time—even if he had been competent—to investigate for himself, and deduct proper conclusions.
Moreover, the doctrines of Dane
, Story, Webster
, were the platform, nay, the very soul of his party.
Confiding in the honor of these expounders, he unqualifiedly accepted their treasonable perversions, and they, more than he, are responsible for the bloody consequences.
From their premises and arguments he concluded that coercion of States was constitutional and proper.
It is evident that he was more sinned against than sinning.
He was a person of fair intellect, slight education, limited knowledge, no research, kind heart, jocular disposition, and credulous and confiding nature-just the man, with his inexperience in statesmanship, and his vague and hazy notions of political ethics and constitutional history and law, to be misled by the sophists of his party, and to be the instrument of crafty political Jesuits.
He was not a man to contrive wickedness, to wilfully subvert the Constitution
, and to build his greatness on his country's ruin, but he could be moved by various pleasurable and delusive pleas and pretexts to do what he would have shrunk from with horror, had he understood the designs and seen the hearts of the movers.
At any rate, upon the ground indicated by the above extracts, the Southern States
were coerced, VI et armis
, for four years, and at last brought to writhe under the heel of Federal military power.
At first, Lincoln
's above-quoted dicta sounded like a huge joke, which was laughed at, until army after army from the ‘Northern Hive’ marched down, to perpetrate it upon the South
; whereat the laugh changed, for the joke was the fiat of an irresistible mob, that had become a great party, and for many years had fanatically surged like the many-voiced sea against the barriers of the Constitution
In glancing at some of this unfortunate man's conclusions, from the arguments and assertions of his aforesaid teachers, we shall see that derision would be the fittest notice, but for the abhorrent consequences.
Acting upon their doctrines, he made this land dark with death and mourning.
But his guilt to that of his teachers, morally, is as much less as ‘homicide by misadventure is less than that with malice prepense,’ page 234. If we had time we would like to pursue his analysis of Lincoln
's opinions, and his contrast of those with the opinions of General Washington
; to see how far the former deserves the sobriquet sometimes given him of the Second Washington
—but time forbids.
Above all, we should be pleased to quote his masterly demonstration of his fourth point—‘That the Federal
government is not only without authority, but is actually prohibited to coerce the ’