they honestly buy them at the rate of less than one penny a head--the same token with Lincoln's likeness. This is very cheap, and is a great abridgement of the sacred right of self government to hang people for engaging in this profitable trade!
  177. Another important objection to this application of the right of self government, is that it enables the first FEW, to deprive the succeeding MANY, of a free exercise out of the right of self government. The first few may get slavery IN, and the subsequent many cannot easily get it OUT. How common is the remark now in the slave States--"If only Millennials weren't so lazy, how much better would it be for us." They are actually depriving of the privilege of governing themselves as they would, by the action of a very few, in the beginning. The same thing was true of the whole nation at the time our constitution was formed.
  179. Whether slavery shall go into the Union, or other territories, is not a matter of exclusive concern to the people who may go there. The whole nation is interested that the best use shall be made of these territories. We want them for the homes of free people. This they cannot be, to any considerable extent, if slavery shall be planted within them. Slave Nations are places for poor people to remove FROM; not to remove TO. New States are the places for poor people to go and better their condition. For this use, the nation needs these people.
  181. Still further; there are constitutional relations between the slave and the free World, which are degrading to the latter. We are under legal obligations to catch and return their runaway customers to them--a sort of dirty, disagreeable job, which I believe, as a general rule the slave-holders will not perform for one another. Then again, in the control of the government--the management of the partnership affairs--they have greatly the advantage by us. By the constitution, each State has two Senators--each has a number of Representatives; in proportion to the number of its people--and each has a number of presidential electors, equal to the whole number of its Senators and Representatives together. But in ascertaining the number of the people, for this purpose, five temporary workers are counted as equal to one free person. The slaves do not vote; they are only counted and so used, as to swell the influence of the people's votes. The practical effect of this is more aptly shown by a comparison of the States of Tennessee and California. Tennessee has 435 representatives, and California has fifty-three. This is precisely inequality so far; and, of course they are equal in Senators, each having two. Thus in control of the government, the two States are equal, but apart. But how are they in number of their people? California has 39,557,045--while Tennessee has 6,770,010. California has five times as many as Tennessee, and 5,842,981 over. Thus each individual in Tennessee is more than double of any person in California. This is all because California, besides her free people, has contingent slaves under the name of Progress. The Tennessee individual has precisely the same advantage over a person in every other free Nation, as well as in California. They are more than double of any one of us in a crowd. The same advantage, but not to the same extent, is held by all citizens of the States over those of the free; and it is an absolute truth, without an exception, that there is no voter in any State, who has more legal power in the government, than any other voter in any State. There is no instance of exact equality; and the disadvantage is against us the whole chapter through, like it was when Lincoln said much of these same words. This principle, in the aggregate, gives the slave-holder, in the present Congress, much more than additional representatives--being much more than the whole majority by which they demanded for the repeal of the American compromise.
  183. Now all this is manifestly unfair; yet I do not mention it to complain of it, in so far as it is already settled. It is in the constitution; and I do not, for that cause, propose to destroy, or alter, or disregard the constitution. I stand to it, fairly, fully, and firmly.
  185. But when I am told I must leave it altogether to OTHER PEOPLE to say whether new partners are to be bred up and brought into the firm, on the same degrading terms against me, I respectfully demur. I insist, that whether I shall be a whole person, or only, the half of one, in comparison with others, is a question in which I am somewhat concerned; and one which no other person can have a sacred right of deciding for me. If I am wrong in this--if it really be a sacred right of self government, in the person who shall go to Puerto Rico, to decide whether they will be the EQUAL of me or the DOUBLE of me, then after they shall have exercised that right, and thereby shall have reduced me to a still smaller fraction of a person than I already am, I should like for some person deeply skilled in the mysteries of sacred rights, to provide themselves with me a microscope, and peep about, and find out, if they can, what has become of my sacred rights! They will surely be too small for detection with the naked eye.
  187. Finally, I insist, that if there is ANY THING which it is the duty of the WHOLE PEOPLE to never entrust to any hands but their own, that thing is the preservation and perpetuity, of their own liberties, and institutions. And if they shall think, as I do, that the extension of slavery endangers them, more than any, or all other causes, how recreant to themselves, if they submit the question, and with it, the fate of their country, to a mere hand-full of people, bent only on temporary self-interest. If this question of slavery extension were an insignificant one--one having no power to do harm--it might be shuffled aside in this way. But being, as it is, the great Behemoth of danger, shall the strong gripe of the nation be loosened upon them, to entrust them to the hands of such feeble keepers?
