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annually; besides the civil list, the rents to lands-lords, with all the ramifications of the aristocratical machinery of oppression, that clings to the vitals of that suffering people; a pieture from which the American reader would turn away withe dismay and disgust.
THE WORKINGS OF ARISTOCRACY. Thus I have taken a birds-eye view of what aristocracy has done, and is now doing in our world. There is a most sur prising uniformity in the tacticks of aristocracy in every country, their mode of attack is also uniform. First-they disfranchise the working class, degrade and oppress them, by monopolizing the whole of what they produce, and calling them the swinish multitude, the peasantry &c. The working men create all the wealth, the comfort, and convenience, and defence too of any nation. Aristocracy has but the small arms in our happy country yet, but by-and-bye, they will bring their heavy artillery, to bear upon us the people; they claim the exclusive right of all the banks and monied institutions, all the colleges and high schools, & of filling the Halls of legislation and courts of law, and all the offices of trust and profit; while we, the rabb e, the swinish multitude, the peasantry, are born to subserve the whims, and caprice of our betters, the well-born, and be their drudges, and we and our posterity, be their “hewers of wood, and drawers of water." Else how comes it, that though
are in the fifty-fifth year of our Independence, and yet some hundreds of thousands of our citizens do not know a leto ter in the alphabet, and are forbidden by law, the right of suffrage!! Let us ask how happens this criminal neglect. The blame attaches itself clearly and exclusively to the men who have so long loved and served the people!! The men who have so long represented, or rather misrepresented us in the state and national legislatures. The states have been in the practice for years, of exchanging their laws with each oth
If the representatives of the people were ignorant of the manner of framing school laws for the state or for the United States, they have the examples of New-York, and New-England, before them, so that they are without excuse. It is a base neglect, a total disregard of the best interest of the Republic, mistaken views of the very intention of government, the most palpable dereliction of duty, and trifling with the solemnity and sacredness of the oath of office. But these men are well aware if there was a good system of national and state education established for the intellectual improvement of our whole population, such men as they are, could never be elected to legislate for the people. Such men could not be sent, year after year to the seat of government, to riot on the people's money; & to meet in clubs, in groups and parties, at each others boarding-houses, to play cards, drink wine and brandy,and smoke cigars. Some of those gentlemen have made the mighty boast among
their friends, that they have been able to bring home, the wages of some ten or a dozen of their fellow members by their superior skill in the mysteries of card-playing, &e. A man of strictvaracity, walked into a long room in Richmond, ą noted boarding-house for gentlemen legislators, and was astonished at seeing 20 tables, with 20 packs of cards. Why is it, that the honest upright member, who considers himself not the ruler, but the agent—the servant of the people; and endeavors to serve the republic faithfully and conscientiously, needs more courage, than the officer who commands a forlorn hope, it doing his duty in the midst of the sneers, the scoffs and taunts of those gentry; and by their united efforts, all their cunning, trick and stratagem, oppose every thing that would be for the real interest and benefit of the community, and laugh out of countenance, the man who advocates it.
