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As a member of the committee, I feel no hesitation in saying that if there be a member here, not determined to go
with us, to the extent of our measures, I prefer now to take my leave of him, rather than be deserted when the clouds darken, and the storm thickens upon us.
This admonition I owed to candor-I have paid it, not because I doubted; my purpose is settled, my mind reposes upon it-I may be in an error-if I am, I hope my country will forgive me—from my God I shall never need it, because he knows the purity of my motives.
I will now state the reasons which influenced the committee, in recommending the measures now before us.
It is not the carrying trade, properly so called, about which this nation and Great Britain, are at present contending : were this the only question now under consideration, I should feel great unwillingness (however clear our claim might be) to involve the nation in war, for the assertion of a right, in the enjoyment of which the community at large are not more deeply concerned. The true question in controversy, is of a very different character; it involves the interest of the whole nation: it is the right of exporting the productions of our own soil and industry to foreign markets. Our vessels are now captured when destined to the ports of France, and condemned by the British courts of admiralty, without even the pretext of having on board contraband of war, enemies' property, or having in any other respect violated the laws of nations. These depredations on our lawful commerce, under whatever ostensible pretence committed, are not to be traced to any maxims or rules of public law, but to the maritime supremacy, and pride of the British nation. This hostile and unjust policy of that country towards us, is not to be wondered at, when we recollect that the United States
are already the second commercial nation in the world. The rapid growth of our commercial importance, has not only awakened the jealousy of the commercial interests of Great Britain, but her statesmen, no doubt, anticipate with deep concern, the maritime greatness of this republic.
The unjust and unprecedented demands now made by Great Britain, that we shall cause the markets of the continent to be opened to her manufactures, fully justifies the views I have suggested.
That we as a neutral nation, should interfere between belligerents in their municipal regulations, will not be contended for by any one. From the course pursued by that nation for some years past, it evidently appears, that neither public law nor justice, but power alone, is made by her the test of maritime rights.
What are we now called on to decide ? It is whether ve will resist, by force, this attempt made by that government, to subject our maritime rights to the arbitrary and capricious rule of her will; for my part, I am not prepared to say, that this country shall submit to have her commerce interdicted or regulated, by any foreign nation.-Sir, I prefer war to submission.
Gontinuation of Mr. Grundy's Speech on the report of
the committee of foreign relations. OVER and above the unjust pretensions of the British government to embarrass our trade, for many years past they have been in the practice of impressing our seamen from merchant vessels ; this unjust and lawless invasion of personal liberty, calls loudly for the interposition of this government. To those better acquainted with the facts in relation to it, I leave it to fill up the picture. My mind is irresistibly drawn to the west.
Although others may not strongly feel the bearing which the late transactions in that quarter have on this subject, upon my mind they have great influence. It cannot be believed by any man who will reflect, that the savage tribes, uninfluenced by other powers, would think of making war on the United States. They understand too well their own weakness, and our strength. They have already felt the weight of our arms; they know they hold the very soil on which they live as tenants at sufferance. How then, are we to account for their late conduct? In one way only; some powerful nation must have intrigued with them, and turned their peaceful disposition towards us into hostilities. Great Britain alone,
has intercourse with those northern tribes; I therefore infer, that if British gold has not been employed, their baubles and trinkets, and the promise of support and of a place of refuge, if needful, have had their effect.
If I am right in this conjecture, war is not to commence by sea or land, it is already begun; and some of the richest blood of our country has already been shed ; yes, in one individual has fallen, the honest man, the orator, and the soldier. That he loved his country none can doubt-he died to preserve its honour and its fameI mean the late commander of the cavalry. You, sir, who have often measured your strength with his, in forensic debate, can attest that he in a good degree, was the pride of the western country, and Kentucky claimed him as a favourite son. For his loss, with those who fell by his side, the whole western country is ready to march; they only wait for our permission; and, sir, war once declared, I pledge myself for my people—they will avenge the death of their brethren.