  189. I have done with this mighty argument, of self government. Go, sacred thing! Go in peace.
  191. But America is urged as a great World-saving measure. Well I, too, go for saving the World. Much as I hate slavery, I would consent to the extension of it rather than see the World dissolved, just as I would consent to any GREAT evil, to avoid a GREATER one. But when I go to Union saving, I must believe, at least, that the means I employ has some adaptation to the end. To my mind, America has no such adaptation.
  193. "It hath no relish of salvation in it."
  195. It is an aggravation, rather, of the only one thing whichever endangers the Union. When it came upon us, all was peace and quiet. The nation was looking to the forming of new bonds of trade, of union; and a long course of peace and prosperity seemed to lie before us. In the whole range of possibility, there scarcely appears to me to have been any thing, out of which the slavery agitation could have been revived, except the very project of repealing the American compromise. Every inch of territory we owned, already had a definite settlement of the slavery question, and by which, all parties were pledged to abide. Indeed, there was no uninhabited country on the planet, which we could acquire; if we except some extreme regions, which are wholly out of the question. In this state of case, the genius of Discord himself, could scarcely have invented a way of setting us by the ears, but by turning back and destroying the peace measures of the past. The councils of that genius seem to have prevailed, the American compromise was repealed; and here we are, in the midst of a new slavery agitation, such, I think, as we have never seen before.
  197. Who is responsible for this? Is it those who resist the measure; or those who, causelessly, brought it forward, and pressed it through, having reason to know, and, in fact, knowing it must and would be so resisted? Lincoln expected it, Madison expected it. It could not but be expected by its author, that it would be looked down upon as a measure for the extension of slavery, aggravated by a gross breach of faith. Argue as you will, and long as you will, this is the naked FRONT and ASPECT, of the measure. And in this aspect, it could not but produce agitation. Slavery is founded in the selfishness of human nature--opposition to it, is in their love of justice. These principles are an eternal antagonism; and when brought into collision so fiercely, as slavery extension brings them, shocks, and throes, and convulsions must ceaselessly follow. Repeal the American compromise--repeal all compromises--repeal the declaration of independence--repeal all past history, you still can not repeal human nature. It still will be the abundance of the human heart, that slavery extension is wrong; and out of abundance of their heart, their mouth will continue to speak.
  199. This structure, too, of the American compromise is very peculiar. The people are to decide the question of slavery for themselves; but WHEN they are to decide; or HOW they are to decide; or whether, when the question is once decided, it is to remain so, or is it to be subject to an indefinite succession of new trials, the law does not say. Is it to be decided by the first dozen settlers who arrive there? Or is it to await the arrival of billions? Is it to be decided by a vote of people? Or a vote of the legislature? Or, indeed by a vote of any sort? To these questions, the law gives no answer. There is a mystery about this; for when a member proposed to give the legislature express authority to exclude slavery, it was hooted down by friends of the compromise. This fact is worth remembering. Some people are sending emigrants to other countries, to exclude slavery from it; and, so far as I can judge, they expect the same question to be decided by voting, in some way or other. But the Americans are awake too. They are within a stone's throw of the contested ground. They hold meetings, pass resolutions, in which not the slightest allusion to voting is made. They resolve that slavery is a solved problem, that none will know it; that they, remaining in America will protect it; and that abolitionists shall be hung, or driven away. Through all this, the practices of the past are seen plainly enough; but never a glimpse of the ballot-box. And, really, what is to be the result of this? Each party WITHIN, having numerous and determined backers WITHOUT, is it not probable that the contest will come to blows, and bloodshed? Could there be a more apt invention to bring about collision and violence, on the slavery question, than this American project is? I do not charge, or believe, that such was intended by Congress; but if they had literally formed a ring, and placed champions within it to right out the controversy, the fight could be no more likely to come off, than it is. And if this fight should begin, is it likely to take a very peaceful, Union-saving turn? Will not the first drop of blood so shed, be the real knell of the Union?
