the mind; from a defect in reasoning.
It is a species of insanity.
One of the most striking characteristics of insanity, in many instances, is, forming correct conclusions from fancied or erroneous premises; so with the anti-slavery
fanatics: their conclusions are right if their premises are. They assume that the negro is equal, and hence conclude that he is entitled to equal privileges and rights, with the white man. If their premises were correct, their conclusions would be logical and just; but their premises being wrong, their whole argument fails.
I recollect once of having heard a gentleman from one of the Northern States
, of great power and ability, announce in the House of Representatives, with imposing effect, that we of the South
would be compelled, ultimately, to yield upon this subject of slavery; that it was as impossible to war successfully against a principle in politics, as it was in physics or mechanics.
That the principle would ultimately prevail.
That we, in maintaining slavery as it exists with us, were warring against a principle — a principle founded in nature, the principle of the equality of man. The reply I made to him was, that upon his own grounds we should succeed, and that he and his associates in their crusade against our institutions would ultimately fail.
The truth announced, that it was as impossible to war successfully against a principle in politics as well as in physics and mechanics, I admitted, but told him it was he and those acting with him who were warring against a principle.
They were attempting to make things equal which the Creator had made unequal.
In the conflict thus far, success has been on our side, complete throughout the length and breadth of the Confederate States
It is upon this, as I have stated, our social fabric is firmly planted; and I cannot permit myself to doubt the ultimate success of a full recognition of this principle throughout the civilized and enlightened world.
As I have stated, the truth of this principle may be slow in development, as all truths are, and ever have been, in the various branches of science.
It was so with the principles announced by Galileo — it was so with Adam Smith
and his principles of political economy.
It was so with Harvey
, and his theory of the circulation of the blood.
It is stated that not a single one of the medical profession, living at the time of the announcement of the truths made by him, admitted them.
Now, they are universally acknowledged.
May we not therefore look with confidence to the ultimate universal acknowledgment of the truths upon which our system rests?
It is the first Government ever instituted upon principles in strict conformity to nature, and the ordination of Providence
, in furnishing the materials of human society.
Many Governments have been founded upon the principles of certain classes; but the classes thus enslaved, were of the same race, and in violation of the laws of nature.
Our system commits no such violation of nature's laws.
The negro by nature, or by the curse against Canaan
, is fitted for that condition which he occupies in our system.
The architect, in the construction of buildings, lays the foundation with the proper material — the granite — then comes the brick or the marble.
The substratum of our society is made of the material fitted by nature for it, and by experience we know that it is the best, not only for the superior but for the inferior race, that it should be so. It is, indeed, in conformity with the Creator.
It is not for us to inquire into the wisdom of His ordinances or to question them
. For His own purposes He has made one race to differ from another, as He has made “one star to differ from another in glory.”
The great objects of humanity are best attained, when conformed to his laws and degrees, in the formation of Governments as well as in all things else.
Our Confederacy is founded upon principles in strict conformity with these laws.
This stone which was rejected by the first builders “is become the chief stone of the corner
” in our new edifice.
I have been asked, what of the future?
It has been apprehended by some, that we would have arrayed against us the civilized world.
I care not who or how many they may be, when we stand upon the eternal principles of truth we are obliged and must triumph.
Thousands of people, who begin to understand these truths, are not yet completely out of the shell; they do not see them in their length and breadth.
We hear much of the civilization and christianization of the barbarous tribes of Africa
In my judgment, those ends will never be obtained but by first teaching them the lesson taught to Adam
, that “in the sweat of thy brow shalt thou eat bread,” [applause,] and teaching them to work, and feed, and clothe themselves.
But to pass on. Some have propounded the inquiry, whether it is practicable for us to go on with the Confederacy
without further accessions.
Have we the means and ability to maintain nationality among the Powers of the earth?
On this point I would barely say, that as anxious as we all have been, and are, for the Border States
, with institutions similar with ours, to join us, still we are abundantly able to maintain our position, even if they should ultimately make up their minds not to cast their destiny with ours.
That they ultimately will join us, be compelled to do it, is my confident belief; but we can get on very well without them, even if they should not.
We have all the essential elements of a high national career.
The idea has been given out at the North
, and even in the Border States
, that we are too small and too weak to maintain a separate nationality.
This is a great mistake.
In extent of territory we embrace 564,000 square miles and upwards.
This is upwards of 200,000 square miles more than was included within the limits of the original Thirteen States.
It is an area of country more than double the territory of France
or the Austrian Empire
, in round numbers, has but 212,000 square miles.
, in round numbers, has 248,000 square miles.
Ours is greater than both combined.
It is greater than all France
and Great Britain
, including England
, and Scotland
In population, we have upwards of 5,000,000, according to the census of 1860; this includes white
The entire population, including white
, of the original Thirteen States, was less than 4,000-000 in 1790, and still less in 1776, when the independence of our fathers was achieved.
If they, with a less population, dared maintain their independence against the greatest power on earth, shall we have any apprehension of maintaining ours now?
In point of material wealth and resources, we are greatly in advance of them.
The taxable property