Every true Southern man must be gratified that the illusion of European
intervention has disappeared — that the gay bubble has burst — and that we no longer occupy the humiliating attitude of supplicants for European
favor An independent national existence achieved by such aid would be in reality the most degrading provincialism, and leave in our own minds a series of obligation and dependence which would embitter all the fruits of victory.
The world at large would feel no respect for a people who had not the strength to vindicate their own cause, and who were willing to accept as a boon from others what they had not the capacity to achieve for themselves.
In addition to the damaging moral effect of such a position, we should be compelled to give an equivalent for the assistance and protection rendered us, which would be as hard a bargain as shrewd diplomatists could wring from the necessities that required their aid. We have been ourselves ready to give them in consideration of their help, our whole commerce and manufactures and our entire coasting trade — concessions which would have reduced us to the condition of the East Indian provinces of England
, and left us with nothing but a bare nominal existence among nations.
What is a nation without commerce and manufacture?
Exactly what the South
has been under the old Union--a mere dependency, and tributary of that people by whom its commerce and manufactures are absorbed.
Indeed, we had some advantages under the old regime,
such as representation in the Government
which reduced us to this condition, which we should not enjoy if tributaries of England
The influence of both Governments, moreover, would be always adverse to our domestic institutions, that of the former especially, whose Exeter Hall philanthropy has fomented the fanaticism of the North
for the last half century.
This would be the smallest price we should have to pay for foreign intervention, and we might be thankful if it did not end in converting us into nominal as well as real provinces of Europe
From such a degradation we have been saved by the persistent refusal of Europe
to interfere in the American
It has, also, delivered us from maternal chronic hostility with the North
, which, if we should achieve our independence by foreign aid, would always taunt us with our own weakness, and be ever on the alert to the advantage of it.
When the interests of European
nations require them to break the blockade, they will break it; but not from regard to us, but themselves.
Northing that we can say or do will after that policy, except that it may be hastened and rendered certain by a vigorous and prolonged assertion of our rights.
But when is comes, it will be from no love of us, and will establish no claims upon our gratitude.--It will come as a necessity to them, not a favor to us, and will entitle them to no commercial or manufacturing or any other advantages at our hands.
We shall achieve our own independence, we shall foster and encourage our own industry, we shall carry our own products in our own ships; in one word, we shall become a power of the earth in reality as well as in name.
We have a higher ambition than simply to be whacked off from the clutches of the American Eagle
by the tail of the British Lion
We have a higher ambition than peace purchased at the price of vassal age to any Government.
Our country must not only be free, but great, prosperous, and powerful.
Is not such a result worth fighting for?