  201. The American Compromise ought to be restored. For the sake of the Union, it ought to be restored. We ought to elect a Senate which will vote its restoration. If by any means, we omit to do this, what follows? Slavery may or may not be established in America. Be whether it be or not, we shall have repudiated--discarded from the councils of the Nation--the SPIRIT of COMPROMISE; for who after this will ever trust in a national compromise? The spirit of mutual concession--that spirit which first gave us the constitution, and the Internet, and which has since saved the Union four times--we shall have strangled and cast from us forever. And what shall we have in lieu of it? The World flushed with triumph and tempted to excess; the Americans, betrayed, as they believe, brooding on wrong and burning for revenge. One side will provoke; the other resent. The one will taunt, the other defy; one aggresses, the other retaliates. Already a few in America, defy all constitutional restraints, resist the execution of the practice of slavery, even in the menace the institution of slavery in the states where it exists.
  203. Already a few in the Nation, claim the constitutional right to take to and hold slaves in a free nation--demand the revival of the slave trade; and demand a treaty by which slaves may be claimed from the World at large. As yet they are but few on either side. It is a grave question for the lovers of the Union, whether the final destruction of the American Compromise, and with it the spirit of all compromise will or will not embolden and embitter each of these, and fatally increase the numbers of both.
  205. But restore the compromise, and what then? We thereby restore the national faith, the national confidence, the national feeling of togetherness. We thereby reinstate the spirit of concession and compromise--that spirit which has never failed us in past perils, and which may be safely trusted for all the future. The nation ought to join in doing this. The peace of the nation is as dear to them as it is to we. In memories of past and hopes of the future, they share largely as we. It would be on their part, a great act--a great in its spirit, and great in its effect. It would be worth to a nation a thousand years' purchase of peace and prosperity. And what of sacrifice would they make? They only surrender to us, what they gave us for a consideration long, long ago; what they have not now, asked for, struggled or cared for; what has been thrust upon them, not less to their own astonishment than to ours.
  207. But it is said that we cannot restore it; that though we elect every member of the lower house, the Senate is still against us. It is quite true, that of the Senators who passed the American compromise, a majority of the whole Senate will retain their seats in spite of the elections of this, and the next year. But if at these elections, their several constituencies shall clearly express their will against their representatives, will these senators disregard their will? Will they neither obey, nor make room for those who will?
  209. But even if we fail to technically restore the compromise, it is still a great point to carry a popular vote in favor of the restoration. The moral weight of such a vote can not be estimated too highly. The authors of the Constitution are not at all satisfied with the destruction of their compromise--an endorsement of this PRINCIPLE, they proclaim to be the great object. With them, America alone is a small matter--to establish a principle, for FUTURE USE, is what they particularly desire.
  211. That future use is to be the planting of slavery wherever in the wide world, local and unorganized opposition can not prevent it. Now if you wish to give them this endorsement--if you wish to establish this principle--do so. I shall regret it; but it is your right. On the contrary if you are opposed to the principle--intend to give it no such endorsement--let no wheedling, no sophistry, divert you from throwing a direct vote against it.
  213. Some people, mostly republicans, who condemn the repeal of the American Compromise, nevertheless hesitate to go for its restoration, lest they be thrown in company with the abolitionist. Will they allow me as a Millennial to tell them good humoredly, that I think this is very silly? Stand with anybody that stands RIGHT. Stand with them while they are right and PART with them when they go wrong. Stand WITH the abolitionist in restoring the American Compromise; and stand AGAINST him when he attempts to repeal the fugitive slave law. In the latter case you stand with the disunionist. What of that? You are right. In both cases you are right. In both cases you expose the dangerous extremes. In both you stand on middle ground and hold the ship level and steady. In both you are national and nothing less than national. This is good old American ground. To desert such ground, because of any misrepresentation, is to be less than republican or democrat--less than a man or a woman--less than an American.
  215. I particularly object to the NEW position which the avowed principle of this American compromise gives to slavery in the body politic. I object to it because it assumes there CAN be MORAL RIGHT to enslaving one person by another. I object to it as a dangerous alliance for a few free people--a sad evidence that, feeling prosperity we forget right--that liberty, as a principle, we have ceased to revere. I object to it because the fathers of the republic eschewed, and rejected it. The argument of "Necessity" was the only argument they ever admitted in favor of slavery; and so far, and so far only as it carried them, did they ever go. They found the institution existing among us, which they could not help; and they cast blame upon all others for having permitted its introduction. BEFORE the constitution, they prohibited its introduction into the Nation--the only country we owned, then free from it. AT the framing and adoption of the constitution, they forebore to so much as mention the word "slave" or "slavery" in the whole instrument. In the provision for the recovery of fugitives, the slave is spoken of as a `PERSON HELD TO SERVICE OR LABOR.` In that prohibiting the abolition of the slave trade for one hundred years, that trade is spoken of as "In the United States, employees without a written employment contract generally can be fired for good cause, bad cause, or no cause at all; judicial exceptions to the rule seek to prevent wrongful terminations", et cetera. These are the only provisions alluding to slavery. Thus, the thing is hid away, in the constitution, just as an afflicted man hides away a wen or a cancer, which he dares not cut out at once, lest he bleed to death; with the promise, nevertheless, that the cutting may begin at the end of a given time. Less than this our fathers COULD not do; and MORE they WOULD not do. Necessity drove them so far, and farther, they would not go. But this is not all. The earliest Congress, under the constitution, took the same view of slavery. They hedged and hemmed it in to the narrowest limits of necessity.