Fellow workmen and fellow citizens, I have endeavored to give you a portrait of the aristocracy of the ancient and modern world, of its rise and progress, and dreadful evils, by a fair onvarnished relation of simple plain matters of fact, in hemospun dress. I write not for critics, but I write emphatically for truth, which has no need of factitious ornaments; but is like the beautiful women, travellers tell us they have seen in Georgia and Circasia, that are perfectly angelic, though dressed in rags; or like Burn's beauties in their every day dress—mair bra than when theyre fine." I address myself to men of com• mon sense (the best of all sense,) having a long experience and some observation in the world. I wish to impress this momentous truth, deeply on the minds of my fellow citizens, and let us never lose sight of it, that aristocracy is the only enemy we. have to fear, foreign or domestic. It is that fell spirit that cast the devil and his angels out of heaven, that cast our first parents out of Paradise, that nerved the murderous arm of Cain to kill his brother, that brought the righteous judgment of God on the. whole world in the deluge; that brought fire and brimstone from heaven on the cities of the plains, destroyed Cora and his company in the wilderness. The same spirit killed all the ho. ly prophets and apostles, yea, crucified the Lord of life and glory; has been the ruin of all the ancient republics, and of all the ancient nations, and every nation that is yet to fall, will be by the madness, the folly, wickedness and extravagance, of that same hedious monster aristocracy. All authentic history, sacred and profane, ancient and modern, civilized and savage, abun.. dantly shows the unrelenting cruelties, the unfeeling oppressions and sanguinary laws of aristocracy. Witness the law of England, that condemned to death a poor boy,(one of her star. ving millions,) for stealing a piece of a goose-berry pye, not long since. But it is a lamentable truth, that the spirit of aristocracy, has taken deep root in our own land of light, of liberty, and of equal rights. It has always existed amongst us, since the first settlements made on the shores of America, and has lately shown its hateful deformed pbiz, with bold and daring effronte ry in the South, in Georgia and South Carolina, and even in Congress; but more especially in the Virginia Convention. While we are disgusted with the sophistry, management and
manoeuvreing of the aristocrats, with not one syllable of sound reasoning or argument on their side, we are charmed with tho ability, patience, sound and powerful argument, inflexible republican principles, and undeviating integrity of the friends of equal rights and rational liberty, in that house. The greatest regret that I feel as an American and a Virginian, is, that three of our revolutionary sages, and Patriots, were of that body, and participated in the debates, and voted and acted on the wrong side of the house. One is constrained, on this occasion, to blush, as he who would hear of his father doing some disgrace ful thing. But they may say, they have achieved a mighty tri umph, over the just rights and liberties of the people of Western Virginia. But their triumph will be a short lived one, for they have clearly laid the foundation, for a revolution in the state, having made no legal provision for amending what they call a constitution. But say they, a majority of the people will adopt the constitution, offered for their acceptance or rejection-a most lamentable apology this. They were the guardians of the rights and interests of the people. They should have most religiously, secured the equal privileges, rights and liberties of the whole state, laid the foundation for the emancipation of the slaves, instead of perpetuating that worst of evils, and laid the foundation for educating the children and youth of the state, rich and poor, without distinction, by a tax on property. But instead of this, the misrule of the few ov er the many has not only thwarted, withered and crushed, but has actually frozen up the energies of the state; till Virginia, the oldest, the largest, and the best state in the Union, is two centuries behind New-York;and without a radical change, wil soon become the fag end of the republic. And if ever our hapру
Union is divided, is severed asunder, it will be done by the bloated pride obstinacy, blindness, avarice& ambition of aristocracy. The immense resourcas of our highly favored state, are locked
The revenuo is perverted to the worst of purposes by these epheniral poate
cians. No man should ever be elected, who sets himself up for office with loud professions of loving and wishing to serve the people; depend upon it, he wishes to love and serve himself at our expense; and we the sovereign people should set him down. No man should be chosen to represent the people, in any capa. city, who is not well known to be the friend and advocate of a : universal system of education, by a tax on property, for all the children of the republic, without any invidious distinctions.
Indeed Congress should without delay appropriate the rev: Cenue arising from the sales of the public lands, for the sole purpose of establishing colleges and female academies, in every State and Teritory in the Union, to be the property of the State, or teritory in which in is located. As to internal improvement, though it ought to be done on the largest scale, it should always be done by companies without taxing the people. Such objects will amply support themselves, if judiciously managed and no one injured, while the whole community would be benofited. Each State should make provision, by law, for her own primary schools; every wise, honest, and patriotic American, wishing to transmit our fair and enviable inheritance unimpared to posterity, must with the most anxious solicitude, direct the undivided energies of the people to the education of our whole population. Many fine writers have discussed this all important subject in the most masterly manner; among which we find a well written piece in the North American Review.
“We must be indulged in a brief appeal to patriotism in fur. therance of a course, which abler pens than ours, might be well employed in recomending. We have hitherto abstained from arguments drawn from our political condition, but they are too powerful to be passed over in silence. There is a solemn responsibility resting upon every real republican to strengthen the foundation upon which republicanism rests.This foundation is knowledge and virtue in the mass of the people. With them the physical force of the community re