Patrick Henry, eponymous of the University. “Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect every one who approaches that jewel.”

Posted by Doug_Huffman 1 year, 11 months ago to Politics
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Excerpt from page 46 of the MS. “
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But, sir, a number of the people of this country are weak enough to think these things are too true. I am happy to find that the gentleman on the other side declares they are groundless. But, sir, suspicion is a virtue as long as its object is the preservation of the public good, and as long as it stays within proper bounds: should it fall on me, I am contented: conscious rectitude is a powerful consolation. I trust there are many who think my professions for the public good to be real. Let your suspicion look to both sides. There are many on the other side, who possibly may have been persuaded to the necessity of these measures, which I conceive to be dangerous to your liberty. Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect every one who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined. I am answered by gentlemen, that, though I might speak of terrors, yet the fact was, that we were surrounded by none of the dangers I apprehended. I conceive this new government to be one of those dangers: it has produced those horrors which distress many of our best citizens.
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SOURCE URL: https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Henry%27s_speech_in_the_Virginia_Ratifying_Convention


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  • Posted by freedomforall 1 year, 11 months ago
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    Thank you, Doug_H. Excellent quote and quite pertinent today, especially the boldfaced section and the warning that followed:

    "nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined. I am answered by gentlemen, that, though I might speak of terrors, yet the fact was, that we were surrounded by none of the dangers I apprehended. I conceive this new government to be one of those dangers: it has produced those horrors which distress many of our best citizens."

    For the purposes of individual liberty the Articles of Confederation were a superior document to the Constitution. The Articles did not provide loopholes enough for an Empire to be established.
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