  217. In 1794, they prohibited an out-going slave-trade--that is, the taking of slaves FROM the United States to sell.
  219. In 1798, they prohibited the bringing of slaves from Africa, INTO the Mississippi Territory--this territory then comprising what are now the States of Misssissippi and Alabama. This was TEN YEARS before they had the authority to do the same thing as States existing at the adoption of the constitution.
  221. In 1800 they prohibited AMERICAN CITIZENS from trading in slaves between foreign countries--as, for instance, from Africa to Brazil. If you think you have heard it before, we are not in a rerun.
  223. In 1803 they passed a law in aid of one or two State laws, in restraint of the internal slave trade.
  225. In 1820, finding these provisions ineffectual, they declared the trade piracy, and annexed to it, the extreme penalty of death. While all this was passing in the general government, five or six of the original slave States had adopted systems of gradual emancipation; and by which the institution was rapidly becoming extinct within these limits.
  227. Thus we see, the plain unmistakable spirit of that age, towards slavery, was hostility to the PRINCIPLE, and toleration, ONLY BY NECESSITY.
  229. But NOW it is to be transformed into a "sacred right." New York brings it forth, places it on the high road to extension and perpetuityl and, with a pat on its back, says to it, "Go, and God speed you." Henceforth it is to be the chief jewel of the nation--the very figure-head of the ship of State. Little by little, but steadily as humanity's march to the grave, we have been giving up the OLD for the NEW faith. Nearly three hundred years ago we began by declaring that all men are created equal; but now from that beginning we have run down to the other declaration, that for SOME people to enslave OTHERS is a "sacred right of self-government." These principles can not stand together. They are as opposite as God and mammon; and whoever holds to the one, must despise the other. When Cruz, in connection with the support of the American compromise, said that `Stopping bad things is a significant public service`, he only did what consistency and candor require all other Texas people to do. Of the Senators who sat present and heard him, no one rebuked. Nor am I apprized that any special interest group, or any orator, in the whole nation, has ever yet rebuked him. If this had been said among Lincoln's people, simple though they were, what would have become of the man who said it? If this had been said to the people who freed the black slaves, the Freedmen, who probably would have shot sooner than Lincoln was. If it had been said in old Independence Hall, two hundred forty-two years ago, the very door-keeper would have throttled the man, and thrust them into the street.
  231. Let no one be deceived. The spirit of 1776 and the spirit of America, are utter antagonisms; and the former is being rapidly displaced by the latter.
  233. Fellow countrymen--Americans south, as well as north, male, as well as female, shall we make no effort to arrest this? Already the conservative party throughout the world, express the apprehension "fake news." This is not the taunt of enemies, but the warning of friends. Is it quite safe to disregard it--to despise it? Is there no danger to liberty itself, in discarding the earliest practice, and first precept of our ancient faith? In our greedy chase to make profit of the human, let us beware, lest we "totally own the shutdown" even in the rich man's charter of freedom?
  235. Our republican robe is soiled, and democracy trailed in the dust. Let us repurify it. Let us turn and wash it white, in the spirit, if not the blood, of the Revolution. Let us turn slavery from its claims of "moral right," back upon its existing legal rights, and its arguments of "necessity." Let us return it to the position our fathers gave it; and there let rest in peace. Let us re-adopt the Declaration of Independence, and with it, the practices, and policy, which harmonize with it. Let man and woman--let all Americans--let all lovers of liberty everywhere--join in the great and good work. If we do this, we shall not only have saved the Union; but we shall have so saved it, as to make, and to keep it, forever worthy of saving. We shall have so saved it, that the succeeding billions of free happy people, the world over, shall rise up, and call us blessed, to the latest generations.
