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[43] patronage and favor. Agriculture or the cultivation of the soil has ever been considered in all ages and in a countries as the grand support and pillar of all governments; it is the aliment on which all the other classes depend and without which the ligaments of civilized society would fall asunder and man revert back again to his original barbarism. In a government constituted like ours, where the rights of man are fully recognized, based on the principles of equality, it exhibits itself in another amiable point of view. Its gains being slow but sure if attended with industry and frugality, it keeps up that equality which the constitution recognizes, and which is the beau ideal of theorists. In this point of view it may be considered as the safeguard of America and the bulwark of liberty. The commercial and manufacturing interests which we contend (in reference to our little community) are preying upon the vitals of their common father, in a national point of view are doubtless deserving the patronage and protection of government, but no one, I presume, will contend that these interests are more important than that of agriculture. In fact, wherever there is a conflict of interests in a municipal community, it is idle to pretend that one part of the community should be taxed for the support of the establishments of the other. This is so inconsistent in itself, so palpably absurd and unjust that few are to be found who would not be ashamed to avow such a principle, yet to what other cause can we attribute the present opposition to this measure from within the peninsula? I know they would endeavor to have a pretense because we are not united to a man in our own section. But has this any weight? What right have they to interfere in a question of interest which relates to ourselves? We expect satisfactorily to prove to the committee that this opposition is more in sound than reality; that more than four-fifths of the landed property and three-fourths of the taxable property are on the side of the petitioners. But admitting it was not so, admitting that we were equally divided upon this subject amongst ourselves, is it for the town of Charlestown to decide which of the two parties are the most disinterested and which the most selfish? But what course has the town pursued on this subject? In the first instance, they

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