Another consideration drawn from our past conduct demands the course we have proposed. In the year 1808, congress declared that this nation had but three alternatives left; war, embargo, or submission; since that time no advantageous change has taken place in our foreign relations ; we now have no embargo, we have not declared war ; I then say it, with humiliation produced by the degradation of my country, we have submitted. Mr. Speaker, I derive no pleasure from speaking in this way of my country, but it is true, and however painful the truth may be, it should be told.
Another reason operates on my mind ; we stand pledge ed to the French nation to continue in force our nonimportation law against Great Britain ; without a violation of national faith we cannot repeal it. What effects is the operation of this law producing ? It is demoralizing our citizens men of commercial habits cannot easily change their course of life ; those who have lived in afluence and ease cannot consent to beg for bread. No, sir, they will violate this law, they will smuggle ; and sir, in politics, as in private life, if you wish men to remain virtuous, lead them not into temptation.
This restrictive system operates unequally; some parts of the union enjoy the same advantages which they possessed when no difficulties attended our foreign relations; others suffer extremely. Ask the northern man, and he will tell you any state of things is better than the present; inquire of the western people why their crops are not equal to what they were in former years ; they will answer that industry has no stimulus left, since their surplus products have no markets; notwithstanding those objections to the present restrictive system, we are bound to retain it-This, and our plighted faith to the French government, have ticd the gordian knot; we cannot untie it; we can cut it with the sword.
This war, if carried on successfully, will have its advantages--we shall drive the British from our continent-they will no longer have an opportunity of intriguing with our Indian neighbours, and setting on the ruthless savages to tomahawk our women and children-That nation will lose her Canadian trade, and by having no resting place in this country, her means of annoying us will be diminished. The idea I am now about to advance is at war, I know, with the sentiments of the gentleman from Virgi. nia; I am willing to receive the Canadians as adopted brethren; it will have beneficial political effects; it will preserve the equilibrium of the government. When Louisiana shall be fully peopled, the northern states will lose their power ; they will be at the discretion of others ; they can be depressed at pleasure, and then this union might be endangered-I therefore feel anxious not only to add the Floridas to the south, but the Canadas to the north of this empire.
Extract of a Speech in Congress, by the Hon. John RAN
DOLPH, on the second Resolution, reported by the com mittee of foreign relations:--A reply to Mr. Grundy.
IT is a question, as it has been presented to the house, of PEACE or WAR. In that light it has been argued ; in no other light can I consider it, after the declarations
made by members of the committee of foreign relations. Without intending any disrespect to the chair, I must be permitted to say, that if the decision yesterday was correct, “ that it is not in order to advance any arguments daginst the resolution, drawn from topics before other committees of the house”-the whole debate, nay, the report itself on which they are acting, is disorderly ; since the increase of the military force is a subject at this time in agitation by the select committee raised on that branch of the President's message. But it is impossible that the discussion of a question broad as the wide ocean of our foreign concerns involving every consideration of interest, of right, of happiness and of safety at home-touching, in every point, all that is dear to freemen,“ their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honour !" can be tied down by the narrow rules of technical routine. The committee of foreign relations haye indeed decided that the subject of arming the militia (which I pressed upon them as indispensible to the public security) does not come within the scope of their authority. On what ground, I have been and still am unable to see, they had felt themselves authorised (when that subject was before another committee) to recommend the raising of standing armies, with a view (as has been declared) of immediate war :-a war not of defence, but of conquest, of aggrandisement, of ambition : a war foreign to the interests of this country, to the interests of humanity itself.
I know not how gentlemen calling themselves republicans, can advocate such a war. What was their doctrine in 1798-9, when the command of the army, that highest of all possible trusts in any government, be the forin what it may-was reposed in the bosom of the father of his country !-the sanctuary of a nation's love the only hope that never came in vain! When other worthies of the revolution ; Hamilton, Pinkney and the younger Washington, men of tried patriotism, of approved conduct and valour, of untarnished honour, held subordinate command under him. Republicans were then unwilling to trust a standing army even to his hands who had given proof that he was above all human temptation. Where now is the revolutionary hero to whom you are about to