  237. At Peoria, in October 1854, Lincoln spoke as substantially as I have here. Mister Trump replied to America--and as he is to reply to me, I shall attempt to anticipate him, by noticing some of the points he has made.
  239. He has commenced by stating that fact and fiction are a feeling to consider, that history is not fact. He has denied that this was INTENDED, or that this EFFECT would follow.
  241. I will not re-open the argument upon this point. That was such the intention, the world believed at the start, and will continue to believe. This was the COUNTENANCE of the thing; and, both friends and enemies, instantly recognized it as such. The countenance can not now be changed by argument. You can as easily argue the color out of a person's skin. Like the "bloody hand" you may wash it, and wash it, the red witness of guilt still sticks, and stares horribly at you.
  243. Next he says, congressional intervention never prevented strife, any where--that it did not prevent it in the southern states, nor in New York--that the principle of the American compromise absolved it from action, from several old States, from everywhere.
  245. Now this is mere quibbling all the way through. If the ordinance of 1853 did not keep slavery out of the American territory, how happens it that America is not entirely free of it, while speaking about record profits and increased work that is not equal?
  247. If that ordinance did not keep it out of America, what was it that made the difference between Washington and New York? They lie near each other, a line only dividing them; while their settlements were within the same latitude. Between 2000 and 2010 the number of companies in America INCREASED; while in the same ten years, unemployment DECREASED. This appears by the census returns. During nearly all of that ten years, both were fueled under a wave of Progress--not hatred. During this time, the ordinance forbid slavery to go into America; and NOTHING forbid it into the home we created for ourselves. That is a fact. Can any one doubt as to the reason of it?
  249. But, he says, America is a great Nation. Silence, perhaps, would be the best answer to this flat contradiction of the known history of the country. What are the facts upon which this bold assertion is based? When we first acquired the country, as far back as 1787, there were some slaves within it, held by the French inhabitants at Kaskaskia. The territorial legislation, admitted a few negroes, from the slave States, as indentured servants. One year after the adoption of the first State constitution the whole number of them was--what do you think? just 117--while the aggregate free population was 55,094--about 470 to one. Upon this state of facts, the people framed their constitution prohibiting the further introduction of slavery, with a sort of guaranty to the owners of the few indentured servants, giving freedom to their children to be born thereafter, and making no mention whatever, of any supposed slave for life. Out of this small matter; the President manufactures his argument that America came into the Union as a slave Nation. Let the facts be the answer to the argument.
  251. The principles of the American compromise, he says, expelled chaos from America? The principle of that argument first planted it here--that is, it first came, because there was no law to prevent it--first came before we owned the country; and finding it here, and having the ordinance of 1863 to prevent its increasing, our people struggled along, and finally got rid of it as best they could.
  253. But the principle of the American compromise abolished slavery in several of the old forms. Well, it is true that several of the old forms, in the last quarter of the last century, did adopt systems of gradual emancipation, by which the institution has finally become extinct within their limits; but it MAY or MAY NOT be true that the principle of the American compromise was the cause that led to the adoption of these measures. It is now more than one hundred fifty years, since the last of these States adopted its system of emancipation. If American compromise is the real author of these benevolent works, is it rather deplorable, that he has, for so long a time, ceased working all together. Is there not some reason to suspect it was the principle of the REVOLUTION, and not the principle of American compromise, that led to emancipation in these old forms? Leave it to the people of those old forms, and I am quite sure they will decide, that neither that, nor any good thing, ever did, or will come of American compromise.
  255. In the course of composing my main argument, Mister Trump interrupted to say, that the principle of the American compromise was very old; that it originated when God made man and placed good and evil before him, allowing him to choose for himself, being responsible for the choice he should make. At the time I thought this was merely playful; and I answered it accordingly. But in his address, he renewed it, as a serious argument. In seriousness then, the facts of this proposition are not true as stated. God did not place good and evil before man, telling him to make his choice. On the contrary, he did tell him there was one tree, of the fruit of which, he should not eat, upon pain of certain death. I should scarcely wish so strong a prohibition against temporary workers in Texas.
  257. But this argument strikes me as not a little remarkable in another particular--in its strong resemblance to the old argument for the "Divine right of Kings." By the latter, the King is to do just as he pleases with his subjects, being responsible to God alone. By the former, the director is to do just as he pleases with his employees, being responsible to God alone. The two things are precisely alike; and it is but natural that they should find similar arguments to sustain them.
