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“  the State or Prince refuse or neglect to succor a body of people who are exposed to imminent danger, the latter being thus abandoned, become perfectly free to provide for their own safety and preservation in whatever manner they find most convenient, without paying the least regard to those, who by abandoning them, have been the first to fail in their duty.” How could the people within the Confederate States provide for their safety and preservation except by obedience to and compliance with the laws. Every act was measured and determined by laws in antagonism to those of the United States, although in many instances the same language was employed and the same end intended for its people, as for those of the United States. Still they were adopted in antagonism,. because adopted by States which had withdrawn from the Union and were at war with it. Their non-observance was remedied by themselves, and the United States were powerless to prevent or hinder,--leaving but one course to the citizen, i. e., submission to the powers that were. Trying the case by this rule, “interpreting and enforcing the contract with reference to the condition of things created by the acts of the governing power,” it results that the Government of “The Confederate States of America” and its constituent members had the power, and exercised it, of making laws for their own government and that of its citizens:--that the citizen had no escape from them :--that this contract was made freely and voluntarily, and was lawful,--“interpreted with reference to the condition of things” at the time of its creation; which “made,” as Chief Justice Chase says in the opinion already quoted, “obedience to its authority in civil and local matters, not only a necessity, but a duty.” It has been repeatedly held that the Government of the Confederate States was a government de facto, with belligerent rights. In Smith v. Brazleton, 1 Heis., 46, Judge Nelson, a statesman and jurist, in whose opinion we see the hand of a master, said, “That although municipal rights of sovereignty remained in the United States during the late civil war, and could be reasserted whenever and wherever the Government was successful in arms, yet while the war was pending and wherever the Government was unable to assert its authority, the belligerent rights of the parties to the war were precisely the same, and neither could lawfully assert any belligerent right superior to or different from the other.” It must be conceded that it is a belligerent right of the first importance to use gunpowder; the right to use carries with it the right to procure by purchase or manufacture, and in the manufacture the right to all the means in reach for its accomplishment. Then if it was lawful for the State to do these things, by what rule is it unlawful for the citizen to contribute to the lawful act of his State? The State, as a State, cannot manufacture powder, but must do it through employees or persons,--individual constituents of the aggregate composing the State. A State having a right may employ all the means necessary to the enjoyment of that right, and it is a gross solecism to say that the State may lawfully
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