« ПретходнаНастави »
whether there may not be some considerations, - whether our own daily business, the maintenance of our wives and families, the securing of a competence for a comfortable old age, whether these considerations may not be of more importance than that we should learn by rote, and recite by rote, every dogma of the party to which we are attached ?
I have spoken of the sub-treasury as I understand it, of its present and its future operations, and I have spoken of this tariff. If it shall remain unmodified and unremoved, it is one consola. tion to know that it is not because we have favored it. All the pursuits of society are certain to be affected by it; and looking to the present state of the country, it is not a matter of slight interest to inquire whether the hands into which we are now about, on the one side or the other, to commit the destinies of the nation, — whether they are men who believe that our true greatness and true glory consist in a conservative policy, in maintaining ourselves where we are, and in upholding ourselves in the view of the world, as a steady, just, enlightened, manly, and not encroaching republic; or whether we commit them to the hands of those who consider that our “manifest destiny" is war, aggression, turmoil, acquisition, annexation, and carrying our system, willing or unwilling, to the fullest extent of our power, to every land, by the bayonet and the sword.
Gentlemen, I think that the policy of the candidate proposed by our opponents, and of those who support him most vigorously, is of a dangerous character. I think that, in looking back to the past, we see that he and they are men who have opposed the adjustment of the Oregon question, and the settlement of the Northeastern Boundary. And one thing further strikes me, that, while there are of this school of politicians men whose views were heard in either house of Congress, and through the columns of all the newspapers, big with taunts, threats, and defiance to England, they are the men that, in all our own legislation upon tariffs and currency, act exactly the part that a British minister would most desire they should.
I know that confidence is to be placed by man in man. I feel the conviction that I must repose trust in somebody's hands to stand at the head of the nation, to uphold our essential interests, and to preserve the honor and peace of the country. I have made
up my mind, and I give that trust to the Whig nomina
tion, to GENERAL TAYLOR. I think he is bound up and wound up in his own principles and in his own declaration. I think with Mr. Buchanan, that he is a Whig, and I think he will be elected by the Whigs. I think he will surround himself, as Mr. Buchanan says, with a Whig Cabinet, and I believe he will honestly and faithfully adopt and pursue Whig principles and Whig measures.
Now I know that, on a certain other topic, great fears are inspired elsewhere, as well as in this State, in order to effect the election. I know that in a most respectable society in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and containing numbers in other States, measures have been taken to influence them to give their votes either for the Free Soil party or for General Cass. I mean the Society of Friends. In thirty years of public life, I have formed a pretty general acquaintance in those States which I have mentioned; and I have the pleasure to know a great many men of this Society, the Society of Friends. I have always entertained a great respect for their public conduct as well as their private character. I have acquaintance with some, friendship for some, great personal regard for some, and to them I may venture to speak; and I would say to them, in the first place, that whatever else may be asserted before them, every vote given for Mr. Van Buren is a vote for General Cass; and the friends of General Cass, I think, will find that out. Why, Gentlemen, I was in New York last week, and while there, one gentleman of the Cass party said to a Whig,“ We shall elect General Cass; there is no doubt of that.” “But how?” “Why, the Liberty party, four years ago, helped us to elect Mr. Polk against the Whig candidate, and the Free Soil party will do just the same thing now." And therefore I say to those to whom I would now speak, whom I know to be urged in every variety of form to vote with that party, that every vote they give in that direction goes for General Cass. The question is, Do they prefer General Cass to General Taylor, as a man of peace, ay, as an antislavery man? I say to them, as I say to you,—and they do not suppose me, I trust, to be a pro-slavery man,- I say to them and to you, upon my honor and conscience, that I believe, under the present circumstances of the country, we are far more secure against the further progress of slavery and the slave power under the adıninistration of General Taylor, than we are under the
administration of General Cass. I will say that here. Let it be recorded, and let the result bring to the test the justness of the prophecy.
Gentlemen, it may be long before I shall again see you in this place in which we are assembled. I do not regret to have been invited hither; I am glad of an opportunity to unbosom myself upon the present condition of the country. I have done it. And I can only express the fervent hope in Divine Providence that while we while our children, in ages to come - can continue to assemble in this hallowed place, to deliberate upon great political and national subjects, it may always be with that intelligence and uprightness, that pure patriotic spirit, and that high and determined resolve, which I believe at this moment animates the great body of the Whigs of Massa. chusetts.