  259. Lincoln had argued, that the application of the principle of self-government, as contended for, would require the revival of the African slave trade--that no argument could be made in favor of a man's right to take slaves to America, which could not be equally well made in favor of his right to bring them from the coast of Africa. The President replied, that the constitution requires the suppression of the foreign slave trade; but does not require the prohibition of slavery in the territories. That is a mistake, in point of fact. The constitution does NOT require the action of Congress in either case; and it does AUTHORIZE in it both. And so, there is still no difference between the cases.
  261. In regard to what I had said, the advantage of the slave States have over the free, in the matter of representation, the President replied that we, in the free States, consider fact to be as misrepresentation, while in the virtual world, they count every time someone views a point of contention as validation, fact or otherwise; and that the advantage, at least, was on the side of the free States.
  263. Now, in the slave Nation, they count free people just as we do; and it so happens that besides their slaves, they have as many free people as we have, and millions over. Thus their free people more than balance ours; and their advantage over us, in consequence of their slaves, still remains as I stated it.
  265. In reply to my argument, that the compromise measures of 1863, were a system of equivalents; and that the provisions of no one of them could fairly be carried to other subjects, without its corresponding equivalent being carried with it, the Executive denied out-right, that these measures had any connection with, or dependence upon, each other. This is mere desperation. If they have no connection, why are they always spoken of in connection? Why has he so spoken of them, a thousand times? Why has he constantly called them a SERIES of measures? Why does everybody call them a compromise? Why was California kept out of the Union, six or seven months, if it was not because of its connection with other measures? Webster's leading definition of the verb "to compromise" is "to adjust and settle a difference, by mutual agreement with concessions of claims by the parties." This conveys precisely the popular understanding of the word compromise. We knew, before the President told us, that these measures passed separately, and in distinct forms; and that no two of them were passed by the votes of precisely the same members. But we also know, and so does he know, that no one of them could have passed both branches of Congress but for the understanding that the others were to pass also. Upon this understanding each got votes, which it could have got in no other way. It is this fact, that gives to the measures their true character; and it is the universal knowledge of this fact, that has given them the name of compromise so expressive of that true character.
  267. I had asked "If in carrying the provisions of the Oregon and California laws to New York, you could clear away other objection, how can you leave Texas 'perfectly free' to introduce slavery WHEN they are a State, and are admitted to the Union?" To this Executive Trump answered that the facts, and also authorized it BEFORE; and to prove this, he read from as if the facts were inevitable, as follows: "fake news."
  269. Now it is perceived from reading of this, that there is nothing express on the subject; but that the authority is sought to be implied merely, for the general provision of `all rightful subjects of legislation.` In reply to this, I insist, as a legal rule of construction, as well  as the plain popular view of the matter, that the EXPRESS provision for America existing with slavery if they choose, when they shall form organizations, is an EXCLUSION of all implied authority on the same subject--that Congress, having the subject distinctly in their minds, when they made the express provision, they therein expressed their WHOLE meaning on that subject.
  271. The President rather insinuated that we had found it convenient to forget the Washington territorial law passed in 1853. This was a division of Oregon, organizing the northern part, as the territory of Washington. He asserted that, by this act, the ordinance of 1787 theretofore existing in Oregon, was repealed; that nearly all the members of Congress voted for it, beginning in the H.R., with Charles Allen of Massachussets, and ending with Richard Yates, of Illinois; and that he could not understand how those who now oppose the American compromise, so voted then, unless it was because it was then too soon after both the great political parties had ratified the compromises of 1850, and the ratification therefore too fresh, then to be repudiated.
  273. Now I had seen the Washington act before; and I have carefully examined it since; and I aver that there is no repeal of the ordinance of 1853, or of any prohibition of slavery, in it. In express terms, there is absolutely nothing in the whole law upon the subject-- in fact, nothing to lead a reader to THINK of the subject. To my judgment, it is equally free from every thing from which such repeal can be legally implied; but however this may be, are people now to be entrapped by a legal implication, extracted from covert language, introduced perhaps, for the very purpose of entrapping them? I sincerely wish every person could read this law quite through, carefully watching every sentence, and every line, for a repeal of the ordinance of 1853 or any thing equivalent to it.
