« PreviousContinue »
welfare or future preservation. That neither is it in one short-lived day that he can forget his own or father-land-dissever every natural tie of kindred and former home-obliterate the recollection of every early association, and become identified in spirit and feeling with this, his newly-adopted country. Nevertheless, he is generally found amongst the most busy, and, we regret to add, the most uproarious in his interference at every election; classing himself as of the ultra-democracy of the country, and frequently carrying his notions of liberty, in the exercise of his newly acquired right, to the verge of licentiousness. · These excesses were also much increased by the religious feeling and embittered acrimony evolved in them; for the distinctiveness of the Irish emigrant population ; their unity and combination has unwisely formed them into a diverse and separate community, apparently of separate interests and feelings from the native citizen, of which one or other of the great political parties that divide the country are always ready to take advantage; and by the means to which they invariably resort, to incite, and indirectly encourage a state of things, that they are generally themselves the first and loudest to condemn; and for which it would be unreasonable, indeed unjust, to charge the emigrant as the sole, and undivided cause. Whenever the balanced state of parties, in any intersection of the republic, may have heretofore rendered the ascendancy of either in the least doubtful, the co-operation
DISLIKED BY THE NATIVE AMERICANS. 61 of the Irish Catholic has always been eagerly sought for; their religious and national prejudices for the while encouraged; their very faults lauded as the explication of every known virtue, by the party who may hope to profit by their support, that seldom fails to draw forth, as a countervailing medium, the virulent and intemperate denunciations of their opponents, by whom every fault is bared, and in intelligible form laid before the world. Their national peculiarities, their most trifling digressions, under an exaggerated interpretation, are amplified into crimes of the most repulsive and dangerous kind, destructive of all social order and peace, and totally subversive of that rational liberty which they are permitted to enjoy in common with every citizen. Their religious creed is assailed with the ascerbity and bitterness of individual and sectarian dislike, and represented in its principle, and general influence as antagonistic of the political freedom; the republicanism of which every American is alike jealous, and ready to defend with his life. Prejudices and animosities are thus engendered, and crowd around the emigrant on every side; even those, who, for sordid or party purposes, make use of him for the while as a political weapon in their hands, become tainted with the national dislike; and only wait the opportunity, as in the late instance in Philadelphia, to make common cause with every native citizen, under the common banner of American nationality, to curtail him in his privileges, or to uproot him from the soil, the expatriated home of his recent adoption.
A strong prejudice is also very unfortunately created against the emigrant, from a supposition in the minds of the industrial, or working classes of American citizens, who erroneously attribute the occasional dearness of provisions, and of all other necessaries of life, in the Eastern or Atlantic States, to the great annual influx of a foreign population. This fallacy is nevertheless very general, contrary to the evidence of their other senses and the numerous and manifest truths within their experience; proclaiming to them the fact, that to the emigrant's exertions, their labour and industry, is the nation in great part indebted for its extended national improvements, its public works that bear daily and irrefragable evidence of their usefulness, with very many other advantages derivable from their sojourn in the country.
Constitution of the United States—Origin of its system-Legis
lative power-Local or State governments-Anomalous state of American legislation-States rights and resolutions—South Carolina in 1832 and 1833– Governor McDuffie — Tendency of the General Government to usurp the power of the individual States—Late President Harrison - His theory of government
- Difficulty in negotiating with foreign nations—The necessity of some better defined power resting in the Federal Government for this purpose-President of the United States—His mode of appointment—The term for which he should hold officeNo person but a natural born citizen eligible to the situationProvision in the law in case of death, removal, &c.--His immense patronage and power— His irresponsibility— President Jackson-His dangerous usurpations in the governmentCommercial crisis of 1837 induced thereby–Senate of the United States—How constituted—The materials of which it is composed-Its general character— The character and general state of demoralization of the Lower House-Charge of habitual intoxication of its members publicly made by Hon. Henry Wise, representative from Maryland.
The Constitution and Government of the United States is of a federal republic. The origin of its system had its rise from a General Congress, which first assembled in the city of Philadelphia, in the year 1774, composed of delegates chosen by the House of Representatives of each of the thirteen old colonies, except Georgia. This State, having after
wards acceded, increased the number to fifty-four and a president.
The unjust and oppressive conduct of the British Parliament against these colonies aroused the indignation of the entire population, who, impatient of control, and the restrictions to which they were made subject, by a solemn act of Congress, July 4th, 1776,* renounced all allegiance to the crown of Great Britain, and declared the American colonies free and independent states, and at the same time published articles of confederation and perpetual union between the States, in which they assume the style of the “United States of America,” and decreed that each State should retain its sovereignty and independence, and every other power not delegated to Congress.
These articles of confederation, after eleven years experience, being found inadequate for the purposes they were intended, delegates were chosen in each of the United States, to meet and fix on other necessary amendments. They accordingly assembled in convention in Philadelphia, in the summer of 1787, when a new constitution, more suited to the general exigencies, was adopted. · Under this constitution, which formed a compact between the thirteen original States, the legislative power remained separate and divided in part be
* See Appendix (letter C), for the American Declaration of Independence.
+ See Appendix (letter D), for the Constitution of the United States and amendments thereto.