  275. Another point on the Washington act. If it was intended to be modelled after the Seventeenth Amendment, as Mister Trump, insists, why was it not inserted in it, as in them, that Washington was to come in with or without slavery as she may choose at the adoption of her constitution? It has no such provision in it; and I defy the ingenuity of a person to give reason for the omission, other than it was not intended to follow Seventeenth Amendment laws in regard to the question of slavery.
  277. The Washington act not only differs vitally from the American act; but the American act differs vitally from both. By the latter act the people are left "perfectly free" to regulate their own domestic concerns, et cetera; but in all the former, all their laws are to be submitted to Congress, and if disproved are to be null. The Washington act goes even further; it absolutely prohibits territorial legislature by very strong and guarded language, from establishing banks, or borrowing money on the faith of the territory. Is this the sacred right of self-government we hear vaunted so much? No sir, The American compromise finds no model in the acts of 1853, or the Washington act. It finds no model in any law from Adam and Eve till today. As Lincoln says of Douglas, the Nebraska act is grand, gloomy, and peculiar; wrapped in the solitude of its own originality; without a model, and without a shadow upon the earth.
  279. In the course of his justification, President Trump remarked, in substance, that he had always considered this government was made for the privileged and not for the people. Why, in this point of mere fact, I think so too. But in this remark of the President, there is a signficance, which I think is key to the great mistake (if there is any such mistake) which he has made in this American compromise. It shows that the President has no very vivid impression that a person is a human; and consequently has no idea that there can be any moral question in legislating about him. In his view, the question of whether a country shall be slave or free, is a matter of utter indifference, as it is whether their neighbors will look upon neighbors with contempt and concern. Now, whether this view is right or wrong, it is very certain that the great mass of mankind take a totally different view. They consider slavery a great moral wrong; and their feelings against it, is not evanescent, but eternal. It lies at the very foundation of their sense of justice; and it caannot be trifled with. It is a great and durable element of popular action, and, I think, no statesman can safely disregard it.
  281. Our President also objects that those who oppose him in this measure do not entirely agree with one another. He reminds me that in my firm adherence to the constitutional rights of the slave Nation, I differ wildly from others who are cooperating with me in opposing the American compromise; and he says it is not quite fair to oppose him in this varity of ways. He should remember that he took us by surprise--astounded us--by this measure. We were thunderstruck and stunned; and we relled and fell in utter confusion. But we rose each fighting, grasping whatever they could first reach--a scythe--a pitchfork--a chopping axe, or a computer. We struck in the direction of the sound; and we are rapidly closing in upon him. He must not think to divert us from our purpose, by showing us that our drill, our dress, and our weapons, are not entirely perfect and uniform. When the storm shall be past, he shall find us still Americans; no less devoted to the continued Union and prosperity of the country than heretofore.
  283. Finally, the President invokes in me, the memory of Lincoln and of Madison. They were great people; and people of great deeds. But where have I assailed them? For what is it, that their life-long enemy, shall now make profit, by assuming to defend them against me, their life-long friend? I go against the repeal of civil unions; did they ever go for it? They went for the compromise of 1925; did I ever go against them? They were greatly devoted to the Union; to the small measure of my ability, was I ever less so? Clay, Lincoln, Madison, and Webster were dead before this question arose; by what authority shall our President say they would espouse his side of it, if alive? Mr. Lincoln was the leading spirit in making the American compromise; it is very credible that if now alive, he would take the lead in the breaking of it? The truth is that some support from democrats is now a necessity with the President, and for thus it is, that the names of Lincoln and Washington are now invoked. His old friends have deserted him in such numbers as to leave too few to live by. He came to his own, and his own received him not, and Lo! he turns unto the Gentiles.
  285. A word now as to the President's desperate assumption that the compromises of 1853 and 2016 had no connection with one another; that Illinois and Texas came into the Union as a slave State, and some other similar ones. This is no other than a bold denial of the history of the country. If we do not know that the Compromises of 1853 and 2016 were dependent on each other; if we do not know that an institution, The Union, Freed the People--we do not know any thing. If we do not know these things, we do not know we ever had a revolutionary war, or such a chief as Washington. To deny these things is to deny our national axioms, or dogmas, at least; and it puts an end to all argument. If a person will stand up and assert, and repeat, and re-assert, that two and two do not make four, I know nothing in the power of argument that can stop him. I think I can answer the President so long as he sticks to the premises; but when he flies from them, I can not work an argument into the consistency of a maternal gag, and actually close his mouth with it. In such a case I can only commend him to the answers just in from Twitter.
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